[Fiction] A celebrity couple's ill-fated trip to Lagos:
"She put her pen down and thoughtfully chewed the silky inside of her left cheek. She stared hard at the photo on her iPod of those beautiful, strong young African women who had just invented this amazing generator that made electricity out of human urine. She shook her head. It was amazing the things that people did in the face of adversity. She continued shaking her head, trying to comprehend the humanity of humanity.
"'Be careful shaking your head,' said her son Maddox, who was sitting on the other side of the enormous bed, watching 'Homeland' on his iPad. 'A shard of your beauty just hit me in the face.' She barely heard him. She let her eye cast around the room for a moment. All her children were here, Maddox, Zahara, Shiloh, Pax, each with his or her iPad. Maddox was next to her on the bed, Zahara was stretched out along the foot. Pax was on one corner of a pink velvet couch, Shiloh on the other. All four were staring at their iPads. In the bedroom foyer, Knox and Vivienne were making a cat out of wooden blocks."
PUBLISHED: Nov. 17, 2012
LENGTH: 8 minutes (2100 words)
A writer visits a fifth grade classroom at a northern California elementary school, where she observes the class's anti-bullying curriculum:
"'Stop it, you are bullying me,' he says. Then he lets his body go slack. He bows, then sits down.
"'You labeled it, you said "stop," you stood up straight,' Linda says, 'Good job.'
"'Very good,' Efrain asks. 'Any questions?'
"'Yeah,' someone shouts. 'What do you do if someone calls you a hobo?'
"'Is that a serious question?'
"'Yes, I want to know what to do if someone calls me a hobo.' A pause as Efrain looks very mildly annoyed. 'Okay. It’s not a serious question.'
"'Hobo,' someone shouts."
PUBLISHED: March 13, 2012
LENGTH: 16 minutes (4247 words)