Why a magnet?

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The broken radio lay discarded on the junk heap. Its still-shiny chrome and black plastic casing stood out against the dark red of the rusted anvils and old machinery. It was strange to see it there instead of on its customary place on the dresser.

We grabbed it,  and began twisting the dials, raising the antenna and pushing it back down, pressing buttons. But nothing happened. The radio was truly broken. Then one of the speakers came loose, giving a glimpse at the inner workings of the device. My brother began to pry it open further. I was the hesitant ninny. I knew how vital the radio was to everyday life, how valuable electrical goods were. But my brother said they didn’t need it, wasn’t the replacement in there in the kitchen already?

I was curious too to see inside the radio, so my protests didn’’t last long. I wanted to know how this little box brought us music from America and beyond, and let us attend sports events taking place a hundred miles away.

But when I saw the magnet in the centre of the speaker, I was stumped. What could it possibly have to do with radio broadcasting? A magnet was a magical thing of itself to us children, our concept of it highly influenced by cartoons, where the bad guy was lifted up and held tight by a massive red and silver U-shaped specimen, betrayed by his belt buckle. But I knew this black circle that looked like a piece of rubber was a magnet, because it looked exactly like the fragments we’d played with before. They must also have come from obsolete radios, taken apart by either someone curious or someone thrifty. And knowing my dad, I’m going with curious.

My brother and I split the magnet in two. I took my half into school, and it was a sensation for a day.

Thirty years later, I listen to music and radio programmes on my laptop. I can’t even see the speakers, and have no idea if they need magnets or not. But the excitement and wonder of that afternoon pulling a radio apart is as fond a memory of a time gone past as the sound of crackling voices coming over the airwaves as a station bursts out of the white noise and into life. Beat that, iTunes podcasts.

 

Inspired by Daily Prompt: Magnet

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‘Aisha’ – Death in Vegas

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Daily Prompt: What’s the first line of the last song you listened to (on the radio, on your music player, or anywhere else)? Use it as the first sentence of your post.

Aisha, we only just met but I think you ought to know: I’m a murderer.

It started off so simply: my neighbour had a really irritating laugh, and sat outside on his terrace every evening, constantly braying his moronic chuckle. One night, I was really irritated by him so started chucking peanuts out the window at his head, but missed. The nuts fell in his glass of beer, or his food maybe; he swallowed them somehow. I didn’t know he was allergic to nuts, but it seems I didn’t really care. Because as he choked to death on his porch and his housemates ran around in a panic, screaming and crying, I sat in my room, calming watching and eating the rest of the murder weapon. The silence from that house is now blissful.

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Hungry for it

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The office was quiet. The morning was easing itself towards daytime and people were getting into a nice rhythm of work. Sara was cutting swathes through her tasks and sipping on her coffee when she realized she was beginning to feel a bit peckish. She had already eaten the snack she had brought with her to stave off exactly this situation, but obviously it hadn’t worked.

She looked at the digital clock in the corner of her computer screen. It was just over an hour to lunch, so she should be able to last it out. She continued with her work and sipping on her coffee. Maybe that would fool her stomach into feeling full.

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Wax on, wax off

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O. M. G.  It is sooo totally waxing that I hate the most about my job. I did beauty therapy because I wanted to play with make-up all day, but I got landed with doing ALL the waxing in this place. It is, like, totes ridic at this stage, roight? I’ve asked Candide when I will be able to do facials, or at least spray tans, but she still has me doing waxes.

The bikini ones are the worst. It never, like, occurred to me that I would basically see more vaginas in a day than, like, Tiger Woods. But at least I know I’m defo not a lesbo. Some of them look so, like, weird, with big lips or strange colours or out of shape. Not what you see on porn videos at all. But then you’re basically pulling out people’s pubes all day long. Some people aren’t so bad, if they are regular waxers. But the people that decide to try it out or want to put on a swimsuit after the winter? Like, OMG, sometimes it’s a total forest. How can men put their faces in there?  And some of the women are so old, like, in their forties, maybe. Why do they even bother? Who would even want to look at them there at that age?

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Let’s dance

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“Let’s dance!” Two words that are guaranteed to send slivers of ice shuddering down my spine. They are usually shouted by an extrovert with a look of glee in there eyes that shall forever more remain alien to me. I lock a rictus grin on my face and follow the group onto the dancefloor, praying for it to be so crowded there won’t be much space to move. Then follows an hour of mindnumbingly repetitive movements of the body, which I pretend are inspired by the awful music blaring from the speakers. Sometimes, I can manage to send myself into a numb trance through these movements. This helps to make the time pass quicker.

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Bottle it up

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Today’s Daily Prompt:

I’m at the beach, lounging on your towel, when a glistening object at the water’s edge catches my eye. It’s a bottle – and yes, it contains a message…

Imagine my horror when I realize it’s from my mother! How could she have arranged this? I didn’t tell her what resort I was going to, and I only decided to come to this beach this morning. Is she here, or is she spying on me somehow?

I should have just torn up the piece of paper, but I was unable to steer myself away from the inevitable onslaught of guilt and disparagement.

“Hello, dearest”, the note read. “I’ll bet you’re surprised to see this! Did you really think there is any place on this planet that would conceal you from your mother? Foolish girl!

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The Flu Gremlins

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The squadron of Flu Gremlins lay in wait, watching as their intended victim got into bed and settled down to sleep. It wasn’t long before she was dozing peacefully, her blankets tucked under her chin.

The gremlins hopped onto the pillow and faced their mission. The prospect of another night of pillage and mayhem had them psyched up. Their eyes were shining and some of them had tongues protruding from between their sharp, long fangs.

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