Friday, April 30, 2010

Story #88 - Chainsaw Juggling - MBD #30

We have made it to the end of the Month of Bad Decisions! Thirty stories in thirty days. You can catch up on the entire month here. And a big thank you to everyone who contributed this month: Nazanine Hozar, Lewis KellyMichelle Wright, Heather Mann, and andrea bennett!

I don't know about you but I'm exhausted, so this blog is going to be off next week. But we'll be back with a new story on Monday, May 10. In the meantime, you can contribute to the blog by submitting a story, poem, or whatever you want by reading the guidelines and emailing them to me. I hope you enjoyed the Month of Bad Decisions, and please continue to read the blog! Enjoy today's story.

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Chainsaw Juggling
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

If this is your very first time doing this, don’t turn them on just yet.

***

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Story #87 - Red Velvet Cake, by andrea bennett - MBD #29

Today is the second to last day of the Month of Bad Decisions! April has been pretty great, I must say, and we've had some amazing writers come in and share their stories. And now we have one more: andrea bennett!

andrea bennett is a first-year creative writing MFA student at UBC. Her work has appeared in the Antigonish Review and Broken Pencil. She is also the incoming poetry editor for PRISM international. Thanks, andrea!

Just a small programming note: Tomorrow will be the last day of the Month of Bad Decisions, then the blog will go on hiatus for a week. But I'll be back with a new post on Monday, May 10. And a reminder - I do take submissions year-round, so please send in something for the site. Now enjoy andrea's story!

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Red Velvet Cake
by andrea bennett

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I decided that I could eat the red velvet cake.

This was after I decided that celiac's disease was a naturopathic figment of North American imagination. Someone, somewhere had made it up in order to sell more buckwheat flour.

The cake had a bounce and an elasticity that'd become unfamiliar. Cream cheese icing that measured an inch thick.

Just look at that crumb, I said to my roommate, who belonged to the cake. So fluffy! So moist!

You can probably have gluten sometimes, right? she replied. Like, it's not going to kill you or anything.

My roommate and I buttressed each other's bad decisions, meaning that we ate nothing but red velvet cake until all of the red velvet cake was eaten.

Do you think my insides are dyed now? My roommate licked her plate.

It was red velvet cake day two.

I farted.

I do not want to know what my insides look like now, I said.

I think I am going to have to open all the windows in this house, said my roommate.

Excuse me. I am going to go the bathroom, I said.

After I left the bathroom three days later, I decided to buy shares in buckwheat flour.

***

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Story #86 - Watched Too Many Movies - MBD #28

The end of the Month of Bad Decisions is in sight! Only 2 days left!

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Watched Too Many Movies
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was going to have a movie marathon. But this wasn’t going to be a lame one, that was only two or three movies. I was going to watch every movie in my collection, one after the other, only stopping for food and bathroom breaks. I wasn’t going to go outside on nice days like today. I was going to do my part.

So I started with a movie that was about three hours long, just to get into the mood. It was one I had seen a million times before. It still held up. Then I got up, put in the next one, and watched it. That was my exercise – getting up to change the movie. Although I would have preferred if my DVD player could just do that automatically, that would be great. (Later I found out about Netflix Watch Instantly, but that is another bad decision for another time.)

Two things happened to me. One, I didn’t sleep. I had accounted for the fact that I might get tired and drift off, but that didn’t occur. I stayed up and watched every second. The other thing was that after watching only movies, I started to believe that I myself was in a movie. That it was my duty assigned by the story to watch these over and over until the end of my days. If I didn’t something bad would happen. Or alternately, the hero would eventually come and wake me out of my movie-induced hibernation, and say something about “freedom” or something stupid.

Unluckily for me I had one of those new “social responsibility” TVs, so after 3,000 hours a blue screen came up saying “THIS IS FOR YOUR OWN GOOD,” and the TV shut itself off, never to be turned on again. I would have gotten upset, only I could no longer move. I was stuck to my seat.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Story #85 - Went By Something New, by Heather Mann - MBD #27

It's the last week of the Month of Bad Decisions, and I have for you today a new story by Heather Mann!

Heather Mann, originally from Waterloo, Ontario, is an award-winning graduate student in psychology, who has been known to perform brain scans of people. Thanks Heather for submitting a story!

Another reminder, if you want to submit something for the site check out the guidelines and email it to me. Please enjoy today's bad decision!

