Adventures in good design, good eats, and everything else.

Phantom Energy

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Artwork: Tim Hodkinson (via butdoesitfloat)
Short Story: Robert Swartwood
Music: Sun Lake Rinsed by The Ruby Suns

She called it phantom energy. She said it was costing us money every month. A few cents here and there, sure, but it all added up.

“Everything adds up,” she said, walking around the apartment and unplugging random things. “Like this record player. How often do you actually use this thing?”

She yanked the cord.

“And this toaster. I can’t even remember the last time we made toast.”

She yanked another cord.

I didn’t say anything. I thought it was only a phase. I let her have her way.

Then I came home one day after work and sat down and pressed the power button on the television remote.

The television didn’t come on.

I got up and walked to the TV and found that it had been unplugged. So had the DVD player. So had the stereo system.

I went room to room. Everything had been unplugged.

I found her upstairs in the bedroom. She lay fully clothed on top of the bed. Her head shifted slightly when I opened the door.

“Shh,” she whispered. “Can you hear that?”

“Hear what?”

“Just listen.”

I listened.

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Where My Boyfriend Lives

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Photo: Folkert Goter
Music: Natural Tune by Efterklang
Short Story: Tara Laskowski

Where my boyfriend lives, the grass grows sideways — not up but into itself, like fingers entwined, like slow hula dancers. In his town, the people sing when they are dying. His mama makes roses bloom when she whispers to them; his dad keeps fire in a jar on his bedside table and releases it at night, sneaking up on it again in the morning when it has tired.

Where my boyfriend lives I visited just once, on a Thursday, when the streets are cleaned and a young man, hair slicked back by spit, stands just outside the doorway of the barbershop and hands out free candy to folks walking by. I took one, a chalky peppermint truffle, light as air. For the rest of the day I shot icicles out of the ends of my fingers. My boyfriend laughed at me and stepped on the heels of my shoes. That night we watched lightning, his dad’s jar flames skipping across the sky, tripping over each other, eager to find a party.

Where my boyfriend lives, letters are written on banana peels. The ones my boyfriend sends me talk about ordinary things like the color of my eyes, the sound of steel digging into dirt, the need for everything to have a name. The letters are short and sometimes long. They talk about how when we are older we will move somewhere exotic.

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Sculptures by Nick Van Woert

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Sculptures: Nick van Woert
Music: Kaonashi (No Face) by Joe Hisaishi

Beautifully done in polyurethane adhesive, plastic, paper spit-wads (guess which one), and glue.

(via But Does It Float)

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