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Writer’s Block

10-20-07

Writer’s Block

God sat at his desk in the middle of the cavernous warehouse and sighed heavily at the typewriter. The page inserted into it was blank, and it had been for several weeks.

 

“Son of a bitch,” he muttered. The words echoed among the billions of rows of file cabinets, the profanity repeating over and over again. He laid his head down upon the desk and considered breaking into tears but decided to just rest his eyes for a moment. Tears might come later, but for now it was good enough to just be able to rest his weary eyes.

 

A door, the only entrance to the warehouse, opened and from his vantage point, God could only make out a pair of sparkling red high heeled shoes and blue ankles extending from them. They clicked and clacked upon the concrete floor, and God didn’t even bother to look up when they stopped in front of his desk.

 

“Hey, Shakti. What’s the good word?” he asked through another sigh.

 

“Shakti? Dude, I’m flattered. The wife would probably be pissed, so I won’t tell her you confused the two of us. But, man, that’s flattering,” a man’s voice replied.

 

“Oh, hi, Shiva. Sorry about that, it’s just the shoes threw me off.”

 

“They’re cool, huh? I borrowed them from the wife. She’s out on some divine errand or other, so I figured I’d raid her half of the closet.”

 

“They’re women’s shoes.”

 

“They’re fantastically awesome women’s shoes, God. And they suit today’s style,” Shiva replied in a matter-of-fact tone.

 

God finally lifted his head from the desk and gazed a Shiva, wondering what style he was going for. Beyond the heels, he wore a pair of denim cut-off shorts with the pockets sticking out of the bottoms, a white tank-top, and his usual array of piercings upon his head.

 

“Cross-dresser?” God asked with a bemused look upon his face.

 

“No. I was thinking more, ‘Hey, these are fabulous shoes. They suit the Lord of the Dance, despite the fact that the Lady usually wears them. And as for the rest, well, it’s easier to warm up in the shorts and tank.’ So you can wipe that smug expression right off your holy face, jerk.”

 

“Sorry. I was just curious.”

 

Shiva bit his lower lip and shifted his weight from one sparkly foot to another as though he was suddenly uncomfortable.

 

“Hey, God, can I sit down for a minute or two?” he asked after a long silence.

 

God waved his hand toward one of the EZ Boys near the desk and nodded. “What’s on your mind?”

 

“Well, you, actually,” Shiva replied and began to pull at a loose string on his shorts.

 

“What about me?”

 

“Well, the others and I have been a little concerned lately. I mean, have you even left the warehouse in the last few weeks?”

 

“No.”

 

“See? That’s what I’m talking about. It’s not healthy. You need to take a break and chill out for a bit.”

 

“But I have work to do, deadlines to meet, and lives to save.”

 

“Yeah, I know. We all do. It’s a shitty existence sometimes, and we all get that. But the thing is, we’ve all decided we don’t think you’re dealing with the stress of it so well.”

 

“Is that all?” God began to wish he hadn’t let Shiva sit down. Maybe if he’d remained standing he would have been too uncomfortable and flighty to have stayed long enough to talk.

 

“Well, yes,” Shiva replied. “But not really. I’ve come here mostly to invite you to come have a beer or something with me. It’d be way cool of you, my reclusive compadre.”

 

“You’re hilarious sometimes, Shiva. I’d go, I really would, but I really need to get something done. I’m a page away from filling file cabinet number four billion, eight hundred thirty seven thousand, nine hundred ninety-two. I’d really like to be able to seal that one off by the end of the day.”

 

“Isn’t that what you’ve been trying to do for the last several weeks?”

 

“Shut up,” God said darkly.

 

“See? Anger issues. You need to just give up for a bit and loosen up. Maybe then you’ll be able to figure out what this big mental block is and then you can fix it and keep going.”

 

“But I do know,” God whispered so quietly the words were nearly lost to the echoing effects of the warehouse. A single tear fell from his left eye as he gazed at Shiva.

 

“Oh, man, what is it? It can’t be that bad.”

 

“Why’d I kill off the California grizzly bears? They never did much harm to anyone, and now they’re extinct.” God could barely hold back his tears as he said the words.

 

“What?” Shiva suddenly lost any sympathy he may have had. “This multiple-week funk has been about the California grizzly? God, you have a deadline to make! What is wrong with you?”

 

“I know, I know! But I just feel like they got the short end of the deal, and I really wish I hadn’t offed them the way I did.”

 

“You make me so angry sometimes. Do you know that, Lord?” There was a hint of sarcasm placed on the final word.

 

God gave Shiva a pained look. “But they were so graceful and intense and beautiful all at once. Why did I kill them?”

 

“Do you remember when you killed off the dinosaurs?” Shiva suddenly asked.

 

“Yeah. I fail to see how this connects, though.”

 

“Shut up and listen for a minute. Do you remember how much fun you had with killing them off? How cool it was? The enormous amount of detail and artistry you put into killing those stupid lizards?”

