The Pugilists

(Photo by jfelias @ Morguefile )

The place was buzzing with an excitement that was palpable. The atmosphere was electric. An unceasing procession of premium cars regurgitating celebrities of all stripes and colours made for some dizzying viewing. The media was represented in full tilt and microphones were being thrust under both accommodating and angered noses at random. Fans and fanatics were buzzing around like a veritable horde of army ants, pushing, craning their necks, standing on their toes, all to catch a mere glimpse of their favourite persona.

Joanne sat across the happening luxury hotel, oblivious to the chaos and confusion punctuating the night. Nursing a dirty Martini, she clinked glasses with her husband Mervyn who was cradling his own drink, a Cherry Orange Old Fashioned.

“So, Anthony Joshua or Andy Ruiz?” asked Mervyn.

“Who cares”, Joanne answered. “There are better things in life than watching two grown- ups trying to change the dimensions of one another’s facial features.”

“You have a point” admitted Mervyn.

“At least we have the place to ourselves. This peace & quiet is a rarity. So let’s make the best use of it” said Joanne. “Cheers!”

“Cheers” replied Mervyn as they touched glasses yet again before downing their cocktails.

(Word Count: 199)

Written as part of Sunday Photo Fiction. Write a story of around 200 words based on the photo prompt given (above). Hosted by Donna McNicol . For more details visit HERE

To read more of the stories based on this week’s prompt, click HERE

 

 

Bridgital Nation: Solving Technology’s People Problem – N.Chandrasekaran & Roopa Purushothaman

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A book that is bold and enterprising in intention, but falling short of concrete suggestions for implementation, “Bridgital Nation” is a welcome addition to the works that attempt to lay a concrete path for solving problems concerning access to basic resources and means in India. The credentials of the authors make the work one to be taken seriously. While Mr. N Chandrasekaran is the Chairman of the Tata Group, one of the world’s best known multibillion dollar conglomerate, Ms. Roopa Purushothaman is the Chief Economist and Policy Advocate at Tata & Sons. Hence, a slew of references alluding to various social, economic, cultural and innovative initiatives undertaken by the Tata Group, within the book, does not strike the reader as surprising.

The basic premise permeating the pages in the book, is an exhortation by the authors to shed the notion of viewing problems as well as solutions through the reductionist binary lens of technology against jobs. Technology, according to the duo can and should be employed as a powerful tool to improve and embellish the functioning of various sectors such as the legal process, education and medical services.

The book begins with a bleak overview of the gap between supply and demand of even rudimentary essentials that is plaguing the population of India today. “For example, it will take a further 600,000 doctors and 2.5 million nurses, a million teachers, about 400,000 agricultural extension workers, and 1.7 million commercial vehicle drivers to meet India’s current needs. Despite the 30 million cases pending within India’s judicial system, the country has only three quarters of the judges it needs. There aren’t enough researchers, plumbers or welders either.” The quintessential issue, leading to this situation, is, according to the authors, two-pronged. First is an inability to bring women into the work force, and the second, a lack of a vibrant ecosystem that encourages and nurtures entrepreneurship. Consider this: “Nearly 120 million Indian women—more than double the entire population of South Korea—have at least a secondary education, but do not participate in the workforce. If even half of this group of women entered the workforce, in one stroke, the share of workers with at least a secondary education would jump from 33 per cent to 46 per cent—the equivalent of fifteen years’ worth of improvement. This alone could add 31 trillion ($440 billion) to India’s GDP.” In so far as the entrepreneurship landscape goes, the authors highlight the fact that the Indian business landscape although boasting a large number of micro businesses, predominantly encompasses self-employed individuals who are optimistically called ‘entrepreneurs’. “What they run are survival ventures, the only road available, the last throw of the dice. If they had a choice, many of these ‘entrepreneurs’ would probably opt for staid, unglamorous salaried jobs.”

The solution: “Bridging India of the numbers with India of the senses.” Enter process Bridgital.

Bridgital recongnises an urgent need to redefine the means that are necessary to deliver a service or solution, especially in a manner that prioritizes the challenges of those without access. Behind the Bridgital process, lies the attribute of digital technology.  A judicious and prudent combination of Digital technology and low-cost service delivery models can complement the skill and talent of workers. The Bridgital process, can, for example ensure both the safety and mobility of women thereby enhancing the existing workforce and more importantly bestowing upon women, their deserving share of both monetary rewards and more intangible considerations such as recognition and progress. According to the World Bank economist Girija Borker, ‘women’s willingness to pay for safety translates into a 20 per cent decline’ in the salaries they could have earned after graduating college. The Bridgital process, can, in addition, also lead to the establishment of a ‘21st Century Cutting Edge Care Economy.’

