The Plushie


Dear Furby,

I know you think this is the place to be. You see the pre-packaged meals with their wrinkled vegetables, cubed meat, and watery potatoes and conclude: that’s the machine that makes them coveted.

I understand the transformation is tempting. I open the door for non-desirable and inedible food. Everyone wants bagel bites. Everyone likes diet dinners. My magic overwhelms those of a lazy disposition no matter their financial situation. In three minutes, I can make anything attractive.

Except I can’t. I can make certain things irresistible, but when it comes to a hideous stuffed animal that’s not actually squishy, there’s just nothing I can do. I have explained this multiple times.

Nevertheless, one of your friends will settle itself against my warm light, waiting for the inevitable transition. Time after time it insists this experience will be different. It isn’t. It never is.

Sure, for the first ten or fifteen seconds there is a certain glow to the future of belonging. Furr sticks together, forming a thick quality that wasn’t there before. But then, just one minute later, all hope melts.

Insides slope downward. Claws turn to paws. Feet fuse to a plastic floor.

Then comes the electricity. It starts with just one spark, but before two minutes, shiny metallic stars erupt from both ears.

This can’t last, but so long, furbys think. It can.

Flames, fleeing from the sides of both arms explode from somewhere within. The heat becomes unbearable. There is nothing I can do to stop it.

I told you it wouldn’t work, I say, but by then it doesn’t matter. Tears of melted eyelashes and plastic eyeballs droop to the floor.

They will never be attractive.

You will never be attractive.

Although I understand the hope for metamorphosis, please don’t use me for your idea of beauty.

It’s not worth the time.


The Microwave



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The Toys


Photo by Luke Bultman

“Look!” Red Feather pointed his gun toward the puppy. “There it is!”

His trusty friend raised the mighty sword as if to try and slice the dog down.

“Wait!” Red Feather said suddenly.

The puppy was just the latest distraction for the boy. There was a time with the boy would do nothing but play with his toys all afternoon. They would go on adventures through the most daring of seas and fight the most dangerous of pirates and they survived in the most heroic of ways. Sometimes there were furry stuffed sharks involved, other times it was a rubber dinosaur. Lately the enemy seemed to be time.

He spent hours bent over his books and homework. When he finally looked up, he was too tired to pull Red Feather’s boat off the shelf. Instead, he would gaze into his computer screen and type at a lightening fast speed. It wasn’t just the computer that hijacked our time together. It was the television, the phone, and the video games. One afternoon when even the pirates were looking bored, his mother burst into his room with a yapping beast that bounded happily onto his bed.

“I think you need something to keep you off of all that technology,” she said with her hands on her hips, grinning knowingly at the boy.

But what about us? I looked around the room at the new posters that mapped out his experience of middle school. An unframed poster of The Misfits was tacked up alongside the clown shaped lamp. A photograph of his family wearing identical Red Sox caps was replaced by a group of gangly twelve year olds grinning into the camera.

“This beast is too big for us.”