Sunday, June 12, 2011

Writing Contest! (opens 6/12 at 7:18pm)

First writing contest of the summer!

I just finished reading CLAIRE DEWITT AND THE CITY OF THE DEAD by Sara Gran, and I'm pretty sure this one will be on my sox-knockers list for 2011.

My copy of the book is the prize for the writing contest.  Here's how to enter:

Write a story in 100 or fewer words.  Post it in the comments section of this blog post.  Comments are closed until 7:18pm EST (Eastern Shark Time) today 6/12.  The contest will run for 24 hours.  It closes on the stroke of 7:18pm EST 6/13.

Use the following words in the story:


There's a bonus prize for the best answer to how those words are connected.

One entry per person is eligible for the contest.  If you need a mulligan, I'll take the LAST entry (based on time)

Ready? Set! WRITE!


Unknown said...

I'm willing myself to take the silette into my hands, to feel its familiar contours. I load the black and white film. It's waiting for my interpretation of reality. I adjust the lens, think of Ansel Adams. He repainted the world using a billion shades of gray. He was an intuitionist, a true-born artist who created genius. Maybe with a camera like mine.
I'm a dope. I shake my head, knowing at best I can parrot his vision, no more. But, there's magic in the instant a shutter opens, closes. Maybe I've created a bit of genius with this instant.

The connection between the contest words: Willing refers to the character Claire is set upon finding. The parrot refers to both the green parrots and DeShawn's tattoo. Intuitionist is a novel by Colson Whitehead. “Dope” is another novel by Sara Gran. Jacques Silette is the French detective from “Détection.”

Jacqui L. Landry

M.A. Leslie said...

The dope stained Agfa Sillete’s lens was dangling loosely from the back of his chair. He stared, lost and confused, at the parrot perched on the other side of the room. It seemed too staged and fake.
Usually, his intuitionist views of art helped. But, his head was clouded and his mind fogged. Unfortunately, he was forced to rely on reason. The drugs were pulling a sheet over his eyes, like a powder coated blanket that block his artistic vision.
He thought it helped, but, sadly, the sullen artist, despite his overpriced camera, couldn’t find his muse.

Shannon Heather said...

“What the fuck?” Shayn-with-a-y screamed from deep inside the model’s skirt. She licked dope from her upper lip.

“Yeah,” his willing little parrot, Emmett, had the perfect valley-girl inflections, yet he’d never been west of Hoboken. “What the fuck?”

Lucy had an idea what put his BVD’s in a bind, but she knew better than to be the intuitionist. He was the photographer prodigy – not her.

“The fucking Silette is creeping up her ASS! It’s ruining the entire picture!” His voice echoed off her negligible rear. ”Let’s just shove a stick up her ass – it'd have the same affect!”

Bonus question guess:
Are they things found on your bookshelf?

J.P. Kurzitza said...

Questions and crackers

I’m an intuitionist by nature. I know relationships and I know when they go sour.

She showed up early this morning at my cage with a low-cut blouse and the patience to match. She dropped the old Silette on the table and stared at me with contempt. I’d see the photos in time, and I’d give her the straight dope on her husband.

I squawked as she brought the box of saltines over to me. What kind of parrot did she take me for? I hated this part of the game, but was always a willing participant.

The Daring Novelist said...

The intuitionist parrot who was not willing to hold still for a picture.

"Use the Silette!" it squawked.

Candace, the junior reporter assigned to the story, wondered how it knew she had a Silette? The antique camera was tucked in her bag, a gift from an old mentor.

"Use the Silette, you dope!"

Fine. Candace pulled out the camera, and saw it had film in it. Old, old film, but she took the picture anyway.

When processed, the pictures showed a parrot... and Jimmy Hoffa. Dead. Beside an open grave. And the car's license plate.

Camille LaGuire

PatiG said...

The detective was an intuitionist, especially when the crime involved drugs. He had seen the hooded man carry a parrot inside the building. Careful not to draw attention to himself, he used a high powered silette to obtain the evidence he needed to make the bust.
He called for backup in order to make an arrest and waited outside a rear window. He overheard a conversation. “Alright you guys, who is that dope peeking in the window?” The detective looked in and saw the parrot mimicking an episode from The Three Stooges. There were no drugs, just a willing cop.

Deanna Kent-McDonald said...

Sticky grit clutched every surface in their trinket shop. Heart pounding, he wasn’t willing to release the faded impression of their first grad school date. Upstairs – greasy fries, smoke, philosophy. Both sick from excess, they’d still tangled in bed after. She’d referred to those as their dope days.

“Infidelity? Be logical. We’ve never discussed this.” He caught a reflection of her gaze inside the warped Silette hanging on the wall.

“Me. Ever the intuitionist...” And from a dull sword, she deliberately expunged the dust.

Viscous blood that pooled at his feet repainted one wooden parrot in a most illogical pattern.

Anonymous said...

Mark prided himself on the fact he was not an intuitionist. Therefore, when the New Age earth-mother from IT bet him she was better at crossword puzzles, he was willing to accept her challenge. She was just a dope who repeated her horoscope like some kind of hippie parrot, for God's sake.
She won by filling in the word 'silette' first.
When he asked her how she had known the answer, she replied,“I didn't. I guessed. Capricorns never understand that.”
As she walked away in a cloud of patchouli, he tried to remember when he had told her his birthday.

Anonymous said...

