Short Stories and Writings

Sock Pelmanism

A Short fictional writing copyright Phil Musgrave.

This is a game you play when you're sorting out your socks. I got a match, I say to myself because there has been no one else in the room. I know you don't have one. A voice inside me says. This one does not have that line at the top. Maybe if I laid them all out on the bed. And turned on the top light I might be able to see better but this is usually an exercise performed early in the morning. when I have other bodily functions to attend to.

I don't drink coffee, but if I did, I might think, sometimes, to scratch my head deep in thought like Plato or Socrates Who everyone knows always had matching socks. It's an even more difficult choice In Winter Because you a big heavy boots on and you don't want your socks running into the toe. Then there's the fact I am Color Blind. I used to feel rather odd and out of place, riding the buses in the summer with two different coloured socks sometimes they weren't even the right match.

That was until I meant a beautiful young lady, a student on the bus. who was wearing two different coloured shoes. She said that her dad had taught this trick: you buy two different pairs of shoes That are different colours and then mix and match.


A writing: copyright Phil Musgrave.

The world is a better place because certain people live in it. Vicki is one of those people. Simple and straightforward.

My trust in Victoria was never misplaced. I met Vicki at The University Of Guelph on my second time around. Although I was already active on campus. I had decided to return to school. Vicki was my SAS counselor. She helped students in need of Special Assistants.

What was wrong.

I was born into this world a child with problems. I had a Movement disorder. I was color blind and. dislectsic It takes a very special parent to recognize and nourish a child with Special Needs. When a disable child has no advocate the problems are worse.

For the longest time doctors thought I could be treated with the right kind of psychotropic medication. If it could only be found.

There was inside me abnormal amounts of anxiety. That was from my background. Nothing a little love could not have put right at the beginning

Looking for a job and meaning in life was always a trial. No one wants a hand out. Working for nothing is not pleasant either. Ask anyone on covid 19 benifit.

What made it better.

It was late in my life that someone else had a positive effect that changed it for the better. Dr Mander S Jog and he prescribed a pill a primidone the effect was like a rebirth

Unfortunately for me it came too late in my life to help me get the kind of job I wanted.

Charlie Came Back as a Snail

A writing: copyright Phil Musgrave.

Veronica was reading aloud from her story to virtual class ”Charlie came back as a snail,” she repeated herself.

”What kind of a snail?” came a voice over the internet. ”Stop Interrupting her. ” It was the instructor. ”Now is this your writing assignment Veronica?”

”Yes Mam.”

”Then speak clearly, you can remove your mask.”

Veronica continues ”So Charlie knew he must have died, because this morning he was something different. Even a heavy night at the bar and some bedtime weed could not have this effect. He had no hands and a slimy foot. Who knows what this body was eating he could not look. Anyway his eyes seemed to be on stalks.”

”Whatever it was he was eating, It gave him gas, and plenty of it, enough to deplete the ozone layer.”

”Veronica is this the best you could do?” It was the instructor again, Miss Glitz. Semi famous for her short poems.

”Yes mam”.

”If you don’t bring this story out of the gutter, I will have someone else read.”

”let her finish.” said the voice on the internet.

Veronica continues ”A fly buzzed past, but Charlie was too busy climbing this strange green tree with his one sticky foot to notice the insect. Suddenly a noise in the grass, a long sticky tongue draws Charlie into the mouth of a cow

Charlie wakes in a sweat. ”Well thank goodness that wasn’t real.” Charlie thought If I had morphed to a wasp, I might have stung Miss Glitz .”

“Alright young lady, that's a detention for you. You are to report to virtual room 101 after school..”

We will remember you: Covid 19

A writing: copyright Phil Musgrave.

As we live through the next 6 weeks We will remember on the 11th month 11th day and the 11th hour Those who have gone before us fighting, Against an adversary, for the ideals of democracy or the survival of mankind. With the number of cases rising in this Pandemic. There are sure to be more people who die. To measure the effect one death can have on another human soul is not possible. These in this year 2020 those who have died of the plague covid 19 are depending on us to bring hope to the future. who is dying and why should we care. Think about the people in your life. Would you miss them if they died? Grandmother in the home would you care if she was in pain? As covid 19 progresses there will be three groups of people in the world, Those who have antibodies and are open to possible reinfection, those who have not been exposed, and the dead. Use this link to get Graphic view of the power of the Pandemic through history.

You might notice that HIV had a significant impact on our world more so than the present covid 19 so far. In Canada during the first wave of covid 81% of deaths were in care homes. This does not compare well with other other nations who restructured systems at the start of the pandemic.

So how does this thing affect the young an article in the Atlantic does shed some light on this, However reports of the news about White House staff donning gowns and Hazmat suits

And the CDC (constantly changing it’s story) now says the virus can test positive after infection for up to 30 days. Although it does seem like a comedy Covid 19 still hurts.

Coming home late in the evening in late September. The drive can involve encounters with these behemoths moving on two lane rule roads that don’t quite fit. You can even see them harvesting under the lights in the fields. It can take driving finesse and a little patients at times to negotiate an encounter. These are our hard working farmers Of Ontario.

Pumpkin Time

A writing: copyright Phil Musgrave.

