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February 7, 2006

Flash Fiction - Honorable Mention

Flash Fiction - honorable mention 1My New Haircut by Kent Roberts  “If you give me some cash, I can find your family,” I told the man in my chair.He looked confused. “What in hell are you talking about? My wife’s at work, and my kids are in those chairs there. You’re cutting their hair next.”  “Those aren’t your children,” I informed the man, who looked dumfounded but somewhat relieved. “Besides, I didn’t mean locating them the way you’re thinking. I meant locating them on a map of the world or nation or county or galaxy.”  “Just cut my hair,” said the man. “I don’t want you to locate my family, on a map or otherwise.” He was watching me closely.  I took a drag off my cigarette and blew the smoke in his face. I told him he was cute for such a big boy. At that point he stood up and started hitting me. Then he cut my hair. He can’t cut hair very well. When I got up and looked in the mirror my nose was pointed in the wrong direction a little bit and my hair was very uneven.  I saw him in church that Sunday and asked him if he could redo my haircut because he had done very poorly the first time around. I also mentioned that he was cute again. He called me crazy and said something about how he would kill me “if we weren’t in a place of God.”  I don’t give a damn anymore. I’m starting to like my new haircut.Flash Fiction - honorable mention 2The Tattooed Organ by Philip A. Smith  A certain mischievous surgeon was also a tattoo artist on the side. He couldn’t give up the artistic satisfaction of moonlighting in seedy tattoo parlors where he branded his clients with renderings of their eternal allegiances, woes, and other unspeakable proclivities. Eventually, however, the strain on his personal and family life became too much and he was forced to choose: either the knife or the needle.  It was too much to ask of him; and besides he had always had a way of transforming an either/or into a both/and ... and, what is more, under the proper Hippocratic aesthetic impulse, it is easy to transform an anesthetized patient into a willing client ...  It began innocently enough, before suturing up after a gall bladder removal, he sketched out a little Celtic pattern along a stretch of intestine. Soon he was able to couple spinal correction surgery with intricately detailed Chinese dragons and prostate surgery with cleverly placed skull and crossbones. That his work went unnoticed, even by the bearer of it, did not trouble him much. He did it for the satisfaction of doing it, like burying treasure.  His masterpiece, however, was a certain open heart surgery. Over the unsightly fist-shaped organ he placed the symbolic heart, pure and simple and red. Oh, how the two beat as one ... it moved his own heart so ...