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Radical Yellow Duck

Joined July 2009.

286 stories, 4 challenges, 353 comments, and 19 friends

Ok, I’m back. One heart attack, a triple CABG (Coronary Artery Bypass Graft, pronounced cabbage) and two sessions of beating my computer into submission. I am back.

I’m old. Real old. I’m so old I remember when dialing a phone number actually involved using a dial.

I’ve worked as a projectionist, an armored car driver, a help desk tech, a museum tech and laserist, an historical interperter at Old Sturbridge Village, a university assistant at a planetarium and observatory. I’ve been a salesman, a techie, A union VP and a storyteller. I remember the Gemini missions, but was born after sputnik. I have a love of History, Technology, Space, my religion (Christianity) and my country. I believe there is more that binds us together than can tear us apart.

I’ve loved many, married one, was involuntarily divorced.

Oh and I suppose I should tell you. I don’t understand your music and when it comes to sports, I don’t care if the Red Sox beat the 49’ers for the Stanley cup or not. Not judging, it’s just me.

Stories

  1. A leap of faith

    I sat and stared at the paper in my hand. Somehow the impossible was happening. A young woman penned her thoughts and I was able to answer them. I reread her letter. And with each reading it was as though her image in my mind became clearer. I could se...

  2. Her Letter

    Would that you and I could sit and talk. I feel as though I could spend hours just listening to you. Yet it isn’t mere curiosity of what the future holds that would have me hanging on your words. That you could read my letter and not call me foolish ...

  3. The second drawer

    The letter had been found behind the left most of the half columns. I griped the center one and pulled. It slid out easily and inside was another envelope. I turned it in my hands and saw it was addressed, Mr. James Dough. I opened the envelope and rea...

  4. Foolish

    I took the letter I had written and put it into an envelope. I put one of the two cent stamps bearing the green likeness of George Washington on it, and walked to the old post office. The corner stone indicated that it had been built in 1855, but had b...

  5. Reply

    Dear Miss Willow, I find it hard to believe that I am even doing this, but after finding your letter hidden in my desk, I haven’t been able to get it and you out of my mind. How could I possibly read your letter? You left it in the hidden drawer of t...

  6. Obsessive

    I replaced the letter back in the envelope and returned it to it’s drawer. That letter weighed on my thoughts over the next few days. That young woman, writing to the man she hoped one day to marry. That the letter stayed in the secret drawer was a p...

  7. Missive

    Father thinks that I spend too much time with my books. He says that too much reading will fill my head with notions that are beyond my poor ability to comprehend. I think he is wrong. I have read the classics, Ovid, Virgil, Dante. I am even fond of so...

  8. The Letter, (Not following the challenge theme)

    Many years ago some optimistic spider had built a web inside that drawer. I brushed aside the web and examined the envelope. It was yellow with age and made of parchment. The envelope was addressed in a flowing and neat script that kids today simply ar...

  9. The Letter

    Many years ago some optimistic spider had built a web inside that drawer. I brushed aside the web and examined the envelope. It was yellow with age and made of parchment. The envelope was addressed in a flowing and neat script that kids today simply ar...

  10. The Secretary Desk

    The apartment I rented was on the second floor of an old Victorian house in what was once the fashionable side of town. I loved the turret and the windows looking out onto the street. My bedroom was small and the living room was probably once a sitting...

  11. Now playing in Cinema 12

    Now Appearing at the Athenaeum Theatre by command of their August Majesties Theseus, Duke of Athens and Hippolyta Queen of the Amazons, for a limited engagement. The Independent Film and Most Lamentable Comedy, Pyramus and Thisbe. SEE the adventures of...

  12. Politically Incorrect

    President Barack Hussein Obama met with Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid to discuss their plans for the nation.

  13. Local News

    I turned the TV in the hospital onto the local new. Reports about how the Day of Ashura was more peaceful than expected. More than two million people had visited the shrines and the Shi’a got to call for “Death to America and Death to Israe...