“How are you doing, Bill?”
Bill, forty-two and balding, glanced at his golf ball on the green. “I’m on par. Rotten sort of day, isn’t it?”
Monroe shrugged and snapped a photo with that obnoxious silette. “Not really. You’re just in a bad mood. How’s that sponsoring-foreign-children thing working out?”
“In tuition, Istanbuli kid needs a thousand; the Indian kid needs four,” Bill snapped as he chipped his ball into a sand trap.
“Have you paid yet?”
“I will. Ingrates, the lot of them.”
“They do perceive your generosity, I’m sure,” Monroe said mildly, and took another photo.

Casey said...

Wanda looked at her wedding photos. They were taken with her father's old German silette, since there wasn't enough money for a real photographer. She was nostalgically amused at the heights her bouffant reached in 1966. She could have hidden a full-grown parrot in the massive up-do. Her groom, grinning like a dope, stood beside her wearing his nerdy horn-rimmed glasses. She had known him for only six weeks when they married. Wanda had always been an intuitionist willing to follow her heart. Tomorrow was their 45th wedding anniversary. “Expect victory and you make victory,” she contentedly quoted.

Brenda Buchanan said...

Ma says I have no appetite for souls. She’s parroting Jacques, but it stings. True, I’m not willing to crawl among the catacombs at midnight, looking for possibles. Not here in the Necropolis, where pretenders haunt the boneyards at night, looking for trouble.

I’m not that big and far too uneasy.

High noon’s my hunting hour, when the gravediggers are sprawled under live oaks smoking dope after their morning’s toil. An Afga Silette slung around my neck, looking like a tourist, I use my intuitionist wiles to save those souls.

I don’t count ‘em though. It’s a philosophical thing.

Precy Larkins said...

Intuitionist. Genius. 

Those were the words that rolled off the woman's curved lips, her bleached teeth dazzling him from across the table. A cab ride. Heels clacking on the steps to his place.

Willing. Eager. Her eyes round, unfocused. Doped up. 

They both were seeing colors. "Blue," he said, tracing his finger down her chin, her shoulder, down, down....

"Blue," she said, a parrot mimicking him. His hands clamped down on her slender neck....

He took out his silette. Focused. Snapped. Beauty and perfection in every line. He wiped the trickle of liquid on her lips.


AlexaNight said...

The journalist was not a willing participate in the parrot’s evil plot. She should have known that the dope was only using her for the Agfa Silette LK she inherited from her father.
How else would a parrot get his claws on something like that?
She was not an intuitionist, so had no idea the innocent looking bird would land her in such a boiling pot. The day that cops arrested her for blackmail, was when she realized she was nothing more than a pawn in his bird game. He would live in freedom, while she was in jail.

KellieM said...

My parrot squawked “The police are coming!”

My heart started beating quickly as I listened to him. I was glad my intuitionist bird was willing to warn me this time. I guess he was happy with me for the mixed vegetables I put in his food bowl. Pellets just don’t cut it. He always seems to know who’s going to knock on the apartment door so I needed to act fast.

I quickly grabbed the stash of dope I had just bought and headed to the bathroom. My birthday present just went down the Eljer Silette toilet.

Side note: I know you meant the camera but I went for original. And yes, silette is actually a name of a toilet!

BP said...

I wasn’t usually willing to trust my parrot as an intuitionist, but there I was, peering across the Alaskan snow, casting a skeptical eye at Polly, who was casually nodding at my camera. With the old Silette in hand, I cautiously leaned forward and clicked a picture. It was a good thing I had the toboggan fired up, because that animal gave one long look, then stumbled towards us like an acrobat on dope across the white powdery snow. I threw the camera down and cast a frozen glance at Polly. “Let’s get out of here!”
Correlation between words: They are all found in the dictionary. Gosh, I feel so smartz. *blush*

ModWitch said...

Morton huddled over his crossword puzzle with relish. It was the one time of day Hazel was willing to leave him alone, having read somewhere that regular mental exercise could prevent Alzheimer’s. She opined often that he couldn’t afford to lose any more of his brain.

Six letters—mindless repetition of words. Easy. Parrot. Mathematician fond of vague truths. Ha, he knew that one—intuitionist. It had been in the Times Sunday crossword last month. Puzzle designer musta gotten lazy this week. German fixed-lens camera. Silette.

Man married for fifty years. He sighed. Dope. Didn’t fit, though. Maybe ‘Morton’ would.

ClothDragon said...

“What are you willing to do for it?” She balanced the bottle at the tip of her fingers as if it meant nothing. My mind went blank as it wobbled.

“Do? For it?” Christ, what was I? A parrot?

A dope, I reached to catch the water not noticing the Silette until both hands slid behind her back.

“Not an intuitionist then.” Her eyes could have cut glass.

Then it was gone; she was gone. The door sounded final. I scrambled, stopped by the chain on my ankle.

Anything. I’d do anything. But the words caught, dry, in my throat.

Terri Coop said...

Mathematicians have zero time, but the blonde merited attending some philosophy circle jerk.

Mentally factoring polynomials to stay awake and ogling a Silette-snapping Goth, I heard the squawk.


The parrot repeated it, bobbing toward the tweed-jacketed host.

“Mathematics is not real truth, only willing constructs of humanity’s mind,” he said, profoundly puffing his pipe.

“Really? I find intuitionist set theory a trifle naïve,” I responded, channeling Bertrand Russell.

The dope had brought a knife to a gun fight.

“Next day I was a full-ride philosophy fellow and had time to get laid.”

“Blonde or Goth?” asked my assistant.



Okay, here is what I was able to come up with on connections.