***

Went by Something New
by Heather Mann

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was feeling a little ragged after floating for hours in hypothermic water, having my throat punched in by a theatre crewman, and getting well-acquainted with the cement floor of a prison cell, so I thought I might spare my body this time. I decided to change my name.

I spent some time brainstorming all variety of terrible name choices. I thought about “George Bush”, but I figured some folks might view it as hip irony. Next, I considered names like “Jackass”, but again, that seemed like it could almost be cool. In the land of bad decisions, I didn’t want to live in the suburbs; I wanted to be right downtown. I decided to go with “Pervy Creep”.

Who knew that changing one’s name entails a jungle gym of bureaucracy? The legal forms took hours to fill out, and the government kept sending them back, thinking I’d misspelled or something. Then try convincing the ID issuers you’re for real. Even my colleagues didn’t really buy it; a few made cracks about how Pervy suited me, but they soon reverted to calling me by my former title. And it’s harder than you might think to train yourself to just ignore the name you grew up with. I think there’s psychological research on that.

So, I felt like in my journey to get to the land of bad decisions, I was just waiting around at the bus stop. It was time to get going, to go for broke. I walked into the first tattoo parlour I saw, and gave the dude my order: “I answer only to ‘Pervy Creep’,” in easy-to-read black font, across my forehead.

Amid the sheer agony of the tattoo needle, I imagined my future grandchildren, gazing up at me with cherubic faces, and begging, “Grandma Creep, tell us about another bad decision!”

***

Monday, April 26, 2010

Story #84 - Frost Burn, by Michelle Wright - MBD #26

Hi there! Today we have an amazing story by a great author: Michelle Wright!

Michelle is a Canadian writer, currently finishing up the MFA program at the University of British Columbia. Her work has appeared in the magazines Grain and subTerrain. She is also a good friend of mine, and like all the writers for LOBD, she is awesome at everything. Thanks, Michelle!

Just a reminder - if you're interested in submitting something, read the submission guidelines and send something my way. In the meantime enjoy Michelle's story!

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Frost Burn
by Michelle Wright

It figured was probably a bad decision to bury it in the playground. I mean some kid could run after a ball or something and step on it. Maybe they would trip. And the location was also very practical. The body was really heavy.

If you run over someone’s dog and no one’s around to see it, did you really run over someone’s dog? Or did the dog just run away? Or get kidnapped? Or go to a picturesque farm somewhere with wide open spaces to chase friendly chickens in?

In any case, it wasn’t breathing, so I decided to bury it in playground mulch. Unfortunately, just as I was elbow deep in dirt and sand, a bell rang and the elementary school beside the park puked kids at me. They were screaming and frothing and I took off with the body, because, really, who knew what those kids would do to it? They don’t understand reality at all.

So I took it home and now I’m stuck with it. I’ve made a nice spot in my freezer, right by the chicken breasts and peas. It’s pretty comforting actually. Who knew a frozen dog could be such a great addition to your life? I’m pretty sure I’m going to take it with me when I move.

***

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Story #83 - Put My Fingers In An Industrial Fan - MBD #25

We're heading into the last week of the Month of Bad Decisions! Here is today's story, please enjoy.

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Put My Fingers in an Industrial Fan
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I’ve always been told that you are not supposed to put your fingers in a fan. But I thought, how bad could it be? I mean maybe your finger gets nicked. I should be smart enough not to lose anything. So I tried it on the nearest fan. Unfortunately it had one of those grills on the front, so I couldn’t get through. I outsmarted it, though, and took it off. The fan was a little plastic thing, and you know what? It wasn’t that bad. I put my finger there, and the blades stopped moving. It was neat. I was able to bring something like this to a halt.

I tried a wooden ceiling fan, just stuck my hand up there. The same thing happened. It hurt a little bit, okay, but it wasn’t bad like I’d heard so often. I tried a metal fan, and yeah it was a bit more painful but it was just like the rest. I liked stopping these fans from working, nearly (I thought) breaking them.

I had a friend who worked somewhere that had an industrial fan. So I asked him one day if I could take a tour of the facility. He let me, and we went all around the floor. When he got to the fan he said, “Don’t go near there,” and I said, “Okay,” and I ran away before he could react and I stuck my arm inside.

Oh, the blood.

***

Friday, April 23, 2010

Story #81 - Insulting A Zebra - MBD #23

The Month of Bad Decisions only has one week left! Can you believe it? Here's today's story, and please do submit your own for the site. In the meantime, you can catch up with the rest of this month here.

