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The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
05 January 2020 @ 10:49 am



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Prison Break Fanfiction
I write primarily non-shipper general fiction, and some Lincoln/Michael slash pieces as well. Yes, I know they’re brothers… and no, I normally wouldn’t be writing brothercest. That said, if it’s not your thing then please stick to the General Fiction section.

                  Prison Break Gen Fiction                      Prison Break Slash Fiction

Supernatural Fanfiction
Supernatural also deals with two brothers, who in this case are bound together in the pursuit of demons and vengeance. An excellent overview of this show and its characters can be found here.
                  Supernatural Gen Fiction                      Supernatural Slash Fiction

Other Fanfiction: Iron Man, Die Hard 4, Chuck, White Collar, Burn Notice, Reaper, and more

Original Fiction and Non-Fiction Stories: Miscellaneous Original Fiction // Real LJ Idol Season 8 // LJ Idol Exhibit A // LJ Idol Exhibit B // LJ Idol Season 9


 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
23 March 2017 @ 12:13 pm
Our daughter comes home Saturday for Spring Break, so I'm looking forward to that. We'll have about 5 days total before she flies to visit a friend in D.C. for the remainder of the week, as she did last year (the extra leg in the trip was her Christmas present). At this point, I'm lucky to have 5 days off in a row—including the weekend ones! Gah. This work schedule means that on Tuesday nights, the next day seems like it should be Thursday. But is not. :(

I don't know what we'll do while our daughter is here, but I'm betting a trip to Ernesto's is on her list. She picks Mexican restaurants based on their guacamole, which often is all she eats. :O

I've been catching up with post-hiatus The Walking Dead, and could not hate the whole Negan plot-line more. I realize that it's in the graphic novels, but it's much too hard to watch. Reading with illustrations is much less assaultive than viewing. I don't much care for the new group of people recently introduced, either. There's a certain ant-colony feeling to them. Not quite a Borg collective, but similar. And cold. :(

We watched Mememto last weekend with TeenSon. I had remembered the basic memory-loss plot and that the movie was good, but I'd forgotten the details of why it was so good. Telling the story in reverse was really the kicker—the viewer remembers the main character's thinking from his "future," and progressively learns how wrong he is and why. Still genius. :)

Books: I've read a couple of Temperance Brennan novels my mother sent back with me at Christmas—both re-reads, as it turns out, but it's been long enough since the first time. I previously finished Anne Tyler's Vinegar Girl, a retelling of The Taming of the Shrew that was a quick and enjoyable. I'm finishing something on the Kindle, too, and then I'll pull something off the e-book list to read next. We have some passed-along books around the house that I'm trying to get through, so I might be able to resist going to the library to raid the shelves. Maybe. It's been months, though, and the urge really builds up. Fresh books!

So, taxes aren't done yet, work is still mainly 6 days a week and a lot of weeknights, and I'm eating too much chocolate. What's new with you?

 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
19 March 2017 @ 12:41 pm
The End Of An Era
idol season ten | week twelve | 801 words
Salty

x-x-x-x-x

"All right, it looks like everyone's here, so let's get started."

"I don't even know why we're doing this," the anchovies complained. "What's the point of talking about how we feel? It doesn't change anything."

"Sharing sometimes helps us feel less lonely," the French fries said.

The anchovies sniffed. "Speak for yourself. Except for Caesar salad and the occasional pizza, I've been out of favor for decades. You want to talk about loneliness? You're a little late to the party."

The olives shrugged. "None of us are as popular as we used to be. With so many aging Baby Boomers watching their blood pressure, salty foods are the first thing to go. I still get gigs on nachos and pizza, and the kids use me to make space-alien fingers at Thanksgiving. The grownups, though? It's like they hardly know me! My cousins, the greens, still get cocktail work. But half the time, they don't even get eaten. Straight into the garbage, like some kind of decoration…"

"Exactly," the pickle said. "Man, I used to be in the middle of everything. At delis, I was the go-to guy as the extra on a sandwich order, and for hamburgers and some of the sandwiches, I was part of the main event! They even sold me at Disneyland for a while, jumbo dill pickles the size of a jam jar, for five whole bucks. The Japanese tourists loved me. Boy, those were the days."