1. "The Intuitionists," a novel by Colson Whitehead is mentioned in a blog post by Jenny Davison under the heading of "The Case of the Green Parrot," in which she references "City of the Dead" as a must have since she read the ARC. COTD uses the book by long dead Detective Sillette in the investigation into the death of ADA Vic Willing. The author of COTD, also wrote a book named "Dope." Colson Whitehead has also been named to a "pretty dope" list of influential black writers.

Thanks for the awesome contest!


Julie Hall said...

He is what he likes to call an intuitionist. One who sees what we may not even see ourselves. He lives beyond logic. Beyond reason. Others call him a dope fiend.

The first time I met him, he took my photograph with his old Silette. He doesn’t trust the digital world: no soul, but infinite memory. A dangerous combination.

I saw the picture tacked to the wall, next to a photo of Sienna, flowers in her hair, a stuffed bear in her arms, a smile that said she was willing to forgive all. The parrot led me to his body.

AnneMB said...

“I think this counts as animal cruelty.” Alfonso put one hand on his hip and pointed at the lethargic parrot with his Silette.

Poco Parrot’s little red-feathered head flopped under the weight of the sombrero. He squawked in a long, drunken moan.

Mabel adjusted the moustahce on her bird’s beak. “I don’t pay you to think, Alfonso. Besides, Poco wants to do this photo shoot.”

“How can a parrot be willing if you’ve pumped it full of dope?”

“He wanted the dope, too.

“He told you that?”

“Heavens, no. Parrots don’t talk. I’m an intuitionist.”

Anonymous said...

Chadwick scowled at the decree ni si. Lette rs, unless accompanied by officers in uniform, held no sway over him.

Until now.

The dinghy pitched as he smacked the useless mast. He’d asked his father, “What’s wrong with the s par?”

ten,” his latest wife had replied, tossing his wardrobe overboard.

“Like you,” his father had added. “I’m cutting you out of the will, ing rate.”

“What am I supposed to do? Pe nding a passing trawler, I’m screwed.”

The yacht disappeared below the horizon.

Chadwick adjusted the rudder by intuition. Ist anbul, he decided, heading for land.

Anonymous said...

Hope gone, last breath exhaled into the wind, lost forever –


35mm Silette. I capture life and death in black and white.

That’s what it comes down to: life and death, black and white, yes and no. Photographic proof. Take it, intuitionist; debate it, sophist. Parrot your own teachings; I’m willing to listen.


Pick your drug, philosophers. Pick the one brushed away this life. He doesn’t need it anymore, and I have my own dope, my own comfortable view of reality.

It’s here, in my hands.


M.R. Jordan said...

Count Chocula was laid out on the sofa when the Castle door creaked open and the intuitionist stepped into the room.
"I found your parrot," she said.
"I'm coo-coo for Cocoa Puffs!" The bird squawked.
The Count sat up and signed. "He's not a parrot, he's a toucan and because of him I can't eat the chocolate I vant. I've been reduced to snorting dope."
"Do you know what a silette is?" The intuitionist asked.
"Me neither. Well call me the next time you need to find something.I'll give you discount." She waved goodbye.

B. E. Hopkins said...

Bonus Question: Terri hit most of the connections between the words. They all intersect with Sara Gran's Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead. There is one detail Terri seems to have left out, though.

Claire DeWitt investigates the death of Vic Willing, and she reads Jacques Silette's book Detection to solve the case. Green parrots come in, not just through Jenny's blog post title, but also because they are a clue to cracking the case in the novel. And of course, Dope is Gran's 2006 book, and Library Journal favorably compared Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead to Colson Whitehead's The Intuitionist.

vv said...

The Carpenter, the Confrontation, and Everlasting Love

by John Vincent Vale

He sat slumped in his workshop, maudlin from dope, sweaty and bedraggled like a parrot in the rain.

She floated into the room. “Why do you sit by candlelight with the pose of a tragic god?”

“I am not an intuitionist, but my old silette camera is.” He lifted the photo of her, naked, with splayed legs and bare cunt, willingly accepting the cock of a stranger.

“Forgive me, my love?”

He rose, gripped her neck with toilworn hands. “There is comfort in companionship, and though his acrid kiss still stains your lips, I made this coffin fit for two.”

jbarville said...

“Put the dope in the parrot cage. Your mom won’t look there. Unless she’s an intuitionist,” Nick threw the sandwich baggie at my chest.
I fumbled, almost dropping it, like a hot potato. “It’ll get, like shit on it. My sister’ll see it.” I didn’t want to tell him I was afraid of Amanda’s bird. He hated me. And he didn’t peck. He bit.
Nick’s eyes narrowed. “Not willing? After I saved your ass? You owe me. Shove it under the news. Just till tomorrow.” Then he raised his old Silette camera and snapped my picture holding the bag.

Terri Coop said...

@Brandon, I started a string of search words and kept adding more, following it where ever it led. It was fun to find strange corners and connections in the webz. I found others, this was the most coherent chain. Terri

Maninder said...


To parrot obscurity, that is the wicked deceit of the intuitionist. The cosmic silette captures her lies, though.

The universe has no eternal memory.

Here’s the straight dope: the willing march, hand in hand and in twisted pairs to the beat of her drum.

Listen with intent. Watch without really seeing. Feel her touch.

She is calling you home.

angel said...

By the time my shift was over at the Purple Parrot, Sean was waiting for me. “What’s this for?” I asked.

“It’s a Silette. I found it in my grandmother’s attic.”

I’d told him to bring me his finest, not a stupid camera. Willing my annoyance away, I said, “Super. Where is it?”

