A Cool Million

short story, flash fiction, The Devil, blogging, humor, Modern Philosopher“What do you want to talk about today?” The Devil asked enthusiastically as he handed me an ice cold bottle of Snapple out of the cooler.

As always, he was well dressed in an impeccably tailored suit that made him look like a rich executive, rather than a bartender passing out iced tea.

“I don’t really care,” I replied with a shrug.  “It’s been a long week and I’m exhausted.  I didn’t give any thought to today’s script, so if you have an idea, let’s give it a whirl.”

The disappointment was evident on Lucifer’s handsome face.  While I see Sunday as a day of rest and chance to escape my hectic work week, he views it as his day to unwind on Earth with his cool friend.

“I noticed that your blog is very close to one million views,” The Prince of Darkness finally pitched once he’d recovered from my lack of enthusiasm.  “That’s an amazing number.  You must be proud.”

“It’s cool I guess,” I answered like someone who was oblivious to the fact that his friend was trying to give him a compliment.

“Why don’t you remind us again how you came to start the blog,” Satan urged.

I stopped, mid-sip of my Snapple, to turn and give him a look.

To my surprise, my guest was now wearing headphones and thrust a microphone at me as he awaited my reply.

“What is going on with that?” I asked as I motioned towards his get up.

short story, flash fiction, The Devil, blogging, humor, Modern Philosopher“You said we could try my idea, and I’d like to conduct an interview with the creative force behind The Return of the Modern Philosopher, an insightful humor blog that’s about to reach one million views,” The Devil explained and shook the mic.

I rolled my eyes and sighed.

“I started the blog when Rachel left to go back to school,” I reminded him of the story he already knew by heart.  “Even though I pushed her to chase her dream, I was heart broken and missed her terribly.  Rachel insisted that I try blogging as a way to keep my mind off how upset I was.”

“And did you know right away that it was going to be a success?” was Lucifer’s follow up.

“Actually, I had no idea what I was doing,” I admitted and allowed a slight smile to creep across my face.  “Not only did I not know how a blog worked, but I also had no clue what to write.  The blog had no focus, no theme.  I’d stolen The Modern Philosopher from the title of an old screenplay, but he wasn’t an actual character in the script.  It was just a terrible mess, but Rachel made me promise to try, so I did it.”

“And the rest is history, folks,” The Prince of Darkness spoke to a camera and audience that wasn’t actually there.  “How did you eventually decide on a theme?”

short story, flash fiction, The Devil, blogging, humor, Modern PhilosopherI took a long sip of Snapple.  I really didn’t want to endure this interview, but when the guy asking the questions has a pitchfork, it’s hard to tell him to #$%^ off.

“I figured it would be fun to write about everyday life, but make it seem like Maine was populated by the kind of characters you’d find in a Stephen King novel,” I finally told my annoying interviewer.  “I came up with a mythology for The House on the Hill, and created a cast of characters that supposedly visited on a daily basis to keep me company in Rachel’s absence.”

“You eventually transitioned away from the Witches, Werewolves, Zombies, and Leprechauns, though,” Satan remarked.  “Can you tell our audience the thought process behind that major change?  Essentially, you gave an already successful blog a total overhaul.”

“Even though I started the blog at Rachel’s behest to keep myself distracted, once it found a following, I realized this was a great opportunity to get my writing to a whole new audience,” I confessed.  “I hope it might lead to paying writing gigs, so I wanted to show that I could write more than just silly stories about fictional creatures.”

“You really dove head first into the 2016 Presidential Election,” The Devil stated.  “You knew early on that Trump was trouble, and used your blog as a soapbox to warn American voters about him.  Why didn’t they listen to you?”

We both had a good laugh at that one, and I took a long sip of my Snapple.

“I guess I should’ve been writing posts aimed at Russian hackers, rather than at registered voters,” I chuckled.  “I blame the interns for not giving me that insight.”

“Do people actually believe that the blog has interns?” The Prince of Darkness queried.

“Funny story about that,” I chuckled a little louder.  “When I first started talking to Melissa, aka The Sweet Irish Girl, she admitted that she thought the interns were real, and that I was full of myself for thinking my silly blog was important enough to need college kids on staff.”

“I suppose your relationship with Melissa has to be considered one of the most unexpected results of starting the blog, correct?” Satan hit me with another question.

short story, flash fiction, The Devil, blogging, humor, Modern Philosopher“I guess you could look at it that way,” I conceded.  “I started the blog to get over a broken heart, and it led to my getting my heart broken all over again.  So basically, the net outcome is still the same: me alone, writing to forget, and spending the afternoon being interviewed by a figment of my imagination.”

“True, but one million views is a major writing accomplishment,” The Devil assured me.

That was when I decided to dedicate the rest of the afternoon to drowning my sorrows in Snapple…

Thanks for all the blog love.  Hope you’ll keep reading my silly stories even after we pass the magical one million views mark!

About Austin

Native New Yorker who's fled to the quiet life in Maine. I write movies, root for the Yankees, and shovel lots of snow.
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19 Responses to A Cool Million

  1. One million views! Amazing!

  2. markbialczak says:

    Way to go, Austin. I’m glad to have contributed my share of the views, my friend, enjoying the evolution of your blog through the years. I’ve never been shy with my comments (and advice) and don’t plan to stop until that heart of yours finds its match. Cheers to the second million views and ultimate meeting of the right one.

  3. Klaudia says:

    Congrats !!! So, you’re a millionaire now – through blogging! 😉 As I heard, the first million is apparently the hardest to achieve, let’s raise the glasses to a lot more to come.

  4. holley4734 says:

    Holy crap! That is amaaaaazzinnnnggg!! 🙂 Congratulations! 🙂

  5. Huge congrats in advance!!

  6. The Hook says:

    Sweet Zombie Jesus, Austin, that’s amazing!
    I’ll never even get close to that number so I salute you, man.

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