Bride of Accumulates by Craig J. Clark

Accumulate #11: Breaking in the Pants

He’d bought them a week ago. No, a week and a half. It was high time he broke them in. Brice was going to be sporting a new pair of pants today.

He had three to choose from – two black and one blue. He would have bought more black, but the store ran out of his size. He chose black.

He’d tried them on in the fitting room, so this was not the first time he’d put them on, but there’s nothing like the first time you slip on a pair of pants with the intention of wearing them for the duration of the day. It’s like growing a second skin.

To Brice, his second skin told the world that he was not a man to be messed with. He was a man in black pants.

Accumulate #12: The Caller

The caller sounded distressed. For all Tim knew, this was because she was, but he was accustomed to people putting on an act to try to get their way.

“Why is it so far away?” she asked. “April is so much closer.”

“That is true, but July 1 is your start date.”

“Can’t it start in April instead?”

“I’m afraid not. You missed the cut off for April.”

“But that’s when I wanted it to start.”

“If you wanted that, you should have called to activate the account earlier.”

“I didn’t know there was a cut-off date.”

Tim leaned back in his chair, wistful. “We all go through life nothing knowing things until it’s too late.”

It was his second week on the job and Tim already knew that all too well.

Accumulate #13: Mixed Fruit Flavored Juice Drink Blend

Clearly the beverage of champions.

Accumulate #14: No Fault Assurance

Through no fault of his own, he was rapidly becoming a shambling wreck. He felt like the star of his own horror movie: “Beware! The Shambling Wreck is coming for you!” The difference, of course, was that he was in no shape to come after anybody.

Actually, “through no fault of his own” was misleading. When he thought about it, he probably could make more of an effort to eat better. And get more sleep. And exercise. And not be such a lay-about.

He couldn’t help but think he was guilty of lying to himself. Or could he?

Accumulate #15: How Do These Things Get Started?

“Cuba!” The exclamation point was unmistakable.

“Cubism!” The response was just as exclamatory.

“Cubic Zirconium!” The emphasis was unquestionably deliberate.

“Rubik’s Cube!” The emphaticism bordered on the fanatical.

“Ice Cube!” It wasn’t clear whether the rapper or the shape of frozen water was being invoked.

“Sugarcubes!” Ambiguity appeared to be reigning supreme.

“Chicago… Cubes.” This was a stretch and the speaker knew it.

“Uhh… Scuba?” Heads were shaken.

“Err…” Impasse had been reached.


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Accumulates #15: Reminds me of the Cubs uniforms with the word "Cubs" written in cursive on the front in such a way that it looked more like "Cuba." But would "Q-Bert" or "cueball" have been acceptable in this game? It's hard to say either of those without saying "cube." How about "cube root" or "cube steak." Dr. Zutroy's Cube of Mystery? I've just noticed that if you type the word "cube" over and over again, it starts to look very odd.

I figured there were variants that I hadn't thought up. Q-Bert is a particularly ingenious one.

#15 makes me want to join the "clube."

I also like #13. I don't know why, but it make me contemplate juice and I like juice. "Mixed Fruit Flavored Juice Drink Blend" most likely derives some of its sweetness from a highly-refined sugar or sugar-substitute like high-fructose corn syrup. It may seem like a very contrary statement, but champions and high-fructose corn syrup match up in an odd way. I see a glowing white guy wearing a tank top, swaddled in the stars and stripes, quaffing his fruity beverage, a sweet, flowing river of maize's own nectar superimposed over him. AMERICA!

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