The Wallpaper

The Wallpaper was beautiful, ethereal. When you looked at it from a certain angle, it could make you erupt into fits of laughter. Tilt your head, and now you softly weep. Try another angle, and your heart would skip a beat. Another still, and your soul would soar beyond the corporeal. One might say there was a special magic to it, though there were but few capable of seeing it.

It covered a single room, smallish in size as far as rooms go. To say that the room was in a severe state of disrepair would be an enormity of an understatement. Furnished with two worn chairs, a small, stained and rickety tea table, a lone bookshelf overflowing and buckling from its burden and a dingy window showing only peeling paint and crusts of dirt.

There was a time when the chairs, so richly upholstered, would have been considered beautiful and welcoming in their comfort by anyone’s standards. There was a time when the varnish on the bookshelf was so rich and polished that you could see your reflection if you held your head just so. There was a time when the dingy window was carefully kept clean and crystalline, so that you could gaze upon the beautiful and wondrous lands of The Dreaming.

The Wallpaper made up for the room’s deteriorated state. In fact, only the room’s Inhabitant recognized what was happening. Only the room’s Inhabitant knew that the Wallpaper was next. The Keeper of the room, however, remained oblivious to the creeping neglect and the devastation it would wreak.

The last day of Autumn found the Inhabitant ensconced in the only chair ever used. One leg bent and tucked beneath the other thigh, the Inhabitant reached for a sip of tepid tea. The chipped cup forthwith dropped from a trembling hand as the Inhabitant saw it. The first crack in the Wallpaper.

Terrified, the Inhabitant bolted to the door and woefully wailed and begged for help. With obvious annoyance, the Keeper approached to inquire what could possibly be so wrong as to create such a ruckus. Choking on sobs, the Inhabitant pointed at the crack in the Wallpaper.

Moving closer to inspect, the Keeper fingered the new curl in the Wallpaper. Whirling back on the Inhabitant, the Keeper proclaimed that this was nothing. The Wallpaper is fine. In fact, the tear gives it character. When the Inhabitant pointed out that damage left in disrepair spreads and rots, the Keeper angrily chided and admonished against overreaction.

I am the Keeper! Not you! Only you would even notice such a thing! This is NOTHING!

With the slam of the door, the Inhabitant slowly stanched the flow of tears and sat back down. Keeping watch over the Wallpaper became the Inhabitant’s sole fixation. Slowly the tiny crack spread. Down, down, down, until finally an entire sheet had curled to the floor.

Once more, the Inhabitant begged for the Keeper to tend to it. This time, the Keeper showed a modicum of concern and immediately re-glued the curled strip back upon the wall. Mollified, the Inhabitant returned to unlocking the worlds within the precious tomes littered about the room. The Keeper stayed away, doing whatever Keepers do instead of Keeping, ignoring the Inhabitant’s warnings about the Wallpaper’s fading luster.

The day before the first frost, the wilting Inhabitant mournfully watched as the Wallpaper covering one entire wall crumbled to dust and slowly settled about the room. The Keeper heard a strange sound and finally checked on the room and its Inhabitant. The Keeper was alarmed to discover the Inhabitant keening and rocking and scraping at the thick crust of dirt covering the window.

“What’s the matter with you?”, questioned the Keeper.

The Inhabitant’s throat was coated in dust, and the response was gravelly and subdued. “I need to see. I need to dream again before it’s too late.”

“You see what I want you to see. This is My Room. And I am the Keeper,” admonished the Keeper.

With great trepidation, the Inhabitant pointed a gently accusatory finger at the naked wall and tried once more, “Look. Look at how you’ve Kept it. I warned you this would happen. I begged you not to neglect it. The Wallpaper. It’s dying.”

“It doesn’t matter. Nobody even notices Wallpaper. You’re crazy, and stop scratching at the window like some caged animal,” the Keeper scornfully returned. “I’ll paint over it. The window and the Wallpaper. So we can be done with this nonsense.”