“Open the door.”

I dug my fingernail beneath the tiny lever. It gave. I grinned at the small baggie of dope crammed inside.


He shrugs. “It was either this or a book called the ‘History of an Intuitionist’—whatever that is.”

bonus: words from Sara Gran's book?

B. E. Hopkins said...

Looking for the hundredth time at my mother with the man I'm told was my father (a grainy shot taken by some unnamed third person with an old Silette), I ask myself again what, if any, truth might be found in an old photograph.

I'm not an intuitionist by nature, nor willing to accept the straight dope I perceive in this faded image: that they were lovers around the time I was conceived. Despite the words my mother would parrot over the years, there are a dozen other men in a dozen other pictures in this old shoe box.

Anonymous said...

“The Silette,” Roger said.

“The Silette,” Claire, like a parrot, repeated Roger’s commands. She passed him the camera.

Roger looked into the viewfinder. He didn’t know what he was doing. “Are you willing to leave him?”

“Leave?” She stopped picking through the camera equipment and turned to him. “Didn’t you say you were an intuitionist?”

“What the fuck is that supposed to mean?”

“Isn’t it obvious? Would leaving matter”

He handed the old camera back, then made an arbitrary adjustment to the subject. “I’m a dope to you, right? A boy toy.”

“I didn’t say that.”

“Please pass the Argus.”

delfeld said...

An Ode to Johnny

As the intuitionist joke goes, he doesn't not look good. A vague memory of his agressive days, wicked looks stiffened at a hundred -- multiply his age by two -- dopes. Willing parrots sang at him and shared his freedom, but didn't. He thought he knew freedom; bit by bit, this Silette replaced common perfection with common efficiency. At what point would he no longer cause a stir? And what then? Suicide? Memoirs? An expose? Not yet, though, since I was going to have him tonight, again, while there was still beauty to take.

Anonymous said...

15 minutes spent trying to figure out what the hell silette means. 15 freakin’ minutes. I’m a dope, no worse - a dupe. Willing participant to her parlor games. Parrot of her proverbs. A lame, a mope, a hack. Oh, look - there’s another contest. Give it a crack. Sure, why the hell not? You got as much chance as the next guy. Dumb. Ass. That’s me. No smarts, not even God-given common sense or intuition. Is that it? Maybe I should--

“Are you talking to yourself again?”

“What if I am? Take a picture, why don’t ya?”

“I’ll get my camera.”

angie Brooksby-Arcangioli said...

Great entries so far, I like Deanna's. Here's mine

Backlit by the window, pecking its reflection, Silette danced the beat to Perfil. He loved Bossa Nova. Sherie was willing to bet he’d been named Silette because the child could not pronounce silhouette. She believed to be no dope, but her intelligence was that of an intuitionist.

“Can I feed him now?” Asked the child, reaching for the food.

“Of course.” The mother replied.

“Is his name Silette because she cannot say silhouette?” Sherie quizzed Mrs. Mulligan.

“How could you know?”

The parrot’s cackling eclipsed Sherie’s smug reply when it burst to full color flying from the windowsill.

Carole Morris said...

"I am a dope! I willingly let my chance at love slip through my fingers!” Silette Hamilton screamed.

Silette had been with Tevian for about two months. Things were going well. He was a gentleman in every sense of the word, not to mention the star pitcher for their university baseball team. He managed to win her a cute blue parrot at the last spring carnival with his stellar throw.

Far from being an intuitionist, Silette believed Tevian was only going to end up hurting her. Her motto has always been, “Bail on them before they can bail on you.”

Anonymous said...

Once my perfectly painted toes are curled around the edge of the sea cliff, I can’t help thinking this is what comes from having a dope smoking, been there slept with that nut job for a mother. Sooner or later the crazy gene rears its ugly head.
Seth’s hollering “Jump, already!”Half the high school stands behind him, parroting his words, willing me to do it. Ben even brought that stupid Silette he found in his gramma’s attic to capture the moment like we’re in some kind of 1950’s beach blanket movie. It doesn’t take an intuitionist to know I’m screwed.

thepopeofbeers said...

"You're an idiot."

"I'm a dope," he corrects.

"What's the difference?"

"'Dope' is a term of endearment."

She bites her lip. "Er... yes, quite right. Just try not to drop the parrot this time, Mr. Willing." She gets behind the camera, checks the shot.

"You have to use your intuitionist when dealing with animals," he says. "My intuitionist tells me this parrot hates me."

"What? You mean your conscience – never mind. Please look over here and say the line."

He adjusts his eyepatch. "Sillette Marine Propulsion Systems! When yar need ter jet, use Sillette!"

The parrot shits in his hat.

Kirsten said...

Nanako advanced the film in the ancient Silette, willing her mother’s prized parrot not to mimic the noise, not that her brother would notice, high on dope and their father’s pride.
She had one frame left on the roll of twenty-four, all hers, not a shot of the family, parents clustered around her older brother and his kyūdō medals, beaming at their perfect son, the accomplished Zen archer.
But she too was an intuitionist, and raised the camera, clicking the shot at the exact moment Ryuu’s arrow left his bow.
She’d show her mother after they buried the bird.

Matthew said...

The parrots were at the line ready to race as they migrated to the new grounds. The winner got bragging rights, and the best bugs and water.
On your mark! Get set! Go!
Flying into the early lead and over the finish line first was Paulie. Since Paulie was so fast he was tested for dope, and his test came back negative. Paulie seemed willing to cooperate. Paulie wasn’t counting on the intuitionist nature of Poppa Rotsy. Poppa Rotsy had taken a picture on an AGFA Silette camera, and the film never lies. Paulie was caught red winged with dope.

