Progressive Alternative Writing Exercises: “Billy Pilgrim Has Come Unstuck in Time…”

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The second hand of the analog clock has gone backwards for the last fifteen minutes; time is going in reverse. And for Lou Turner, this means he is finally going completely insane.

Bored, exhausted, and ready for happy hour, Turner swiveled in his office chair as he stared out the window. The sun was already setting and it was only just before five in the evening. Turner shook his head in disgust of the approaching autumn season. The thing is, he did not mind autumn that much, but the winter that proceeds the season of browns and reds has always troubled him. With a sun that sets before the office day has ended it has been a cause of depression and low morale for many.
Turner eased back into his office chair as the supervisor chances by. For a split moment it caused Turner to glance at his analog clock, and in that instance he watched the minute hand skip backwards. Of course his weary eyes played a trick on him because clocks did not go in reverse. So, he ignored it and began a game of solitaire. Only two minutes left in the work day, he thought to himself.
Quickly he completed a hand and then glanced back to the clock. Turner was excited because the day would end in four minutes. Wait, he thought, four minutes? A moment ago it was two minutes. He stared at the clock waiting. Tick tock, back went the minute hand. “Hey Pete, what time do you have?” Turner called over the cubicle barrier, a little disturbed by the obviously malfunctioning time piece.
Pete confirmed that it was five minutes to five in the evening. Strangely though, Pete had added, “And please stop asking me, I am busy. Get a watch or something.”
Ok, maybe I am real tired, Turner said to himself in hopes of an explanation. He was not sure why Pete responded so aggressively, or why Pete claimed that he had asked before. But that was the least of his worries. Seeing things during extreme drowsiness is normal, he assured himself.
He watched for the next three minutes as each munute ticked away, in reverse!
“What time you got now Pete?”
“Let’s see, just a few minutes pass the last time you asked, so about eight to five.”
“What?!” Turner jumped from his seat. “You just told me me five to five about three minutes ago.”
Pete shook his head, “no I didn’t. That would have been a lie.”
Pete wore a worried expression and Turner decided to let it drop.
Four minutes later, four ticks backward, Pete replied to Turner that it was twelve to five in the evening. “Bull hockey dude. I just asked, and just as this stupid clock goes backward, you keep giving the dang time that has already passed.”
“That sounds real disturbing man, plus, I only answered you just now because you have not asked me for the time all day.”
Turner looked around at coworkers going about their daily routine, unaware that time was seemingly going in reverse.
“You sure it’s a quarter til Pete?” Pete nodded. Turner looked down to his clock: fifteen minutes left in the work day.
“Aahhhh! No way!” Turner jumped from his seat and began pacing. He muttered to himself. It was such a spectacle to see.
Pete did his best from laughing aloud. As Turner slowly lost grip with reality, Pete typed an email to the team:
He is totally freaking out. He must really think he is losing it. LOL.
Okay, just remember everyone, to play along if he asks the time. For our good friend here, it is now twenty to five. The overtime pay will be worth this prank.
-Pete Wazki
p.s.
Thank you Lorrence for rigging that clock!

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