She snuck into her parents’ room and ordered a pizza with no sauce and no cheese.

She looked up and locked eye contact with him. “This is your last chance to tell me, man”, she said, as she loosened her grip on the carton of organic free-range eggs.

“Don’t let them get away with that”, the keeper told her.

They were an efficient team in person, but the amount of time spent scheduling their meetings was greater than the time spent participating in the meetings.

On the topic of incorrect assumptions, the lifeless robin on the lawn outside their living room window had not hit the window. The little scamp down the road had shot it with his pellet gun and placed it there sometime in the night.

He replaced his 20 year old can opener with a brand new model. The thing required zero grip strength. So smooth.

He marbled the cake. As in, he poured in the vanilla cake mix and then he poured in the chocolate cake mix then he stirred it around artfully. Then he dropped in some marbles. Like, rare, handmade marbles from a glassblower fare away, possibly Copenhagen. One looked like the moon, and all were big enough to avoid accidental tooth breakage.

The days had been alternating sun and rain, and the the little stream behind the hedges was flowing well. He imagined the area by his neighbours fence to be Point A, and the entrance to the culvert by the road Point B. He placed a basketball-sized boulder in the centre of the stream between point A and point B, and the water wrapped around without any sort of diversion or change in speed.

He was so tired. Comatose. He tripped over his drooping eyelids and melted into the floor.

Her son marvelled over the one hundred and ninety six pieces of candy spread and grouped out on the dining room table. She eyed the six Snicker bars over his shoulder. One way or another they would be hers.

Rats had gotten into the huge bag of dogfood in the garage. The population had presumably skyrocketed. The engine block wires were doomed.

The first minutes after the family went out the door in the morning: Pen to paper on the coffee table. Silence like a sensory deprivation tank. Chaotic hubbub replaced by a subtle but thick static in the air, a nearly imperceptible pop in a light fixture, a drip of water from ice cubes melting in the kitchen sink, the cat stretching on the carpet, the refrigerator kicking in.

It was a weekend that never happened. First it was Friday, then it was Monday. Somewhere in between there had been reading and eating and watching, but of what, he could not remember.

On his way to get his teeth cleaned he saw a sign in a coffee/plant shop window that said, “Free latte with plant purchase”. Sold. Fifteen minutes later, his dental hygienist was working on coffee stained teeth and a little fern sat on the counter next to the free-toothbrush basket.

He looked around his lifeless room and wondered if rent-a-plants were a thing.

They set out five granola bars on the table. Different brands, sizes, styles. Which product would be best for their 30 minute hike?

The wind was gusting hard, pushing to dislocate weakened branches from their sockets, and pulling to topple diseased trees with their rotting bases and root beds. Nevertheless, he was right in there, driving a series of discs toward the golf tee: a dented ring of sheet metal that collared the base of an old pine. He was right in that mess, working to improve in this “sport” that was played by only five other people within a 100km range.

He rotated the pen and unscrewed the tip. A purple gelatinous substance poured out onto his silicon work mat. He picked through the ooze with two toothpicks, and located the tiny diamond-like stone. He picked up his cellphone and dialled.

He had always bought just a few of everything. Three apples. Four oranges. Two peppers. Three onions. Today was the day he was going to buy one of those big sacs. The sacs that told your checkout line-mates that you were not only serious about cooking, but also, you know how to store food. Better than most. So, lemons is what he bought. Forty lemons in a mesh sac.

The days were blending into each other. His routine was sound, but it made every day feel a tad too similar. That’s why he stepped into the tuk-tuk and informed the driver that he was looking for a gift for his wife, and that he had only $1000 USD. Maybe a ruby or some fine textiles? Mister tuk-tuk driver, could he help?