Street Vermin

Have you ever noticed that when a bug hits your windshield they always splatter directly in the center of your field of vision? This “accuracy of aim” occurs far too often to be purely coincidental. I suspect they are graduates from Kamikaze Insect Institute who are intent on delivering their payload where it makes the most impact.

A close friend of mine would always make keen observations like, “It took guts to do that,” or, “I bet he doesn’t have the guts to do it twice.” Another favorite is, “What’s the last thing that passes through a bug’s mind when he hits your windshield?” I’m sure you can guess the answer. If not, bug me about it in the comment section.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our hostess is the renowned author and artist, The Belle of Belton, Shelley Kohlen Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Jill Wisoff

Today marked the first time Shelley had encountered other people while carrying stolen property. Three boys in their early teens stopped her on a side street.

“Whatcha got there?” they teased. “Is it heavy?”

“Want me to carry if for you?” The tallest one made a goofy face and reached for the invisible box.

She had to spin hard to avoid his grasp and twisted her ankle on the curb.

An elderly man saw the boys harassing her and ran them off.

“You boys should be ashamed of yourselves.” He shook his cane at them. “Picking on a damned mime.”

*the above is an excerpt from my current work in progress, “Criminal Mimes.”

56 Comments on “Street Vermin

  1. Dear Grumpy Old Curmudgeon,

    It’s a good thing she wasn’t a Land Mime or she might have exploded. Now I’m going to be up all night pondering the last thing that goes through a bug’s mind when it hits a windshield. I can only think of Mr. Bill. “Oh nooooo!” Enough of that. I’m packing my tags back into my invisible box. Always remember ‘a mime is a terrible thing to waste.’ Ah well, I don’t mime if you don’t mime. And the plotz thickens…or gets deeper.


    Shelley Kohlen W(T)F


    • Dear Shelley Kohlen W(T)F,

      Funny you should mention Land Mimes, Lowry is working on a Mime Detector to help sniff out the one in question. It’s only a matter of time before she’s serving time behind invisible bars in a mime-in-all security prison.

      As for the answer to the bug riddle, Mr. Ayr is correct.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Lively stuff this week, Russell, with all the spinning and shaking and teasing.
    At least one of us needs to have a lie down now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s only scratching the surface, Iain. This mime will also kill your cereal (the entire box) and take all the Do-Not-Remove tags from your furniture and mattresses. It is indeed a horrifying trend. Let’s hope other mimes around the world don’t try to follow in her tiny footsteps.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. If it’s not a bug that hits your windshield square in your line of vision. It’s that bloody flying rock that leaves a pock – that you have to have “stopped” from cracking so you live with it until forever you own your car. At least a bug can be washed off somewhat.

    As to those street vermin, thank goodness for old men with canes… she’s safe. For now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Liz,

      I read your story and tried to leave a comment, but Blogspot erased it when I clicked the “publish” button. I’ve also had the same experience on othe Blogspot sites–it is not commentor friendly when explains why those posting on Blogger have fewer comments that those on WordPress.

      Switching over is not that hard, and all your old post will immediately be transferred. Sure, there’s a short learning curve, but it’s certainly worth the effort. Just my two cents.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Next time she better hide her invisible box, there isn’t always an old man with a cane around. The mysterious mime strikes again.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Since the old man didn’t get to give those three punks a thrashing with his cane. Shelley needs to needs to find them and bash them on Facebook. I’ve heard it’s life-shattering. Speaking of which, those poor bugs…

    Our beloved province had adopted the slogan, “Saskatchewan, land of living skies.” A drive in the evening will quickly reveal just why. Viewing the spectacular sunsets, of course.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The boys were just being boys. What really hacked Shelley off was the digust the old man used in referring to mimes. She would have flipped him off, but decided he wasn’t worth the effort.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I love this story, it made me laugh but I could see it happening too. The mime girl with her invisible box and the boys teasing her about the invisible box. Love a bit of whacky humour.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mimes get picked on a lot in real life and are often treated with disdain. Shelley is a very interesting and complex character. I’m not sure what drove her to a life of crime, but hopefully I’ll figure it out before the book is complete.


  7. 🙂 Great how you keep moving that box along. I could see Shelley struggling with those box to keep hold. Hope her ankle recovers soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Am I the only one who feels sorry for the ‘damned mime’ who twisted her ankle? It must be quite the valuable invisible box if she’s risking life and limb for it!
    Have you always been SO funny? 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • No, I doubt you’re the only one who feels sorry for the mime. The invisible box is quite rare and valuable–especially to it’s rightful owner (it’s been handed down for generations).

      No, I haven’t always been funny. But I’m always happy to see people smile.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. That title “Criminal Mimes” gets me every time. Glad to hear your little mime will get a chance to cause more trouble in the future.


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