55Friday: The “I Feel Fine” Edition

oh, hell no.jpg Set adrift on memory bliss…

My screen says, “Please replace this generic password.”

Either my kappipaal hasn’t kicked in yet or I’ve got a severe case of Spring fever (perhaps cowbell could cure it?). I can’t focus, let alone devise a password with 12 letters, one symbol, two numbers and an exclamation point. One of my favorite co-workers stops by my desk, with an eyebrow raised.

“You look lost.”

“Can you like, pick a password for me? Like, passwords are hard.”

Like math?”

This is our favorite inside joke, this reference to Barbie’s great fustercluck of ’92. Still, despite legendary vacuous utterances, Barbie is beloved not just by me but also his six-year old daughter, because as we three agree, them Bratz dollz are slatterns.

“Sure I’ll pick something for you.” He seems serious.

“You like music. Use a song lyric.”, he instructs, before striding in to his office, which is next door to my desk. Then he pops his head back out…

“I used to use ‘It’s the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine’ as mine.”

“R.E.M. fan, eh?”

He smiles at me in response. We’re nearly the same age; we were both dorky loners who probably spent all our free time between classes with our headphones on, tuning out the world. We both remember how the release of “Green” in 1988, during the fall quarters of our Freshman/Junior year in high school defined a moment, a mood.“You know, I usually just pick a word in Greek or Latin.”

“That also works.”, he says and then he’s gone.

I’m trying to choose something which is easy to type and still somewhat secure but now I really can’t concentrate. All I can hear is Michael Stipe singing/shouting “LEONARD BERNSTEIN!” and I feel like I’m falling backwards mentally, travelling through time.

Being able to sing along to that song was something impressive; memorizing the rapid-fire lyrics didn’t just prove that you loved R.E.M. and “college rock“, it also affirmed that while others listened to disposable pop, we chose to be “politically aware” and ponder what it all meant.

After my fuzzy trip back to my first year of high school, I realized that perhaps the universe was giving me what I had asked for– inspiration for today’s Friday55. I am so sorry. I’ve meant to do one every Friday since the last nanofiction orgy, which was a while ago, but something always comes up and if it doesn’t, I just blank when it comes to a theme.

So, write about

rapid eye movement
Athens, Georgia
A tournament, tournament (there’s your madness)
the rapture
why you feel fine. :)

In other words, pick any phrase or idea out of the lyrics below, that is, if you need a prompt, a gentle nudge, a temporary muse. You may also choose to be a G.D.I. and ignore our theme completely. Whatever you do, pretty please mold exactly 55 words in to a fantastically short short story and post it in the comments below. Friday calls for flashes of fiction, because I (and hopefully you) feel fine.


R.E.M.- It’s The End of The World As We Know It

That’s great, it starts with an earthquake,
birds and snakes, an aero plane -
Lenny Bruce is not afraid.
Eye of a hurricane, listen to yourself churn -
world serves its own needs, don’t misserve your own needs.
Feed it up a knock, speed, grunt no, strength no.
Ladder structure clatter with fear of height,
down height. Wire in a fire, represent the seven games in a
government for hire and a combat site.
Left her, wasn’t coming in a hurry with the furies
breathing down your neck.
Team by team reporters baffled, trump, tethered
crop. Look at that low plane! Fine then.
Uh oh, overflow, population, common group, but it’ll do.
Save yourself, serve yourself.
World serves its own needs, listen to your heart bleed.
Tell me with the rapture and the reverent in the right – right.
You vitriolic, patriotic, slam, fight,
bright light, feeling pretty psyched.

It’s the end of the world as we know it.
It’s the end of the world as we know it.
It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine.

Six o’clock – TV hour. Don’t get caught in foreign tower.
Slash and burn, return, listen to yourself churn.
Lock him in uniform and book burning, bloodletting.
Every motive escalate. Automotive incinerate.
Light a candle, light a motive. Step down, step down.
Watch O’Neil, crush rush, Uh oh, this means no beer Cavalier.
Renegade and steer clear!
A tournament, a tournament, a tournament of lies.
Offer me solutions, offer me alternatives
and I decline.

It’s the end of the world as we know it.
It’s the end of the world as we know it.
It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine.

