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June 21, 2016

#thesideshow June 21st 2016 Flash Fiction Shouts & Murmurs Future Move (A Submission for the New Yorker) by Dan Patch & Lola Nation

She suggested that with the inheritance from her step-father and my recent lottery winnings we move to Alaska. We would first kidnap her ex-lover’s daughter so she wouldn’t have to bear children and she was fairly attached to that one.

No one would come looking for us in Alaska. She said she’d keep house and I’d be a crab fisherman.   She said I could claim that she’s my half-wit sister. She suggested that I would get to work with my hands and we could tell stories to the locals that would impress them and build a following similar to the minions we’re use to, “…but this time Jerry, we’d be living a normal life.”

I have a psychic gift that I use occasionally when someone thinks they can interrupt present circumstance to adjust their future. I put on my Mexican wrestling mask, grab a flashlight that blinks from red to blue in strobe fashion. I tell her to get comfortable, I’m about to foretell the future for her.

Here, look into the crystal ball

It’s cold, wet and dark.

I’m writing you a letter.

Dear Sophie,

I’m sorry that you didn’t get to leave the State, that was a bad rap you got for kidnapping and trying to cross Stateline with a minor. I’m sure that one day you’ll be out and I wanted to let you know what it’s like in the future, living in Alaska, as a crab fisherman. I’m having a hard time writing this because I’m missing some fingers (because that’s what happens to fingers on boats).  I’m kind of drunk too.  I started drinking when I lost the first finger, so, like 4 or 5 fingers ago. Anyway…

I got sick of the tweaker-eskimo neighbor parking his truck in my spot.  Every day I told him “one igloo, one spot!” It wasn’t long before I took my shot at the Eskimo bastard, using six and a half fingers (not bad!), I was there in between his three Suzuki Samurai’s he’s been restoring forever, and it went right through his igloo living room window.

The bullet went through the skinny tweaker-eskimo-bastard (it’s just a big fur coat) and out the back igloo window, down the igloo Street, and hit the one postal worker in the igloo post office/99 Cent Store. She worked there 45 years, back when it was a Dime store with Blue Chip Stamps n’ all- you could get a canoe!

I’m sure you heard it on the news (do you get to watch news?) They said, “City folk move here and go postal.” (you shoot one postal worker…shit)

Oh yeah, and me and a 40 ounce Zima? That’s malt liquor trouble…with a twist of lime. Who knew Alaska was the only place that still sold Zima? Maybe it’s brewed in Norway now? Brewed, heh, however it’s made. What is that shit anyway? Like schizophrenic 7up?

I put money on your books, knock yourself out at the commissary. — Feet

I look up from the strobing flashlight and tell Sophie the rest of the oral future history.

I go to mail your letter, right and as I take off on my ‘85 Honda Elite scooter (the 250cc red one with corvette flip headlight held up with duct tape…hell yeah!) my Capri Light 100 falls out of my good hand (with three fingers, fine, ok, two fingers and a thumb)

The first turn I took I hit that black ice shit. I’ve heard about it on YouTube but never seen it in real life. I was wide open, doing 18+ mph, when I crashed head first into a snow bank. Stuck head first in snow, I never really thought about the polar bears before moving. Didn’t we kill them all off with the Indians?

Anyway, I’m alive but face down, ass up, that’s the way I like to…be eaten alive by a giant prehistoric bear! You never said let’s go live in a dark frozen place where giant bears live because that’s like living in Florida. Need I say more? Ok, then. I will.

I would have made that turn with just one more finger I bet.

I would have been saved in the “big city” even if I was just a head on a box with a bunch of tubes running from it.

The local Dr/Postal Worker/Snow Plow Driver was not available for some reason when I crashed. So my head, still alive head, just froze solid in the snow. Like when kids are found in swimming pools after an hour and are still alive… from the cold or whatever?

The local Sheriff said that the last thing the half frozen head mumbled was

“Damn you Deadliest catch…Damn all the Tattoo shows. No that’s a flower on my neck, not a gang tattoo! I have a..ne…ck?”

The Sheriff told local news on TV “That’s what them Zima drinkin’ scooter stealin’ felonious addicts get!” and then a public service announcement was made on behalf of the Sherriff’s department to call the local Sheriff/Plumber/Gun Shop if you are missing a head…or a scooter.”

Look, maybe Florida? I know zombies run real fast now, rape homeless guys and eat face meats but how fast do alligators run or do they have crocodiles?

The crystal ball clouds up and the future is gone.


Written by Dan Patch and Lola Nation, original Venice artists. Lola is a writer and is presently working on a litearary awareness campaign “Poetry in Lingerie.” Dan is a tattoo artist who sometimes writes for his manifesto, you know, the one you leave behind when you jump off the roof of the Westside Pavilion, just after setting yourself on fire…