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Insulting a Zebra
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I read a poll once that said that zebras were the worst animals. I personally didn’t agree, but I thought that they could be made fun of. So I went up to the nearest zebra and said, “hey, look at this poll.” I showed him the results. The zebra seemed impassive, but I could tell that he was secretly hurt.

“Hey, what’s more useless than a zebra?” I said. “Oh wait, nothing. Sorry, I keep forgetting that.” The zebra looked in my direction, then looked away. Clearly he did not want to respond. But that wasn’t good enough. “What do you call a zebra with no legs?” I said. I couldn’t think of an answer, so I said “Who even cares!” It wasn’t a great joke, but the zebra still didn’t respond. So then I just started calling it names like “worthless” and “stupid” and “stripey.” The zebra eventually wandered off, and I assumed I had won and that the zebra was going to go home and think about its uselessness.

When I got home I was the subject of a scathing post on the zebra’s blog, and he received 1,526 comments all agreeing that I was the worst person in the world. My IP address was blocked from all websites, ever, including email. I was also evicted from my home, due to complaints from neighbors that I was too shitty to be around. So I am thinking of ways to get back at that zebra. I am thinking of writing a tell-all book.

***

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Story #80 - Played In Wet Cement - MBD #22

There are only eight days left in the Month of Bad Decisions! Make sure you submit your story or poem soon. Meanwhile, enjoy today's story.

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Played in Wet Cement
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was walking down the street and I saw this cement that was being put in this sidewalk and there was no one around, so with my finger I wrote the words “FUCK” and “SHIT” in there. I thought it was fun. The only thing was that I wasn’t able to wash my hands in time, so my finger actually became encased in cement. Which kind of sucked.

There was a big uproar in the community, trying to figure out who had written those obscene words in the sidewalk. They filled it in, sure, but they were very upset. Town leaders held hearings and everything. So I hid. No one was allowed to look at my hands. I wore oversized gloves, or sometimes a novelty foam finger.

I thought of borrowing a jackhammer to get the cement off, but I couldn't’t think of a way to do that without losing my finger as well. I liked that finger. It had always served me well. It was hard to type, sure, but I bought a giant keyboard to compensate. There was a bit of trouble with remembering not to hit myself in the face.

Eventually they did force everyone in town to show their hands, and when they found me out I was given a restraining order to not come within 100 miles of that sidewalk. That’s okay. I needed a fresh start. Somewhere, preferably, where no one knows about me, or what I did. That would be for the best.

***

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Story #79 - Ate Only Salt - MBD #21

The Month of Bad Decisions continues! Here is today's story. Please enjoy.


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Ate Only Salt
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was reading this book about how salt is so great, how it changed the world and was extremely important. So I thought, maybe I will only eat salt, and then maybe in that way I too could become extremely important. I figured it was the sort of thing that never tried before because it was too good of an idea.

So in the morning I would have some salt, and also at every other time in the day. I preferred the kind that came in small cubes, as it was easier to feel like I was eating something. I wouldn’t eat salty foods, mind you. Like I’d get potato chips, but I would take all the salt from the chip, throw the chip away and then eat the salt. I’d drink water, but only if it had plenty of salt in it.

I was surprised but I wasn’t too surprised when I collapsed on the floor and was unable to move until I was hospitalized for months. After the physical therapy, I was told I could never eat salt again. But I have too much of a craving now. I am hoping that I can balance it out now by only eating sugar.

***

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Story #78 - Took A Leave Of Absence - MBD #20

There are only 10 days left now in the Month of Bad Decisions! I hope you've been enjoying the bad decisions so far. If so, leave a comment and let me know how you feel about things. Also don't forget to send your own submissions. Enjoy today's story!

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Took A Leave Of Absence
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

One day I decided I would take an extended leave of absence – from work, from my life, everything. So I left. It didn’t take long. A plane ticket to another country, one with very lax immigration laws. I had no place to stay and no chance of finding work. I tried to fall in with some crowds, but everyone kept telling me I was an asshole. So I was on my own.

I basically travelled until the money I had ran out. I saw some amazing sights, places that I would have never gone to otherwise. I tried to visit as many natural habitats as I could. After I thought I had explored one country, I would move on to the next. This lasted until I was down to my last coin, which I lost during a heavy rainstorm. I mostly stayed out in the street.

