Last of the First

10 May

Can you imagine how it felt? And what it must be like to see your fellow countrymen throw it all away over the years?

Here is my 100 word (on the nose this week) story for Madison Woods’ FridayFictioneers. It’s about an old man alone with his thoughts after hearing a friend has died and realizing he’s the last of his kind still standing.

I’m posting it early because by the time Madison kicks things off it’s midnight on Thursday here and I get hammered trying to keep up. WordPress starts counting hits on its own schedule and I’m trying to beat 180 views. Have to utilize the full 24 hours. There, I’ve gone and exposed myself as a greedy stat monkey. Oh, well. I’m going to try to rock the Casbah anyway. Thanks for reading. Tonight at midnight I’ll add the link for all the other stories by changing the color of the word ‘here‘ to red. Check in and read, comment and post your own story. (I think we’re going to be long on werewolves and such, but hey, there’s a full moon out so what do you expect?)

Aloha,

D.

I remember skip-hopping, my charcoal smudged white boots raising silent dust fans that fall in perfect slow motion parabolic arcs. Shadows deep and dark contrast with the harsh glare of the sun in a starless sky. My suit ventilation system hums in the background of distant and excited radio transmissions.

Even now when I think of her I smell burnt gunpowder and feel the grit on my teeth.

The memory helps this old pilot write and when I see her riding high she reminds me that I once walked on her surface. The vibrations thrum through her core yet..…and mine.

105 Responses to “Last of the First”

  1. tedstrutz May 11, 2012 at 12:10 am #

    Since you are such a suck-up, let me be first to cast a like!

    Oh, good story, btw… Made me think of Gene writing his daughter’s initials on the Moon.

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 12:26 am #

      Hi Ted,

      I’ll take the ‘likes’ of you any day. Thanks for being the first of the gang. (I’m actually just trying to break a personal record for page views and they only come on Fri/Sat of FridayFictioneer reading. WordPress splits it somehow, what with me being in Hawaii and all. I’ll get it sorted sooner or later.)

      Keeping my eye out for your story soon.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  2. TheOthers1 May 11, 2012 at 1:20 am #

    Greedy stats monkey. I laughed so hard at that. The little stats counter turns us all into greedy stats monkeys so I’ll not hold it against you.

    I really liked your story! I felt like I was sitting beside your character as he was telling about a treasured experience. Very nice. Mine will be up later. I can always venture back later to post my linky. Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

  3. Brandon Scott May 11, 2012 at 2:54 am #

    I must admit, I’m a bit guilty of being a stats monkey myself.

    Your story was wonderful. I can only imagine the feeling of being able to look at the moon like that. I’m sure it’d be a bit surreal.

    My first thought when I saw the photo was werewolf, so I steered clear of it like the plague. Speaking of plague: http://authorbrandonscott.wordpress.com/2012/05/10/death-cart/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 3:25 am #

      Dear Brandon,

      Thanks for reading and adding your kind comments. Loved your segue into the plague and your story as well. I lit it up a little. Let me know if that’s alright with you. I’m a quick study.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  4. Jeannie May 11, 2012 at 3:38 am #

    You outed yourself! LOL

    I really like this piece and the pride it evokes…I remember how fascinated we all were, sitting close to our television sets and seeing the most fantastic adventure imaginable–our guys up there–gone to the moon. It was one of our finest hours! How real you make it for us again. Thanks for a good read Doug!

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 4:25 am #

      Dear Jeannie,

      Amazing times they were. I fear we’re part of an Idiocracy now. Caught in the backwater’s of history. Keep reminding people of what’s possible. You never know what might yet happen in our lifetimes (but oh, the forty year hiatus was such a waste.)

      Thanks for dropping in. i’ll find your story when Madison pulls fires the starting pistol.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  5. teschoenborn May 11, 2012 at 6:33 am #

    Stats? People keep track of stats, really? As if I don’t know…

    Your story is wonderful, if not a bit sad. Truly I thought we’d have a lunar base by now. Ah well, the Chinese will probably get there first. Speaking of which, here’s mine: http://teschoenborn.com/2012/05/10/friday-fictioneers-et-wannabe/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 8:59 am #

      Nice segue into your story! Thanks for stopping in and reading.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  6. Sandra May 11, 2012 at 8:05 am #

    What stats? πŸ˜‰

    I loved this; it reminded me of a time when, as you say, we thought we were seeing the beginning of something, when in reality it was just the opposite. Sometimes I can’t believe it was never taken further…

    You captured the magic of the moon perfectly; will we ever tire of looking at it and wondering.