  14. New Toys

    General Kemper came to visit us in the hospital. He brought me my jacket that I had left in the helicopter and a little bit of news. It seems that if we hadn’t stopped the attack when we did the military did have a back up plan in place. An F-16 was ...

  15. Hospital

    My memories of what happened next are disjointed. I remember feeling wind in my hair, and a voice saying I was going to be all right. I remember feeling my clothes being cut off me and being washed. Was I dead? Were they preparing me for burial? I saw ...

  16. Death

    A hissing sound accompanied the smoke as I ran to the back of the ambulance and threw open the doors. I saw a machine plugged into an electrical outlet in the back panel and struggled into the ambulance. My vision was blurred and it seemed darker than ...

  17. Shahada

    I was rolling to my knees when I saw a flash of white step out from around the back of the ambulance. Clarke shouted "DOWN!!´and shoved Rodgers hard into the shelving. I heard a three round burst and saw three holes in Clarke’s uniform quic...

  18. Six Tango's Down

    The terrorists were dressed in their CBRN suits with hood and masks donned. They stood around a Hummer that had prominent large white squares and a red crosses painted on its sides, back and front. Rodgers had fired a three round burst into the first t...

  19. Rush

    When I reached the bottom I unslung my rifle and crouched behind Rodgers and Clarke. We were between two rows of shelves lined with tires that formed an alcove against one wall of the garage. Rodgers advanced to the end of the alcove with Clarke close ...

  20. Roof

    The Blackhawk sped away and we three were alone on the roof. An air conditioning unit hummed on the roof next to an access hatch that lead into the interior of the building. “I’ll go first, then Clarke, then you,” Rodgers said pointing at me last...

  21. Helo

    “Stay with the helo. They’ll get you to someplace safe,” Rodgers said. “The hell I will,” I shouted back. “Do you think you can take on what’s down there with just two men? Gimme a fuckin’ rifle. You don’t have time to argue.” Rodge...

  22. Observers No More

    The Kiowas were in formation, one behind the other. They were slowing down and coming into hover above the garage. Less than 50 yards away, on a nearby building roof top, a man stood up and brought an RPG to his shoulder. From my vantage there was no n...

  23. One Down, One To Go.

    “Delta force just hit the bus station. They took down the terrorists and have secured one ambulance,” shouted Rodgers. “One down, one to go,” said Clarke. “There’s another delta force team on its way to the garage in Karbala. We should be a...

  24. Ants

    We approached Karbala from the east, the rising sun somewhat to our left. In the northeast part of the city were two large buildings, each with two minarets separated by a plaza with lines of trees. The gold clad domes shone in the morning sun and alre...

  25. Enroute

    The sun was coming up over the horizon as the soldiers at the checkpoint brought me to a school with a parking lot. Within minutes a Blackhawk helicopter landed and I was onboard. Rodgers and Clarke sat across from me. The crew chief gave me a helmet w...

  26. Phone Call

    “Rodgers here.” “It’s Talman. I’ve got two locations for you to check out.” “Where?” he demanded. “A bus terminal someplace in Najaf and something called Faris garage in Karbala. They modified two US military ambulances with smoke gen...

  27. Inshallah

    I waited a moment and then sat up. My hands uncovered my belly and I examined myself. The bullet had made a considerable dent into the slide of Michaels P226 in my waistband. Splatter from the bullet’s fragmentation had cut my skin in a radial patter...

  28. Regaining Lost Honor

    “Rashida,” I said. “Why?” “Because Allah calls us all to defend Islam, with our lives if need be. I sacrificed my honor, in order to further his cause. I gave my body to Michael to obtain what we needed. I allowed myself to be humiliated and ...

  29. A problem

    She reached into the waistband of her skirt and withdrew a cell phone. With a practiced flip she opened it and hit a speed dial number. I could hear the line ring and a man pick up the other end. “Yes,” the man said. “This is Rashida. The deed is...

  30. Brown eyes

    I shifted my weight and she swung the gun and pointed it at me. Her eyes were cold and hard. “Rashida, you don’t want to shoot me, so point the gun away…” “Don’t I,” she interupted. I took my eyes off the gun barrel that was pointed a...

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