 

“They weren’t stupid, you jackass,” God retorted.

 

“I believe I told you to be quiet for a minute. It’s only been twenty-seven seconds. Anyway, what I’m getting at here is that was some of your best work. It was beautiful. So beautiful, in fact, that I cried when I read it. And it wasn’t because I cared even remotely about the mammoth lizards. It was because it was all so incredible. You’re an incredible writer, God, and you don’t give yourself enough credit for it all.”

 

“Wow. You really cried? Didn’t you tell me once that real male deities never cry?”

 

Shiva’s elegant features crumpled into a ghastly, full-faced frown. “That’s not the point, God. The point is, you over-work yourself far too often with these people-do-hickies you’ve created along with all their issues. Take a break, if not for your own health, then for the well-being of your creation.”

 

“I just don’t think I can,” God sighed another heavy sigh.

 

“Please, God?”

 

“I don’t know. I don’t want to just abandon it all. I mean, this is my life’s work,” God said as he stood up and walked over to the nearest file cabinet. He pulled open the top drawer and ran a tender hand over the hundreds of papers held within. “I love what I’ve created, Shiva.”

 

Shiva stopped fiddling with his shorts and gave God a deep and meaningful look. “I’m not asking you to abandon it, God, just to sit your rear end back down and type three very simple words.”

 

“And those would be?”

 

“To. Be. Continued,” Shiva grinned as he spoke.

 

“You are fantastically annoying sometimes.” God couldn’t help but let out a small chuckle at his friend.

 

“Now, that’s the deity we all know and love. Laughter, it’s the best medicine! Come on, God, let’s go to the bar. I’m buying.”

 

“Naw, that stuff’s not healthy.”

 

“And what is it you’ve got there in that cup of yours? It smells awful.” Shiva made a face implying he might soon become quite ill.

 

“Yak’s milk with nutmeg.”

 

“I think I just died a little bit inside,” Shiva said and shuddered.

 

“That’s not possible. You’re immortal, you blue-skinned weirdo.”

 

“It’s a figure of speech, okay? And, hey, it’s a lovely shade of blue. You can’t deny that. Now, come on, you mook. We’re going. The incessant echoing of this place makes me feel all small in insignificant. It’s bad for my self-esteem.”

 

“But what about the California grizzlies?”

 

“They can wait. The way you talk, you’d think you don’t want to find a solution for the problem.”

 

“Huh? You lost me there.”

 

“You’ve spent nearly a month sitting here drinking, ugh-barfness, yak’s milk, wracking your omnipotent brain for an answer, and you still haven’t gotten anywhere. Ergo, you need a break, and you need to come get a beer with me. And maybe some real food. Like, um, I don’t know. Something with a little substance, perhaps? Steak?”

 

“I thought you were against eating beef.”

 

“I didn’t say I was going to eat it. But you certainly can. Everyone else says they go together splendidly. Steak and beer. Beer and steak. Like the two of us. You can be the steak, though. I prefer the beer.”

 

God could feel his stomach churn at the thought of real food. The yak’s milk was the healthier choice, but he failed to see how it could possibly beat out a steak and a tall glass of beer. His hand wandered to his abdomen where he could feel his ribs beginning to protrude in an unhealthy way.

 

“See? It’s a good idea, God. What do you say?” Shiva asked, grinning wildly.

 

The hand over his stomach tightened into a fist briefly before God let it fall to his side. “But the bears, Shiva. If I could just figure out how to save them, I know I could fix the rest of it.”

 

“How about this. You come with me anyway, you know, despite the peril of the bears, and you have a steak and some beer. And while we’re consuming that beer and getting blissfully inebriated, we can brainstorm and come up with a solution to your bear problem.”

 

“You mean it?” God asked hopefully. The thought of food was becoming more appealing by the moment.

 

“Of course I do. I’m thinking it’ll involve a bunch of environmentalists getting mauled by a pack of angry bears and fun stuff like that. It’ll be cool. And then you can address all the crap going on with the people-thingies, and we’ll all be happy again. Especially you.”

 

“A happy worker is an efficient worker?” God suggested.

 

“Something like that,” Shiva said, rising from his recliner. He threw his arm over God’s malnourished shoulder and began to guide him away from the desk, knocking over the glass of yak’s milk in the process. God began to protest, but Shiva kept him walking toward the door.

 

“We can clean it up later. It’s all good, God.”

 

“Yeah, Shiva, I think it will be. Thanks, old friend,” God replied as the door opened, and they stepped out of the dark warehouse and into the bright light of the universe.

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Categories: Fiction
  1. Mark Stackpole
    August 3, 2011 at 8:22 pm

    “By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.”
    And an object at rest tends to remain at rest.
    God dammit, we’ll never see God’s sequel.

  2. Ker-Splattie
    August 3, 2011 at 11:52 pm

    But…but Kari, what about the bears?

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