I think maybe I had this idea that people back home would be worried about me when I didn’t show up after so long of a time? But, again, too much of an asshole. So no one looked for me.

Eventually I was forcefully deported when I was sleeping on the side of a national monument. I want to emphasize: I didn’t intend to urinate on it, I was just having night terrors. But anyway. Once I came home, I thought it would be easy to regain my old life back. But it didn’t work. Everyone could tell that I had changed – or worse, that I hadn’t changed enough. So I guess that my leave of absence is still in progress.

***

Monday, April 19, 2010

Story #77 - Talked At The Theatre - MBD #19

Hello, and good evening! If you missed it, over the weekend there were stories from a new contributor: Lewis Kelly. Please read and enjoy ! And submit your own story, it would be a good idea. In the meantime, here is today's story for the Month of Bad Decisions.

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Talked at the Theatre
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was at this play, and I didn’t like it, so I said “This is some bullshit!” out loud so that everyone could hear. I got my cell phone out and turned the ringer on, as loud as it would go. The play immediately stopped. The spotlight operator shined a light directly in my face. An announcement came on saying, “Everyone, please line up.” The entire audience, cast members, crew, director, even the ushers came and formed a single file line.

A cue was heard over the P.A., and then they slapped me. One person would go, and then another, and so on for a thousand times. Not all of them slapped me, some poked me in the eyes or tried to break my nose. One man tried to give me papercuts with his program.

After everyone was done, the last person (one of the crew) punched me right in the throat. I tried to talk, but I could only wheeze unintelligibly. He then smashed my cell phone under his foot. “Thank you,” someone said, and then the play resumed as normal, as if nothing had happened. And they wouldn’t let me leave. I had to watch the whole rest of that fucking play.

***

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Story #76 - Untitled, by Lewis Kelly - MBD #18

Today we have another contributor to the Month of Bad Decisions: Lewis Kelly! Lewis was born in Calgary, grew up in Edmonton, and now lives in Vancouver, where he allegedly studies Journalism. You can read his writing at his blog, Shark Sandwich. He has written a story today for you, and has indicated that he wants to do something cool for the site in the future. He is a good person! Enjoy his story!

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Untitled
by Lewis Kelly

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

The problem was, I couldn't make any bad decisions -- or, rather, I couldn't make one particular bad decision that I very much wanted to make.

It all started one day when I realized that when I have kids, if I ever have kids, I'll want to have some wild exploits with which to regale them while they are dandied about on knees and so on. I wanted to have a cooler stories than “kids, let me tell you about the time Dad was a regional finalist in the Annual Alberta Scrabble Showdown” or “hey, that reminds me of this craaaaazy viola recital I saw once at the Carnegie.”

So I thought, what's cool? Obvious answer: drugs. And so I set out to buy some. I didn't have any particular sort in mind. I just wanted to create some great stories to tell my kids. These drugs will be an investment in my future, I thought.

One of the first challenges the burgeoning narcotics enthusiast encounters is the fact that no drug dealer will ever, ever have a straightforward conversation about the goods they purvey. They just lounge around in dark glasses making oblique reference to their products. While this makes it harder for law enforcement to obtain iron-clad legal evidence against them, it also leads to exchanges like the ones I began having with these trench-coated men of ill repute.

“I hear you're a good person to talk to about, you know, white.”

“Yeah, man. For you, special price.”

And then five minutes later I'd be walking away with a small plastic bag of what would turn out to be icing sugar, or baking soda, or, one time, both. One time, I tried asking for benzoylmethylecogonine, but the guy just looked at me like I had grown a third eye and then walked off muttering something about gentrification.

The whole project seemed doomed to failure until one night I was arrested for buying what turned out to be the world's most expensive sea salt. I spent the night in the holding cells, which I shared with two gentlemen named Stubbs and Tyrone. It was an educational evening.

***

Friday, April 16, 2010

Story #74 - Punched A Light Bulb - MBD #16

Hi, please have a good weekend and enjoy this story for today. The Month of Bad Decisions continues for two more weeks!

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Punched a Light Bulb
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was reading in my bed, and I became tired, and I wanted to turn out the lamp. But the switch was too far away. So instead I just punched out the light bulb. It shattered released a fine mist or gas, and my hand hurt like shit. However, the light was off now. So I went to sleep.

The next day my hand still hurt, but I kind of got addicted to it. So I went through my house, just punching out all the lights I could find. It stung. But I was so gleeful, you should have seen the smile on my face. The best were the overhead lights, because then the debris would fall around me.