Simon Hay said...

What a dope. Intuitionist! She had catwalk thighs and wore a ten dollar mini. I studied the brown bottle on the coffee table, and she opened her legs.

“Bosisto’s.” The way she said it I expected to be charged by the minute.

“What?” The leather upholstery groaned.

“Bosisto’s Parrot Brand.”

“Oh.” I tilted my head to read what was on the wooden box - Silette Chess 1920 - and looked up her skirt.

“1845 Eucalyptus oil, and the chess set is an original.”

“Can you find my brother?” I barked.

“God willing … did you kill him?”

dhsakjfhsakjfhja said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jes said...

Once we’ve smoked enough dope that our lips feel like rain and our arms and legs coil together like snakes, he says, “I will love you forever.” He never says it sober, a point of always tension; but for now I am his dazed and willing parrot. “Forever.”

He pulls out his Silette, peers at me through the viewfinder, sends the shutter clickwhirring. If I were an intuitionist, my legs would venom bite him and my arms would constrict him blue-lipped.

I am not an intuitionist.

The rain falls, the snakes sleep like my heart; the pictures are the proof.

Anonymous said...

"And an intuitionist is...?"

The walrus-mustachioed man took another swig of Parrot Bay. "Someone what ain't got to explain himself to a dope like you. Mind?"

I stepped back obligingly. He wasn't the cheapest psychic on Craigslist, but he was close. As he already had my seventy dollars, I was willing to let him work.

He stood for ten minutes, mumbling, in the purple chalk trapezoid he'd scrawled on my kitchen floor. His bloodshot eyes flashed open.

"That which you seek lies at the Mansfield farm, in the old silette."

"And a silette is...?"

"A female silo," he snapped.

trickyidnego said...

i wasn't willing to dope the parrot, not with the intuitionist ready with the silette. So I shot him and the parrot. No witnesses.

Carolynnwith2Ns said...

I said to God I’m willing, take me. Without another breath to breathe I am unable to parrot the Lord’s Prayer one more time. I am not a dope. I think he will forgive me if my last thoughts are not of him but of sweet Silette. This cannot be the end of my life, I feel a future ahead, I dream it. My female intuitionist tendencies proclaim, I will somehow be found. Silence, darkness, and then the wall blocking the entrance to where I am trapped is pulled away. I survive. Where is Silette? I must find her.

Patrick DiOrio said...

The Intuitionist screamed, her parrot fluttered, agitated, on its perch. I laid the silette down, feeling like a dope, a willing participant to the inevitable.
Fists beat a hungry tattoo against the door. Brains! The zombies, hungry, wanted brains. Our brains.
Madam Sosa peered apprehensively at the shuddering door, holding the black and white photo taken by the silette weeks before. It showed this room, the two of them now.
“I should have known,” she moaned. “I’ll lose my Intuitionist license for this.”
“Not to mention your brain,” I added as the door gave way and they came flooding in.

Kregger said...

“Awwwk,” shrieked the oriental Parrot.

Jacques peered into the cage. “Stupid pullet.”

“Don’t agitate Wil Ling, or he’ll bite your nose,” said Claire.

Jacques sipped his martini. “This rat with wings stole my olive. There’s pimento in its teeth.”

Claire chortled, “Oh mighty Silette, use your intuitionist skills. Besides, only hens have teeth.”

“Logic has nothing to do with this. Dim-witted birdbrain can’t even speak,” Jacques turned to the parrot, “you ornithomoron.”

Wil Ling reached through the cage, grasped the toad sticker, stripped the remaining olive and devoured the fruit. The bird grinned and said, “Dope. Ha, ha, ha!”

heatherwynn85 said...

Melanie wasn't sure if she could handle this situation. She wanted to win the bet, but smuggling an endangered parrot out of the zoo underneath a blanket, like she was smuggling a bag of dope made her extremely nervous.
Melanie's internal dialouge raged: Hide the bird in your bag!
I'm crazy,my mom would know, she has hidden intitionist powers! All I have to do is take one picture of the bird, with my uncles' antique silette and I'll win. Melanie convinced herself to birdnap the parrot, and willing herself forward, left the zoo, rare bird in tow.

Rocket said...



“Bueno! Estilete.”

The class parroted, “Estilete.” Except for Bob.

Bob stared outside, willing to bet this was one of the nine circles of hell and his teacher was the devil. He mumbled, “silette,” hoping it was good enough. It wasn’t.

“Hey, Bob-o!” He’d hated her, and that nickname, ever since he learned it loosely translated to ‘Dope.’

He turned, trying to hide his thoughts. Mrs. Hunter called herself an “Intuitionist” and claimed to read minds. Sometimes he believed it. “Me?”

Her eyes narrowed dangerously, “Si, tu! Atención!”

“Yes ma’am.”

“Si, Senora!”

“Si, Senora.”

Hell. He was in hell.

Steven D. said...

Arctic rain was just the icing. I was shipped to Vice since I was unaware of the Mayor’s daughter’s nepotistic immunity. I wasn’t an intuitionist—just went where the evidence led.

Still, I viewed my magazine as being half full. Tonight I’d have the opportunity to repay my nemesis, The Parrot. I’d taken my dock position to catch him loading crates of antique silettes stuffed with dope.

To capture the Parrot, it’s said you must be willing to sacrifice your life and your closest loved ones. Unfortunately for him, I’d already capped my cheating wife and best friend this morning.

