The pandemic has taken T-Rex Cafe from me on my birthday.
It was a fledgling, two-year-run of a tradition but I honestly don’t give a shit. And not because I was ‘just’ there earlier this year for a much-needed dino/LEGO-themed catch-up with an out-of-town friend.
This would have been the year that the T-Rex Cafe tradition evolved into the Dinosaur World tradition (DID YOU SEE WHAT I JUST DID THERE?!)—Dinosaur World is an extraordinarily out-of-place Florida attraction found in a corner of the Sunshine State that’s closer to Tampa than Orlando. The Plant City (actual city name) location is great, because it might just be far enough outside the bubble of the Plastic City (not the actual city name) that it wouldn’t be suffocated to death by His Holy Mousiness.
Her therapist keeps telling her to find a hobby. Her husband keeps telling her not to spend so much on the house renovation. To be fair, the useless wall standing between Karen and her open floor plan wasn't telling her anything, but it was definitely mocking her.
The sun melted into the horizon, sending cascades of deep oranges and purples and greens across a darkening sky. Max Nebula’s gaze shifted up from the setting sun to see alien stars just beginning to shimmer through the atmosphere.
It was the end of another day. A magnificent display of nature that held within it the promise of a new day to come.
It would have been a beautiful scene if not for the fact that the world he stood on was about to be winked out of existence by a massive phase induction bomb. This was particularly unfortunate because, as previously mentioned, Max Nebula was still standing on said planet.
“Hey, laser-brain!” The call came from Max’s on-again-off-again partner-in-sleuth, Luna Astroflux. “We could use a little help with this whole end-of-the-world crisis, if you’re not too busy with the naval gazing.”
I used to be able to do this. Ideas had always been there. Fingers would eagerly dance across a keyboard, weaving a tapestry of story—however long or short, it just HAPPENED.
I used to be able to do this. But now there's just so much noise.
Has it always been this noisy?
Has it always been this noisy and the older I get, the better I am at hearing?
To be fair, when I was younger, I didn't have three different social networks constantly refreshing. I didn't have four devices on my person begging for attention. I didn't have a measly five minute window to myself for "personal edification"—it was at least six minutes. Maybe even seven.
Regardless of the dwindling minutes, I want to course correct.
I want my ideas back.
I want my fingers to dance again.
But there's just so much damn noise.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jordan Krumbine is a professional video editor, digital artist, and creative wizard currently quarantined in Kissimmee, Florida. When not producing content for the likes of Visit Orlando, Orlando Sentinel, or AAA National, Jordan is probably yelling at a stubbornly defective Macbook keyboard, tracking creative projects in Trello, and animating quirky videos with LEGO and other various toys.
Jared Wurston had been waiting for this week all year.
It was Christmastime, which meant two-thirds of the office was out on vacation and the remaining workforce was unobtrusive and blissfully quiet.
In his six years at Vector Corp, Jared had endured six agonizingly banal Christmas parties full of, from his perspective, fake joy and forced merriment. As frustrating as the parties were, it was all worth it when the majority of the building’s workers disappeared a week or so later. It was at this time that Jared was gifted with the only thing he ever wanted for Christmas: quiet.
Quiet from the insufferable buzz of social pleasantries that added up to meaningless drivel. Quiet from the incessant blather about pointless reality TV that leaked from over the cubicle walls.
Quiet from the clueless management whose only discernable purpose seemed to be that of making Jared’s job more difficult.
Most people planned trips and visited family for the holidays. Jared Wurston stayed home and pretended the world didn’t exist.