When there were no more lights left in my house, I went to a department store. Originally the plan was that I would by more, but then I thought, why not just punch these ones right here? It wasn’t exactly the same thrill because the light bulbs weren’t plugged into anything, but it was still fun. Except those fluorescent lights, those are just awful.

Eventually I was apprehended by the store security, where they showed me pictures of intact light bulbs just to torment me. My hand still hurts. I’m not sure if it will ever recover, and I’m less sure if I want it to.

***

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Story #73 - Walked Into The Middle Of The Road - MBD #15

Today is April 15, which means that we are halfway through the Month of Bad Decisions! Catch up with the archives here. Only fifteen more days to go. Help out by submitting your own story, poem or etcetera to the address on the right. Please enjoy today's story!

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Walked into the Middle of the Road
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was walking on the sidewalk one day, when I thought, Fuck this, who says I have to be here and the car has to be there? So I stepped into the road. It wasn’t too busy of a street, but still the drivers there had problems with me. They would honk as they passed me by. I started a running count of how many times I was honked. A long sustained one counted as two.

Luckily there were no car accidents that were immediately caused by me. But still, people in the cars hated the fact that I could be so bold. They flipped me off as they passed. Some even balled up pieces of paper and threw them at me as they passed. I could hear the cheering as they hit. One asshole even threw his car radio at me, but I picked it up and threw it right back at him, breaking his back windshield.

At which point he felt the need to stop his car and lecture me, explain to me what I was doing wrong. But I kept walking. And he followed me. Which means that even he was now getting yelled at and flipped off and having things thrown at him.

We continued on like this, past drivers and cars that were so upset at us. Some even held their fists out as they passed by so that they could hit us in the junk. By the time I was dragged forcefully out of the road by some drivers who had a rope, I counted at least 1,095 honks. Maybe one day I can beat my own record.

***

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Story #72 - Yelled For Hours - MBD #14

Here is a new story, please enjoy!

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Yelled For Hours
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I went up to the roof of my building and I said, “AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA” and so on and so forth. I did this for hours and hours. I wouldn’t even stop to take a breath – if I felt myself passing out, I just sort of doubled over until my body was too confused. It wasn’t an angry yell. It wasn’t even a cathartic yell. It was just sort of there, like a passing ambulance, or more like a non-ending steam whistle.

Some people took notice, though, and threw rocks up at me. One of them did hit me and break my nose. Someone threw a car battery, someone else managed to get a whole cinder block. The cinder block didn’t break, it sort of landed with a thunk. There was also an empty stroller thrown up, a car jack, a bicycle tire, and an outdated video game system.

But what eventually stopped me was the birds. For a while a bunch of birds had been gathering around me, and then one flew directly into my mouth. That finally stopped me from yelling. I had to remove the bird, but by the time I did that the other birds had surrounded me and started pecking at various parts of my body. And the thing is, I wanted to yell for real now, but I was so exhausted and my voice was so gone that instead I curled up and went to sleep, while the birds tore various parts of my skin away.

***

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Story #71 - Filled A House Full Of Tea - MBD #13

Hello again, it is time for another story in the Month of Bad Decisions! If you are just reading this site for the first time, I am posting a new story every day for the month of April, instead of once a week as I usually do. Also, if you want to submit your own story, poem, or whatever, please do and it will run on the site. For now, enjoy today's story.

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Filled a House Full of Tea
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I wanted a tea house. That is to say, I wanted to fill my house completely full of tea. So I turned on every faucet in my place after stopping up any drains I had. Soon I had flooded my entire house. But the water wasn’t warm. What was the point of that? I thought about turning on some of the electrical stuff in the house, then realized that would probably be an even worse decision. So I had to let all the water out.

What I did next was to install one of those instant hot water faucets that old people have. Then I had to insulate my house more, so that the heat wouldn’t immediately escape. I studied how an electric kettle worked, but still didn’t understand it so I got an engineer friend of mine to do it. All of this was expensive, but I felt it was worth it.

I tried again, and my house was completely full of hot water. I opened up a window on the top floor and threw in a hundred tea bags. Then I waited a few days for the water to steep. It looked great. At first I thought I might swim in it, but I did not want to be scalded. So I grabbed a cup, dipped it into the tea, and drank it. It tasted like furniture. It’s possible that I might have got my measurements wrong.