Anonymous said...

Derek was no longer willing to believe his eyes. When he was told he was going to be joining one of the top intuitionist photographers in the country he hadn’t thought in his wildest of dreams, or nightmares, that it would be a parrot. Still, there it was, a 47 year old macaw, wielding a nearly antique 1974 35mm silette camera. An hour into the shoot he realized the bird wasn’t the amazing part, it was the parrots owner. The 50 something drug addled woman’s only response to media at the event on her parrots talent was “He’s so dope.”

Phil Hall said...

The Silette was cold in his hands; it was his most willing work partner. He shouldn't prefer this aged camera to a newer Agfa, yet he did. His intuitionist nature was fully at play. This gave better results anyway.
Across the room the parrot sat, cawing and whistling, lamenting the scene to which the police had been called. Dutifully the bird was photographed as it struck an ominous pose against the wallpaper that now was painted garish red with blood; the crimson arcs left splatters like waterfalls everywhere. And a centenarian dope smuggler lie brutally murdered.
"That's a new one."

Melinda said...

“Are you able to do what is necessary?” The parrot squawked.

“Of course I am, you dope,” Stacy said.

“I ask because as an intuitionist you were a complete failure.”

“Just give me the damn thing.”

“Take the silette then, and this time try to stay out of prison.” The parrot preened himself.

Stacy grinned wickedly.

“How’s this for morality?” she asked, then threw the silette at the bird. She watched with satisfaction as it hit him squarely in the head. “Guess you aren’t an intuitionist either!”

Sheila JG said...

“Stilletto!” Big Sister held a shoe.

Oh! “learning words” time, thought the boy. He dropped the tennis shoe he thought she wanted. “Silette,” he said. “Oh.”

“Where’s the other one, you little dope.”

“Tul . . . dope?” he backed away from Scary Face.

“No! You worthless parrot. You took my shoe! Where is it?”

He pointed to her hand. Couldn’t she see it?

She sighed. “I’m willing to deal. Want some Candy? Don’t lie.”

Candy! He told her where to find her shoe.

“Intuitionist?” she asked.

“Ish,” he pointed to the fishpond outside. “Into ish . . . Honest.”

Shaunna said...

When (experimental) linguist Henry married (recovering) intuitionist Virginia, people wondered. And rightly so, for despite their intelligence, they never quite assumed the gravity of their parental charge.

Their first child swallowed language as all toddlers do--more a parrot than a proficient, but a willing pupil all the same. He entered the wider world, however, to discover the legacy he had inherited.

This Silette snapshot, taken his first day of kindergarten, captures the essence of his profoundly confused discovery that Henry and Virginia, out of caprice or simply too much dope, had only taught him to speak pig Latin.

SBJones said...

The words have to do with your previous post about the book you are reading. Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead by Sara Gran.

Steve Forti said...

“I found her spaetzle recipe,” Jan says while thumbing a tattered cookbook.

“Burn it,” I say. “She always kept that one her secret. Gonna cook it for Jesus when we meet, she’d say. God willing.

Jan smiles, but I see her lip quiver. It doesn’t take an intuitionist to see the pain of sorting through the earthly remains of a grandparent. I fill a box with a brass kettle, an old Silette with photos of her parrot, even a working rotary phone.

“Sweetest lady that ever walked,” Jan muses. I agree. Until I open the drawer with her dope stash.

T.M. Frazier said...

"Damn it Janine, I ain't gonna tell you again, git that parrot outta my house! Silette if you have to! Damn bird knows when imma dope up like some sort of intuitionist and I ain’t willing to keep on hearin’ it sing the dang song from COPS no more!”


Bethany Elizabeth said...

Call me a silette. Yeah, my graphics card may be a bit dated, but this memory? Razor sharp and photographic, babe. That’s how I knew Jarred was lying.
Did he expect me to believe that the strange, parrot green substance I’d seen was a harmless houseplant? Looked more like a deformed piece of rotting coral, but I knew it for what it was: dope. He said I’d been imagining things, and I was almost willing to believe him. Jared’s a good kid. But it’s this damn photographic memory: I know what I know.
I ain’t no intuitionist.

David S. said...

I told her I was too ugly to be photographed, my willingness notwithstanding.  The woman -- Silette, showed me her special camera that could erase the hunch from my back.  An intuitionist by birth, a dope by happenstance, but an optimist by heart, I agreed to become the latest cover model for High Times, Nautical Edition.

A month after the shoot, I received eighty-seven copies of the magazine, my requested payment.  I stared back at myself, smiling.  My pirate costume was glorious; made even better by the green parrot that replaced my oft debilitating physical anomaly.

I’d never been happier. 

Anonymous said...

The year was '68, and I had just come to Salzburg, a willing grad student, to work with Professor Marx, the famed intuitionist. I stood outside the door of his quaint little house and rapped on the door.

It opened, seemingly of its own accord. "Du bist ein Dumpkoff!" someone screeched.

Hesitant, I peered inside. It was a parrot. Below the bird's cage, a man lay crumpled on the floor, a tiny packet in his hands. I sniffed. The sweet sickening smell of dope hung in the air.

I snapped a photo with my Silette and called the police.


Lesann Berry said...

“Mind the parrot, he bites.” Lars handed the dope across the scarred teak bar. The Key West humidity hung thick, a storm a rumbling threat in the background.
The runner rolled the packet into a lump and glanced at the perch near the door, noted the hyacinth macaw’s beak capable of snapping off a finger. “Silette sends her regards, said you should make like an intuitionist before the tourist crowd descends for happy hour.”
Lars watched the man tuck the bundle inside his speedo; the visual gave new meaning to the word package. He nodded. “I’ll call. I’m willing.”

richardh said...

