© Dawn M. Miller
Fanatic time traveler Michael Robert Obe knew only murder could change the future. “Sorry, kid. This is the only way.” The eccentric (or insane) physicist held the bound five-year-old boy by the collar of his shirt while standing on the railway trestle.
“I loved this view when I was a kid. That’s why I brought you here. Too much at stake in my future world to let you live.”
The child looked up at his captor in terror.
Obe rolled Fredrick Christ Trump into the Colombia River to drown.
“Now to see what sort of world I’ve created.”
I wrote this for the Rochelle Wisoff-Fields photo challenge. The idea is to use the image above as the prompt for crafting a piece of flash fiction no more than 100 words long. My word count is 100.
As you may have guessed, Fredrick Christ Trump was the father of our current President Donald Trump. I know this harkens back to the old time travel paradox of whether or not you would kill Adolf Hitler as an infant in order to prevent the Holocaust. I’ve written stories like that before, but given that (at least in social media) any action that would inhibit, stop, impeach, erase, Donald Trump (or anyone conservative, or anyone suspected of being a Trump voter or at least not a Democrat) seems justified, I decided to take it one illogical step further. Would you murder Trump’s Dad when he was five years old to prevent a Trump presidency? In other words, would you kill an innocent little boy in cold blood because you think it’s the greater moral good?
To read other (kinder, gentler) stories based on the prompt, visit InLinkz.com.
Some people become overwhelmed when they feel they have too many things to do and they don’t have enough time to do them. This overwhelmed feeling causes them to move more slowly than they usually do. Their minds becomes unclear. It’s hard for them to focus and concentrate. Instead of becoming more efficient at what they have to do, they act way below their standard competency level.
What is the solution? Serene zrizus!
What does it mean to have serene zrizus? It means that you take action, and you do so with full speed ahead while remaining calm and tranquil inside. You move as fast as is appropriate for the specific situation and circumstance. But you have peace of mind.
You might not have previously associated zrizus with serenity, but now you can. Your mindset acknowledges that you will do everything that you have to do and that you will have an inner calm. Although you might move quickly, inwardly you are at ease.
A key benefit of having serene zrizus is that you think clearly. You think about what you need to do, and you remain calm as you take action.
-from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s book: “Taking Action” – pages 55-6
Image found on WeHeartIt
“Why did you want me to try to paint Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’ on your back? No one will see it unless your shirt is off, and I told you, I can’t make a perfect duplicate of it anyway.” Nineteen-year-old Danny Cross was waiting for his most recent touches to the painting on Marta’s back to dry. The white glare from the snow-covered college quad streamed in through the window of his second-floor dorm room, as she casually lay upon an old down blanket on the floor between the two beds. His slender left hand, looking so much like a girl’s, poised over the waistband of her stretch pants, and he felt a persistent urge and swelling in his own, while wondering if his rail-thin frame was pressing down too hard on her.
“I told you, it didn’t have to be perfect. I just want you to capture the style. Inspiration will do the rest.”
To the sophomore, her voice sounded like a young Lauren Bacall from the old movie “To Have or Have Not,” which he’d just watched in his American film classics class. He watched his pianist thin fingers, slip slowly under her waist band, and felt a sexual thrill at the warmth of her skin and the roundness at the top of her ass.
“Hey, get your hand out of there.” In mid-sentence, Marta’s tone shifted from annoyed to playful, but he jerked his hand away suddenly. “Not that I don’t think you’re cute, but we don’t have time for that right now.”
When you are in an energized and enthusiastic emotional state, you feel like doing much more than when you are a low energy, down state. Some emotional states are conducive to taking action, and other states aren’t.
Your emotional states are the sum total of your breathing rate, brain waves, blood pressure, energy level, heartbeat, hormones, immune system, muscle tension, physiology, and tone of voice.
Because every state you experience is stored in your magnificent brain, I advocate naming your best and most resourceful states. When you do this, you will find it easier to access those positive states.