But it worked. I have all the tea that I could need, in my house, whenever I wanted it. Only, some fucking kids came by and broke one of my windows, and all the tea came flowing out. Now there is a giant mess in front of my house that I refuse to clean up, no matter what anyone says.

***

Monday, April 12, 2010

Story #70 - The Day I Lost My Skin, by Nazanine Hozar - MBD #12

Today we have a new story by Vancouver author Nazanine Hozar! Naz is an amazing writer, whose work is forthcoming in Prairie Fire magazine. She is good at everything. Thank you, Naz! Please enjoy her story, and if you feel the need to submit something yourself click on the Submission Guidelines on the right.

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The Day I Lost My Skin
by Nazanine Hozar

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I woke up one morning and decided I no longer wanted my skin. After my morning routine, I found the old Swiss army knife my Dad gave me for my Bat Mitzvah and began to cut my skin off. At first I could only cut in little chunks, since I wasn’t used to the way skin moved around your flesh. But after a while, I got used to it. An hour in, I got better and peeled the rest off in one go. I was quite surprised by all the things I found under my skin. When my task was finally accomplished, it was about that time to head to work and take on a new day.

Since I had no skin, I decided there was no reason to wear clothes. It’s amazing how a skinless body is different from one that’s not. Though I did wear my runners to help me walk faster. It was then that a swarm of mosquitoes from the nearby park came rushing towards me. I guess, since I no longer had skin, they figured it’d be easier to suck out my blood. But when they lodged onto my flesh, the mosquitoes became trapped between the folds of fat and muscle. I didn’t want to make a scene but I had hundreds of them stuck to me and it was uncomfortable. I tried to pick them off one by one but realized it would take too long and I’m not a patient person.

Luckily, that was when the sun came out. Its rays penetrated my flesh and burned the mosquitoes off. But since I had decided to have no skin the rays also incinerated my flesh. Now all that’s left of me is my skeleton.

***

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Story #69 - Overstated My Importance - MBD #11

Hi everyone, got a new story today! The Month of Bad Decisions continues on. I've got something really great coming up tomorrow, so make sure you come back for that. For now, here is today's story.

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Overstated My Importance
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was feeling very good one day. So I decided that I was extremely important, and that everyone should know it. I wrote a blog post that said, “It might not be clear but I am the most important person on this planet.” I received no comments.

It continued at work. My boss came and asked me to do something. “I can’t right now,” I said. “I’m too important.” Then I realized what I sad might not have the same effect while playing Solitaire. If I believed I was important, then I had to act important. So I got up and said, “I’m also going to make a few changes. Firstly, I will now receive $750,000 a month. All phone calls will be directed to me, then to someone else, then back to me.” I was quickly fired.

I took it upon myself to inform my landlord that I was actually his landlord, and that he owed me the late rent money. He responded by turning off my water and gas. That’s okay, as I own the utility companies.

I went to the bank and said, “I am the president of this bank.” Only it turns out that they can verify that sort of thing, so it didn’t go well.

So I then declared myself to be Emperor of Earth, and that all world business would have to be funneled through me. Then I realized I was too important for affairs like that, so I delegated my responsibility to my underlings, a.k.a. the leaders of most of the nations and a few other people. So far, so good. I am currently taking applications for a high-level position – maybe a minister of something.

***

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Story #68 - Defaced A Painting - MBD #10

Here we have the 10th posting in the Month of Bad Decisions! If you're just checking out the site, catch up on the whole month. There are some other ones in the archives. And also submit something yourself!

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Defaced a Painting
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was at this art museum, and I saw a painting in front of me. It was entirely black, with a few white spots on it. It looked terrible to me, but I guess I am not one to judge. I thought that maybe now was the time to do something. I looked around me. I was the only one in the room. I stepped forward and placed my hand on the painting.

Museum guards are fucking fast, let me tell you. Within seconds of putting my hand there I was face down on the floor, with a guard holding me down with his knee. Another guard took out a baton (they have batons, did you know that?) and started to beat me across the head with it. A third guard came and kicked me in the shins, I don’t know why. When I was done they sat me on a chair and took turns punching my face.

The last thing they did was take me to the second floor balcony of the museum overlooking the lobby and threw me off of it. I landed with a thud on the ground. Then they carted my body outside, took any possessions I had, and left me in the middle of the street. They handed me a piece of paper that said “Lifetime Ban” on it.

I guess some people just take art very seriously.