I had just become willing
(because I would make a killing
and leave this chilling garret)
to sell my wondrous Oracle parrot,
my feathered intuitionist,
who, perched on someone's fist,
could say things that gave them hope,
til some smart New Yorker dope
muttered the magic word "silette"
and left my bird a silhouette.

Unknown said...

She was willing to let the giant mutant parrot eat the intuitionist, after all, the guy was a complete freak, a dope, and he broke her favorite silette.

Joel Q Aaron said...

Brown's Last Arrest

Detective Brown didn’t think of himself as an intuitionist. But he was always willing to listen to the voice in his head.

“Stop the parrot act. You’ve told the same sorry story over and over. Now, where did you get the Silhouette?”

“The what?” the young man said.

“The camera.”

“It’s a Silette.”

“Whatever. You steal it so you could buy some dope?”

“You mean drugs?”

“From talking bird to smart ass.”

“Like I said, my dad bought it for me.”

“Again with your daddy? And just who is he?”

“The man who will probably fire you in the morning.”

Steve Stubbs said...

“Intuitionist willing, I’ll silette your parrot’s dope.”

“Don’t do that, I pleaded. He can’t help it that he dislikes Rush Limbaugh!” The conservator of the Conservatory was angry tonight. He waved his right hand for emphasis, mainly because he did not have a left hand.

“That’s not it,” he said. “That bird thinks Paul Revere rode to warn the Americans the British were coming. The truth is, he rode to warn the British the Americans were coming.”

“You are a Sarah Palin fan, then,” I said.

“I can see Russia from my house. And my house is in rural Nebraska.”

jesse said...

Why do I want to attend your school?
I should probably tell you some beautiful fallacy, like it’s my dream to cure diseases. However, truth is beauty, and the truth is I don’t want to end up like my parents. My mother, the “intuitionist,” spends her days coning tourists. My father, the dope fiend, sold my Silette-F for a parrot that was “hilarious.”
Despite many hardships, I’ve maintained a 3.9 GPA. My goal is to achieve a 4.0 at your institution. I know it won’t be easy, but I’m willing to work hard to achieve it. That is my dream.

Melinda said...

The silette disappeared behind the cardboard flap as Mother packed up my stuff. It didn’t take an intuitionist to understand.

She was sending me back.

Back to where they housed crazies and my roommate had repeated things like a parrot on dope.

Not that it mattered. I’d spent most of my time in the Safe Area. The toilet seat I’d broken had sliced through my arm more fabulously than expected. But it had earned me a night out to the ER with a hot male nurse.

This time I would go willing. Mother would get hers when I got out.

BONUS GUESS: Things you lose when you're committed. :)

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

"Mister Owl?" Johnny Frostbite asked his parrot, Sassy. "How many stokes does it take to saw off someone's thumb?"

Sassy, staring at him, said, “Let’s find out.”

Johnny figured you didn’t need to be an intuitionist to know that if you’re going to steal a guys dope and vintage Silette, you have to be willing to pay the price. He lined up the blade on Mel’s thumb.

“A one.”

The blade cut skin

“A two”

Deep into bone.

“A thrrreee.”

The thumb fell onto the rug.

Sassy flapped her wings. “Three.”

Sarah said...

Walking in, the first thing I see is the camera on the pawnshop counter.
“Is that a vintage Agfa Silette?!” I cry.
“Vintage?” parrots the bargain hunter. I ignore him - a weekend dabbler who thinks intuition is the only tool needed to find that magic sale.
“Frankie,” I say to the clerk, “If you’re willing I can give you seventeen bucks today, another fifty tomorrow.”
“Forget it!” says Dabbler. “I’ll give you sixty now!”
Frankie sighs at me but takes Dabbler’s cash. The poor dope swans out the door.
“You are evil,” Frankie says. I grin and slip back behind the counter.

dylan said...

Dear Ms. Reid

The crime-scene techs departed, and the photographer packed-up his Silette. As a cop I’m willing to compromise to catch a serial slasher, especially one mauling my undercover informants, but psychics give me agita. This dope called himself an “Intuitionist”.

He eyeballed the carnage, lips quivering.

“I’m getting a hunch!”

“Put a parrot on your shoulder, Quasimodo, and maybe no one will notice.”

He sighed.

“Your snitch rambled, editorialized, made messy queries. You sent a minnow to ensnare a shark.”

“We gave that kid an airtight cover-narrative. What went wrong?”

“Classic bungle. He didn’t tell what his fuckin story was about.”


Anonymous said...

I'm no intuitionist, but I'd be willing to bet that we've seen the last of Kathy's parties.

Friday night's soiree seemed more like a funeral. She must have sensed it, too, because she clapped the room to attention, grabbed her Silette, and unveiled her pet parrot's cage.

"Step right up and give Max your drink order," she announced.

I went first. "Manhattan."

"Scotch or brandy?" the bird squawked.

It was fun until Charles, a neighbor who'd recently lost his wife, stepped forward.

"What's the best drink for a man in sorrow?"

"Hey, dope! Do I look like your fuckin' bartender?"

Laurie Dennison said...

A dead pirate was what he looked like. Why the eye patch? Beau wondered. The mortician couldn’t just sew the lid shut?