"No kidding." Over at the coffee pot, the beef jerky sighed and poured a fresh cup. "Salt used to be a valuable commodity! People mined it out of the ground and traded it for jewels and gold, for crying out loud. Now we're, like, pariahs."

"Some of us more than others." The pickle jostled the bag of potato chips sitting next to him. "Being salty and high in fat has to totally suck, am I right?"

"At least I'm fun at parties," the chips said. "I get invited everywhere."

"Hey," the olives said. "Speaking of fatty foods, where's bacon?"

The macaroni and cheese rolled its eyes. "He says there's a bacon renaissance going on, and he doesn't need help with his self-esteem."

"Geez, what an ego," the movie popcorn huffed.

"I know, right?" The canned soup passed the box of donuts around. "Must be nice."

The hot dog scooted his chair forward. "It's so hard to let go of what we had. I mean, I used to be part of the whole American ballgame experience. I'm still there, but I just don't feel important anymore. If I didn't have pretzel right there in the same boat as me, don't know what I'd do. He just gets me, you know?"

The other foods sat quietly, feeling sad. Apart from the corn chips and chile con queso, none of them had that kind of special bond, and oh, how they wanted it.

The French fries looked around the room. "Spam, we haven't heard from you yet."

"Not much to tell, really. Still big in Hawaii, still ignored on the mainland. It could be worse. When I get noticed around here, it's usually someone sneering at the ingredients, or the can, or the jelly coating, or whatever. Being overlooked isn't always bad."

The macaroni and cheese nodded. With its artificial colors, flavors, and mysterious additives, it was happy being a comfort food and escaping close scrutiny, even if it was nearly toxic to anyone on a low-sodium diet.

The French fries checked the clock. "Well, our time is up for this week. I think this was a good first session, with a lot of important sharing. Our next meeting is in two weeks, same time and location. For those of you who are also in the Fatty Foods support group, that meeting is next door and starts in ten minutes. Thank you, everyone. Please fold the chairs and put them against the wall before you go."

The pickle stacked his chair, and snagged the last remaining donut. It was a plain glazed, hardly worth the calories, but Eh—a donut was a donut.

The potato chips walked past.

"I suppose you're headed for the fatty-food follow-up?" the pickle said.

"Yeah, so?"

"So, do you know that ice cream gal who goes to that meeting? I've seen her around. She's hot. Well, not hot, but you know what I mean."

"Not really."

"Dude, get your head out of the bag! She's, like, three scoops of gorgeous with a maraschino cherry on top." The pickle shook himself. "Man, would I ever hit that!"

The potato chips rustled and shuddered. "Gross."

"Why? I totally would."

"Ice cream and pickles? Plus, you're covered in warts."

"Yeah, so, who isn't?" The pickle leaned in an elbowed him. "No, seriously, be a pal…

"You think you could introduce me?"


--/---

If you liked this story, LJ Idol community members can vote for it along with many other fine entries here.

 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
11 March 2017 @ 01:21 pm
So, it's my second weekend of working an additional day, thanks to management planning screw-ups at the office. I was at it late last night (after a day of uncooperative equipment and wasted time), then we did housecleaning because my son wanted to host a "deco" (decorating) party for a school event. We did one last November, in which teenagers were in and out of the house for about 6 hours.

For HalfshellHusband and me, being introverts, that is basically a distinct and prolonged version of Hell.

So, today's party was to mostly be outside, since the weather is good and painting will be happening. At ten minutes to FPKAT (First Potential Kid Arrival Time), we had a plumbing event.

I.e., water started burbling up out of the toilets, bathtub, and shower because the outtake to the main sewer line suddenly became clogged. Well, not JUST water. /o\

So we are now hosting an event from 11-4pm in which nobody can use the bathrooms. At least there's a public park with bathrooms about 3 blocks away, but still.

Because, you know, the day wasn't fun enough already. :(


 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
The Kingdom Between The Shores
idol season ten | week eleven | 1115 words
The Blue Hour

x-x-x-x-x

Poseidon blamed the Romans.

