Short Fiction

Week 416: Crystal Ball Vision; Words of Now; Big List of Dopes 2023

The Future

Predicting the future is big business. Aging psychics are falling aside, usurped by new frauds (you’d think the veteran charlatans would have seen that coming). So, it may never be too late to make a fortune by lying to people. So I open my crystal ball and see:

A distant evolutionary jump that will announce itself with the first and only generation of children who will unanimously call bullshit on both Santa and the “true meaning” of Christmas.

They will be called Generation Death. Gen Death will be born preloaded with all the knowledge gained in human history stored in their brains due to a technological reason that today sounds like magic; they will neither require an education nor life insurance. Gen Death will have no interest in money or politics or celebrity. All they will care about is the elimination of their elders and resetting the planet. No new children will be born after the millionth Gen Deather. Their eyes will have that evil space cadet glow seen in Children of the Damned.

And that movie title is fitting because the Gen Deathers will damn their parents and ancestors.The sanctioning of the non Gen Deathers will be easy because nothing in the universe spreads disease more efficiently than a small child. Gen Deathers will be precociously pernicious and will have a knack for knocking down the walls of immunity with a thoughtful virulence never before unleashed by nature. One sneeze from a kindergarten age Gen Deather will instantly take out an entire stadium. The little sociopathic telepaths will organize and set a date and claim the world in less time than it took either Nature or God to create it.

And it will all be so beautiful, a goddam “Itchy-koo Park”–or would’ve been if any of the Gen Deathers had considered what it would be like living in a world with billions of corpses rotting at the same time. At least the oversight, brought on by one final act of human arrogance, won’t last long. The animals of the world, attracted by the stench, and sensing a chance at payback, will pounce and wipe out Generation Death in short order.

And later, as the Vultures and insects finish the task of clean up, the animals will look at each other with a “I thought they’d never leave” expression on their faces (and whatever passes for the face of something like a jellyfish), then get back to fornication and killing minus the artificial human concepts of shame and guilt. And there will be no conspiracy theories or investigations or rules that are unnatural.

And later still, an advanced race of Lizard people who placed the winning bid for removing all radio and television signals roaming the galaxy, created by extinct races, will delete our aimless babble. They will suck in and convert our porn, wrestling, breaking news, ads and music to blank photons and it will be like we never were. Yet on the Lizard People’s home world the first generation of Lizardlings, unimpressed with winning bids and janitorial careers, will hatch below a pitiless three-lobed sun.

The crystal darkens…

Consider it my resume for a job at The National Enquirer.


No matter how ridiculous a future one may predict, what actually transpires is usually more interesting because history is a result of multiple inputs, some good, some malign, most inert. This week five writers added their good insights to history. May none of their words ever be deleted by Lizard People.

Monday saw the welcome return of James Bates. I publicly congratulate and thank Jim on and for his fine story Storm Clouds. He is always a gentleman amenable to suggestions and not deterred by the prospect of hard work. This harrowing little tale speaks of his talent, and proves his range. Further good news is found in the fact that we will see Jim again soon.

Antony Osgood is compiling as impressive a list of work as we have ever had on the site. It is no accident that As Ever, the Nun appeared on Valentines Day. It’s an ironic appearance that speaks more about the nature of desire than what Harlequin serves in candy dishes.

A Pebble at Dawn heralded the happy first return of J Bradley Minnick. We already have Brad’s third in the paddock and once again he shares a unique look at unique people. In this case the MC is wonderfully drawn, poignant and not in the least sentimental.

Thursday heralded the site debut of Adédoyin Àjàyí with Beside Kam Salem. No matter where you are in the world some things never change. This penetrating and entertaining look at a place where “Everyone Knows Your Name” is as fine a debut an author can hope for.

The inimitable Tim Frank closed the week with Neanderthals. Just like Antony Osgood, if we had blind submissions, I would recognize Tim’s voice instantly–even though his subject matter is diverse. I cannot lay a finger on precisely what it is about his work, but I know it when I see it. And that is the best thing a writer can hope for–well, except for riches, universal adoration and world domination–but a recognizable voice should be in the top five.

I now present The A to Z of Dopes 2023 (E, F, G, I, M, O are omitted for the usual reason)

A: Assimus Maximus (Emperor of Dopes)

B: Bonnie King Charlie

C: Camilla Guerrilla

D: Dopium Moresomus (Empress of Dopes)




H: Him-or-her-a-rhoid


J: JackorJillwagon

K: King Upchuck

L: Like-Ya-Know (Some would have little to say if those words were stricken from the language.)


N: Nooklur Fizzacyst (Says stuff like “expresso” and “intensive purposes”–been around before.)


P: Prime Minister for a Day

Q: Quotemeister (Bozo who has a dated pop culture remark for everything–i.e. “I’d tell you but then I’d have to kill you”; “Weeelll, alrighty then.” Quotemeisters are usually divorced men.)

