Tag Archives: star trek

Daily Prompt: Jack Of All Trades


If the world worked on a barter system, how would you fare? Would you have services to barter? Would you be successful, or would you struggle?

Photographers, artists, poets: show us SKILL.

The world on a barter system, hmm… people helping each other, what a concept.  I’d like to think I’d be ok, I’m fairly well-rounded when it comes to skills. This all really depends if our world would be the same as it is now. Do we still have modern conveniences, have we moved back one hundred years?

I don’t mind helping out, I like being part of a “team effort for the good of the whole”, sort of thing.

Why don’t we go one step farther, and say that the human race has realized consuming animal products is a thing of the past. The planet we live on can no longer support the millions of “animals”, we raise for food.

There would certainly be an opportunity to help people understand this new way of eating. I’m always trying new vegan foods, I love experimenting, so I would certainly have services to offer in this area.


I can plant a garden, even though my rows are crooked, I’ve never thought the carrots minded being extra close to the beets. If a riot in the veggie patch is the least of our worries, I think we’ll be ok.

Cake decorating, sewing, painting walls, I’m pretty sure I’d think of something to offer. Most of us are able to do more than we think. In this crazy modern world, it’s easy for “manual skills”, to be looked upon as non-essential. When it comes right down to it… I take comfort in knowing I’d be able to do more than “push a button”, waiting for the replicator to make my cheesecake.








Retail Blunder



part two

Barry had a soft spot for Tommy ever since he stopped a shoplifter from stealing the life-size cutout of Mr. Spock.

Two years ago when the Star Trek convention had come to town, a fellow dressed like Captain Kirk had tried to make off with the giant paper doll. We thought he smelled a bit too much like Vulcan ale so we kept a close eye on him, after all how hard would a bald Kirk be to miss. He had asked Trudy, one of the girls stocking shelves where he could find duct tape, only it came out sounding like duck tape. She looked at him like he had three eyes, excused herself, and went to find Barry to inform him they had another Riverdale runaway on their hands.

Every full moon we could count on the crazies making their rounds. “Just keep a close eye on him Trudy, if he starts getting out of hand give me a shout.”

Now, Trudy was a bit of a prankster and decided to have a bit of fun with the fellow. She sauntered up to him slowly, with this quirky smile on her face. “Excuse me Sir, what size duck did you need that tape for?” I was in the next aisle putting together a display for Depends; I came dangerously close to breaking open a carton.

What do you mean, size?” He was talking real slow like the batteries in his power pack had reached the critical stage and were about to need more juice. Up close the guy looked like he had gone through the replicator with a series of malfunctions along the way. His bald head was shiny, and waxy looking like someone had used his head as a demo for floor polish. The Captain Kirk outfit he was wearing was a good one, but he should have sprung for the boots that went with the costume. On his very large feet he was wearing those black and red-rimmed rubber boots most of us grew up with. He looked hysterical. Trudy turned her quirky smile into one of concern, and very innocently answered, “Well Sir there are three sizes of ducks in this neighborhood. The Goliath duck, the Crappy duck, and the Pewee duck, which of these do you need the tape for?” The poor guy stared at Trudy like he was about to heave, his face the color of day old dish water. He was literally swaying back and forth while trying to comprehend what she had said. He sputtered a few words quietly, leaning closer to Trudy than she had expected. Why would I want to tie up dicks?” The Depends display I had been working on went for a spill into the main aisle, with me on top of it. Trudy completely lost it and bent over laughing so hard she split the back of her pants.

The scene must have looked surreal. A space explorer locked on to the wrong energy beam, a stock clerk in need of repair and a cashier swimming in over sized pads. Trudy began shirking with laughter, startling the dazed shopper. He jerked back quickly like he’d been jabbed with a cattle prod.

The poor guy, he wasn’t sure which way to go or what to do. He ran down the aisle towards me with this crazed look in is eyes, like he knew his number was up. If I didn’t take immediate action he would stumble over me, so I rolled under the day-old bakery cart.The crazed shopper ran towards the exit, bumping into other frenzied customers trying to flee the scene. People were screaming and yelling, unsure of what was happening. The check out closest to the door had a display of DVD’s, with Mr. Spock guarding it. The lunatic stopped abruptly, lifted the cutout from its perch and headed for the door. Tommy was just coming in and scanned the scene in the blink of an eye. The cane he carried shot out tripping the space fool, who landed face down on his fellow traveler. By this time, Barry was running for the entrance, not fully aware what was going on. The way customers in the store were reacting, he must have thought we had been robbed or the place was on fire.