Renaming someone without his permission—a god, no less—showed a distinct lack of respect. It had all been downhill from there.

Once, Poseidon had ruled the seas, in all their blue vastness and glory. Now, those days were but a memory. As the Greek Empire had diminished, so had Poseidon's influence. The Romans had honored him for a while, but were changeable by nature and in time had absorbed still other gods in place of the old.

Poseidon and his fellow gods had been appalled and their wrath mighty, but both it and they had been largely ignored.

Decades of scarce sacrifices and libations had gone by, and then centuries. Without the adoration and offerings of worshippers, Poseidon had finally been forced to make harsh changes that, frankly, were beneath his dignity.

Most significantly, he had been obliged to seek employment.

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If you enjoyed this story, you can vote for it along with many other fine entries here.

 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
02 March 2017 @ 01:19 pm
Managerial Discretion
idol season ten | week ten | 1033 words
Take a hike!

x-x-x-x-x

Griblitz loved his job in Hell.

Well, -ish.

As much as one could love anything in Hell. The combination of Hell and "love" was confusing, like a triple negative that kept flipping from Yes to No until it was spinning. Much like his Afterlife, really…

What Griblitz did not love was working in Limbo, or the relocation costs of moving from Limbo to Hell and back, depending on his current Evilness Index standing. If Hell was confusing, Limbo was even more so. Griblitz would have preferred to stay in Hell full time, but he kept tripping himself up and crossing over one line or the other. He aspired to be Bad with a capital B, to fulfill his demon calling.

He just wasn't very good at it.

His last job evaluation came back with a personal scorch mark of disapproval from the big "S" himself: Needs More Cruelty.

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If you enjoyed this story, you can vote for it along with many other fine entries here.

 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
01 March 2017 @ 12:29 pm
For those of you thinking about signing up for Second Chance Idol, or who have seen Idol stories on their friends-lists and wondered, "What is that about?", your last chance to sign up for Second Chance Idol and submit your first story is this week. Please don't delay! And hey, what have you got to lose?

I'm still working on this week's entry for the main Idol competition. I have the idea, but could not stay awake last night to do much with it (Moot Court activities kept us out late), and my office is now asking people to put in 20% time if possible, which is draining energy as well as time. As if work weren't unpleasant enough already... /o\

We've had a break in the perpetual rain, so I've been able to get out biking this past week, seen previously buried parts of the bike path near home, and... tried to scrape some of the leaves out of the mud in our garden, which is thisClose to being a lost cause except where it may hurt or eventually kill plants (the roses and azaleas, of which there are a TON).

At some point, I really need to start in on the taxes. Hey, I bought TurboTax 2016 from Amazon! That's the first step. :O

We're watching Season 6 of Doc Martin on Netflix streaming, partly because much of Season 7 left us thinking, "Huh? When did this happen?" Well... apparently, the season we thought we were waiting for already went by, so we were two seasons behind. \o? We have S7 on the DVR/Tivo, and many episodes have a lead-in of Ian McNeice stumping for Public TV, which I have to force myself to fast-forward through. Bert Large is probably my favorite character on the show, and that's what is coming through in those lead-ins: a very large man who has his own particular brand of odd charm, and is willing to use it. :)

So, March. Can't say I'm sorry to see the back end of February, but it's early days yet.

 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
21 February 2017 @ 12:36 pm
Streetcar Scoundrels
idol season ten | week nine | 708 words
The Trolley Problem

x-x-x-x-x

The problem wasn't just the trolleys parked on the sidetracks after dark. Those mouthy ones, who clanged their bells at skirts and smoked the newspapers riders left behind? That bunch was trouble, and everyone knew it.

But it was bigger than that, much more widespread. Cities everywhere had trolleys, and anyone who thought their little downtown darlings were better behaved than the tourist-trade riff-raff was kidding themselves.

The breed itself was flawed.

Maybe it was the electricity, scrambling the brain and eventually taking its toll. After too many years on the rails, there was nothing left but a hum between the wheels and a never-ending thirst for the juice. Or it might just be the restlessness trolleys were prey to, with every line and circuit lit up and buzzing with the burning need to go somewhere new.