In the authors’ own words, for instance, childcare workers—whether attached to a care-centre or standalone—could be integrated into a cloud-based management system which allows them to do administrative tasks like reporting attendance, health and safety records, and also to undergo training. This would also enable real-time check-ins and scheduling, and offer a source of collaboration amongst parents. Moreover, individuals can also create a transferable professional history by adopting this platform-based approach, deepening their integration into the formal economy.”

The authors breeze through, at breakneck speed, some of the initiatives that are currently implemented, and are yielding results in the various spheres such as healthcare, as a result of a blend of human capabilities and technical knowhow.

The noble exploits of Nikhil Burman, a driver in Silchar, who by virtue of his selfless service, lends an extraordinary degree of credence to the usually maligned word, ‘middleman’ is worth recounting. Possessing no professional medical qualifications or training, Mr. Burman has redefined the concept of medical care in so far as a multitude of the poor and underprivileged are concerned. Parking his conveyance on the kerb of National Highway 37, he receives a stream of patients, mostly villagers who have made long and exacting treks just to meet him. Armed with a mobile, Mr. Burman then proceeds to make doctors’ appointments, arrange affordable lodgings, along with conveying honest expectations around cures, costs and timelines. This intrepid and tireless individual could be empowered to do much more, if he was equipped with the right type of technology.

A Tata Consultancy Services (“TCS”) pioneered venture in the domain of healthcare that is making waves in the district of Kolar, Karnataka is a case in point. Goaded into action by the then health Minister Mr. Ramesh, TCS converted an otherwise plaid sanatorium in Kolar into a Digital Nerve Centre. Local health workers popularly known as ASHAs, are provided iPads. Armed with these devices, ASHAs make house visits, talking to patients, recording their symptoms and updating their medical records. The data is uploaded onto a cloud server, thereby enabling doctors to deal with patients on a remote basis even. The necessity of and for proximity is thereby restricted to purely inevitable circumstances.

The book concludes by positing the potential for porting technology into diverse sectors of the society thereby harnessing the power of both intellectual and Information Technology capabilities. This process would usher in a new and vibrant India. Although not a teeth-to-tail handbook dealing with the measures that would make the Bridgital process meaningful, the only shortcoming of the book is a heavily macro-level and 30,000 feet exposition of both the nature and feasibility of the Bridgital process. Racing through the proposed solutions does not provide the requisite and appropriate degree of amplification that is otherwise necessary for identifying, evaluating and appreciating the cures for the social, economic, cultural and technological shortcomings ailing our nation.

Perhaps Bridgital Nation – 2 may alleviate this lacuna.

In Service Of The Republic – Vijay Kelkar & Ajay Shah

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In their thought provoking and densely technical book titled “In Service of the Republic”, former Finance Secretary to the Government of India, Vijay Kelkar, and Professor at National Institute of Public Finance and Policy in New Delhi, Ajay Shah track the trajectory of the Indian economy, alluding in particular to the ‘reversals’, which the country has suffered since 2011, following an exemplary growth spurt following liberalization. The authors also offer prescriptive structural and institutional measures to get the rails back on track.

A great portion of the book is devoted to explaining the functions of the state and an imperative need to instill implementable measures of checks and balances in a state’s working. According to the authors, “all state activities fall into two categories. In the first case, the state can use force to modify behaviour. A law can be enacted, that forbids a certain activity (e.g., killing, defamation or sedition) and threatens violators with punishment ranging from monetary penalties to imprisonment to death. In the second case, the state obtains tax revenues and spends this money in certain ways. But obtaining tax revenues is itself done through the threat of violence. The state demands that residents must pay certain taxes, and threatens us with monetary penalties or even prison time if these demands are not complied with. The big idea of liberal democracy is to limit state violence into a controlled, predictable and just form. In an ideal democracy, we consent to an ethical regime of coercion. When the checks and balances surrounding the state are imperfect, state violence can be applied in unjust ways.”

