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Drabblecast 43 – Jelly Park

December 20, 2007

Cover art for Drabblecast episode 43, Jelly Park, by Rodolfo ArredondoDrabblecast #43 presents “Jelly Park by Aliya Whiteley.

In consideration of the holidays, Norm begins to see a common theme to this Drabblecast season: celebrating relationships.

Take, for example, the relationship between the holidays and a pile of extremely rare rhinoceros dung. Four piles, actually. All collected by conservationists and auctioned on E-bay to raise money for preservation of the species.

Norm speculates on the market timing of such a gift… A thousand dollars and you could have your very own rhino scat to accompany that Elf on your shelf. Which leads us to reflect upon the meaning of the holidays for all manner of people, animals, and legendary monsters.

But we digress.

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Drabblecast 42 – 40 Quarters

December 14, 2007

Cover for Drabblecast episode 42, 40 Quarters, by Jonathan Wilson“Your work does sound most commendable, but I’m afraid there’s nothing I can do.  Volunteer work, no matter how worthy, doesn’t pay taxes.  There’s no such thing as a free lunch…”

Building on last episode’s interest in a Nigerian scam spame e-mail, Norm announces the first annual “Nigerian Scam Spam E-mail Contest,” arising from listener Strawman’s suggestion. We move on to the feature story, whose author Tom Williams appeared before on episode #30, “2084.” This week, Mr. Williams writes about a cynical Social Security officer who tires of the hard-luck cases he hears on a daily basis, deciding “there ain’t nobody but workers and slackers.” A special individual arrives to remind our protagonist of the truth of the social contract.

Drabblecast 41 – Set Another Place at the Table, I’m Bringing My Pimple

December 5, 2007

Cover for Drabblecast episode 41, Set Another Place at the Table I'm Bringing My Pimple, by Bo Kaier

It starts off like any normal bout of Pre-Menstrual Syndrome.  I’m constipated, I’m depressed and I’ve got a pimple the size of a hazelnut on my chin…

This week’s Drabble details a junk mail scam, betraying Norm’s deep interest in e-mail spam scams, later manifesting itself in the Drabblecast’s signature “Nigerian Scam Spam Contest.” Norm wholeheartedly plugs “Between the Cracks Fiction,” the website archive of the feature story’s author, Kim McDougall. Norm issues a warning, that the feature is the grossest story Drabblecast has aired since “The Worm Within.” In it, a young woman spends a very difficult week dealing with a delicate medical condition. Feedback from Episode #36, “Pumpkin Seeds,” a Halloween special, was universally positive.

Drabblecast 40 – Marbles

November 28, 2007

Cover for Drabblecast episode 40, Marbles, by David Steffen

“Michael…” his mother said, smiling and bending toward him. “Don’t you think we should invite your new neighbor over to play?”

In Drabble News:  the field of Taxidermy triumphs with the successful recovery of a famous cryptozoological (mystery) animal. This week’s Drabble, “Shark attack,” provides a surprising role reversal. The feature story, also by author Ayn Sauer, continues the theme of vicious youth. “Marbles” tells the tale of young Michael and a precocious young collector named Alice. It details a kiddie cross, the sort of thing that scars for life, or elicits a frightful smile. Head-scratcher feedback for Episode #35, “The Guilt Trader,” follows.

Drabblecast 39 – The Beekeepers

November 21, 2007

Cover for Drabblecast episode 39, The Beekeepers

The Tehtix move so damn fast – scientists can’t ever keep up… and populations never know what hit them…

In a mind-bending tale of parasitic worms, intelligent wasps and a symbiotic virus, author J. Alan Pierce describes an unusual alien invasion that preserves its victims forever. The story connects themes of dreams and communication. Mr. Pierce had previously written Episode #18, “The One that Got Away.” Finally, Drabble News recounts the story of an alleged alien virus, arising from a meteor falling in Andes. A real-life story of contamination in the same region as the feature story – co-incidence or premonition?  Feedback #34, “The Suit,” rounded out the episode.

Drabblecast 38 – Trifecta

November 15, 2007

Cover for Drabblecast episode 38, Trifecta 1, by Bo Kaier

Trifecta – a run of three wins or grand events. Origin: 1970s from “tri” + “perfecta”

The Drabblecast’s first ever trifecta special, three short stories asking there interesting questions. Is best model, best witness? How much is a dream worth? And what would you do to get a pound of flesh?

This episode marked the first “Trifecta,” as Norm produced an anthology of three short-ish stories connected by a theme. Norm left the specific theme open for speculation by listeners. Was it perhaps, “lethal consumption?”  In the first story, “Witness,” a cleaning robot recounts a mysterious incident from its uniquely prosaic point of view. Next, “Wiggin’s General Store,” turns out to be a place that sells dreams. No, really, sells dreams and not the safe kind. (The author, Basil Godevenos, wrote the poem “The Truth about the Reaper” in Episode #34.) The final story, “Pork and Steak Eye” ponders the ethics of willing organ-donor clones. Upon reading the feedback from Episode #33, “Dessert Storm,” a good laugh was had by all.

Drabblecast 37 – Luna Springs

November 8, 2007

Cover for Drabblecast episode 37, Luna Springs, by Rick Green

They say the gravity’s lessened here, air’s purified, filtered with vitamins and proteins.  Even the light’s better – Luna Springs is on a mobile foundation timed to keep optimum reflected sunlight at all hours…

In Drabble News: a young girl born with four arms and four legs in India, believed to be the incarnation of a Hindu goddess, underwent surgery to remove her irregularities. Norm speculates on her attitude towards baby pictures later in life. Continuing on the theme of physical infirmities, the feature story features a sickly and wheelchair-bound grandfather. A man who found a place in a retirement community on the Moon, where “memories come alive with the moonlight and dance with the stars” – leaving his grandson with a painful memory of his own. The story author, Patrick Hurley, has been published in “The Horror Library” and other venues. Feedback for Episode #32, “The Warden’s Last Day,” closes out the episode.

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