The other night I tripped a nice continental drift divide.
Mount St. Edelite. Leonard Bernstein.
Leonid Brezhnev, Lenny Bruce and Lester Bangs.
Birthday party, cheesecake, jelly bean, boom!
You symbiotic, patriotic, slam, but neck, right? Right.

It’s the end of the world as we know it.
It’s the end of the world as we know it.
It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine…fine…

(It’s time I had some time alone)

42 thoughts on “55Friday: The “I Feel Fine” Edition

  1. The Final Four starts tomorrow, Excited as can be..

    The Bruins vs. The Gators The Buckeyes vs. The Hoyas

    It’s going to be a great weekend full of hoop dreams. Great athletics, festivites, music, and mayhem.

    Good luck to everyone in their office pools. May we all come out without looking like fools. GO UCLA!

  2. I just got my daughter the Bratz Genie Magic Dvd the other day. It’s not that bad.

  3. I went to Bhangra Blowout, a dance tournament in D.C.

    Before I left, my parents smiled, handed me their credit card and $400 in cash and told me to have a good time. “You deserve it beta, we’re proud you got in all your top schools. Be careful.”

    I wasn’t careful, but they’ll never know.

  4. The doctor exclaims, “It’s a girl!” and it’s the end of the world as we know it. The apocalypse is made of glitter, foundation, and wonder bras. The Bratz Genie laughs fire onto those Left Behind in the strip malls. I’m safely reading books far away from the stranglehold of thongs, and I feel fine.

    I’ve never actually participated in this before, but was that right? I love reading your posts, Anna :)

  5. I’ve never actually participated in this before, but was that right? I love reading your posts, Anna :)

    That was perfect! What an excellent first 55, seriously. And thank you, I love reading your posts, too, especially if they include flash fiction like that! :)

  6. I feel fine and I feel gooooood!@#!!! I feeeel like Iyyyyy never shoould!@#!@! Whenever I get this way(#$%@!!), I just don’t know what to saayyyyy, why can’t we be ourselves like we were yesterdayyy!!@!!!@! EVERYTIME I SEE YOU FALLING (#$%@@1) I GET DOWN ON MY KNEES AND PRAY. I’M WAITING FOR THAT FINAL MO-whap


  7. A white-dressed widow approached her husband’s body and bid a silent, final farewell. Those observing were amazed at her mourning: tearful, yet dignified.

    His body left for the vultures, the widow calmly looked upon the line of family and friends leaving the Tower of Silence. There were other vultures who would circle her now, too.

  8. This is my first attempt at flash fiction

    Where the Adriatic and the Mediterranean meet, I am on the cusp of inarticulable things. I am waiting to touch the original-blue of the Aegean Sea. “The world is bigger and smaller than ever before,” I say. “Eye of a hurricane, listen to yourself churn,” he says as the salt spray dusts our faces.

  9. Chachaji/Pitaji: I got rejected by Penn, but got wait-listed by Williams and Amherst(America’s best liberal arts college, in case you don’t know), so It means that i can boast about my writing Skills(:p)

  10. so It means that i can boast about my writing Skills(:p)

    Boast about whatever the hell you want, but kindly gloat with 22 additional words for an even 55, thank you.

  11. first time be gentle

    Why would somebody need the feel to get Double Ds? You are beautiful, intelligent and always real, a rare and indispensable quality amongst us. And to go ahead and insert plastic inside your body should be a crime punishable severely by law.

    P.S. with a booty like that you don’t need to be top heavy

  12. Somebody please translate this complex post? It’s like it’s written in code? It started about Barbies and some weird coffee drinks right? kappipaal? What has REM got to do with it? I’m lost, I admit it can’t keep up. Faraz

  13. Up and early for the hope of a brand new day Seen a homie you ain’t seen since back in the day Fresh haircut fitted wit a fat ass fade End of work, we chilling on a Saturday How you felt when you first heard the Daddy Kane Rakim KRS hey I had that tape

    Wanna think of things that make you feel that way (sorry…not my own words…but this was the first thing i thought of when prompted for “why you feel fine”)

  14. Waiter can I get a tutor for english reading 101 to table 19 please? Thank you.

  15. Standing in a Mumbai local, feeling someone breathing down your neck , you sigh and wearily wonder if leaving America was worth this everyday commute, squashed against moist humanity.Then , at dinner time, you inhale the fragrance of Amma’s rasam and realize that it was and turn and smile at her and have no regrets.

