Thursday, January 07, 2010

Entry #34

I AM I: BAGGIES
by Veronica Purcell


I know it was stupid of me to work outside today, and should’ve checked the sky and see if it was still mourning the loss of the world. I stepped into puddles and allowed its shit to rain over me anyway. Besides, who else is going to lug those maggoty baggies into the cauldrons? I don’t see God doing it anytime too soon, especially when the damned fires took longer to kick in and the corpses slower to disintegrate. The flies are only interested in making my chores more miserable. Bastards!

Does God care that I almost did a Russian-Roulette this morning over weak coffee, tasteless bread and stale gossip? I know Mickey’s Dinner has a reputation to uphold but honestly... Luckily, I had the ole Lotto Cat to reassure me. Its numbers promised a better tomorrow.

Lunchtime was a better impression. I ate acrid bagels whilst watching the usual bird silhouette picture and its soars through the grey skies with an impression of ease. I debated whether it cared to see colour again. The debate left me hollow and saw the bagels creating Jackson Pollack impressions on the floor. I decided to leave the artistic mess for tomorrow. No one’s going to care.

So for today, I go to sleep grateful to God for my survival. I suppose I should say the prayer for today’s dead.

“God above, give these baggies rest in peace, and hello to Michael J.”

Peace out.

28 comments:

Sarah Laurenson said...

What a picture you paint. Brilliant and so very sad.

pjd said...

A little bizarre. I admit I don't really get the thing about the baggies. I'm guessing it's post-apocalyptic, but I'm not sure I read it right. The reference to Jacko at the end has a sort of satisfying incongruity to it.

Aniket said...

Ditto Pete.

Not sure I catch all the references, right. Will have to dig up.

Loved the narration!

Lena said...

This evokes a feeling of hopelessness in me. So sad. But greatly put into words.

Bernita said...

I take it "baggies" are body bags?
A janitorial figure after a nuke holocaust is my take.Very well done.

SzélsőFa said...

sounds quite dystopian to me, too. nice visuals with the Pollack and all the food gone crap. kind of makes me want to throw out. i think this was the writer's best intention. she did it very well.

JaneyV said...

I'm guessing the title is an homage to I am Legend and that baggies are the dead bodies. I imagine that the clothes become quite baggy as they decompose. I think Bernita has it again. A Janitor for the Apocalypse. I love his madness. Bleak yet thoroughly enjoyable.

Meghan said...

I agree with JaneyV. I also find this piece bleak and yet enjoyable. Well done.

Leatherdykeuk said...

Bleak but amusing -- I love the Pollack vomiting!

Preeti said...

Sigh. All in a day's work. And what work it is? Damn.
There is a machinic, droll faced approach to the piece added to which is a certain slobbishness and inertia.
It all sums up to a narrative that left me gaping at the screen. I thoroughly loved reading it.

Four Dinners said...

An apolyptic mortuary attendant?

This is bloody good stuff Veronica!

Bloody good!

Craig said...

Strong piece. He seems like he almost doesn't care anymore and that doesn't bother him even though it should. Perhaps he is just nitpicking the small things because the big stuff is just too much to deal with. Thought provoking

Chris Eldin said...

I understood body bags for baggies. I was totally drawn into your dystopian tale. Is this part of a larger writing? I really liked it.

Amias said...

Interesting, but I got a little lost, still I understood it was about life and death. Will miss MJ.

Kartik said...

Two reads later, I'm still not sure about the post-apocalyptic theory. It sounds like a mortician going through a tough time for sure though. But I like the ambiguity that this piece has created in its interpretations :)

laughingwolf said...

so mote it be, veronica...

kashers said...

Sorry, but being honest, this confused me. I didn't get many of the references. Like, for instance, fallen bagels creating Jackson Pollock impressions on the floor... just couldn't see how.

Plus, if it's apocalyptic and the mc is one of the few survivors (as hinted by 'who else would put those maggoty baggies in the cauldrons?), I wondered who put the dead bodies in the baggies in the first place, and seeing as they're infested by maggots, not too well either.

Terri said...

I think the opening line is great:
"...should’ve checked the sky and see if it was still mourning the loss of the world"
Definitely post-apocalyptic, to me. I also am lost with a few minor details, however the strong, bleak voice makes it not matter to me.
The scene is vividly written, great use of words.

austere said...

An undertaker at the end of the world?
I'm lost.

Laurel said...

Bleak. So nearly hopeless except for the prayer at the end. This really creates a mood! Good work.

catvibe said...

It's amazing that this person has faith at all given the circumstances. Bleak and bleaker. Nice imagery.

Jimmie Vee said...

Being that the stories are only 250words, I thought I would keep my comment to a minimum. I'm sorry that my previous comment "huh?" (previously removed) was lacking - what I meant to say was I had trouble following what was happening here and I found the story just a little bit confusing. I think if the story could have been expanded more, I could have gleaned a better understanding of all that was going on, and possibly why. Besides that, I do enjoy off-the-beaten-track stories, and the subject here concerning society thrust into the gutter sets my mind wandering into "what-if" mode. Thanks for the insight.

illyriataylor said...

great twist on the end of the world scenario.

McKoala said...

I'll admit to coming to the comments for some clarification on this one - I didn't follow it very well at first. However, I was intrigued enough to want to follow up, because there were some lovely touches in here.

james r tomlinson said...

I guess the end of the road is nothing more than a dump. Plastic doesn't break down and is very menacing. Your setting has left these images slushing around in my head.

Deb Smythe said...

I love the way you took the grand scope of a post-apocolyptic world down to such an individual level. The MC's voice really came through.

V.B. Purcell said...

Confusion is there because you are glimpsing at a piece of a puzzle. It would seem I haven't written this piece's purpose clearly. Then again, revelation is not necessarily made known through clarity.

I'm glad people have pointed out what I had hope were obvious elements (apocalyptic tones etc). There are also a lot of underling tones that connect to other moments not revealed. I believe this is lends toward questions.

Thank you for reading and for your comments. They were what I had hoped for.

Aerin said...

Dear Entrants #1-105,

I have read your pieces so that I can fairly participate in the Readers' Choice vote. (I read all of them through last week, before I started commenting.) I will be coming back around to offer my keep/tweak comment, but I didn't want anyone to snark.

Cheers,
Aerin (#236)

BTW, it's perfectly fine if you still want to snark, but this way you can choose a more appropriate subject, like the new Starbucks paninis or the people over 35 who are exclusively on MySpace