Deep in the heart of winter, the Keeper suddenly thought of the Inhabitant and stormed into the room only to pause and look around with perplexity and great fear. The shoddy paint job allowed bits of irreparably damaged Wallpaper to peek through. The rest lay curled and crumbled about the floor. The books had gone to dust and every surface of the room thinly cased in ice.

The Inhabitant had faded: skin nearly translucent, head lolled to one side, breath coming out in slow, measured, white puffs of air.

Slowly meeting the eyes of the Keeper, the Inhabitant whispered, “It is time.”

“No… No, you can’t mean it! I forbid it!,” shouted the Keeper.

“But the Wallpaper is dead. It has suffered, and it has died. Only dust and decay remain,” the Inhabitant stoically replied.

“Why did you allow this to happen? You can’t let this happen,” implored the Keeper.

The Inhabitant shed a single tear and solemnly raised a mirror to the Keeper’s face. “Tell me what you see.”

“A Keeper. A Keeper that couldn’t Keep.”

The Inhabitant stood and touched the Keeper’s cheek. As the Keeper wailed and reached for purchase on the Inhabitant’s body, the Inhabitant slowly faded from the earthly plane. Returning home, to The Dreaming, with a faint twinkle and hope of Spring.


The Keeper cursed and wailed and blamed and pounded the floor and begged the emptiness. And the vacuum created by the Inhabitant’s departure caused the door to swing inward, locking the Keeper into a room now devoid of anything worth Keeping.

News Flash: Time Marches On (aka The Year Ends. Every. Fucking. Year.)

File this bitch under pet peeves or something because damn, this gets under my skin. And I think it’s the kind of thing that is greatly exaggerated and exacerbated by working in an office environment. (P.S. The word is exacerbated. I didn’t say masturbated. I would never say masturbated. Especially not on my blog. I mean who talks about masturbation on their blogs? Perverts, that’s who. So I definitely did not say masturbated. But I digress.)

Gather round, Peoplleaneous, and watch as the the comedy horror unfolds.


All the World’s a Clock, and All the Office Workers Stand by in Shock: A Prophetic Glimpse into 2016

Brought to you by: Stephellaneous
Sponsored by: Miller Father Time

(Names changed to protect the innocent idiots.)

Act One: Shock and Awe

Kim in the Kitchen with Tea: Ohmygosh, y’all! Can you BELIEVE it’s January?
Jim in the Kitchen with Kim: I know, right? How did we get here?
Kim in the Kitchen with Tea: I wish I could tell ya! I just can’t believe it’s a whole ‘nother year!

Tim Passing through the Kitchen with Kim and Jim: I don’t think I’ll ever get used to writing 2016, instead of 2015. *grumbles*

Kim in the Kitchen with Tea and Jim and Tim: OH-HIIIII Stephanie! We were just saying how we can’t BELIEVE it’s January! Can you BELIEVE?
Stephanie in the Kitchen with Side-Eye: WHAT?!?! No way, man! Seems like this happened last year, too!!

*Uncomfortable laughter and mild confusion*

Stephanie, Glutton for Punishment that she is, Keeps Going: I mean, seriously! I’ve already been through 35 Januaries! I don’t understand how this keeps happening!

*Like cockroaches, the idiots scatter.*

Stephanie calls after them: Wait! We haven’t even discussed the fact that it’s Monday! Again! What is the deal with Mondays?

Act Two: The Lemmings Accept Defeat

Yvonne in the john: *sighs*
Gloria, the Perpetual Grump: What’s your problem?
Yvonne: It’s already April. Can you BELIEVE it’s already April?
Grumpy Gloria: Yeah, I can believe it. But you think you’ve got it bad? I hate Aprils. It’s just my luck it’s April.
Yvonne: Hm, now that you mention it, Aprils are kinda gloomy with all that rain.
Grumpy Gloria: Story of my life. As if I wasn’t suffering enough.