  16. What’s that Dad? That, son, is a flaming asteroid. Wow, it’s big. It’s heading towards us. Us? Yup. Now? Yup. Are we going to die? Yup. Oh. Dad? Yeah? I love you. And, um, it was me who crashed the car. I know, love you too. And son? Yeah Dad? I’m not your real Dad.

  17. The tournament’s tomorrow. My last chance at Golden Gloves. This insomniac is staying in to rest. Every night I dream of fights on sidewalks rather than the ring. I wake up and start pacing again, counting breaths. While my boys are hitting the stripclubs, all I can think is how much I miss Coach Ben.

  18. All she could hear was the excitement in the voice on the other end of the call.

    “Things are going swell. I left my last job and found a better job in a day. I am so excited I am starting next week!”

    She feels like a loser. Everyone seems to be happy except her.

  19. The yearly spring cleaning took an hour and fifteen minutes. Every drawer was emptied, every shirt unfolded and refolded, every pen tested for its inkiness. Most drawers were fairly empty to begin with; most shirts worn to a wrinkle-free softness, most pens absent of ink. She had hoped that this year would be, somehow, different.

  20. Watch a heel crush, crush. Uh oh, this means no fear – cavalier.

    That should read “Watch O’Neil, crush rush, Uh, oh, this means no beer Cavalier”.

    The quote was inspired by the drinking, during fall rush at U of VA, that was so bad, that President Bob O’Neil forced the greeks to move it to spring and go dry (I think).

  21. That should read “Watch O’Neil, crush rush, Uh, oh, this means no beer Cavalier”.

    Thank you, so much– I was surprised at how difficult it was to find the lyrics to this song…every version was slightly different and none of them seemed exactly right. I was confused, but I chalked it up to old age and memorizing shit twenty years ago. Anyway, this was one of the lines which struck me as odd. Sigh.

  22. thekingsingh, that was excellent.

    Oye Jai Singhaa, toon kitthe rehnda hain ajj kal? (another excellent 55 contributor, him).

  23. My 8 year old daughter got a couple of those dolls for her b-day and only plays with the small dog and monkey that came with the dolls. The Bratz dolls itself are sitting in a corner collecting dust.

  24. I never understood the reference to Christina Applegate.

    Just a play on A Tribe Called Quest’s Bonita Applebum lyrics – “Bonita Applebum, you gotta put me on…”

  25. Always late, never understood. This was supposed to be the weekend he finally said something, after six years of holding it in, and then she’d see him for who he was. He chickened out, and she left the box of Godivas he’d brought her behind, half-eaten. So instead he slept with his best friend’s sister.

  26. The Bratz dolls are seriously messed up and the appropriation is super crass. I wish the poster didn’t have to resort to misogynistic language.

  27. “So you’re thinking of moving?” “Love here, but need something…else.” “Yeah, I know” My heart sank to the basement.
    My dream: he picks it back up and says to follow. My nightmare: I never find it in the dusty downstairs. My best friend. has. no. idea.
    “I’ll miss you.” I say.
    “I’m not gone yet”

  28. I opened the door and I stood there, alone. Not wanting to go in, not wanting to move. The involuntary blinking of my eyelids did not help.

    “Photograph…” blared my ring tone breaking the gloomy silence.

    “Where are you, Buzz me in, I took the day off” she said. The frown morphed into a smile.

  29. about another song.. :)

    I don’t understand a word of the song on the radio. The chord progressions make much more sense to me, as does the way this singer sings from the heart, but begins the song with the ‘B’ section. I, too, always come in somewhere in the middle of things, neither at the beginning nor end.

  30. absurdly, and out of wishful thinking, i present a first time post – 55:

    “… and I feel fine.”
    “Unbelievable.” She turns the page of the magazine, languidly twirling a long strand of her hair, petting her belly.
    “You look too thin to have single-handedly devoured 300 bratz dolls. Didn’t the plastic hurt on the way down?” “You’d be surprised at what a mean cocktail disgust and perrier make.”