For Your Consideration: Celebrity Sketches

13 Mar

Inspired by recent events, as well as the brilliant work of Brendan Adkins over at http://www.xorph.com/anacrusis, here is a collection of what I like to call sense sketches!

These are short pieces; some with narrative, some without, which all serve to evoke or express a certain feeling, emotion, setting, personality, idea, et cetera. They’re like literary doodles! In the ones you’re about to read, I take the persona of certain celebrities who are beloved or interesting to me, and stick ’em in an unusual situation. Some of them make sense, a lot of them don’t, but they’re all intended for fun.

Here’s the interesting part: each sketch is precisely 101 words long. The aforementioned Brendan Adkins, who provided the idea, described his reasons for doing this as follows: “because I want to get better at writing, and there’s exactly one way to do that”.

Now that is an idea I can get behind.

So, for your consideration, and with apologies to Mr. Adkins: Celebrity Sketches.

*

A gentle smile tugs at Jimmy Stewart’s face as he breaks cover and turns into the snow. His Winchester spits, four times, and he thumps back down behind the boulder.

“I, I think y’better head back. Y’don’t look so good,” he says, and Mr. T’s responding growl is so derisive that Jimmy Stewart laughs.

A thump as the ice-bear’s paw hits the snow. Jimmy Stewart tips up his hat and grimaces upward, and Mr. T’s eyes flint down at him. Automatic rifle, ursine mount, and boxing champ roar as one and leap forward. The snow cloud settles, and Jimmy Stewart grins.

*

Smoke hangs in rings and the naked lightbulb cuts through them. Three shadows around a table silently belch their smog until one breaks the silence.

“So what happens now?” says Bogie, impatient as always. “They’ll be along soon.”

“I think it’s safe to assume they’re already here.” Cary Grant’s voice is rising. “They’re coming for us next. What the hell are we supposed to do?”

The two look at the third. Brando’s eyes, impassive and haunted, narrow out at them from under the smoke. His teeth grin out from the gloom, and his chuckle is a blast of exhaust.

“Run.”

*

How did Harrison Ford master the bullwhip? There are many stories.

Some say the knowledge was always within him, waiting for adventure to crack his soul and set it free.

Some say it was within the whip itself, that its power glows into the hand that holds it; but these are fools.

Some say William Shatner taught him, in the docking bay on the way between galaxies. But could they have practiced, with a single weapon between them?

Some say he watched a lot of Westerns.

Some say he is no master, just a silly, overenthusiastic maverick.

But these are dead.

*

Jeff Goldblum’s fingers slide effortlessly over the keys. His singing voice is fair, but it’s when the music dies off and he stands next to the machine that Jeff Goldblum’s real talent emerges.

“Bree. That’s a beautiful name. I once dated a girl named Bree,” he is saying, as he smiles. “She was very lithe.”

His smile gets even wider now. “I, uh, I hope you’re the same way.” The gloves slide onto those perfect hands. “I like a girl who’s nice and, uh, nice and… flexible.

A klaxon sounds. As the cage descends, Jeff Goldblum is grinning.

“Good girl, Bree.”

*

Elizabeth Banks leads you into the tent, holding back the flap of the hippy fortress. “Don’t mind the smoke,” she laughs. She is so pretty.

“Have you met Seth?” A dark mass in a corner, half beanbag, half curly-headed man, nods at you. He offers a fatty, but you decline politely. You’re starting to feel light-headed. Is there any water?

“Not for miles, honey,” says Elizabeth Banks, her beaded earrings jangling. Her hand is on your chest, and her breath is close on your cheek. “Not for miles and miles.”

Then Zeppelin starts up, and you’re lost in time and space.

*

The fireworks are just starting over the dunes, and in the starlight Bill Nye can make out the camel’s silhouette galloping towards him. He puts down his telescope and salutes.

Colbert looks down at him, his suit pressed neatly, smelling of jasmine. “Found anything yet, Science Guy?” His sneer turns into a smile as he jumps, and Bill Nye embraces him tightly.

“This could be it. A real one! After all these years!” Nye is his usual excitable self.

Colbert’s smile fades. Bill Nye points skyward, and the pair look past the crackling colours, and at the plummeting ship in the distance.

*

Bullshit, thinks Keanu, as he lets out the clutch and listens to the roar.

There’s no way, thinks Keanu, as the exhaust plumes out and the dirt flies under his spinning wheel.

Why wouldn’t she tell me? thinks Keanu, as the wind whips his hair back, and the sun sets on the flatline horizon.

What, I’m to stupid to understand? Is that it? thinks Keanu, as the rumble softens, and he stops beside the smoking wreckage.

Good fucking riddance, thinks Keanu, as his boots knock the dust aside. His sunglasses are off, and a tear rolls down his cheek.

*

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