    Mine’s http://castelsarrasin.wordpress.com/2012/05/10/you-called-friday-fictioneers-may-2012/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 9:00 am #

      Dear Sandra,

      You’re a laugh riot. It’s amazing what comments my ‘greedy stat monkey’ admission has elicited. Thanks for dropping by.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  7. joannalazuliportals May 11, 2012 at 9:32 am #

    Stats? What’re they? There speaks the mathematician in me….lol

    Great piece, Doug. Love that you brought the moon to centre stage with the narrator’s voice. And the ‘excited’ radio transmissions made me grin πŸ™‚

    Ours is here: http://www.lazuli-portals.com/flash-fiction/moon-and-sky and is just over 160 words.

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 9:36 am #

      Dear Joanna,

      Thanks for stopping by and reading. I just finished yours and left a comment. Thought it was a true horror story of everyone’s life. Hope I never go there. Don’t know if it will show up. Hope it does.

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • joannalazuliportals May 11, 2012 at 9:42 am #

        Just moderated it, and it’s there πŸ™‚ Thanks!

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 10:23 am #

      Thanks for visiting and commenting.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  8. rochellewisoff May 11, 2012 at 9:57 am #

    I really loved this one! Don’t know what I can say that hasn’t been said already. Here’s mine: http://www.rochelle-wisoff.blogspot.com

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 10:22 am #

      Hi Rochelle,

      Thanks for visiting. Just got done reading yours. Good job.

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • rochellewisoff August 26, 2013 at 2:49 pm #

        Ha, I did comment on this one. Looks like a pretty good “haul” of comments to feed the junkie. πŸ˜‰ And here’s one more.

  9. Caerlynn Nash May 11, 2012 at 10:20 am #

    I like the imagery of your first paragraph. Nice! Here’s my story: http://wp.me/p1WuR1-TH.

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 10:23 am #

      Hi Caerlynn,

      thanks for visiting. Headed your way right now.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  10. Lindaura Glamoura May 11, 2012 at 10:48 am #

    Oh, that was very beautiful, Doug. And your ending sentence with “her core” was brilliant. Gorgeous. This photo prompt was too evocative for me and I simmered it down to its core myself.
    here it is:
    http://fictionvictimtoo.blogspot.com

  11. readinpleasure May 11, 2012 at 10:55 am #

    Aren’t we all stats monkeys? Wow, a beautiful walk on the moon. And thanks for your visit. Mine is here, for the sake of other readers: http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/2012/05/11/fridayfictioneers-tanoas-baby/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 11:08 am #

      I thought I was alone in my stat monkey status. Nice to know it’s not true. Thanks for visiting and reading.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  12. unspywriter May 11, 2012 at 10:56 am #

    Oh, Doug, this was wonderful. Every time I look at the moon, I remember the footprints of humans are on it, but you have expressed it so well. Thank you!

    Here’s mine: http://unspywriter.wordpress.com/friday-fictioneers/in-moonlight-and-peace/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 11:02 am #

      Thanks, Maggie.

      I appreciate your comments very much. I wish we’d followed up our first foray to the moon with many,many more. We could have had a city there by now. (Instead of all these stupid, useless wars.)

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • unspywriter May 11, 2012 at 11:06 am #

        So true, and the only thing Newt Gingrich and I agreed on.

        Maggie

  13. Michael Fishman May 11, 2012 at 11:20 am #

    From one greedy stat monkey to another (160 was my busiest day so send everyone you know over to click on me!) – this tender little story made me feel sad for the aging pilot who has nothing but the past to reflect on. This was a beautiful flash, Doug.

    • Michael Fishman May 11, 2012 at 11:21 am #

      Can’t get clicks if I don’t share the link! Here’s mine:
      http://michaelsfishbowl.wordpress.com/2012/05/11/i-miss-you-so/

      • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 11:35 am #

        Thanks for your nice comments, Mike. I wish you luck in your stat quest. I just got tired of splitting my hits between two days. Being here in Hawaii I was getting hosed by time zones. Decided to post as WordPress changed days in the stat counter.

        Aloha,

        Doug

  14. Carlos Repuesto de la Tabla May 11, 2012 at 11:36 am #

    Lovely writing, Doug, as we have come to expect. What page view counter? I just look at the number of comments and subtract my responses. I don’t think I’d want to know more.
    I too remember the moon landing but under rather different and surreal circumstances that I won’t go into here, other than to say I had no idea what was going on; I thought there was something wrong with my television.
    I agree about how much further we could have gone if we’d spent war money on space travel. Or anything else: medical and science research of any and every kind. Education perhaps most of all. But it’s a logical conundrum, a recursion: because we make unenlightened choices, perhaps it’s a good thing we remain confined to the planet we are destroying until we learn not to destroy.