Either way, the results were inexcusable.

There were reports of trolleys marauding the streets in packs, spoiling for a fight. They would cluster at intersections waiting for delivery trucks to approach, and then lunge at them. The trucks might be crushed, or just shaken enough to spill their loads across the roadway. Afterward, the trolleys would slink back to their byways and depots, their destructive urges sated until the next time.

They were too smart to pull those pranks in broad daylight, of course. Anyone who claimed to have witnessed the nocturnal hunting expeditions was dismissed as drunk or crazy.

The trolleys didn't take well to strangers, either. Every year or so, a new streetcar would be added to the line. After dark, the other trolleys would gather around it, jeering:
     "Well, now, would you look at this?"

         "Just who does he think he is, with his fancy paint and polished brass?"

              "We're gonna knock some of that shine right offa him!"

City officials always blamed the damage on vandals. Everyone knew the downtown area was rife with crime.

A few of the trolleys were more dangerous and unbalanced than most. They would run their routes for months—years, even—acting solid and reliable, and then one day pedestrians would step into their paths and the cars would mow them down. The trolley conductors claimed they had done everything possible to stop the cars, and accident investigators always decided that the trolley's brakes had failed.

The other streetcars knew better. They called it going rogue.

Once trolleys developed a taste for attacking humans, they rarely got past it. They all hated humans to begin with—the way people stomped and scuffed with their dirty shoes, or spilled their food and sticky beverages on the floor, or banged the poles with their briefcases and luggage. Once in a while, someone (usually a child) would offer that rare praise of, "Oh, what a pretty trolley!" But usually, trolleys were the means to an end—reaching a destination, or an experience to be felt and then checked off the list.

A rogue streetcar would start racking up incidents like a two-bit robber on a Mom & Pop corner-store spree, and eventually it would be deemed too hazardous to keep on the line.

Rogue streetcars were decommissioned. It was their fate.

The trolley would be loaded onto a flatbed and driven away, never to be seen again. But that didn't stop rumors.

Some said the cars were stripped down to bare metal and rendered scrap to be melted into something new—stepstools, shovel heads, toilet handles, toy airplanes for tourists, or any number of unimaginable things. Others said that was ridiculous, and that the cars were probably dumped in scrapyards and left to rust.

But all trolleys hoped that the wheels were treated differently.

The soul of a streetcar was in its wheels, those wheels that only ever wanted to travel whatever parts of the world they could.

Inside their forged and welded metal hearts, the trolleys dreamed that the wheels of decommissioned cars were saved and used again, perhaps on those shiny metro rail systems or elevated trains. None of those modern creations were as beautiful as trolleys, or as beloved by tourists.

But they were fast, lightning fast at times, and all wheels were the same.

No matter the track or the chassis they sat in, wheels always wanted to run.


--//--

If you enjoyed this story, you can vote for it along with many other fine entries here.

 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
20 February 2017 @ 02:08 pm
Remember a post from around the summer, where I found a bird's nest in my gardening hat and was thinking that The Boy might have put it in there as a prank?

I pulled that same hat off the peg in the garage last weekend, and it was again occupied by a bird's nest. Except this time I knew for sure I had put it away the weekend before—no chance of leaving it out unguarded. There's also the matter of an artificial flower display I have outside, where fricasseed bits of it wind up on the ground or a table top in the breezeway. For a while, I thought the cat was getting up on the fence next to it at night and going nuts. Or maybe the raccoon that gets into the yard. But last fall, I kept catching glimpses of movement over there, and a tiny bird would fly out of the flowers. I checked to see if it was trying a nest in there, and it wasn't. However... one of the flowers wound up as nesting material in the hat inside the garage.

I cannot fathom why a bird would want to build a vertical nest inside something it has to sneak into—and can only get to when the side door to the garage is open (which, okay, is most of the time, but still). Nevertheless, it appears that is not an accident but a plot. I put the nest in the crotch of a tree by the patio, hoping someone might reuse it.

