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KeithSpeak - March 2024


March 1, 2024
She appeared to be sane enough when they were dating, but soon after the marriage ceremony she morphed into a crazy lady. She started eating cereal for dinner and expected him to as well. She painted their kitchen and bathrooms black because she had "a bunch of extra black paint". One winter day she broke all the windows on their sun porch because she wanted to feel the crisp outside air, inside. She was staring into her husband's closet when she decided she could no longer stand his grey suit. She took the suit and all the rest of his clothes and threw them onto the front lawn. Then she burned them at 2 in the afternoon because "that is the traditional hour for grey suits." When the fire department arrived, she told them that her husband had cheated on her (he hadn't) and she was taking her revenge. The firemen put out the burning clothes and left. Amazingly, after she made up her story about his affair she convinced herself it was true and that he was actually cheating on her. This made her a tad crazier. When her husband came home after work and saw his half torched wardrobe on the lawn, he ran into the house (where she was waiting for him with a fireplace poker). She accused him of cheating, that he looks pathetic in grey, and because she "couldn't stand it any longer", lunged at him. She is currently under psychiatric evaluation and he is healing from multiple stab wounds. In his defence he said he was taken by surprise because they don't have a fireplace. The end.  
I realize that's a terrible tale to start off the lovely month of March, but we here at Keith Ryan Publishing are merely abiding by our slogan - Style. Substance. Occasional disgrace, and well, there you have it.
March 2, 2024
I bought this item at a hardware store and on the front of the package was a huge American flag proudly boasting that this product was made in America. First off, this is Canada, so no one's impressed. Second off, when I got home and opened it, the instructions were in Spanish and it said it was a product of Colombia. Thanks to unseemly and disingenuous politicians, lying is such an American thing now that other countries are lying to the liars. Touché 
March 4, 2024
Drat, I had a quick, unexpected trip out of town. I'm still there. Will post tomorrow.
March 5, 2024
Overheard a man talking to himself.
-- If you don't do it, someone else is going to. That's where we're at, isn't it. So are you gonna do it? Come on, man, say it. Is it yes or no? Do it or don't. Do it or don't. Say it. Say it. Say it. Say it. No! Let someone else do it. Ok then, that's settled.
March 6, 2024
Sure there are crazy people in the world, but you don't have to date them. When you date a crazy person, you too will become crazier. It'll happen slowly, like paint drying. After a while you'll wake up and 5 years of your life will have vanished in a blur of nuttiness and you two will still have the same crazy issues that you had at the beginning of the relationship only now they will have been so blown out of proportion that things, well, will have only gotten crazier. You can avoid all this by not dating a crazy person. Ok, nuff said.
March 7, 2024
The envelope was stamped For Your Eyes Only and Confidential. It was thick, had no return address and appeared to have already been opened and then resealed. I am not a curious sort by nature. I really have no interest in what's in the envelope, who sent it or for what purpose. If something doesn't look or feel right to me, I'm done with it. I threw it away unopened. In case you're horrified at that, I will say that this is not a one off. Here are a few more examples of things I'm not the least bit curious about:
What's in other people's medicine cabinets.
My credit score.
Deciphering vanity license plates.
What's on other people's computers or phones.
The soup of the day.
March 8, 2024
Another writer visited my office and kept saying how nice it was compared to the shithole he has to write in. I hope he realizes that where you do the work really has no bearing on the work you do. You're creating something from your mind; the room you do that in is irrelevant. I didn't say that to him as he was kind of enamored with the idea that he could use his poor office as some kind of excuse for his poorer work. Why write fiction when you can live it, eh.
March 9, 2024
Miss Binney, 24
Model at Frederika's Fingerless Gloves
I'm so far away you'd need a time machine
Would you like to muss up my perfect part?
Maybe mess with my sweet ringlets?
Wipe that coy look off my face?
All you have to do is bring me underwear that doesn't itch.
Send me a telegram.
March 10, 2024
The auditorium was 2/3rds empty. The decorations were plastic flowers, some hackneyed banners and a couple of creased and wrinkled flags. They were blaring songs from artists who told them to cease and desist playing their music. It was as exciting and alluring as stale white bread. A mountain of lying, repetitious old grievances, stupid ideas, childish taunts, ridiculous boasts, disproven claims, gobblygook bullshit and whiny begs for money were the evening's offerings. The entire charade was a dog and pony show with a bunch of fascist loving, gullible morons in gauche red hats led by a greasy, charmless, foul smelling feeble old man who has lost his mind. Welcome to America?
March 12, 2024
Been trying to do something that is not working. I tried a couple of workarounds, neither of which were successful. How to do what I need to do? I did some research but found everyone's suggestions were also fruitless. Hmm. I really don't see any other way to accomplish this. 