***

Friday, April 9, 2010

Story #67 - Went To Live In A Remote Shack - MBD #9

Hello, and happy Friday to you all. Here is another story in the Month of Bad Decisions. As always, please submit your own story or poem or whatever for the site!

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Went to Live in a Remote Shack
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I left behind all my possessions and went to live in a remote shack in the desert. It was just me and a well and the hot sun. I had to learn how to live on my own. I would go out and look for vegetables, or maybe kill an extremely small and timid animal. I made a solar powered oven for myself. One time I used pieces of the wood from the shack to make tea, which I don’t recommend.

It was boring at first, but I found ways to keep myself entertained. I would run around the shack until I got tired. Sometimes I would walk as far as I could, to find out from how far away I could still see the shack. And sometimes I would make sculptures out of the rock and clay that was around me. They weren’t very good, and I have no intention of showing anyone. But mostly I just stood outside in the sun and didn’t do anything. I closed my eyes and lay down, and let my mind go. A few insects would crawl all over me, which I was at first upset about, but eventually was okay with.

In the end I had to leave the shack because it turned out not to be monsoon proof. Luckily I was outside the time, but I had just woken up, so I didn’t believe it at first when I saw the shack being washed away, like the remnants of a proud boat.

***

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Story #66 - Making Obscene Gestures - MBD #8

Here is a new story for you, please continue to enjoy the Month of Bad Decisions.

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Making Obscene Gestures
by Dan Schwartz

I walked around the town today with my middle finger permanently outstretched. No one seemed to notice at first. Then I brought it in front of my face, so that everyone could see. Then people noticed, but usually that meant they walked around me or flipped me off right back.

So I did every obscene gesture I could think of with my hands, and when I ran out of ones I knew I had to make some up, like jumping up and down while whistling, or grabbing the insides of my teeth. Once I walked down the street doing a handstand, flexing my legs in the air one at a time.

But the thing is, nobody really noticed or cared. They might have glanced at me once, and then went on with what they were doing. I realized what happened – everyone was so used to seeing assholes on the street that they no longer pay attention to them. They just carry on.

So my bad decision didn’t really affect me or anyone else. The only thing I lost was my dignity, and it’s not like that was around much anyway.

***

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Story #65 - Wrote A Fake Memoir - MBD #7

Here is today's story! The Month of Bad Decisions continues on!

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Wrote a Fake Memoir
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I opened up my word processor and started writing whatever I could think of. I wrote about how below deck during a storm on the Pacific Ocean, how I traveled around the world by the time I was 4. How I became an orphan, and how I befriended a kitten that stayed with me my whole life. I wrote about my failed political ambitions. I wrote about my encounter with aliens. All in all I managed to get about 50,000 words of my touching life story.

I didn’t expect to find a publisher, but when I queried it I received offers from every conceivable publishing house. Suddenly my book was a huge seller. I did hundreds of interviews and media appearances. The best part, I always said, was how everything was unverifiable. (Indeed, there was that chapter about how I lived off the grid for awhile.)

Eventually someone caught on that maybe I wasn’t the lost heir of the Ottoman Empire, and I was forced to make a public clarification. I was lambasted in several newspapers that had previously sung my praises. At one point a genuine pitchfork mob came after me. Sales of my book plummeted, but you can still find them in most remainder bins. However, this experience has been a good one, and I am going to use most of it in my second book.

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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Story #64 - Delayed A Space Shuttle - MBD #6

Did you see yesterday's MBD entry, or the one before that? Maybe you should! And also please do submit your own works for the site, it would be something that would be okay! Here is today's story.

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Delaying a Space Shuttle
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I was in Florida once, and I saw that there was going to be a space shuttle launch coming soon. Fuck that, I thought. So I did everything I could to stop it.

I called into the control center at important times and asked questions that didn’t go anywhere, just to slow them down. I went in and asked for guided tours, and purposefully made myself a nuisance so they’d have to kick me out. One time I arranged a birthday party festival outside, including clowns and a bouncy castle, even though it wasn’t anyone’s birthday.

I never resorted to physical violence, with the exception of a few bricks thrown in a few windows. I found it better just to annoy them, waste their time, and make them spend money on things that they didn’t need.

All in all, it worked pretty well. But that might, in fact, not have had much to do with me. That’s okay though. I feel right in my own mind.

***

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Story #62 - Hit With A Ball-Peen Hammer - MBD #4

Hi everyone, the Month of Bad Decisions continues! Although I'm a bit worried that I'll have nothing more to write after this story. But please enjoy it.

