Mister Bluster

By Dan Nielsen -

Mister Bluster cozies into his bright red La-Z-Boy. He presses the illuminated blue side button, legs slowly rising toward horizontal. He turns on the lamp. Electricity trickles out from the wall, climbs the brown cord, and enters the off-white ceramic pedestal. In no time at all it reaches and lights the bulb.

Across the room by the front door the evening paper sits on an end table. Mister Bluster enters a meditative state. His mind travels to the edge of madness, pauses there for a moment, and makes the unconscious decision to return to a slightly altered reality. On his lap lays the paper.

“Thank you!” Mister Bluster half shouts to the woman in the kitchen.

“What?” she says and turns off the tap. She says it again. “What?”

“Thank you for getting me the newspaper.” Mister Bluster opens it. He has a thought:

When you die you go to the other side which is the same, but the grass seems greener.

“You’re crazy!” The woman laughs. She has a name and Mister Bluster knows it but feels uncomfortable using it. Her name is Eureka. She’s from an agency.

Donald Dog yawns in the filtered sunlight. Donald Dog fetched the paper. Mister Bluster turns a page and notices the slobber.

“Good boy,” he says, and enters another meditative state. His mind travels to the edge of madness pauses there a moment and continues past the edge never to return.

“What?” Eureka folds her apron. She places it in the drawer where it belongs.

Donald Dog looks out the window and sees a hundred birds gathered close together in the snow. One bark and they’d fly away. He knows this but why bother?

Eureka is done for the day. Mister Bluster is asleep in his chair. She covers him with an afghan. She turns off the lamp. The light dims as electricity leaves the bulb descends the off-white ceramic pedestal trickles through the brown cord and returns to the wall.


Dan Nielsen is a part-time standup comic. His least flavor of jelly is petroleum. Most recent FLASH in: Weird Mask, Defenestration, The Daily Drunk, Backchannels, Potato Soup Journal, and Jokes Review. Dan has a website: Preponderous, you can follow him @DanNielsenFIVES. He and Georgia Bellas are the post-minimalist art/folk band Sugar Whiskey. The podcast is Dan Nielsen with 5 Minutes.

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