It is now 4 hours later and my tenacity has turned to apathy. There appears to be no way to make this work. I hate giving up on things but I am left with no choice. I pull the plug. As soon as I do that I see the solution to my dilemma. But it's too late. I pulled the plug. Sigh.
March 13, 2024
I went up to the road to open our gate early this morning and surprised two knackered foxes resting in the bushes. I pretended to ignore them so they wouldn't feel the need to get up and run away because they looked exhausted. I opened the lock, unhooked the gate and swung it across the driveway. I hooked it on the other side and even though I was within 10 feet of the foxes, neither one moved. Then I retreated back down the driveway leaving the tired canines their space. We think this is our property, but I'll bet every other animal living here thinks it's theirs.
March 15, 2024
You ever have one of those days where you wake up after a great sleep and you feel great and have a great attitude and you think it's gonna be a great day and everything is just great until things turn to shit and you're pissed off and mad at every damn thing and it just builds from there to some point when all is at its worst and you remind yourself that Today was gonna be great day and you have your first smile since things went south. An ironic smile, a sardonic smile, but a smile nonetheless. No? That's just me then?
March 16, 2024
You ever find something you didn't know you were looking for? No? That's just me then?
March 17, 2024
Overheard a couple at the movies.
-- Peter said this was pretty funny so I'm looking forward to it.
-- Charley, I told you about this movie a couple of weeks ago and you blew me off. Now Peter says it's cool so suddenly you want to see it. How come you always take his advice and yet you argue with me about mine?
-- What?
-- Don't what me.
-- Peter said this was a pretty funny movie, that's all.
-- Peter this and Peter that. I'm sick of it, Charley. So what's the deal, you got a crush on this guy?
-- A crush! Are you kidding?
-- Then why are you so enslaved to his ideas, advice and recommendations?
-- I think enslaved is a little strong, Millie.
-- Is it?
-- I think so.
-- Well answer my question. What's your fascination with this guy. And how come I've never met him?
-- You've never met him because...
-- Yeah, spit it out.
-- You would fall in love with him like-
-- Like you have?
-- Nooo.
-- Yes.
-- I'm not gay.
-- You sure sound like it to me.
-- If you met him you would probably leave me for him, that's why.
-- Oh really?
-- Well yeah. He's way cooler than I am.
-- Then I have to meet him.
-- Nooooooo.
-- Yes.
-- Millie, nooooo.
-- Charley, yes.
-- You have to promise not to leave me.
-- I'm not promising anything.
-- Peter is MY friend. I just want to leave it that way.
-- No, Charley. Not anymore.
-- Yessssssss.
-- No.
March 18, 2024
You hear that? Your inner voice is slagging you off, criticizing your choices, laughing at your ideas, belittling you to the point of tears. No wait a minute, that's you doing that to yourself. You are so successful in beating yourself up that you've no faith in yourself, you think you're a loser, and are convinced that you're worthless. On the bright side, it's a perfect way to show how your thoughts about yourself are what you think of yourself. So just imagine where you'd be, who you'd be, if you peppered yourself with positive and enriching ones instead. Capish?
March 19, 2024
I went in to buy something that costs X amount of dollars. But after seeing how cheaply it was made and how, according to the reviews, it didn't last long and had a myriad of faults, I started looking for the best built one on the market. And I found it. It cost X dollars times 9. That's right, the "Rolls Royce" of this product cost 9 times more than the shoddy one. But you know what? After doing a huge amount of research and reading over 500 reviews of this company and their products, I too was convinced it was worth the money. I was so impressed, I'm not only buying the thing I was looking for, I'm also buying another very expensive, top notch quality product from this same Swedish company. Hoj hoj.
March 20, 2024
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. A thousand words! The damn Gettysburg Address was only 272 words long. The Gettysburg Address! You think your comments on some picture is worth THREE TIMES the Gettysburg Address?! Delusional! Realistically, I'd say a picture is worth a couple of sentences, a paragraph at most. What?
March 21, 2024
Ooh, so the Literary Poetry Police are after me for denigrating their ability to expend a thousand words on some picture. A thousand words of poetry is basically unreadable. Sure there is The lliad, The Odyssey and Divine Comedy, but then they're not describing some picture now are they. So my comments stand. Take that!
March 22, 2024
Oi, I got a call from Larry Shane Bentowitz, western Canada precinct captain for the Literary Poetry Police. He was hopping mad about my previous posts and offered me a choice. He either wants to fight me using swords, sue me "for all I'm worth", or he writes a particularly nasty poem about me - my choice. I told him that unless it was a 1,000 word poem, to screw off. He fired back, Game on! Ooh, it's Keith vs. the Literary Poetry Police. Stay tuned.
