All Flash No Pan Fiction
“All Flash No Pan Fiction”
by Leigh Binder is his fifth book and second compilation of flash fiction. Filled with all the dead-end losers and anti-heroes that fill the pages of prior work, “All Flash” has a crisper voice that leads you through epiphanal moments that last forever, one thousand words at a time
Nothing To It
JIMMY BLAINE didn’t feel like doing anything– nothing, zip, nada….done with any and all chores and jobs, anything that would take him from the couch. The bag of weed, the bottles of booze, the syringe filled with his joy, the jobs that supplied his habits; nothing mattered.
He sat on the couch and refused to move. He didn’t answer the phone or open his emails. The far wall spoke to him in intricate patterns of plaster and faded paint. He studied it with the intent of a master artist but was not moved or inspired in any way. He didn’t care.
Friends came by and forced him to eat and drink water. He obliged but found no flavor or sustenance. He only participated because his friends insisted. The landlord finally kicked him out of his apartment with a look of despair and curiosity. Jimmy walked across the street to the park and sat down under a big shady tree. He didn’t move. After a couple of days the cops came by and asked Jimmy to leave, but he refused. When he was asked what his problem was, he replied, “There’s nothing to do.”
The cops informed him that this was unacceptable and took him to jail for loitering and being a public nuisance; for offending the public at large. No one wanted to see a man doing nothing; it was disturbing. He didn’t resist and sat in a jail cell for three days staring at a stain on the wall that looked like Thomas Jefferson. He couldn’t be bothered with eating.
Jimmy was transferred to the state mental facility where he was given a series of tests, asked numerous questions, had his serotonin levels checked and given a bed to sleep in which he never left unless forced to. At the end of one month, the doctors could find nothing wrong with him. Jimmy just didn’t want to do anything. It was strange behavior but budget cutbacks forced the hospital to release him because he was only a threat to himself.
The next day Jimmy was back at the park sitting under the same tree. The cops knew arresting him was pointless so they left him alone. A reporter for the local paper had found out about Jimmy’s arrest and went to interview him in the park. Jimmy told the reporter what he had told everybody else: “There’s nothing to do.”
Several college students came to visit Jimmy and bring him food. He sat there day and night explaining there was nothing to do, so why pretend? What started as a group turned into a crowd. The park was filled with people doing nothing and making no excuses for it. The city council became worried. They couldn’t have hundreds of people doing nothing. The crowd spilled into the streets and into the neighborhoods. No one did a thing. It became a movement.
A movement doing nothing?
Jimmy was given a TV show where he sat on a couch and did nothing twenty four hours a day. Millions of people tuned in to watch and do nothing with him. One day a man wearing a blue suit, white shirt, red tie, suspicious sunglasses and a very official looking ID walked into the television studio. He told the security guard he was an emissary of the President. The security guard bowed and let him through. The man in the blue suit walked up to Jimmy and put the barrel of the gun to his temple and squeezed the trigger. Jimmy was murdered in front of millions of people all doing nothing in front of their televisions.
The next day, everyone went back to work.