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Hit With A Ball-Peen Hammer
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

Don’t ask why, but I’ve always wanted to be hit with a ball-peen hammer. So, it was simple. I got my friend to do it. He hit me with the hammer. It hurt like fuck. The end.

But I’m wondering, now, if it’s a good idea to accomplish all your dreams, or even if your dreams are worth accomplishing.

But then sometimes I think, how much room really is there in our lives for regret.

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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Story #61 - Meeting a Snake - MBD #3

Hello, the Month of Bad Decisions continues once again today! 27 left to go. Submit your own!

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Meeting a Snake
by Dan Schwartz

Meeting a Snake
By Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

In my garden yesterday I found a snake. It was about a foot or so long, and was brown with interesting scales. I had never seen one up close, and knew next to nothing about them.

At first I thought I should just run away. But then I thought – don’t snakes have like cool hallucinogenic venom or something? (Short answer: No.) So I decided to try to get the snake to bite me.

I called it a few names. I said that it was ugly, that it was stupid, that it had bad credit. No response. I picked it up, gently, and sort of threw it away. Still no reaction. It looked like it just wanted to mind its own business. So what I ended up doing was grabbing a spare violin and bashing it over the head.

Well, luckily it turned out to be just a garter snake, and it wasn’t poisonous. The bite still hurt like hell, though, and later it got infected and I had to go see someone about it.

***

Friday, April 2, 2010

Story #60 - Froze the Sidewalk - MBD #2

The Month of Bad Decisions continues! If you have a submission for the blog, please email me!

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Froze the Sidewalk
by Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

I decided that I would freeze the sidewalk in front of my house. I got a lot of ice and leftover snow, and even some liquid nitrogen for good measure. I poured it all over my front yard. I wanted it to be winter all the time.

It worked brilliantly. People would be walking or running on the street, and suddenly trip and fall. At which point I would be on my porch in my winter coat, pointing and laughing.

The community zoning board eventually appeared on my doorstep – although they had to wade through a mound of ice and snow to get there. They told me that if I didn’t unfreeze the sidewalk, I would be charged an extremely exorbitant fine. I had used all my money on the liquid nitrogen. So I said, okay.

What I did was, I broke up some of the ice, and left some the way it was. That made my front yard into ice floes. One day these floes will crack and possibly melt, and then my house will become an island.

Fuck you, zoning board.

***

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Story #59 - Breaking Vinyl - MBD #1

Happy April!

I believe it was T.S. Eliot who once said "April is the shittiest, stupidest, worst fucking month," so in honor of this I present to you: The Month of Bad Decisions!

I am going to attempt to post something on this blog every day this month! Thirty days of bad decisions, one after another.

You can participate too! Just send me a submission - write a story, poem, comic, or whatever, and I will put it up as part of the MBD. Just read the submission guidelines here.

Please enjoy!

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Breaking Vinyl
By Dan Schwartz

I wanted to live in the land of bad decisions. In order to live in the land of bad decisions, you have to make some bad decisions.

Although, honestly? What I really wanted was to be a jerk. So I went over to my friend’s house and asked him to play me some vinyl records. “This is some sweet jazz music,” he said.

“Can I take a look at one of these records?” I said.

“Sure,” he said, and handed me an LP from the 1970s that he had purchased for $4.00 at a sale. I took it out of its sleeve, looked at the grooves set deep in the vinyl, and then broke it over the nearest table.

“What the fuck!” he said. But I wasn't done. The vinyl had smashed so easily in my hands, just right in two. So I grabbed some more records and this time used an antique Coke bottle to break it up. Both the bottle and the record made a brilliant mess on the floor.

“That’s what you get for using outdated technology!” I yelled, then I ran away before my friend could get his gun.

I went to my neighborhood record store, where a bunch of people were hanging out and listening to music. I brought a very heavy hammer. I walked down the aisles, just swinging it to and fro. “Fuck you!” I said. “And you as well!” I said. The sound of a breaking vinyl record was the only music I needed to hear.

I was disarmed a few minutes later though. It turns out that I’m not the first one to think of this, and it actually is legal for a record store owner to keep a tire iron for this sort of emergency. The hammer that I used was later used on me, but I understood that this was just.

Also, my friend from earlier went over to my house with a wrench and smashed up my computer and iPod. That’s okay, though – my ears got all bloodied and I won’t be able to hear for a while anyway.

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