March 23, 2024
Larry says it's done. He is going to have the grand unveiling of his hate poem to me at a poetry slam in Des Plaines on Saturday at Victor's Chuckle House, 35 W. Main. Be there or be square.
March 24, 2024
I walked in the room and Larry Shane Bentowitz and I locked eyes. He looked less like a cop and more like a failed poet, natch. I took my seat in the audience while Larry climbed on the stage and stood opposite a seedy looking chum, ready to slam, I suspect, with my poem. Instead, Larry launched into his 1,000 word poem slamming me, not his opponent. He turned away from the seedy one and addressed me directly in the crowd. 22 stanzas in, people were yelling, "Cringe" and "Shut the fuck up!" He rhymed yellow with detergent and claustrophobia with Denise Shuttenberg, who ever that was. Larry went off track several times trying to extend his poem to 1,000 words, but in the end, it was such a stinker the judges threw him out and openly asked who let him in. Fully humiliated, I expected Larry Shane Bentowitz to be waiting for me out by my rental car, so I brought my sword, just in case. Sure enough...I pricked him twice in the same knee and he dropped his sword and hobbled away.
And so we return to my original premise that a picture is not worth a thousand words. This is because a picture should engender an emotional response, not some words on a page to explain it. When looking at a picture, people ask, How do you feel about it, not, What would you write about it. See?
March 26, 2024
Damn, I'm out of town again. My life is too frenzied. I'm too popular! Tee hee. Tomorrow, my pretties.
March 27, 2024
Do you ever think that something monumental is going to happen to you? You have no idea what it might be but you feel something life changing is going to happen - so you see every opportunity that comes your way as just another chance at that, right? Come on, who's with me, raise your hand! No? That's just me then?
Who knows? It's only just out of reach
Down the block, on a beach, under a tree
I got a feelin' there's a miracle due
Gonna come true, comin' to me
Could it be? Yes, it could
Somethin's comin', somethin' good, if I can wait
Somethin's comin', I don't know what it is
But it is gonna be great
                                                                                Jimmy Bryant, West Side Story
March 28, 2024
The East Mumford pickleball team was disqualified from the tournament because their 4th member couldn't find clothes weird enough to be allowed on the team. At one point she showed up in a blazer, pencil skirt and high heels but was told by the team, the boisterous crowd, the pickleball community at large and the tournament board that that was highly inappropriate and not in the spirit of the mighty sport of pickleball nor the East Mumford pickleball team itself. She was immediately shunned and ostracized on social media where she had to finally apologize to the world and admit that she had no clothes weird enough to be a full fledged member of the East Mumford pickleball team and what was she thinking? Then she quit in a huff, thus disqualifying East Mumford and ruining their chance at victory and glory. So they too slagged her off on social media and urged their followers to do the same. The end.
Moral of the story? Pickleball isn't for everyone.
March 29, 2024
I was standing in our yard when a chickadee landed on my shoulder. I was surprised, but moments later when a second one landed on my toque, I was downright amazed. I named them Max and Irma and they were my best friends until either Max or Irma flew from my hat while either Max or Irma stayed on my shoulder (I hadn't decided which was which). I had no food to offer and am perplexed as to why two wild birds would do what they did. After a minute or so, in a bittersweet moment, the other Max or Irma flew off as well. I'll never forget my best friends.
March 30, 2024
Overheard two kids.
-- Mama says it's a bad word.
-- If it's so bad why do people say it?
-- I guess to be bad.
-- But I hear it all the time.
-- I know.
-- What's so bad about it?
-- I don't know.
-- What if I say it right now?
-- Shhh, mama might hear you.
-- I'm gonna say it.
-- Marlon!
-- I'm gonna do it.
-- You're gonna get us in trouble.
-- Taxes.
-- Shit, is she coming?
March 31, 2024
An editor got in touch and we discussed a project over the phone. At one point he asked me to lunch to continue our conversation. As he was in New York and I was in British Columbia, I suggested that lunch might be a bit of a stretch. He asked why. I said, I'm in British Columbia. He said, "Isn't that near New Jersey?" I thought he was kidding but he wasn't. I informed him that we were 4,500 kilometers apart. Of course, he had no idea how far a kilometer was. I said, About 2,800 miles. He then muttered, "Ah, the west coast," and suggested we meet in Los Angeles. I told him that LA was 1,500 miles from me. "What!" he blurted, "Where the hell do you live?" I proposed we meet in Vancouver. He asked how far Vancouver was from where I am. I told him it was a 6 hour drive. He was again shocked. "That's like from here to Portland, Maine! That's like 5 States! I'm not going to Maine for lunch!" These very large distances were proving to be too much for him. He was in a dither, not quite a tizzy. To calm him, I suggested we continue our discussions by phone. He readily agreed. And that was 4 minutes of my life I'll never get back.

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