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 11:42 am #

      Dear Carlos,

      I’ve got a widget on my dashboard that tells me how many views I’ve had…hey, are you pulling my rubber leg?

      I like your story about not knowing what was happening during the moon landing. That sounds as though it would make an interesting post one day. Thanks for visiting and commenting, my friend.

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • Carlos Repuesto de la Tabla May 13, 2012 at 9:51 am #

        β€Ž”I suddenly became strangely inebriated. The external world became changed as in a dream. Objects appeared to gain in relief; they assumed unusual dimensions; and colors became more glowing. Even self-perception and the sense of time were changed. When the eyes were closed, colored pictures flashed past in a quickly changing kaleidoscope. After a few hours, the not unpleasant inebriation, which had been experienced whilst I was fully conscious, disappeared. What had caused this condition?”β€” Dr. Albert Hofmann – Laboratory Notes (1943)

  15. Jeffrey Hollar May 11, 2012 at 12:04 pm #

    Very touching piece that leaves me feeling everything the MC does. Well done, fellow stat monkey.

  16. theforgottenwife May 11, 2012 at 12:42 pm #

    I like this. I like how the moon was alive, as well, and how you described the tactile senses, too. Very good piece! Here’s mine, if you have a minute: http://theforgottenwife.com/2012/05/11/friday-fictioneers/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 1:05 pm #

      Thank you for visiting and commenting. I dropped by your piece and was delighted to find such a deep poem based on the prompt.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  17. Craig Towsley May 11, 2012 at 1:45 pm #

    if I knew how I would embed a gif of someone clapping because that’s all I could think of.

    • Craig Towsley May 11, 2012 at 1:46 pm #

      I think I mean the story was so good I’m speechless./

      • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 6:39 pm #

        Dear Craig,

        I just woke up after a few hours of sleep. Trying to get started and ride the wave. I don’t know when WordPress changes from Friday to Saturday but I think it’s soon. Ah, well…

        Thanks for your fine compliments. Coming from you they mean more than most and I appreciate them very much. I’ll track yours down soon.

        Aloha,

        Doug

  18. Linda May 11, 2012 at 2:21 pm #

    And what’s wrong with having a healthy interest in ‘stats’, I mean if you ask any statistician they make the world go round don’t they? LOL

    Great story, makes me think of something in the far future when we are past going to the moon and a sense of sadness about it too.

    Thanks for your comment on mine and for other readers here is my attempt: http://womanontheedgeofreality.com/2012/05/11/friday-fictioneers-painting-creation/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 6:43 pm #

      Dear Linda,

      Nothing wrong with an interest in stats in my mind. The readership/participant list of FridayFictioneers has grown since its inception and I get a kick out of riding the wave. Thanks for your comments. I really appreciate them.

      See you next week?

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • Linda May 11, 2012 at 8:49 pm #

        I’ll definitely be back and help increase your stats.

  19. Russell May 11, 2012 at 2:28 pm #

    Well, Doug the count is up to two on my blog this morning and yours at 40 as of this comment and Madison at 77 as of 7 am Central time. I really enjoyed the moonwalk story. The space program is responsible is responsible for a lot of the things we take for granted in today’s world. I hated to see the shuttle program shut down.

    here’s mine http://russellgayer.blogspot.com/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 6:49 pm #

      Dear Russell,

      Good morning. I just got up after a few hours of sleep. Have about 24 more page views before I reach my goal but WordPress calendar clocks are ticking. Have to figure out how to respond via email for an entire 24 hours cycle. (Don’t think that will ever happen. Unless I become a better writer or a viral sensation somehow, I’m going to have to settle for some sort of theoretical limit to the numbers game. It was a nice experiment and maybe a lesson learned. Be a better writer.)

      In any event, thanks for your compliments. I appreciate them a lot.

