Sunday, December 27, 2015

Weekly Prompt Story: New Years' Resolutions

My New Year’s Resolution
By Christopher Munroe

In the new year, I’m going to like me.

I’ll look upon myself, upon my works, and strive to honestly like what I see, to take pride in those aspects of myself that I deserve pride in, to see those aspects clearly, rather than depending on the validation of others.

I’ll self-validate, because I’ll know my own approval is the only approval I’ve ever needed. And, in doing so, I’ll finally allow myself to be happy.

Obviously, this won’t happen. My self-loathing is far too internalized by this point.

Still, I will try.

Or at least: I’ll try to try…

Thursday, December 24, 2015


Admittedly, a Degrassi reunion would not be possible without Drake, and Drake will be difficult to get at this stage in his career.

However, for the purpose of my pitch we have him, and as such, let’s make him the star, yes?


Now, I’m not kidding myself that we have access to an international hip-hop superstar for any sort of long-term project, so we will have to make this a one off, two hour TV movie rather than any sort of ongoing program. Which is fine, that’s about how long television reunions ought to be anyway, so that’s something we can work with.

Original cast, then, for two hours, once.

Christmas special?

Christmas special.

So Jimmy Brooks, after one personal tragedy or another, is finally pushed past the point that he can bear, and decides to take his own life, only to be interrupted at the last moment by an angel that takes him by the hand and wheels him through a version of Degrassi that would have been had he not been there. Through this narrative device he learns how his presence has changed his classmates, his friends, the lives he’s touched and the impact he’s had upon the lives of others. This leads him to an epiphany that life, all life, is valuable, even if you may in the moment think that it is not.

I’m aware that this is derivative, but I don’t think that it matters. TV reunions aren’t about depth or breadth, they aren’t about new ideas being presented, and they never have been.

They’re the television equivalent of comfort food, and I think that a celebrity we know and like playing the character that we first met him playing, weeping as he realizes that yes, life is out there and worth living, would be very comforting indeed. I think the program could be a huge success…

Even if it is just blatantly thieving from It’s a Wonderful Life.

It would be a heartwarming moment, and heartwarming moments are what Christmas specials are all about. We’d laugh, we’d cry, it would become a part of us, and in the end we’d smile along as church-bells chimed in the background and some plucky orphan quoted Drake the signature line of the piece, as though we’d known from the start that it was coming. Because it was the natural end, the only possible end, that the story could have…

I know when that hotline bling, and angel gets its wings.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Weekly Prompt Story: Drop

Drop It
By Christopher Munroe

“Drop it like it’s Hot” is an amazing early 2000s club jam, quite possibly Snoop Dogg’s finest moment.

It is, however, horrible advice if you work at a resaurant. The food is always going to be hot and in spite of that it does need to be carried to the table safely.

Dropping things simply because they are hot means re-cooks, angry guests and wasted food. Frankly, in spite of how amazing we all agree Snoop D-o-double-g is, we cannot afford to be following his example.

It wouldn’t be economically viable.

In summery: Snoop Dogg is awesome, and you’re fired.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

My Thoughts on Star Wars (Part 2)

To those of you flipping out about Star Wars: The Force Unleashed spoilers:

A young person, living on a desert planet, who wants a simple life is contacted by a droid who brings with it the call to adventure. She follows that droid, who leads her to an older character, who in turn tells her of the force.

Then, the young person, older character, droid and probably some kind of rogue/fugitive that they meet along the way go on a galaxy spanning mission, trying to stop a black armored sith lord and highly ranked imperial officer from, and I’d actually happily bet you a beer on this, building a Death Star.

X-Wings and Tie Fighters, or their modern equivalent, dogfight and, in the end, using the force, the young person will carry the day and the Death Star will be destroyed, ensuring the safety of the galaxy.

But for how long?

These films aren’t complicated, is what I’m saying. Enjoy them for what they are, but try not to worry about spoilers, because you’ve known what was going to happen, beat by beat, in this movie before J.J. Abrams even finished shooting.

Search your heart: You know this to be true.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Weekly Prompt Story: Box

On Subscription Boxes
By Christopher Munroe

I want a subscription box that, every month, sends me a box from another, different subscription box service.

The box will arrive, and I won’t know until I open it what I’m receiving. One month could be beef jerky, the next X-Men merchandise, there’d be no way of predicting.

The contents, after all, aren’t why I enjoy subscription boxes. It’s the surprise, the anticipation as I tear open my monthly treat.

And, without any clue what’s in the box, it’d be all the more surprising.