Terming economists in India to be ‘doctors without stethoscopes’, Mr. Kelkar and Mr. Shah identify the core reasons for public policy failures in the Indian economy. The authors expound that the quintessential reasons behind policy paralysis in India is a conflation of five key factors:

(1) The information constraint; (2) The knowledge constraint; (3) The resource constraint; (4) The administrative constraint; and (5) The voter rationality constraint.

The authors repeatedly stress upon the need for authentic, reliable and measureable data in order for meaningful conclusions to be drawn regarding the progress, or the lack of it, of the economy. This facet is an indispensable necessity especially while tackling issues of seminal importance. Prior to instituting and implementing any reform, the policy mavens need to ask the following questions:

  • What is the problem?
  • What is the underlying root cause?
  • What are the interventions which can make a difference?
  • When interventions were undertaken in the past did they deliver useful results?

Mr. Kelkar and Mr. Shah bemoan the lack of a systematic process leading to an absence of posing the aforementioned questions prior to the unleashing of a policy reform. The authors also highlight that many of the draconian and ante diluvian measures that reared their ugly heads during the license-permit-raj era even now continue to rule the roost, albeit in a diluted and disguised form. While the process of liberalization ushered in a new era of free market philosophy, and tempered the intervention of the state in the working of the economy, there still continues to exist a more than “light touch economic regulation” by the State leading to roadblocks and stumbling choke points.

The authors also cite the examples of demonetization and the Goods and Services Act as a classic case of ushering in a measure without analyzing the potential ramifications and outcomes.

A very interesting point made by the authors that makes a reader sit up and ponder is what they term ‘the under-supply of criticism,’ While it is universally recognized that dissent is the corner stone of any democracy, the authors argue that an absence of criticism or an under-supply of criticism in any society represents a market failure. Citing the example of Xu Zhangrun, a law professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing, the authors underscore how the absence of criticism impairs the functioning of a market. “In July 2018, Xu Zhangrun wrote a tough review of the hardline policies of Xi Jinping, the revival of communist orthodoxy and the adulatory propaganda surrounding Xi Jinping and the regime. Prof. Xu Zhangrun’ s essay has text such as: ‘People nationwide, including the entire bureaucratic elite, feel once more lost in uncertainty about the direction of the country and about their own personal security, and the rising anxiety has spread into a degree of panic throughout society.’ Such writing by intellectuals is the essence of building a civilized society, and imposes positive externalities upon the Chinese populace. However, Prof. Xu Zhangrun is alone in facing the attacks from the regime. He has been suspended, barred from teaching, investigated and barred from leaving the country. The externalities do not accrue to Xu Zhangrun, while the costs do. A few academics are courageous and speak up like this, but most would prefer silence.”

The authors, however come across as placing undue emphasis on Gross Domestic Product (“GDP”) as a barometer of progress. Readers may recall that as early as in February of 2008, when the world was racked by a financial recession of dangerous proportions, President Nicolas Sarkozy of France tasked Nobel Prize–winning economists Joseph Stiglitz and Amartya Sen, along with the distinguished French economist Jean Paul Fitoussi, to establish a commission of leading economists to study whether Gross Domestic Product (GDP)—the most widely used measure of economic activity—represented a reliable indicator of economic and social progress.

The Committee in a book titled “Mismeasuring Our Lives” provides a radical assessment or rather reassessment of the limits of GDP as a measurement of the well-being of societies. The authors propose a new slew of concepts ranging from sustainable measures of economic welfare, to measures of savings and wealth, to a “green GDP.” Even countries such as Bhutan have shifted emphasis from GDP to more deservingly alluring and logical measuring parameters such as Gross Happiness Index (“GHI”) to assess the holistic progress of the nation.

“In Service of the Republic” is an erudite work by two eminent economists, that makes for a necessary addition to anyone interested in embellishing the economic, political and social progress of India.

Blaze of Light – Marcus Brotherton

Brotherton

On the 1st of April, 1970, the People’s Army of Vietnam (“PAVN”) numbering around twenty thousand attacked a camp called Dak Seang which was established by the US Army and the Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) northwest of Kon Tum in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. More than two thousand enemy rounds rained down upon the camp in the form of 82 millimeter mortars and 122 millimeter rockets. The siege of Dak Seang lasted until the 8th of May 1970 and required a monumental effort on the part of the American land and air forces before the dust could settle. A mind numbing conflation of 2,829 fighter sorties, 154 gunship sorties, 114 bombing sorties and 164 aerial resupply sorties were employed during which a total of 2,922 Viet Cong perished.

