“Writing” Challenge ~ A Short Story

By Syl Dinada

I came upon a post. Well, “post” is perhaps charitable in the context. This err… let’s just say, less-than-positive display, did not relate to the goals of that particular Writers’ Group. A long convoluted, interesting, and sometimes even slightly bizarre comment thread developed. Much of the discussion revolving around the lack of relevance to the group purpose.

I agreed with this sentiment, but in the spirit of practising Alternative Perspectives I took upon myself the challenge of seeing how I could *Use* that “post” positively as a writing exercise and challenge. My contrary side added a few more bones challenges:

I would need to use all of the post in a relevant way.

Showing my less-than-positive opinion of the post needed to be a part of it but doing sop in a positive and fun way.

Using writing “Sins” in a way that was appropriate and enhanced the story.

Showing an absurd interpretation of the post but with a logic that is internally consistent.

Slip in some social commentary.

Sneak in some philosophy in a non-obvious subtle way that does not detract from the story and adds to it.

Make the entire challenge fun and amusing, an extended satire of sorts.

Use a gender “other’ character that had non-typical motivations and perspectives, but still make then believable.

Ridicule some absurdities in a positive way.

Persist and trust that solutions to some of the problems I foresaw before beginning the detailed writing would resolve themselves, through luck and/or inspiration.

Well, you be the judge. Let me know how much you think I succeeded in these challenges.

“Writing” Challenge

Jones loved mysteries, which was a good, thing, because most of life among the humans was a mystery to them. Ok, to be fair, just posing as a human was a massive mystery, but to be really fair, if they were honest, most of what they liked to call “Mysteries,” just plain fcked with their minds, *All* of them.

Jones never had thought they were particularly slow, but was now reconsidering, maybe why they had been given this “Assignment.” Jones air-quoted with all thirty-three of their digits, in their minds ofc, the human twenty would otherwise have to do. This was one human affectation they did like and understand.

After Jones’ initial reports, and their abject incomprehensibility, never mind extending his “Sentence” to this marvellous “Mystery” planet, Jones had been given the “Suggestion” of being a writer. It seems writers could get away with all sorts of otherwise peculiar, even untoward, or unsocial, behaviour. If they had weird ideas, this was a boon.

Also, Jones could stay safely ensconced in their dwelling, engaging electronically. Through this format they could even tell people they were an alien, and it mattered not a bit. Jones had researched what they were “expected” to do as a writer, thus joining some Writers’ Groups on the currently most popular self-aggrandisement platform.

Jones’ mystery today was figuring out exactly what a *Fcktard* was. They gathered easily enough it was a counter-self-aggrandising term. Understanding this mystery Jones hoped, would help them in their larger puzzle: Motivations. If they’d heard it once they’d heard it more times than cliche:

Understand motivations, understand humans.”  (Then we’ll know why we can eat them.) Ok that last part was all Jones, but really!!

The latest mind-fck, err mystery, was a post in one of the writers’ groups. Jones re-read the post:

“If the people in this group can’t lighten up and not run to admin over an article they believe dosen’t have anything to do with writing. Then ill just stay on the Writers Fight Club and leave this pathetic group of sensitive pussies. Everything has to do with writing. If you can’t see the value in both sides of an argument and see past your opinion. Really see past your pre-conceived ideas. How are you ever going to write a convincing or three dimensional antagonist? Really? Maybe you could all try turning these threads you dislike into writing threads. Be constructive, and ask the OP a good question? Or at least don’t just be a tattletell. That is one of the worst things someone can be.”

“””Mystery””” Ha!! Jones emphasised the extremity of their perception with TRIPLE air quotes!

“When in doubt fall back on your training.”

Jones sighed. Something else the humans had gifted him. They sighed, it seemed, more than they breathed. Thanks water bags. Their training said to go through a “mystery” one step at a time. Dissect each segment individually. (This raised pleasing images in at least seventy percent of Jones’ minds.) OK, on to figuring out the fart bit: Jones typoed “First bit,” but decided to leave it. His subconscious contribution was more appropriate. Breaking this confoundation into the first seemingly coherant, (yes with and a) portion, Jones analysed:

“If the people in this group can’t lighten up […]”

The obsession with superficial racial characteristics confused Jones. Yes it seemed to be somewhat of an issue for some, but this just did not make particular sense in the context. Jones had low expectations of this particular “Writing Contribution.” They had researched “lighten up,” and indeed, as they suspected, one *Could* lighten one’s colour. They had researched iconic and influential figures as one of his first projects and one such famous individual, a king no less, had done exactly this.

Yes yes, Jones was well aware that “lighten up” also meant to increase levity and or amusement. But that made even less sense. Then nothing else in the sentence made sense. Next:

“And not run to admin […]”

Jones did not know this was possible. They understood run, and had even managed it themselves. They were quite proud of this accomplishment. But run *TO* admin!!! That was a long way! Jones had researched Admins’ whereabouts, and the closest, in their city, would on average be a long long run. For Jones, even if they lived in the next house, it would be an effort. But well, those addressed were assumed to be were human, (Jones assumed) and the few times they had gone out, typically early morning for the reduced stink, they had indeed seen many people running about. This part thus wasn’t then such a complete mind-fck, it was the next part,

“over an article […]”

This Jones had *never* observed. And here the “”Writer”” (Yes, they merited double double quotation marks.) had lost them entirely. Jones spasmed with amusement. The incredulosity involved the preceding Not. Not only had Jones Not seen anyone run over an article, but the writer was suggesting that if they did *not* do what they were already doing…. Ugh, Jones’ minds started fighting amongst themselves. Leave it, just leave it. Let those higher up the mind-chain pretend they can figure it out. Move on, just move on. Next:

“they believe dosen’t […}”

Jones had to look up dosen’t. And NOOO Search Engine, they did *NOT* *mean*… How could they mean a different word to the one they were looking up if they didn’t know what it meant in the first place?? Jones had been rigorous in their search protocol, typing: meaning: dosent

Their dis-inflated brains had allowed the error, but when Jones noticed, their brains mostly back in alignment, the omission of the apostrophe made sense. Jones was loving their subtle brains, those were providing otherwise unimaginable help. With the apostrophe it would be: dose not. Short light sleep not. ?? This could not fit in any way Jones could imagine. However, Jones’ fortuitous typing had yielded the correct definition.

