I was just getting over a week long flu and I had finally mustered the strength to get my laptop to my bedroom and plug it in, in the hopes of squeezing out a few words as I convalesced. Unfortunately, whatever string of Ns and Hs had made up the particular virus that knocked me out seemed to have burned up any story ideas I might have had, because I was coming up with zilch. The blank screen stared at me accusingly; even projects that I had been outlining before I got sick seemed worthless, or I had forgotten what they were supposed to be about. Meanwhile, my cat had noticed the computer’s power cord running across the bed.

The first thing that happens when my cat sees anything long and dangly is, she starts chewing on it. Maybe to see if it’s a noodle; I don’t know. She won’t eat dry cat food but she will eat powdered donuts. Anyway, this thing she has with dangling objects means I constantly have to pull extension cords out of her mouth, which is always stupid, but somehow stupider when I’m sitting up in bed while I do it.

So there I was, propped up with pillows, my computer in my lap, my cat trying to electrocute herself, my mind utterly blank, when all of the sudden there’s an explosion at the apartment building next door.

I should mention that we’re pretty sure the apartment building next door is just a flophouse for meth heads.

Which is to say, an explosion over there couldn’t be considered as surprising as an explosion at, say, an elementary school, or a strip mall, or just a regular apartment building with tenants who pay their rent like citizens and don’t cook methamphetamines. But still, an explosion. More exciting than the flu. I went to the window to see if I could get a glimpse of anything – like the building burning, or… actually, I really just wanted to see if the building was burning. I sort of hoped it was.

It wasn’t. I could hear a couple of the meth heads arguing, but I couldn’t see them. No one was screaming, so presumably there hadn’t been any injuries either. I went back to bed.

And there was that blank screen again, a nineteen-inch screen of blank nothingness, reminding me of how I would never make it as a writer.

I wished that something interesting would happen, to inspire me.

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