Sergeant Gary Burnell Beikirch an Army Green Beret and a combat medic found himself in the eye of the storm during the attack of Dak Seang. Despite being grievously injured during the shelling, he displayed exemplary courage and unparalleled nobility in tending to the wounded before himself passing out overcome by fatigue and loss of blood. This singularly stupendous act of bravery earned Beikirch, he United States military’s highest decoration, the Medal of Honor.

In his inspiring new book, ‘Blaze of Light’, Marcus Brotherington chronicles the life of Beikirch as he struggles to overcome the demons of Vietnam relentlessly plaguing him. He also faces an insurmountable hurdle in the form of non-acceptance as his own countrymen look at him with disdain and heap scorn on him for having participated in the Vietnam War. Fleeing friends, and family and desperately trying to flee from the enemies within, Mr. Beikirch resorts to an assortment of ameliorating measures ranging from the sublime to the silly. From sampling Aldous Huxley’s famous mescaline to finding refuge in a cave nestled amongst a group of boulders named Dome Rock in the Appalachian Mountain Range, Mr. Beikirch desperately tries to win an inner battle which every passing day garners strength and threatens to sap the last vestiges of his energy. Finally, by a quirk of incredible coincidence and fate, Mr. Beikirch seeks refuge in the teachings of Christ and finds solace. As the final shards of self-doubts assailing him are given a permanent burial, Mr. Beikirch ascends to a plateau of acceptance and peace.

Mr. Brotherton does a stellar job in assiduously bringing to his reader the triumphs, travails and tribulations of Mr. Beikirch. As Mr. Brotherton points out, Mr. Beikirch’ s battles with life seems to have been decided preternaturally for him. Falling twenty feet, headfirst from an open window when he was just a toddler of eighteen months, Mr. Beikirch needed more than 100 stitches and multiple medical interventions before he could be plucked away, literally, from the jaws of death. Later on in his teens, Mr. Beikirch is overcome by a desire to emulate one of his closest friends Don Jacques, who enlists himself for the combat in Vietnam before unfortunately losing his life in the battlefield. Mr. Beikirch after an incredulously exacting bout of rigorous physical and mental training, earns his stripes as a Green Beret. He is posted to Vietnam where he works as a medic in the camp of Dak Seang. Mr. Brotherton describes in a brilliantly poignant manner, the deep relationship and bonds forged by Mr. Beikirch in the camp with the indigenous Montagnard people. Mercilessly hunted down, discriminated and brutalized by the North Vietnamese, the Montagnard tribe look to the American forces to lend them the much sought after protection from being completely annihilated. A fifteen-year-old teenager named Deo is assigned to be his body guard. Mr. Biekirch is particularly struck by an inscription found on a plaque above a door in Camp Dak Seang:

“To really live, you must almost die,

To those who fight for it, life has a meaning the protected will never know.”

This quote gets etched indelibly in the heart of Mr. Beikirch and the profundity of it imprinted in his thoughts, words and deeds. Unfortunately for Mr. Biekirch, the true meaning of the inscription on the plaque plays out in agonizing detail in front of his own eyes when the siege of Dak Seang begins. Deo, in an act of incomparable selflessness and indescribable courage, sacrifices his own life when, in trying to protect Mr. Beikirch from the perils of a mortar assault, flings himself on top of Mr. Biekirch. This incident leaves a massive scar on the conscience of Mr. Beikirch and he is racked by a sense of deep and painful sense of guilt.

Mr. Biekirch’ s list of injuries itself resembles a litany of woes right out of hell. After being shot at least three times, before being blown up and thrown through the air, Mr. Beikirch gets hit by shrapnel near his spine. Jagged metal finds refuge in his insides, while the intestines are ripped out and hang in clusters outside his body. Even in this seemingly irredeemable condition, Mr. Beikirch continues dragging himself to the fallen nearest to him and treating their injuries.

“A Blaze of Light” is the unparalleled biography of a gallant soldier who valued altruism more than achievement, who placed more faith and trust in magnanimity over money and whose currency was brotherhood, bonding and blessing. Mr. Brotherton does an exemplary job in bringing the story of this heroic individual to millions across the globe. For this Mr. Brotherton receives our wholehearted appreciation.