The very first result:

Dosent – definition and meaning – Wordnik

https://www.wordnik.com/words/Dosent

Dosent mean they are ignorant people, just rather different from the rest of America. (Unrelated political advertising followed.)

“mean they are ignorant people” – Jones multi-tsked at the grammar, but now this last section made sense. Thus:

“they believe ignorant people (dosen’t) […]”

Jones finally felt they were getting somewhere with their translation. The last part: “have anything to do with writing” was at last obvious. It was easy to have *any* thing to do with writing. Jones felt “included’ in this, searching in vain for the warm fuzzy feeling.

Jones rewrote the sentence for his report, with the much needed translation adjustments:

“If the people in this group can’t adjust their racial profile, and fail to run over an article on their way to admin, [then] they believe ignorant people have anything to do with writing.”

Jones Smirked with satisfaction, an unconscious habit they had already picked up in their short time on planet. Full immersion into the super popular self-promotion addiction site had affected them more than they realised. They expected some madness as a side effect of understanding, but…

Content, Jones’ courage returned to undertake the second sentence. Section one:

“Then ill […] ”

Who was ill? (Well all of them evidently.) Jones scolded their minds: Focus!!! Ok, so person or persons were ill at some undermined time. Next:

“Then ill just stay […] ”

A rather uncharitable sentiment, but we’ll, humans… At least it was comprehensible, if reprehensible. Jones’ optimism peeked shyly out from one of the nether brains…

“Then ill just stay on the Writers Fight Club […]”

…but promptly fled in terror at the next. Jones didn’t need to research Fight Club, it had by chance been one of the pre-mission study videos. Perhaps, Jones trembled, not by chance at all… Higher-Minds had tricked Jones into Combat!!!! They had explicitly put into their contract that any combat was purely voluntary. But, they had *Agreed* to be a Writer. NOOOO!!! Jones hovered on the edge of brain-melt. Many many years of discipline and sacrifice prevailed. Pressing on, Jones was however, wholly unprepared for the prescient prognostication about to become an ironic reality:

“and leave this pathetic group of sensitive pussies.”

Shock, horror, dread, defeat and abject misery enveloped Jones. They knew!!! The little fckturd human had been playing them all this time!!! They knew, they knew everything!!! This was beyond any possible coincidence. Jones’ species, in their natural form, closely resembled an ambulatory vagina. Jones had initially been confused by the over-focus on what appeared to be crude children’s illustrations of what his kind looked like. They couldn’t figure how the humans could possibly know, maybe some intuitive thing, until they realised it was just a species wide maternal fixation. But this, so pointedly directed at them… the combat threat, knowing Jones’ fear of violence of any kind, even suggestive violence, and that thus, Jones indeed was a “Sensitive pussy,” this was just too accurate!

Jones “training,” programming, they realised, activated. Scanning the rest of the “post” to double check and confirm… Especially now they had cracked the code. “Write,” “Writing” and “Writer” all were synonyms for *Combat!*

Jones skipped the piece by piece discernments, no time for that now. They simply had to take the dreadful “Writing” and translate it directly for their report, while they still had time. At least the warning…

Report #231564879:

We, Jones, have uncovered a direct threat to our safety encoded in a barely literate “post” in a forum I was an active participant and “member” of. (Jones had enough spare mind to wince at the irony of “member.” They were technically mostly male.) See original copy of pre-decoded message above. My exhaustive efforts have yielded the following deeply deeply disturbing communication: (Our expert commentary is added where necessary. Please note our personal commendation for a commendation.)

If the “people” in this group can’t adjust their racial profile, [actually be humans] and fail to run (over) away [from] an “article” Combat, on their way to “admin” [Planet Vaginuus], [then] they believe ignorant people [us], have anything to do with “writing” [Combat]. Then ill just stay, on the “Writers” Fight Club and leave this pathetic group [planet] (of) [you] sensitive pussies. Everything has to do with “writing” [combat]. If you can’t see the “value” in both sides of an argument, [combat for sport!!] and see past your opinion [Sensible sensitivity]. Really see past your pre-conceived ideas [Enlightened evolution.]. How are you ever going to “write” [fight against] a convincing or three dimensional antagonist? [Scary humans] Really? [Really!]

Maybe you could all try turning these “threads” [passive aggression] you dislike [like] into “writing threads” [Real actual Combat!!]. Be constructive [destructive], and ask the OP a good question? [unintelligible] Or at least don’t just be a tattletell [

A pre-banquet sender of reports to “Admin” ](The confirming damnation of the entire message, the fcktard term “tattletell.”) That is one of the worst things someone [us] can be. [Extreme violence redundant confirmation.]

As the implications compounded Jones began to fuse, eventually leaving another puddle of “Spontaneous Combustion” residue for the savages to puzzle over. Whoever thought they could ever had made a good meal was the biggest fcktard fckturd ever!

 

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Syldinada – A Philosopher-Writer focusing on the Application of a comprehensive Practical-Personal-Philosophy. Creator of: The Philosophy of Appropriateness and: An A+ Philosophy.

 

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