The obit called him an ‘intuitionist,’ but Uncle Jack preferred psychic. Bullshit, either way. He’d spent the last year doped up on Svedka and Adderall filched from Beau. Jack must’ve been high, willing his Haitian-speaking parrot and a Silette to his nephew. What was a twelve-year-old supposed to do with a defunct camera and an immigrant bird?

Too bad dying only proved him a fraud; Jack hadn’t seen the mark’s gun until the bullet passed through his eye.

Kate Outhwaite said...

The cellar air stands thick with the smell of balsa wood, aircraft dope and blood. I pause near the bottom of the steps, willing that final tread not to creak. But it creaks anyway, as it always did, and bile taints my words.

“What have we got?”

“Self-inflicted shotgun wound. Professor of Institutional Psychology or something.”

“Intuitionist Philosophy”, I correct.

I glance over Lawson’s shoulder, past the chrome Silette camera, and on to the photographs which hang from every surface; photographs of a wind-blown and anxious looking girl with a parrot on her arm. Photographs of the 7-year old me.

Cherry Lou Sy said...

The Intuitionist had no name from the beginning. Time for him was an illusion, a trick to wield and bend. It was the strength of his mind that gave him identity willing his being to be and to become. He did not need any dope like others who did not know their capacity for mind-bending. He could be something animated and gauche like a brightly-plumed Amazon parrot or an inanimate obsolete thing like an Agfa Silette. His mind and his will were one. He was the Intuitionist.

Anonymous said...

Ned eyes the silette.

“No,” I tell him.

“Come on, Nan,” he wheedles, “I need it.”

His eyes seem to spin, and I know I can’t trust him, not now, not ever. He is my twin brother and I hate him.

I glance down at the little camera, at the parrot sticker my daughter slapped across its back with her four-year-old fingers. I am not willing to part with it.

“No,” I repeat. “You’re going to sell it for dope.”

His expression turns from forlorn to resentful. A failed intuitionist, he has read me wrong.

“I knew it,” he lies.

Anonymous said...

Mother’s hands stroked her ancient silette adjusting the f-stop. I had to pee, but I stayed as still as a small, sweating statue can.
“One, two, three . . . ” my mother intoned, so we could hold our breaths. A long exposure.
I let my mind parrot the words to take my mind off my bladder.
My brother, the dope, sneezed. Inuitionist, he felt her disappointment. She said we would do better. And we, her willing slaves, promised.
We held ourselves, the light, the shadows, the long summer afternoon for Mother’s keeping. Our gift to her.

Rick Anderson said...

"You on Dope?"
"No, sir."
Dad looked at his son. "You've become a what?"
"An Intuitionist."
The man ran his blue-collar fingers through his hair. "I sent you to college to think, not parrot the beliefs of some professor."
"Pop, you should meet Dr. Silette. He's brilliant."
"You did this willingly?"
The boy nodded.
The man thought then a smile rose to his lips. "I think I'll join you. Not another cent in-tuition-is-t/hat clear?"

Kelly said...

I'm channeling Saba from Moira Young's YA "Blood Red Road."


I nose wot I nose, an’ I ain’t willin’ to stan’ dere like a dope, waitin’ to git trampled on. Tha rumblin’ gets louder. Horses. Spittin’ up dust an’ sand.

“Move,” I yells at the peoples surroudin’ me like a bunch of flappin’ parrots cryin’ fer help. Theys all scatter in tha witchy sand wind, like fire was in der britches.

I dig for tha Silette picture taker to count. But tha lens is too scratched up.

“How many, Baena?” someone hollers. Pa use to call me a intuitionist.

“Sixie-sevin,” I says unner my breth. An’ theys comin’ fer me.


Kelly S.

Sasha Barin said...

'Caught an old bastard last night. Big-ass professor. Asked how he was doing. He told. Only word I thought I understood was "intuitionist".'
'Flashed him?'
'Tit, dove and parrot, baby.'
'You classy bitch, you’re learning. Was he willing?'
'Dope helped.'
'Was he generous?'
Mary showed. 'Gave me this.'
'A book? Was he one of them Jehovahs?'
'It's a dictionary, stupid.'
'Hell you need this shit for?'
'To learn, I guess.'
'Shit. Well, I'm off to the bar. Friday, many dicks to work.'
'Later, sis.'
Mary found words "paradigm", "epistemology". Got stuck on "Silette".
Then she had to go too.

Tara Tyler said...

“Eddie, come here!”

“Eddie, here!” Tonya parroted.

“Stop that, Tonya!”

“Top that, Tona!”

Avery sighed, willing the toddler to be quiet. Eddie pulled up beside his big sister. She displayed the old cyclops camera she found in Granny’s attic. Poor little Tonya had found Granny “asleep.”

“It says ‘Silette,’” Avery read.


“I wonder if it works.” Eddie looked it over.

“It works!” Tonya grabbed and it fell open, exposing the film inside.

“Tonya, you dope! Now we’ll never know what was on it.”

The mimicking intuitionist grinned with an evil gleam in her eye as she repeated, “Never know.”

Kati said...

Silas kept only what he was willing to the children: his purple heart, his wedding band…
He uncovered a photo – a stunning woman, posing by a streetlight in Paris.
“Es-tu un intuitionist?” Celine had asked, when he’d told her she’d make it in Hollywood.
“Me? No, I’m a dope!” He’d said. She’d smiled wider. They’d gone to dinner.
He’d been deployed the following day.
Silas remembered the colors of her hair, neckline, dress, florid as parrots’ wings. Remembered hoping his Silette camera could capture her.
But the photo was black and white, unclear. Shadows seeped in from the edges.