      Headed your way now.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  20. siobhanmuir May 11, 2012 at 2:39 pm #

    This is a powerful piece on memory and the recall of amazing actions beyond the usual ken of mankind. Beautifully done. Thank you for your comment on mine. πŸ™‚

    Here it is for others:
    http://siobhanmuir.blogspot.com/2012/05/watchers-100words-for-fridayfictioneers.html

    Siobhan

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 6:52 pm #

      Hi Siobhan,

      Got your tweet, thanks. And thanks for the comments left here, too.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  21. Atiya May 11, 2012 at 3:09 pm #

    Hey Doug, this reminds me listening to my Dad talk about his time in service. A lot of his friends are no longer here. What’s sad is even though I just got out myself some of my friends are starting to disappear as well. oh and even though you already visited here’s my flash for the week. Oh and thanks for the catch. Those one am posts mess me up. http://remakingme-atiyatownes.blogspot.com/2012/05/friday-flash-fiction-birthing.html

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 6:57 pm #

      Thanks Atiya,

      I appreciate you reading. I know what it’s like to post something and go to bed then wake up and go, “Oh, darn…better fix that quick.” Some people are sensitive to having things pointed out in public. Can’t figure that out, but hey, that’s me. Glad you’re not one of them.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  22. April M. Galloway @AMelodyGalloway May 11, 2012 at 4:09 pm #

    Since I’m new at this, I’m not tracking stats yet. I’m sure it will happen down the road. Very nice job. It’s amazing how many different perspectives there are. Here’s mine: http://melodypearson.com/flash-fiction/friday-fictioneers-photo-prompt/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 7:05 pm #

      Dear April,

      I’m up early riding the WordPress wave and screwed up your name in the comment I just wrote you on your story. Apologies for that.

      Thanks for reading and commenting here. i appreciate it more than you know.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  23. janmorrill May 11, 2012 at 5:38 pm #

    Thanks for letting us in on the stat secret to success, you little stat monkey, you. Loved your story — very unique and creative perspective of the prompt!

    –Jan
    http://janmorrill.wordpress.com/2012/05/11/flashfriday-fictioneers-hes-watching/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 7:07 pm #

      Dear Jan,

      What secret? What success? If I knew the answer to either I’d be a happy camper. I think it has something to do with being a good writer. perhaps I’d better just focus on that, and that only. Stats will probably take care of themselves.

      Thanks for stopping in and reading.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  24. oni1138 May 11, 2012 at 7:08 pm #

    lovely imagery πŸ™‚

    Here is mine: http://oni1138.wordpress.com/2012/05/11/escape/

  25. r042 May 11, 2012 at 7:41 pm #

    Great stuff – it’s another way of looking at the moon and one that’s entirely logical when you think of it.

  26. jeanelaine May 11, 2012 at 7:46 pm #

    Good! really good and different. LOL

  27. Quill Shiv May 11, 2012 at 8:05 pm #

    I’ve missed your writing, Doug. This was quite a welcome back. This love affair with the moon was a treat to read! As always, glorious.

    http://quillshiv.com/2012/05/11/the-first-world/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 8:09 pm #

      Dear Rinn,

      And I’ve missed you, too. Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  28. Kathy McClure May 11, 2012 at 8:06 pm #

    You may be a stat monkey, but you’re a stat monkey who can write! That was lovely and sad. Not just being the last of the first, but the living past that one superlative moment.

    Kathy
    http://notforallmarkets.wordpress.com/2012/05/11/stay/

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 8:08 pm #

      Dear Kathy,

      Thank you for your insightful and complimentary comment. i live and die by them and appreciate it greatly.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  29. Lora Mitchell May 11, 2012 at 8:23 pm #

    Aloha Doug: You Stats Monkey. How do you find the time? I have enough trouble keeping up with all these stories…jotting down whom I’ve read and leaving comments. Loved your story but sad that he is one only one left. Your notes, tidbits and stories are a joy to read. Loved everybody’s interesting, fun, challenging comments as well. I, of course, am old enough to remember the fear and awe-struck wonder of Sputnik and the excitement of USA landing on the moon…which future generations will never experience until the Chinese get there…(but will USA sit back and allow that to happen)? I am eagerly awaiting June 1st when the Enterprise arrives at the Intrepid Museum (docked at Pier 84 on the Hudson River), which I can see from my hi-rise 46th flr. apt. and 2 blocks walking distance. Also…thank you, dear Doug, for leaving your inspiring comments to my “biblical” story.

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 11:29 pm #

      Dear Lora,

      Will you send me a picture of the view from your lanai? Must be wonderful.

      Yes, the Chinese on the moon will waken our nationalistic pride and perhaps we’ll get off our butts and they’ll let us rent a seat on their trip to the moon, but I doubt it. We’ve lost our internal compass. Wall street greed, morally bankrupt politicians, entitlement junkie citizens, Idiocracy grown to lunatic proportions. I’d move to the moon in a heartbeat if it meant I could get away from the drones of this world.

      Curiosity rover is a few months from landing on Mars. That should be a shot in the arm if we can pull off the landing. Stay tuned and thanks for commenting.

