Saturday, March 30, 2013

Short Story: The Arms by ESP

When Darnell Dunkin woke up, he put on his arms.

His mechanical arms, that is. They were metallic and one might compare them to puppet strings.

At 7:04, Darnell’s arms fed him a nutritious breakfast consisting of wheat germ cereal with two percent milk, a tangerine, and apple juice.

At 7:06, the arms performed the Heimlich maneuver on Darnell when he choked on an unpeeled, un-sliced tangerine.

At 7:30, the arms conveniently brushed Darnell’s teeth after his meal. They also generously flossed his teeth and gave him a swig of mouthwash. His teeth were sparkly white and his gums were blood red.

At 7:40, Darnell took a shower with lukewarm water and an all natural bar of soap.

At 7:42, Darnell was lightly shocked with electromagnetic electricity when his mechanical arms negatively reacted to the water.

At 7:50, Darnell dressed in paisley pants, a red button down shirt and black tennis shoes. The bright patterns made Darnell’s eyes hurt but the arms loved paisley.

At 7:57, Darnell rode his bike to his Teen Juvenile Time Out and Coping Center. Darnell had asthma so he usually didn’t ride his bike across vast distances but he and the arms had watched a global warming special a month ago and now they were going green.

At 8:30, Darnell sat down with the group, the group therapist Ms. Fern, and the multiple security guards.

“So how does everyone like their arms?’ Ms. Fern looked eagerly around the circle.

A murmur of groans and moans released in a 360 sound wave.

“I don’t like them.” Tim Serial piped up. “The arms keep me from doing everything. They won’t let me eat candy. I have to ride my bike everywhere and watch what they want to watch.”

“Tim, you are on house arrest. Your probation officer can only walk you here once a week. You’re not even allowed to ride your bike here.” Ms. Fern reasoned.

Tim took this in consideration.

“Guys,” Ms. Fern says, enthusiastically looks around the circle. “Testing out the new arms beats seventy to life, right? Darnell, you’re going to be charged as an adult soon. These arms will keep you out of a maximum security prison.”

“Breaking and entering won’t put me in a maximum security prison.” Darnell corrected, naming the charge that had put him in this institution.

Ms. Fern nodded. “True, but twenty four counts of drug induced rage, six DUI’s, two child endangerment charges, three charges of violating probation, six charges of unauthorized gun possession, four charges of public nudity, six charges of harming government official, and three charges of underage drinking, will probably do the trick.”

Darnell noticed Ms. Fern was reading off of a lengthy file and the security guard was discreetly reaching for his gun holster.

At 2:30, Darnell returned home from his therapy session. He had a hearty glass of prune juice, eight carrots with a tablespoon of hummus and about six pills. This time, he didn't choke on anything.

At 2:45, Darnell changed into his paisley lounge clothes.

At 3:50, Darnell sat down and completed his self-reflection examinations. His arms sweetly provided him with a gentle shock every time his mind thought of everything other than the source of his anger.

At 4:45, Darnell sat down to watch a special on the great white shark. Darnell suffered from severe selacophobia, but the arms had been looking forward to this for a week. Darnell tried to bolt, but the arms forgot to turn their shock system off and kept shocking him every time he tried to leave.

At 6:00, Darnell sat down to have dinner with his mother and the police officer that was supposed to make sure Darnell didn't have anymore “rage issues”.

“So how was your day, Darnell?” His mom asked, picking at her vinegar and watercress salad.

“Alright,” was all Darnell said as vinegar dribbled down his chin. The arms immediately wiped it up for him, before it came close to touching his paisley lounge clothes.

“How do you like your new arms?” His mom asked, passing him a plate of seasoned asparagus. “I am so jealous. They’re so trendy.”

“I hate these things.” Darnell stated, and immediately, a light shock went up his forearm. He had to call the technician tomorrow.

“What?” Darnell’s mother dropped a piece of asparagus in her watercress, looking shocked. “The arms are great!”

“Yeah, if totally boring and controlling sets the standards for being great.” Darnell murmured while munching on a piece of asparagus.

“Darnell,” Ms. Duncan cooed. “I really wish you’d be more positive. The arms are great. They keep you safer. They make you smarter. They help you stay out of jail. They assist in labor. The arms were called the ‘best invention since the electric-chair’ in Technology Monthly!”

“You said you stopped reading tabloids.”

Ms. Duncan continued,” This could be a brand new life for us! Which is why,” she leaned over the table and hoisted up a silver box over her head, “I pre-ordered my own arms and mechanical arms for the whole family!”

At 6:03, Darnell choked on his asparagus.

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