Tag Archives: blog fiction
The shell of a newly-discovered ‘laser clam,’ killed Thursday by Clete Horn on Blacktip Island’s Eye Patch Beach. (photo courtesy of James St. John)
A newly-discovered species of clams, able to shoot bursts of laser energy several feet, injured multiple beachgoers on Blacktip Island’s Eye Patch Beach Thursday, island authorities said.
“Kids were out there digging in the sand, like they always do, when a clam zapped little Shelley Bottoms’ smack on the forehead,” Island Police Constable Rafe Marquette said. “A couple other kids got hit, then two adults who were pulling them out of harm’s way.
“I’ve never seen, or heard of, anything like it,” Marquette said. “Those clams have about a six-foot range. There’s no way to tell how widespread they are, but we have that whole stretch of beach roped off for safety. Hopefully we can contain them and they won’t spread to other beaches.”
Marine science experts say the clams likely evolved in response to environmental factors.
“Clete Horn managed to whack one with a shovel, so I have a dead one to examine,” Tiperon University-Blacktip marine biology professor Ernesto Mojarra said. “It’s essentially a razor clam that’s developed the ability to focus the sun’s energy. Near as I can tell, it’s a defensive adaptation that’s triggered by perceived threats.
“The mutation is almost certainly a result of landfill runoff leaching through the beach sand,” Mojarra said. “The island dump is just inland from there, and there’ve been mutated fish on that stretch of reef for years. This was really just a matter of time.”
Island officials are taking the danger seriously.
“Closing the beach and posting warning signs is a no brainer, but losing that beach is a hit below the waterline for our tourism,” mayor Jack Cobia said. “If need be, we’ll soak that beach in diesel fuel and light it on fire so we can open it up again.
“Meantime, we’ve got Stoney MacAdam and Rocky Shore out there with welding goggles, gloves and camp mirrors,” Cobia said. “When one of those clams shoots a laser, the mirrors’ll bounce it right back and toast it. And if that doesn’t kill it, Clete Horn’ll club it with his shovel.”
Other residents favored preserving the clams.
“We certainly don’t want any kiddos getting their eyes put out or losing toes, so we appreciate them from a distance,” Chrissy Graysby said. “They’re beautiful after dark. We took the little ones to the beach last night, and the clams were out fighting for territory, with their different-colored lasers flashing. From a distance, it looked like a miniature Star Wars.”
Others hailed the clams as a new food source.
“Sure, you gotta move careful around them, and use long sticks to stay out of range, but they’re tasty little things,” Angela Fisher said. “They’re like regular razor clams, only better. The little lasers partially cook the meat, which really brings out the flavor. I’m selling Jack Cobia on the idea of farm raising them to sell to local restaurants.”
Sunday, August 15, 2021
Precipitation – Maybe later
Blacktip Island water polo players will face new challenges with the inclusion of shore-based archers in their matches. (photo courtesy of Vinny Abalone)
A group of Blacktip Island sports enthusiasts has combined elements of water polo and archery to create a new sport, which it hopes to introduce to the world in the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.
“We were bored silly watching the Olympics and reckoned we could combine two of the dullest sports to create something actually worth watching,” Vinny Abalone said. “Arrows flying amongst the swimmers really gets the blood pumping. And flowing. We’re calling it ‘arrow polo,’ but we’re open to other suggestions.
“Basically, archers on land shoot arrows at the ball during water polo matches,” Abalone said. “The goal is to hit the ball as many times as possible. You get extra points if you shoot the ball whilst it’s in the air. You lose points if you hit a swimmer, though—it’s a sliding scale, ranging from minus one point for a pierced hand, to minus three for a torso hit, and minus five for a full-on head shot.”
Polo players say the sport presents new challenges.
“Before, the biggest danger was an opposing player dunking you. Now it’s being impaled,” Rosie Blenny said. “Straight away, we all grabbed helmets and body armor. It slows you down, but it also makes you a stronger swimmer. If you survive.
“We also banned broadhead arrows,” Blenny said. “Sure, they made things more exciting for the spectators, but it’s bad for the sport if you have players bleeding out in the pool. We also installed screens so the wind wouldn’t throw the arrows off by too much.”
Some in the community expect the sport to be short lived.
“It’s a Blacktip cliche: get bored, create a new activity, then everyone gets tired of it after a month or two,” Frank Maples said. “Long term, Vinny and his lot are angling for a free trip to Paris. More power to them, if they can stay focused for three years. And live through it. Stanger things have happened.”
Abalone said the group is refining the sport as they go.
“There was loads of blood in the water last practice, so we need to sort out how to factor that in,” he said. “We discussed using blunt-tipped arrows that wouldn’t puncture the balls or anyone’s skin, but that ran counter to the spirit of the sport.
“Instead, we decided to add sharks to the game,” he said. “It’s a small pool, so the thrashing should really add to the excitement.”
Sunday, August 8, 2021
Precipitation – Seriously?
Blacktip Island residents will celebrate the binary star Sirius leaving its conjunction with the Sun this weekend, marking the end of the so-called ‘dog-days of summer,’ when the celestial bodies are said to combine to cause extreme heat and extreme behavior. (photo courtesy of NASA, ESA and G. Bacon.)
Blacktip Island residents will celebrate the end of the ‘dog days’ of summer this weekend with the 23rd annual Dog Days Night celebration at the Sand Spit bar to mark the Sun and Sirius—the dog star—no longer being in conjunction, DDN organizers said.
“Technically, Sirius and the Sun are still in conjunction through Wednesday, but we’re celebrating Saturday and Sunday when most people can get time off, “Tiperon University-Blacktip astrology chair Rigel Estrella said. “Wives’ tale or no, Blacktippers worry the stars make them crazy. People are serious about Sirius here. We’re glad when those days behind us each year.
“Looney-wise, I’m not sure you can tell the difference between dog-day and non-dog-day behavior on Blacktip, but the party’s a tradition,” Estrella said. “Monday people can go back to what passes for normal on this little rock after they let off some steam.”
“Can’t wait for all the bad juju to blow away,” Catalina Luxfer said. “I figure if we party hard enough, it’ll chase all the negative vibes off. Everybody’s gonna dance on the beach ‘til they drop. All the island dogs’ll be there, too. All three of them.
“Folks tend to stay inside ‘til the dog days pass, so it’ll be good to see everyone out, and mix with them again,” Luxfer said. “Dog Days Night’s when folks really come out of their shells, and that’s saying a lot on Blacktip.”
Event organizers say the event will feature the usual dog-themed activities.
“We’ll have the Dog Show and Best Dog Tricks contest, as ever, with all contestants being people in dog costumes,” master of ceremonies Kay Valve said. “We’ll also have the ball-chasing contest, the stick tug-off and Frisbee toss out on the beach. After the sun drops, of course, so no one passes out in their costumes.
“The Sand Spit’ll be doing its usual meal service in dog bowls,” Valve said. “People love scarfing ground-up burgers and salads like it’s kibble. And slurping beer out of tin pans. It really brings the community together in a canine sort of way. And there will be fines for public urination and nipping at people’s ankles.”
Some residents say the celebration will be bittersweet.
“It’s great to have the hot, crazy days behind us, but it also means the heart of the hurricane season’s coming up,” B.C. Flote said. “Now folks’ll be glued to the interweb weather sites, watching for big storms and buying up cases of water. That’s another kind of craziness. Me, I’ll take the dog days any time.”