That said, knowing my luck, my first box would wind up containing Gwynith Paltrow’s head…

Friday, December 11, 2015

My Thoughts on Star Wars

As some of you may already know, a new Star Wars movie will be opening shortly.

It’s a popular science-fiction/fantasy franchise from the late 70s/early 80s, but that’s not important right now.

What’s important is the degree to which the film has, by all accounts, respected the aesthetic of its predecessors, to the degree that it’s even gone out of its way to reunite much of the original cast. The news that this had happened pleased fans of the original series of films greatly.

You see, a prequel trilogy was released in the early 2000s that a portion of the fan-base believed did not do the franchise justice, and the appearance of the original cast in this new film has been taken as a sign that… you know what? Not important, you don’t need to know this much back story for my point to be made. Plus, really, if you’re not familiar with the basics of Star Wars you’ll probably have stopped reading by this point.

Also; If you’re not familiar with the basics of Star Wars how have you managed that? It’s pretty basic cultural information, isn’t it?

My point is simply this: The original cast of the film, thirty-five years older than they were during the series’ heyday, will be appearing, to greater or lesser degrees, alongside the younger cast who will be carrying the franchise forward. Presumably some portion of this new, younger cast, will be the biological offspring of the characters of the original films.

Potentially Luke Skywalker, the principal hero of the original Star Wars Trilogy, will have a child amongst the new cast. Which would mean that that child would have a mother, because that is how biology works. THIS would mean that, presumably, there was at some point a romance between Mr. Skywalker and some heretofore-unknown female character, who he would have to have, at some point between the end of Return of the Jedi and the events of The Force Awakens, met, loved and had a child with.

He would not have to have loved her, from a biological perspective, that is not a requirement to father a child. However, from a narrative perspective it would be better if he had.

Who would this character be? What happened between them? And, perhaps most importantly, how did they meet?

I don’t know how this piece of back-story will be handled, until the film is actually released none of us do, but I DO have a preference, and it is this:

I want for Luke Skywalker to have been introduced to the mother of his child by Wedge Antilles, who flew by Luke’s side at the Battle of Yavin and later over Endor, and who later founded Rogue Squadron with him. I feel that it is, knowing what we know of the character, only right and proper that he be the one to have fixed Luke up with the mother of any children he might have.

After all, as we all recall from the original films: Wedge is, above all else, an excellent wingman…

Thursday, December 3, 2015

...on paintball.

New idea for a business: Let’s open a paintball range.

Now; I know paintball ranges already exist, paintball ranges built within warehouses, paintball ranges out in the woods, paintball ranges for every occasion, in every style, for every theme, and with this in mind you might think that opening a paintball range would not qualify as a “New” idea.

I assure you, nothing could be further from the truth. This is a very new idea, because MY paintball range will offer a service no other range will offer.

What service is that? Why, it’s so simple that when I tell you you’ll be shocked that nobody’s thought to do this already…

You see, my paintball range will offer, in addition to many the enjoyable afternoon of paintball that we’ve all come to expect from such a place, a special, private session for two, in which you and a friend, or indeed a rival, can participate in a very special form of conflict resolution.

The room will be smaller than the regular course, of course, and a gun and one paintball will be provided each complainant. The grievance will be heard and one last opportunity given for either party to back down, to abandon his or her claim, to admit the other right that conflict might yet be averted.

And then, assuming neither party chooses to do so, ten paces, turn and fire.

There’s an old-schooliness to settling disputes with pistols at dawn whose appeal is undeniable, even if in this modern age murdering somebody just to win an argument is frowned upon, and I feel like paintball would be a good, legal, nonlethal way to bring back some of the magic of a bygone era. You each take your shot, if one hits the other the argument’s settled, if not honor is at minimum defended and you go your separate ways, agreeing never to speak on the matter over which you fought ever again. It wouldn’t be the sort of solution everyone would be drawn to, or the sort you’d apply to every problem, but I think enough people would take us up on the offered service that it would be a proven success for us.

At minimum it would be a great opportunity to slap the shit out of somebody with a glove.

So that’s my idea for a business, and I think you’ll agree it’s a good one. We’ll be providing a service no other paintball course provides, and it will be a service people genuinely want, though they may not know that they want it right now.

Business, as they say, will boom.

My excellent reasoning has convinced you of the worthiness of my plan, yes? You will approve my loan?

You won’t?

Sir, I’m deeply offended by the implications your refusal has regarding my ability to run a small business, and I assure you, this insult will not stand!

I shall meet you in front of this bank at dawn, and we shall settle this like men!