The Poor Man’s Caesar

A Monarch of all he surveyed, but now a wretched pauper seeking his soul

Majestic robes he found himself ensconced in were now tattered rags wrapped around a ghoul

Muttering to himself he wandered aimlessly as his unprotected soles drew streaks of blood

Oblivious to physical pain and totally deaf to what around him was being said.

“One reaps what one sows” said some crunching their faces in apparent disgust

“He was a good man” opined some, “until consumed by the lure of lust”;

But he himself felt strangely free

Having accepted his Hubris.

(Word Count: 94)

Courtesy of Sammi Cox Weekend Writing Prompt#136

Wafting Woman, Wistful Tree

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

There was stillness everywhere. Not a ripple could be seen as the vast expanse of water rested with a magnificent equipoise. Winter had stripped the trees of leaves making them mute sentinels. The aesthetically designed view point itself was empty with the benches placed inside patiently waiting for visitors who would never arrive.

The man and his wife who were wafting between windows were also exercises in utter stealth. Not only were they unseen, they were the very reason for the stillness. Since the time they were murdered in the watch tower 13 years ago, they were every visitor’s nemesis.

(Word Count: 100)

This story was written as part of the FRIDAY FICTIONEERS challenge, more about which may be found HERE

For more stories based on the above prompt, click HERE 

Civility

(Photo Credit: Crispina Kemp)

“Mama, what is p.r.e.s.e.r.v.a.t.i.o.n?” Victor asked Joanne trying hard to string all the letters in the word in a cohesive manner. Joanne looked down with a mixture of pride and undisguised love at her prodigious five-year-old. This was his first visit to the Museum of Natural History and he was drawn to the artifacts like an iron filing gravitating towards a magnet.

Joanne as the curator of the museum knew every nut and nail that was curated, restored, and preserved. Every single object ensconced within the reinforced double paneled glass cabinets was as dear to Joanne as was Victor himself.

“Preservation means to protect, my darling” said Joanne. “These are tools which were used by our forefathers 20,000 years ago to seek food, sew clothes and sleep within their houses.”

“Like Mummy and Papa protecting me and little Richard?” squealed Victor.

“Yes my love” whispered Joanne, brushing off a tear.

(Word Count: 150)

Written as part of the Crimson’s Creative Challenge #58 More details regarding this challenge may be found HERE.

A Man’s Head – Georges Simenon

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“When a bell somewhere rang twice, the prisoner was sitting on his bunk with his two large hands clasped about his folded knees. For the space of perhaps a minute he did not move, as if suspended in time; then with a sudden release of breath, he stretched his arms and legs and stood up in his cell, a huge man, ungainly, his head too big, his arms too long and his chest hollow.” Thus begins what must be one of the most enduring, endearing and indelible murder mysteries ever penned in the annals of fiction. “A Man’s Head” by the peerless Georges Simenon, has its brooding, introspecting, constantly pipe-smoking protagonist Detective Inspector Jules Maigret facing a challenge bearing a singularly peculiar disposition.

Joseph Heurtin, 27 is arrested and convicted of a gruesome double murder. Mrs. Henderson, a rich American widow and her French maid are found dead in their sprawling mansion under horrific circumstances. The murderer has resorted to stabbing each woman more than a dozen times. Tell-tale clues such as fingerprints, imprinted boot-marks all converge and lead to the detention of Heurtin. However, as the day of the impending execution of the prisoner nears, Inspector Maigret is racked by guilt and a gnawing conviction that Heurtin is either ‘insane or innocent’ but certainly not a murderer. A protracted degree of pleas, arguments and commitments later, an audacious plan is hatched by Maigret with the blessings of the examining Magistrate Monsieur Comeliau, to smuggle Heurtin from his cell. The expectation being, the ‘falsely’ accused criminal would either lead the Detective to the actual criminal or Maigret’s exercise would turn out to be one in misplaced confidence, in which case, Heurtin would be hauled in again and guillotined.

