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Archive for the ‘Non-fiction’ Category

Driverless

In Non-fiction, Writing on August 12, 2012 at 11 pm

Google test drove its robotic car 140,000 miles—at least 1,000 of them autonomously—on California highways before we found out. I say we but really I mean they, as in the government who, no doubt, will one day decide whether robots are allowed to wait in line at the DMV alongside humans or not.

The government got a clue after a reporter inquired about the top-secret project and Google fessed up. Google then hired a lobbyist to nudge Nevada into becoming the first state to allow autonomous vehicles onto its roads. For their likely* law-breaking treks in California no punishment did they receive. Read the rest of this entry »

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Post Script

In Non-fiction, Writing on August 12, 2012 at 11 pm

He’s still in the box he came in, sitting on the same shelf we sat him on days after his death. Always an unceremonious bunch, the idea of spreading his ashes seemed stilted, yet chucking his last remains seemed, even for us, too flippant. So on the shelf he went, among the few souvenirs, keepsakes and mementos that evidence my family’s time in yesterdays.

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Love Story

In Love, Non-fiction, Writing on February 13, 2011 at 12 am

A lady in a nursing facility passed away recently. Her name was Janet. She’d lived there for eight years and for the entire eight was in a complete vegetative state. She was one of the few residents of the nursing facility that visitors felt uncomfortable looking at.

It was the look on her face that did it. Janet’s mouth was always half-open and in her eyes was terror, pure terror.

She lived mostly paralyzed with exception to her hands, which were aways shaking. She often held those shaking hands up near her face. This shaking, in proximity to her terrified eyes, made it appear as though she believed she was being attacked and was fearfully defending herself. It is a terrible thing, the face of someone who is being attacked from within. 

When visitors to the nursing facility saw her they looked away and would think that life can be cruel, to leave some of us so ravaged yet alive, unable to rest in peace.

Table Therapy

In Food, Non-fiction, Writing on February 6, 2011 at 1 am

Extraordinarily full and fully contented, we sat before two empty plates, two empty wine glasses, one small bowl lined with congealed butter, and one large bowl containing the shell remains of our Dungeness crab dinner.

Satisfaction is generally inherent in eating and the quality of the meal is often reciprocal to the level of satisfaction: the better the dish, the deeper the satisfaction. But this meal went beyond mere lip-licking fulfillment. The joy it provided was not confined to the belly; our smiles were not simply lingered tastes on the gums and teeth, coaxing the cheeks upward. Though aided by the convergence of good weather, good tastes and good company, the crab—rather, the process of cooking and eating it piece by piece—stirred in us a large happiness.

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Loose Stiffs

In Non-fiction, Writing on February 6, 2011 at 1 am

They gave us all similarly marketable skills and a lesser number of jobs requiring those skills and in the resulting donnybrook those with wild confidence and bravado won out.

In the selling of self, color me the shy eyed hooker, losing the John to a multiplicity of brave catcalls and kissy faces.

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Later I Awoke

In Non-fiction, Writing on February 6, 2011 at 12 am

The odds were favorable. Still, a gun to the head is a gun to the head.

The gun was removed from its holster quickly. The man, as he put it against my head, explained, “This gun holds one-hundred bullets. It is loaded with only three.” He spoke with a casual confidence about my favorable odds.

But at that moment the odds didn’t matter at all: I was terrified of that gun. It was holding bullets and the trigger would be pulled.

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