They're bigger than a car even, an SUV, a Pickup or even a Semi truck trailer Combination, and some are even too wide to fit the traffic lane. A History of the tracker made its evolution into the centerpiece of farm life. Chicken Pig or beef. There are of course many other types of farms. The video next door shows the many chores the

tractors can do.

More Links


A short story: copyright Phil Musgrave.

Sometimes the feelings overwhelm me and I must admit I take it out on Margo. Margo is my bike, she is French, well, she thinks she is. I keep telling her she is made in America. She is big and red and her tires are sturdy.

“That's not French that’s Big strong American Know How” I say. She however constantly reminds me that she only has three speeds and does not do hills very well, Like any sophisticated young French Aristocratic Lady.

I would never think to tell her she is not young anymore. She just might refuse to speak to me. She can’t be seen outdoors without her hat and her bustle, two wire baskets both front and back.

I don’t want to talk out of school here, but she does have smooth curves, and a comfortable ride. What can I say, “she’s French”

The Three Best Teachers I ever had

A short story: copyright Phil Musgrave.

Some people say that life is a good teacher, the question is teacher of what. Life can sometimes dish out some very crude lessons. People are bundles of insecurity and sometimes refuse to accept a person with a disability as being their equal or “brother”.

At work and at school Judgment will be passed. “How can you say he needs a scribe for exams he does alright with the computer?” “If he is color blind then he should not be in art!” “He had a better mark than me but he has no friends.” “He is downgrading the academic value of the course.”

I have had these things said to me at times and I don’t care to remember. I struggled at school, it was not easy for me. So hard if fact that I sometimes wondered if there was a compassionate God in the universe. Why would a loving God give me so many burdens. I am and try to remain good, but like everyone I have my bad moments.

So the best teachers I ever had were three young men at University. They all taught me the same course, Studio Art.

The professor was a white Christian man who gave his weekly lecture in a small room referred to as the Cave.

His vocabulary was amazing. His understanding of teaching methods was exceptional. He knew all about motivation and the young student mind.

My TA for this course was a black man, with the kindest heart I have ever known. He shared many qualities of character with his professor. This man made me feel good about myself and tried to teach me how to succeed.

My last best teacher was someone I could call a friend

He was a TA too. A helper to me, you would say. He struggled too with Identity and relationships. He always had a ready smile. I was happy to call him friend.

Knowing these three was a wonderful humans was an experience, an enrichment of my life. I miss school and the good people I found there. The world has changed and again I am just me. A student of life.

The Artless Cow

A short story copyright Phil Musgrave.

This story begins with Joey, as he tries out his new Christmas gift. Joey has been given a set of fancy Headphones to go with a new cell phone. He can't wait to try them out. Joey's On The Bus, His New Wireless head earbuds in ears, all ready to rhumble. He wants to make it look like he is talking to himself. So he has hidden everything out of sight. He is talking to Ruth, a captive audience that he knows will engage in just about any conversation.

“Maybe cows were meant to art,”Joey says in a loud voice

“Maybe it is a natural function that reduces germs in the cow’s gut.”

“How can you say that? The unheard voice at the other end of the line.” This is not something Joey wanted. A one way conversation, that's what Joey wanted. Joey of course was wearing his dog mask for covid 19 that is in the hope of not getting it. Every time he talked it looked like the Dog pictured on his mask was barking. There is a cat sitting next to him. That is to say a lady in a cat mask socially distanced of course. She is reading a book to herself out loud, and there goes her mouth meow, down the bus a bit there is a man addressing a pole. He Grabs it and says “Science and Technology.” The pole says “I am a pole, I don’t often talk but you are holding me a little tight.” The bus says “Face coverings are now Mandatory.” Joey says “This my stop I will talk to you later Ruth.

In search of Moby Dick

A short story: copyright Phil Musgrave.

“How I spent my summer Holidays” is the name of a book by W.O, Mitchel, best read of a cold Canadian winter night. W. O. spoke of the time when a boy child has only a hint of his only future manhood, and can therefore spend his time digging out holes in the Canadian soil prairie for really no reason at all.

As a man grows older even with a family he still holds within him a desperate need to do things apart in the company of other men, fishing is one of those activities that men can do together alone.

My story starts slowly with a quiet coxing of curiosity and the urging of a friend. Yes I had been fishing before. I would happily relate to anyone within earshot. How I had caught my first pike on a ten dollar rod and reel set and a catfish too. On the same day. So this would satisfy any one who asks about my manhood regarding fishing.

Although it could have stayed that way watching local baseball was an outlet for that kind of spirit. It had been for years. I could sit for hours watching the light play on the field. Taking pictures and greeting old friends and eating ballpark hotdogs.

Then something changed, no more local baseball. What was to happen to my manhood? I thought of the time I had seen Tiger Woods play golf on the media and after making a great shot someone in the crowd screamed out “you're a man Tigar.” My golfing skills were non-existent.

Catch a pike yes yeah, hole in one no.

So off to fish we went, back to nature, what else could a man do in the summer of 2020. I had to reclaim my man hood somewhere. If it was to pull a fighting fish to shore and throw it back. My manhood would cry out for satisfaction.

It was a long journey no fish “what you catch?” He caught them all,. but I was patient and the Gods of nature were kind to my bruised ego. 16 sunfish and one on the first cast. Now I was hooked from that point on it was a fish every time. Most of them baby freshwater cod. The ugliest baby a mother could set eyes on.

So I remain in search of Moby dick.