R: Richie and Rosie Retch (Persons who are enveloped in an atmosphere of cologne and perfume.)

S: Sensornator (Convinced that every negative you say is about him/her.)

T: Tarzan of the Bungle

U: Ugsomebody (a person with a spectacularly bad, even ugly, attitude that they must share with you.)

V: Velcro-trainee (New employee assigned to you who’d follow you into the restroom if you allowed it.)

X: (e)X-phile (Seldom talks about anything other than the spouse who wised up and left.)

Y: Yelp Yodler (always threatening perceived poor service with a negative Yelp review. Tattlers as adults–well in body that is.)

Z: Zomedian (Every last f&*%ing joke has to do with zombies. Should be legal to shoot these fools you know where on sight.)


15 thoughts on “Week 416: Crystal Ball Vision; Words of Now; Big List of Dopes 2023”

  1. Now that LS is changing approach (Weird Sundays or whatever), I thought that the beginning comment was an essay or dystopian fiction story. Ever since I’ve been hearing generation blup does this / hates that blah blah, I’ve hated generation whatever as a marketing gimmic. Some of the “greatest generation” were war profiteers. Boomers didn’t invent problems – ecological disasters go back thousands of years, it is facile, but stupid to blame all of your problems on your elders. If that doesn’t prove the labels wrong, I’m in the silent generation.

    I agree with most of the gap A-Z and add “Cell/mobile loudmouth”, Masters Of War (as long as it doesn’t negatively affect [note – not impact] me) and maybe a hundred others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello and thank you, Doug

      You raise an interesting point about generation labeling. I was born in 1959 but still labeled a Boomer even though I was a small child during the sixties–eight when the Summer of Love took place and nine when the hell year of 68 happened. Yet I am still in the same boat with the college students and Vietnam veterans. I “identify”as human. That’s enough a load for anyone to handle.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Editor Sharon and I are in different “generations” despite my child bride and I having most of the same history and memories.
        The whining of “Okay boomer” pissed me off. Interpretation “I’m an oppressed person who has been made to fail completely by all of the sins of older people. I take no responsibility for my problems.” What a load.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. So – there’s no Zombies then in this lizard world? All those corpses rotting and decaying and not one of them gets up and goes in search of edible brains. I just don’t see it catching on. Sorry.

    We really don’t deserve this earth, do we?

    E – Ectoplastics – those with artificially enhanced faces that make them look like badly designed plastic dolls.

    Great post as always. Thanks Leila

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Diane
      No Lizard Zombies. No Lizard Vampires or Politicians either. Just a Lizard People who can imagine a world without Heaven or. Hell below. But they might hatch one generation too many….TBD (I forgot to mention that all Domesticated animals in the future will have mastered the can opener and no longer rewire human assistance).
      Thanks again!


      Liked by 1 person

      1. This be fruit ful and multiply thing has been way overdone. If god were paying any attention it would yell “Enough already”. Now we are screwed as Western nations aren’t reproducing leaving a few to support the many, while the rest of the world increases beyond available resources.
        I’m probably one of many (“Reprieve”) who has written a story about how a mass decline in humans would improve earth.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Enjoyable post. Gen Death sounds like a pretty horrible future, among many other possibilities. I’d add Internet Celebrity to the list of dope for people who get famous for videoing themselves doing doping things.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, David
      It’s important to know that my crystal might need to be calibrated. It also predicts Dolly Parton will be the first woman president (she seems too smart to want that job) and still insists, despite ample proof to the contrary, that the Cleveland Browns won the Super Bowl last Sunday.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Leila,
    Excellent post as always!
    In the words of Whitney, ‘I believe that children are the future’
    …So we are fucked!!
    Look at what they grow into. And with societies idea that everyone has the right to procreate, even if they don’t do anything specific, they will drown the world in them!!
    Now talking about ‘them’ that leads me nicely into my inclusions for the Dopes!!
    E- Eejit Sam Smith
    F- Fucking eejit Sam Smith
    G- Great tit Sam Smith
    I – Idiot Sam Smith
    M- Mammary gland Sam Smith
    O- Orifice Sam Smith
    If you haven’t heard anything about this, look up Sam Smith corrects Alex Jones in ‘The One Show’ – He states that he wants to become a fisherthem, not a fisherman or even fisherwoman if he was feeling that way, that morning, a ‘fisherthem’
    Offence over a nothing phrase is unfortunately becoming the norm but no matter who argues what, it’s still ridiculous!!
    What about the folks who are offended at not being allowed to not being offended by those who are offended at everything??

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Hugh
      With all the pain and suffering in the world it shouldn’t be possible for the media to constantly give a voice to such nonsense as though it has a meaning. If an EMP occurred stuff like fisherthem thing would puff off like summer fog; it is a phone creation that cannot withstand a pulled plug. Speaking of such, someone ought to yank Sam’s plug. He sounds braindead!

      Thank you as always


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