However, things take a nasty and dangerous turn when, after attacking a cop tailing him, with a soda siphon, Heurtin gives Maigret and company the slip and vanishes into the teeming, bustling and heaving mass of humanity in Paris. Further complications manifest themselves in the form of a Czech immigrant named Radek. Portraying a Bacchanalian attitude, Radek although looking like a tramp in his detestable appearance, possesses a razor sharp intelligence which could either improve or impair Maigret’s chances of getting at Heurtin. Then there is the Bohemian nephew of the murdered widow, William Crosby. Always in the company of his wife Madame Crosby or Edna, and his mistress, Edna Reichberg, a Swede, Bill Crosby further adds to the existing flies in Maigret’s metaphorical ointments.

Whether Maigret succeeds in collaring the killer? Or does he pay a hefty price for what ultimately would turn out to be a daft and indiscreet move in the form of protecting a murderous human being from deserved execution?

As with all other books in the Inspector Maigret series, “A Man’s Head” is an absolutely racy one-sitting read. Bewitching, mesmerizing and gripping, Simenon does not lose his reader’s attention even for a micro second. Every word, phrase and sentence is loaded with essence and is inextricably linked to the plot. The characters, littered across pages and chapters in a random scatter graph pattern all converge together in a crescendo at the end, thereby contributing to an explosive climax. But what strikes the reader most vividly is the powerful narration employed by this genius of an author. One of the most memorable cachet of Simenon is his ability to lend what must be the most uncannily appropriate description of each of his characters. In writing about Radek for example, Simenon hold forth: “The mop of red hair struck a note of international bohemian nonconformity, which was reinforced by a shirt with a very low one-piece collar, dark in colour and worn with no tie.” Or take the case of the ever agitated and troubled disposition of Monsieur Comeliau: “Monsieur Coméliau was at his most inflexible and vehement. Thin, excitable and tense, the examining magistrate was pacing up and down in his office. He spoke so loudly that remand prisoners who were waiting in the corridor to be seen must have overheard snatches of what he was saying.”

Simenon also excels in detailing out in exquisite detail the nefarious underbelly of Paris which regurgitates squalor and detritus. The relevance and contribution of the Seine along the length of which life and living sprouts in a kaleidoscopic variety, is also brought to the reader in full force. The barges and cafes, inns and bars that are heaving, throbbing and pulsating with the paradox of wastrels and wisdom provides a great insight into the dark side of one of the world’s most exotic and esoteric capitals. “And Maigret spent an hour after his own heart, snugly ensconced in a corner of the cab, whose windows were splashed with rain and misty from the warmth inside. He smoked incessantly, warmly wrapped in the enormous overcoat that had become a byword on the Quai des Orfevres. The suburbs of Paris glided by, then the October country. Sometimes a drab band of river came into view between the gables of houses and the bare trees.”

The boisterous story of the curmudgeon Maigret as he goes about his business is an absolute delight to sample. Brash, brusque and tolerating no nonsense, the man instills apprehension and fear even into his own colleagues, let alone the targets he pursues. But more than anything else he harbours an iron will to ensure that no one finds himself or herself on the wrong end of justice.

“A Man’s Head” – Georges Simenon at his wickedly best!

Singularity of Destruction

(Photo courtesy of Paul Howell (Mystery writer Betty Webb‘s husband)

The excitement was palpable. The atmosphere was electric. The VIGBYOR toads were living up to their reputation – and more. Clinging atop a specially designed ‘Creeper Drome’, this Bufonidae family was being photographed by a throng, when the latter was not gaping or gawking that is.  Artificial General Intelligence (“AGI”) had attained the apogee of its potential. Using seemingly esoteric concepts such as Deep Learning and Machine Learning, a consortium of Artificial Intelligence organisations led by Singularity Unbound had succeeded in not just genetically modifying but astonishingly, birthing a new and colourful species of toad.

A pioneering technique unimaginatively titled Design Instituted Engineering (“DIE”) was at the forefront of the cutting edge research behind the evolution of the idea creating the toads. However, the irony behind the nomenclature was completely lost on the egregious scientists striving to create an alternative strand of intelligence. The darting, lashing and flailing tongues thrust out by the multicolored toads at random elicited peals of laughter from the assembled children.

However, none observed that the tongues were being thrust out at precisely measurable intervals. Neither did the proud creators realise that the communication of their creation was but a euphemism for wanton destruction.

(Word Count: 198)

Written as part of Sunday Photo Fiction. Write a story of around 200 words based on the photo prompt given (above). Hosted by Donna McNicol . For more details visit HERE

To read more of the stories based on this week’s prompt, click HERE