Yarn Over

This is my idea for the digital storytelling part of #etmooc. It’s a story I wrote in 20 minutes to go with an installation in a gallery near where I live. A murder scene in fact.

Usually, I’d do something more personal, detailing aspects of my life, or self, but this might make me experiment and push boundaries a little more. It’s also an original piece by me, and Creative Commonsing it allows me to give a small little bit back to the community (though the community may not in fact actually want it…)


I’m planning – if I have time – to maybe do something with Popcorn and it.

It’s Creative Commons Licensed, which will allow anyone to reproduce, or alter it, for non commercial use, as long as it’s attributed to me, Keith Brennan, and whatever is produced is Creative Commons, and maintains the conditions of my licence ( reproduceable, alterable, for non commercial purposes, and is attributed).

If you do anything with it (and you are welcome to) please mention it to me – you can catch me at this blog, or on twitter, @wiltwhatman.

Read, enjoy, and (in the unlikely event you want to do something with it) copy, redistribute, and pull it apart.

Yarn Over.

I first met the man called Dixie Marsh seven days ago in a grubby little office in a high rise in Brooklyn. It was my grubby little office. I’m a grubby little kind of guy. I wish I had stayed in my grubby little office thinking grubby little thoughts.

Dixie was wearing two-tone spats, a shit-eating grin, and an expensive sharkskin suit that made him look cheap. He was made of mainly muscle, and hair he got from looking at a magazine.

He didn’t have much smarts. He didn’t think he needed them. He was clever like that.

He was handsome. Cute. In the way that people who think being cute is just about the most important thing in the world. He was a man who would wear make-up when he was forty and clothes that were ten years too young for him, and hair dye and the same shit-eating smile just so he could show you how cute you should think he still was.

Except he wouldn’t be thinking anything anymore. He hadn’t had the smarts to make it to forty.

But that comes later.

I met Dixiein the company of a tall brunette who looked like she looked like she owned things. A lot of things. She had jade green eyes, a Brooklyn accent you could break a jewellery shop window with and legs that could floor a prize-fighter. The rest of her could start and finish a dozen bar-room brawls.  The Queen of Sheeba may have had more pearls. But they weren’t as big as the ones wrapped around her neck.

She had the kind of class you could buy, and it looked just fine to me, and the kind of taste people you paid for someone else to have for you and a fat wad of dough that spoke louder than anyone else in the room when she took it out and gave it a confortable seat across my desk from where I stood. I looked at the wad of dough. It looked at me. It was a beautiful moment. I flapped my gums a bit to pretend I was still in charge. The muscle tried to push me around some to show me who was boss, but I was listening too closely to the roll of dough to pay too much attention. I sat down so I could be comfortable while he pushed me around some more. I sat down so I could listen to what the roll of dough was telling me. I sat down because the legs might floor me.

She had lost some emerald doohickey she said. Or doodad. Or maybe it was a whatyamacallit. The exact words didn’t seem to matter exactly, less than that she was saying them to me. She crossed her legs and had me light a cigarette for her. I was in a cold sweat. I guess I didn’t have enough smarts either.

She told me to meet her here, in this room, in a back alley under the L.

I could tell Dixie was dead not from the shit-eating smile which he still had, or the perfect teeth that caught the light like greasy pearls.  I knew he was dead from the way he didn’t try to push me around the second I walked in the door. From the small hole in the side of his head. From the way he didn’t get up when I said “Hello Dixie”. But mainly I knew from the way most of his blood was now beside and outside his body painting the wooden floor like one of those Modern French paintings the Upper West Side crowd go wild for.

I had found her doohickey the day before. It was sitting right in the pocket of my suit. There were sirens in the background. There was the sound of heavy feet coming up the stairs. There was my gun on the floor soaking up some of the Dixie’s ruby paint. The cops who arrived looked like they were owned by someone who owned things and like hat was just dandy with them.

It was a tight spot. But I’ve been in tighter.

Filed under: MOOC projects and personal homework Tagged: Creative Commons, digital storytelling, Dixie Marsh, maguffin, Yarn Over