The next time you find yourself in a “zrizus state,” say to yourself, “This is my zrizus state.” Be aware of your thoughts, mental images, and feelings when you are in this zrizus state.
-from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s book: “Taking Action” – page 51
One of the most self-empowering ideas for a happy, fulfilling life is that it’s up to your own mind to choose to enjoy what you do. You have a tremendous power to develop this attitude.
If you need to do something that seems uninteresting and boring at first, ask yourself, “How can I find a way to enjoy what I need to do?”
Brainstorm. Enjoy the challenge of thinking of a number of ways to make the task more meaningful and fulfilling.
Ask yourself, “What are some of the ways that I can think about this task (or project, goal, or job) that will enable me to enjoy what I am doing?”
-from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s book: “Taking Action” – pages 47-48
At the beginning of each day, ask yourself:
 What are my goals for today?
 What are the five most important things that I need to do today and what is their order of priority?
 What new Torah knowledge do I plan to gain today?
 What acts of kindness can I do today?
 What one trait would I like to excel in today?
 What positive change am I resolved to make or maintain today?
 If today were my last day, what would I make certain to do?
 How can I gain by looking at today as the first day of the rest of my life?
 What would you like written on my tombstone? What do I plan to do today in that area?
 What is important for me to remember today?
-from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s “Gateway to Self Knowledge,” p.188
I must admit to not being this organized.
The quality of your choices will depend greatly on your mental state at the decision-making moment. Your choices will be different if you are at your wisest and best.
When you are at your wisest, you think more clearly. You weigh your options more skillfully. You give greater thought to the possible outcomes of a specific course of action. You realize when something is not a good idea. Since your quality of thinking is at its highest, your decision will be the best choice that you can make at that moment.
When you are at your best, your talents and skills represent your best efforts. Remember your best moments and utilize this to create your wisest and best ways of thinking and acting.
-from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s book: “Taking Action” – pages 43-44
Action will enable you to accomplish and achieve. But something must come before taking action: thinking.
Think first. Yes, think big and think bigger, but always think first.
Taking action without thinking will lead to many avoidable mistakes and errors. Taking action without thinking first will lead to unnecessary quarrels and arguments, hurt feelings, and misunderstandings.
Taking action without thinking will lead to wasting much time and energy.
Taking action without thinking might get you far, but it’s likely to get you far in the wrong direction.
When you spend time thinking about your options and about consequences, you will be able to learn from each experience to think even better and wiser next time.
-from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s book: “Taking Action” – pages 40-1
Create the habit of taking action right away. To make anything a habit, you keep doing something many times. The wise person doesn’t wait until a new habit becomes a habit. He acts the way he would act if he already had the habit. And then automatically his actions become a habit.
-from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s book: “Taking Action” – page 38
Found at thecompanion.in – No image credit listed
Based on my blog post called More on Social Media and University Radio Show “Echo Chambers” and my conversation in the comments section of that post, I felt it necessary to write this one. Let me explain.
I had a twitter “conversation” with someone from the radio show Scene on Radio (possibly producer and co-host John Biewen, but since the twitter “handle” was @SceneOnRadio, it’s impossible to know for sure).
Marleen, one of the readers of this blog, wanted me to listen to Episode 53: Himpathy (MEN, Part 7), originally broadcast in October of this year, because in her words:
I’ve gone and listened to four episodes. I’d recommend the 53rd one. I would hope that if something like that happened to your granddaughter or daughter your response would be that it ma mattered rather than that the thing people should be doing is telling “good” stories (defined as not bothersome).
Since I’ve expressed somewhat of an oppositional viewpoint relative to how the show’s content is presented, and specifically their misuse of Biblical interpretation, Marleen suggested (at least as I understand it) that listening to this episode might help me realize that I don’t necessarily have to “lock horns” with the show or its co-hosts (the other co-host being Celeste Headlee).