The rain here has worn me down to the point of, "Could you STAHP? I mean it!" We will be at 8 consecutive days of it by the time this round ends, after the previous stint of 5 days, and then 6 before that. My legs are tired and cramped from biking in the garage, and running is still out due to the plantar fasciitis. Boy, do I wish I could do some running right now!

Some random recs: Movie-wise, The Skiptrace is streaming now on Netflix. It's a basic Jackie Chan flick, silly but entertaining, and with a lot of extended "found object" fight scenes (this is Chan's genius, for us). Parts are a little strained and ridiculous, but there is a also lot of gorgeous Mongolian and Chinese scenery, which balances that out.

Book-wise, I'm finishing up Neal Shusterman's Challenger Deep. This an "unreliable narrator" extravaganza, told in short sections which alternate parts of a strange sea voyage (with a pirate captain and his crew) with a teenager's life in suburban America. At some point, it becomes apparent that many events in both stories are the same, but wildly abstracted. The reason becomes clear as you continue to read, but that bleed and resolution are just fascinating throughout. Almost finished, and then I'll start a Pascoe and Dalziel mystery. :)

In fan fiction, I've been reading Band of Brothers slash (just finished a gorgeous pre-series arc called Lancaster County yesterday). This is in between writing my Idol entry, of course, and then soon I'll be reading Idol entries and back at work, wondering why these 3-day weekends don't come up more often.

For music, it's more Rag 'N Bone Man: Lay My Body Down, and Hard Came The Rain. Yowza.

So, is everyone else ready for winter to be over? Or summer for those in Australia, which is probably just past its worst point now?

 
 
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
15 February 2017 @ 01:35 pm
We had some 5 1/2 days without rain, but now another week of storms lies ahead. We aren't in the danger range below the Oroville Dam, which got very hairy for a lot of people a couple of days ago. Never have I thought about a dam in the same way as a would-be jumper on a ledge: "Don't give up now! Keep fighting, you can do it!" People have been allowed to return to their homes, and the hope is that enough water was let out of the dam to at least get through the upcoming storm without risk of the dam breaching. *fingers crossed*

In my area, the twist was hitting a sunny stretch and looking forward to getting out on the bike path again, only to discover that the majority of it is underwater because more water was released from Folsom Dam in preparatory panic. People who live above the dam say the water level is still so low that they can see extended dirt patches revealed over the five-year drought. And that it's ugly and they would like more lake again. ;) Downriver, I worry the bike path will be damaged by being under water for so long (possibly washing out in areas), plus that river (the American) will back up already when it rains because it's a tributary to the Sacramento River, and that will rise quite a bit. In the meantime... it is hard to get miles in on surface streets near my house, with so many lights and stop signs. Who would have thought it would be my office-route cycling that would save me?

Also, I have entered Season 5 of Chuck in garage-biking viewing. I started S1 sometime in November of this year. \o?

Surprises: About 2-3 weeks ago, I spotted three teenage boys on the soccer field at our neighborhood park. One of them was a dwarf with a wave board, and he and another kid were in swimsuits. It was probably 52o at best. Were they maybe taking pictures? In the dead of winter? It was one of those, "Wait, am I really seeing this?" moments, with such an unexpected combination of unusual people and things.

Not a surprise: While warming down in my neighborhood after a bike ride, I came across two people in banana suits driving around in a white SUV. They waved and I waved, but if they hoped to give me a jolt, well, Hah! I live with the original banana boy! I did briefly think our son should organize a banana-suit flash-mob event, but I have no idea how he would go about that...

Listening to: Still kind of ensnared by Bob Moses' Tearing Me Up, even though it's more pop than I usually like, But the longing! The inability to walk away! I don't recommend the official video—the actors are way too young for the mood of the song—and I haven't found anything else by that group that I like, but that song? Yes. Then I was hooked all last week on Rag 'n' Bone Man because of Human, which has one of the single most annoying openings ever, and after 60 seconds settles down into, "This man should sing the blues forEVER. Damn." He doesn't look what you'd expect, and he's British, but he has the voice for that genre and he knows how to use it. Wow.

Work awaits, though I'm sure I had more weirdness I meant to share. Maybe it'll come to me later? \o?

ETA: My crack-inspired Idol entry, in case you missed it...