April Showers

Act Three: Mass Confusion and Fear

Tony the Brony: Son of a…biscuit!
Betsy the Bewildered: Huh? What happened? What’s wrong? Are you mad at me? Is it raining? Is there any fresh coffee?
Tony the Brony, looking like a deer in headlights: No, wife just texted. Kids get outta school in two weeks.
Betsy the Bewildered: Oh. I don’t understand. Can’t you just put them in summer school or something? Also, you have kids??
Tony the Brony: I don’t know what I’m gonna do! I don’t understand how the school year flies by so fast like it does every fucking year in the history of ever!

Stephanie pours fuel on the fire: Yeah, and it’s gonna be sooooo hot. You know. Because summer. And they’ll want to be inside. All the time.
Tony the Brony: They’re going to eat me alive! I can’t handle this! Hashtag OMG! Hashtag FML! Hashtag I can’t even!
Stephanie the Asshole: Well, there’s always crack.
Tony the Brony: *blinks*
Stephanie: Get them hooked on crack. That way they’ll rob you once instead of slowly milking you for the rest of your life. Then they’ll move on to the street corner and live outside. Problem solved. You won’t even have to feed them.

Tony the Brony: *lays his head down on the desk and whispers* You’re evil.
Betsy the Bewildered: I don’t know what crack is, but that didn’t sound very nice.

I realize this isn’t an exact fit for the scenario presented, but it’s close enough. Besides, Tim doesn’t give a fuck.

Act Four: The Anticipation is Killing Them (but not fast enough)

Tony the Brony returns: Son of a…biscuit!
Betsy the Bewildered: Huh? What happened? What’s wrong? Are you mad at me? Is it raining? Is there any fresh coffee?
Tony the Brony, looking like a deer in headlights: No, wife just texted. Kids go back to school in two weeks.
Betsy the Bewildered: Oh. I don’t understand. Can’t you just home-school them or something? Also, you have kids??
Tony the Brony: I don’t know what I’m gonna do! I don’t understand how the summer flies by so fast like it does every fucking year in the history of ever! I can’t afford this!

Kim in the Kitchen with Tea: I’m so excited! And I just can’t fight it!
Tony the Brony: What’s up?
Kim in the Kitchen with Tea: The kids go back to school in two weeks! I won’t have to deal with them anymore! And then it’ll be fall! And cooler weather! And pumpkins! And spicy lattes! And! And! Hooray!
Tony the Brony: Hmm. Yeah, I won’t have to deal with mine anymore, either! Now they’re someone else’s problem! And also, here comes No Shave November! Yay!

Stephanie Swoops in to Save the Day: There’s always boarding school.

*two sets of eyes blink back at her*

Stephanie Saving the Day: That way you’d never have to deal with them again!

Act Five: D is for Denial and Doom

Whiny Wendy: I’m so depressed. I can’t believe the year is almost gone. It’s already November. How is it November? Where did it come from?
Virulent Vicky: Well at least you don’t have to six kids to buy presents for.

Stephanie tries to be reasonable: You don’t have to buy presents, you know.
*Stephanie is resoundingly ignored.*

Whiny Wendy: But I don’t understand how we got here. It will be 2017 before you know it. How does this happen? I haven’t even gotten used to writing 2016 yet. Hashtag FML.
Virulent Vicky: Well at least you don’t have in-laws and extended family descending upon your house for three weeks. Vultures, all of them. I hate them all. Hashtag FML.

Whiny Wendy: What am I gonna do? I didn’t keep my New Years’ Resolutions for this year! And now I have to make new ones!
Virulent Vicky: Oh who cares. I’ve got it way worse than you. Why does this shit keep happening to me? It’s like everyone is out to get me. It couldn’t possibly get any worse!

Stephanie tries once more: I hear ya. It’s tough living in Sudan.

*two sets of eyes blink back at her*

Whiny Wendy: What’s that supposed to mean? I don’t get it.
Virulent Vicky: It means she’s an asshole. Let’s go. I need to do a passive-aggressive post on Facebook about her and about how much it sucks to be forced to spend $2,000 on Christmas presents.

lucy peanuts
I dedicate this cartoon to all of the aforementioned assholes.

The End.