It is a well-known fact human beings panic for the silliest reasons, or maybe I should say they panic for no good reason. One person starts screaming and everyone within ear shot thinks an ax murderer wearing old pantyhose has been stocking the frozen food aisle.

One evening on reality TV I watched a store video where the robber had pulled the pantyhose, legs and all over his face. The store clerk was so pissed she grabbed both legs dangling around his head, and hung on as tightly as she could. The guy had knotted the hose around his neck, wanting to make sure it didn’t fall off in the heist. Little did he know an angry cashier would nearly choke him to death.

All this ran through my mind as I watched the scene from my bunker under the bakery cart.

Brenda was the cashier nearest the exit and had a reputation for being less than friendly with scum who had the nerve to disrupt her daily routine. She had worked at the store for twelve years and wasn’t exactly your customer service specialist. Rumor had it she‘d worked as a guard in an all male sanatorium. Maybe that could explain why she had an obvious dislike for the off-duty interns who would occasionally shop in their work cloths.

When the guy began running towards the front of the store Brenda had been bagging cat food for one of the regulars. The commotion made her head shoot up, her eyes narrowing to an angry glare. Mrs. Minsky, the customer she was bagging for, was so panicked by the side-show she let out a shriek and fainted across the counter, her body almost instantly sliding off to hit the floor. Grabbing a can of chicken delight from the assortment on the counter, Brenda heaved it at the space intruder, missing him, but taking off Mr. Spock’s right ear. She scooted around her stall, wanting to help Tommy, but miscalculated where her customer had passed out. Her foot snagged on the strap of Mrs. Minsky’s purse, jerking the old lady to a state of semi consciousness. Brenda began spewing words we’d never heard before, and her disillusioned customer continued her trip into never, never land.

The local television stations had a field day with this one. Each broadcast had a different version of the events; We didn’t have to ask or even wonder whom they had been talking to. All in all Tommy ended up being the hero of the day, and our cashier from the storm troopers was the one using the duct tape to repair the space traveler’s ear.


Retail Blunder


Having worked for a large retailer for many years has given me an inside look into the insanity of working in a chaotic environment. The surreal things that happen each day are hard to believe, but, yes they really do happen.

I started writing a book a few years ago, about a group of people who work in a similar situation, only different. When I first started this project I thought, novel, now I think a series of short stories, about the store, may do it justice, and be more exciting for the reader.  Right now I don’t have a name for the book it self, but the title of each story stands on it’s own.

Since I’m new to blogging I’ve read that writing a post too long can bore people, and they stop reading. My stories will be split into different days, part one tonight, part two tomorrow…etc. What do you think, do people get bored if it’s too long? Feedback please.

With each story I write, I learn more, try to do a better job at editing and always try to add an element of fun. If the characters were ordinary, that just wouldn’t be me.


Walking through the doors made me nauseous as hell, and made me think of those bathrooms at the back of gas stations. Rusty door with a lock that doesn’t work, dim lightning, and a garbage can overflowing with used everything.

Poppers, was a chain of discount stores, thriving on the obsession the public had, with getting the best for less. It always made me laugh to think about that, especially when we saw some of the stuff that came through the back door. Then again, what came through the front doors didn’t look all that different either.

Every Wednesday we had a regular customer by the name of Tommy pays us a visit. He called him self “Old Tommy,” but we figured he couldn’t have been more than mid fifties. He was a skinny little man, slightly hunched over, and he could move faster than Brad the check out boy.

His claim to fame was being knocked over by a rampaging elephant when he visited the zoo as a youngster. He told the story on a regular basis, especially when children were present. Their eyes would grow as big as hubcaps and their mouths would drop open, releasing unpaid for jawbreakers. Tommy’s voice would lower to a hush just as he got to the part where the elephant stepped on him. Most of the youngsters listening would put their hands over their face and scrunch their eyes closed, for fear they might actually be sucked back to Tommy’s fateful day. The majority of customers shopping ignored him but the mother’s whose children were being entertained could not have been more grateful. Every one of us had heard so many different versions of the story we were never sure which one he was going to pick.

My favourite was the one where the hippo and the elephant were having a race and he got jammed in the middle on his way to buy feed for the flamingos. Go figure, who would have thought feeding the birds could be hazardous to your health. Barry, the store manager liked the episode when Tommy was on a field trip with his class. Out of all the kids, he had been chosen to help feed the elephants. What the zookeeper had neglected to tell them, was that the gigantic beast had cataracts and apparently thought Tommy was a large potato. Hilda, the largest of the elephants wrapped her trunk around Tommy and was preparing to sample him. Tommy screamed, the teacher fainted, and the zookeeper got the pink slip.

to be continued…