Mini-Me Monday: The Capsule

The Capsule

Written circa 2006.

One morning, Marie Kaline woke up to her mother shaking her.  “Marie! Wake up! Mitchell disappeared last night!”  Mitchell was their next door neighbor.   It was only eight o’clock in the morning and already the day was disastrous.  Marie gasped.  “What happened?” she asked. “Do you know?”  “No,” her mother replied, “but he was kidnapped…His mother just phoned.  She wants us to go to their house.  Now hurry and get dressed.” In a few minutes, Marie and Mrs. Kaline were on their way.  Mitchell’s mother met them at the door.  Her black hair, normally neat, was uncombed.  Her cheerful face was now white with worry.  Continue reading


Meet Mini-Me!

We, my friends, are going time traveling.

I’ll admit, this is partly an attempt to make sure I post at least once a week, even when I’m swamped by school and have no time to write. My first day of classes — that is, the day I start taking Mechanics I, Fluid Mechanics, Thermodynamics, Computer-Aided Design, and Engineering Math A and B — is August 25th, and I only have a week left before I ship off across the country. I want to keep blogging. Nay, I SHALL keep blogging. But just in case, I’ve invented my own version of Throwback Thursday: Mini-Me Mondays.

Each Monday (or so I hope), you’ll hear from a special guest writer. I’m bringing in the cavalry here, guys, and you know the coolest part? It’s still ME.

Most of the pieces will be pre- high school, I think, although anything that seems juvenile enough and tickles my fancy will probably make its way here eventually. I might publish it raw, with just a date to specify exactly when in the prehistoric era I wrote it. I might polish it up. I might comment on it. Anything’s possible, really. You never know what might happen when you start tinkering with time travel. First Mini-Me Monday is projected to take place in three days…see you in the future!

Readers, I need your help!

The second edition of Al(m)as is here! A heart-wrenching tale of sibling love in a broken family, Al(m)as explores the power of the imagination to overcome all obstacles.

I promise it’s a short story — less than half an hour to read, and in convenient PDF form to read on or offline on all devices. Read it by clicking the image on my blog’s right sidebar, or

READ IT RIGHT HERE: Al(m)as, 2nd edition

This project is very close to my heart and I’m looking for any and all kinds of critiques, as I mentioned when I first published it. If you read it, I’ll love you forever. If you read it AND give feedback, well, we might just have to get married or something.

Dun dun…dun dun…

We had been swimming in the ocean for 45 minutes at this point and I was getting tired.

Sure, I was having fun, too. My mom and I swam down the along the shoreline and back, pretending we were sea otters. I (loudly) helped my newly-ordained deacon dad learn the basic lines of Church Slavonic he’ll need to know when we get back from vacation, repeating “Премудрость, прости!” back and forth with him hundreds of times. The three of us had a great time bellowing the ending to “In the Dark of the Night” with me as Rasputin and my parents as my evil minion back up singers. We added in some Beach Boys and Beatles for good measure.

But man, I was so cold! The water was lovely, in theory — the Pacific ocean at its best, a tropical beach in Maui. But the perfect temperature for a hot day felt a little too chilly now that the sun was starting to set.

“M-m-mom, let’s g-g-go in. I’m f-freezing!” I said, letting my teeth chatter a teensy bit more than necessary.

“You just need to move more! Swim around, like me. Don’t just stand there!” she chirped.

Okay, way too cheerful for me to handle in my current state. “Why don’t we head back to the hotel?” I suggested. Secretly, in my oh-so-tired head, it wasn’t a suggestion.

Continue reading

Plane Part Deux

The best thing to do after a 9-hour flight and 12 hours traveling? Get on another plane.

I called my mom during my layover and reported that I hadn’t slept, and wasn’t planning on it during the next leg. That way, I’d arrive in the San Francisco airport ready to sleep off the journey.

Ten minutes into the five-hour transcontinental flight, my head hit the tray table and I fell fast asleep.

I woke to the crackling speaker and the captain’s voice “…landing in San Francisco, about 11:30 pm local time.”

What? I’d slept through the whole flight? Oh glorious day!

I decided to make a celebratory trip to the bathroom to stretch my aching muscles before they turned on the seatbelt sign and prepared the cabin for landing. While I waited for the little indicator light to turn green and vacant, I asked the woman behind me if she knew how long it would be until we landed.

“Well, he said 11:30, so however long it is from now until 11:30, I guess,” she hazarded.

“Yeah…I just don’t know what time it is…” In other words, your response is entirely useless.

Continue reading

The art of knitting in red

I swear, we were just minding our own business, having our Sunday stroll through Kennedy Park. Clara and me, holding hands, like we always do. I was on the right, she was on the left. Like always.

I don’t remember what we were talking about. Nothing important, just chatting. God, she’s beautiful, I remember thinking. I was so wrapped up in her presence, her being, her scent, I didn’t even see it coming.


It was a gorgeous day to walk in Kennedy. Spring was in the air: birds chirping, green leaves swaying in the breeze, kids running around laughing. The wind caressed my hair, Tom held my hand in his, and all was right in the world.

I smiled at the little old lady sitting on a park bench. She was knitting something red this time. We walked by her every Sunday. By now I felt like I knew her, even though we had never exchanged a word. She looked like such a dear, sweet woman, right up until the moment she lunged at my husband. I can’t imagine what came over her.


Click click, click click, click click, go my needles. Red rum, red rum, red rum. I grin. Funny. Glance up. That couple again. Happy. Woman smiles at me. Always smiles.

Man doesn’t smile. Dirty man. No smiles for old auntie. Red rum, red rum, red rum.

My needle finds its mark. Tears on man’s face. Good. Tears cleanse the soul. Red yarn the color of fresh blood. Yes. Red rum, red rum, red rum.

Writing 101, Day 9: A man and a woman walk through the park together, holding hands. They pass an old woman sitting on a bench. The old woman is knitting a small, red sweater. The man begins to cry. Write this scene.

Today’s twist: write the scene from three different points of view: from the perspective of the man, then the woman, and finally the old woman.