” ‘Comes the revolution…’ ” / Memorable Fancies #1822

[(In a dictatorship) “it is customary to ask the victim if he agrees with his fate, and it is also customary for the victim to say yes.” -- Slavoj Žižek If even one victim dared refuse, dared say “no,” the entire system might collapse. We wait patiently for this to happen, for the corrupt and tyrannous realm to come to ruin; but by the time the victim appears on the platform, moving his head up and down rhythmically, repeatedly, we know that this one, just like all the others, has been … [Read more...]

“The Mysterious Emails” / Memorable Fancies #1705

You begin to receive emails with long, seemingly meaningless, sequences of letters and numbers. A code, it seems, perhaps a message, but you can’t find anything in these sequences that have meaning – they seem to be random, just noise. But then, you’re no statistician or code-breaker, so maybe they do mean something. Why are you receiving them? You don’t know. After two weeks the emails stop coming. That afternoon, visitors arrive at your home, knock politely. Calmly, they apologize for … [Read more...]

“The Promotion” / Memorable Fancies #1704

[“Are they natural bodies promoted to the rank of statues after slight alterations or a ripening period?” – Michel Leiris] “In honor of your long service,” the Leader said, “we’re making a statue out of you. For the city square, you know, facing the Palace.” Quite an honor, I thought, after that troubling disagreement when... But then I saw in an aide’s hands a hammer, chisel, another behind him awkwardly pushing a wheelbarrow of freshly mixed concrete, another pulling a wooden form … [Read more...]

“More Drama” / Memorable Fancies #841

        During the intermission, an usher appears and slips you a folded note bearing the seal of the Great and Feared Leader. You unfold it; it is blank. Now you know what will happen in Act 2. <END> THE PITCH If you liked this post, please tell your friends and share a comment here or on Facebook or other social websites. For an author profile, list of publications, and other information, see www.terencekuch.net. To browse or buy any of the author’s novels or story … [Read more...]

“Laughter” / Memorable Fancies #775

[“...a convulsive laughter without joy, full of dread.” – Hugues Le Roux]     The Leader is about to tell a joke. We know from his slight smile, from the way he holds his lips and cocks his eyebrows, that he is about to tell a joke. That joke. He has only one. Since we all laugh heartily every time he tells it, it’s the only joke he needs.        Sometimes I think he knows what he’s doing to us, how he toys with us, how the joke’s on us. But we are still alive, still laughing, roaring with … [Read more...]

“Home” / A Memorable Fancy #256

We arrived as tourists, learned the local words for “please,” “how much?” and “thank you,” patronized trinket sellers. The woman shopped for idle things, found little. “We should go on to St. Tropez,” she said, “but I like it here. It’s quiet, orderly. I don’t want to leave just now.” We considered the passport hassles, immigration grilling. And we and our sons especially enjoyed this place, I had to admit: a grandeur of palaces, splendid marches, speeches. So we stayed, almost flying on or … [Read more...]