      To answer your question, the stars aligned this week and I was able to put everything in a line for a WordPress syzygy. I posted when WordPress changed days from Thursday to Friday, had three days off bracketing those comment writing time and stayed up for almost the entire twenty-four hour span writing comments and responses. It all worked out and I’ve got a new record now. 214 views. Left me with questions, though. If I had that many views but only 70 comments (half of which are mine in response) then what’s up with that? Only 35 or so people saying anything? I might have rounded up enough facts to make me put down the stat monkey. Better to concentrate on good writing and let the numbers take care of themselves.

      Oh, well, it was fun while it lasted.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  30. bridgesareforburning May 11, 2012 at 10:28 pm #

    Hi Doug,
    Hope you don’t go blind reading all these comments. And you’re not a stat monkey, you’re a social butterfly. At any rate, your take on the photo is cosmic, and far out. You took this prompt very literally, didn’t you. Thanks for the fun comment on my story. I’m sending you some dehydrated spring water. To reconstitue it, jut add water! Ron

  31. bridgesareforburning May 11, 2012 at 10:37 pm #

    Oh, and I meant to ask. Aren’t there any werewolves on the moon? I would think they would love it there. It would be like having a full moon all the time.

  32. bridgesareforburning May 11, 2012 at 10:38 pm #

    I’m writng this reply just to improve your stats.

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 11:03 pm #

      Dear Ron,

      You’re intentions are admirable and I thank you for the attempt to inflate my numbers, but doesn’t that defeat the purpose? I’ll think it over while I’m reconstituting that water.

      (I just checked and I set a new record thanks to you and my tactic of starting the cock when WordPress did. 212 or so views. I’m worn out now. going to go finish tiling the bathroom.)

      Thanks,

      Aloha,

      Doug

  33. V. L. Gregory-Pohlenz May 11, 2012 at 10:49 pm #

    Doug, This is one of my favorite pieces. The phrase “the vibrations thrum through her core yet…and mine,” remind me of my brother and his love for flying (not in a spaceship, though). When he talks about the thrill of flying, he just glows–thrums in his core, so to speak. Well done, as usual.

    Mine: http://www.vlgregory-circa1800.vpweb.com/blog.html

    • dmmacilroy May 11, 2012 at 10:59 pm #

      Dear V.L.,

      I read your story early on yesterday but was stymied from leaving a comment. made me very, very crazy. I thought it excellent and asked why did your MC want to kill the eagle? Ceremonial feathers?

      Thanks for your comments here.

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • lifeofawillow May 11, 2012 at 11:26 pm #

        i liked it. quite.

      • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 1:46 am #

        Thank you. Much.

        Aloha,

        Doug

  34. glossarch May 12, 2012 at 1:50 am #

    I think it’s neat that you thought of how an astronaut feels looking back at the full moon. I sometimes cover the moon with my thumb just like Tom Hanks does in Apollo 13-and I am amazed all over again.

    Here’s mine:

    http://glossarch.wordpress.com/2012/05/12/persistence-friday-fictioneers/

  35. sphrbn May 12, 2012 at 1:51 am #

    Hope I get over 180 hits in one day, one day, haha. Great story, your descriptions really set a scene. “….that fall in perfect slow motion parabolic arcs.” Love that line, I learnt what ‘parabolic’ means, might use that word some time.

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 4:10 am #

      I’m sure you will and sooner rather than later. I managed 220 or so today. I pronounce the experiment a success. Thanks for visiting and commenting.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  36. erinleary May 12, 2012 at 2:32 am #

    Love it – very clever point of view. I really enjoyed this one!

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 4:09 am #

      Thanks Erin,

      For visiting and for commenting.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  37. Gary May 12, 2012 at 8:33 am #

    Sorry I didn’t get here sooner, help get your stats up! Though obviously stats don’t interest me. Nope, not at all…ahem. πŸ˜‰

    Your story has such a wonderful, romantic feel to it. It’s almost poetic, bringing forth genuine warmth and affection from both the narrator and reader.

    http://garybaileywriting.wordpress.com/2012/05/11/fridayfictioneers-moonlight-sonata/

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 6:04 pm #

      Dear Gary,

      I don’t care about stats either (nose growing longer) but I thank you anyway for adding to them as well as for the kind comments for First of the Last.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  38. mysocalledDutchlife May 12, 2012 at 9:19 am #

    I totally believe that you did walk on her surface. Beautifully written and you’ve drawn me in.

    http://mysocalleddutchlife.wordpress.com/2012/05/12/following-footsteps/

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 6:10 pm #

      Thanks for reading Last of the First and leaving a comment. I just read your story and can tell you that the story is strong within you. Hope you return next Friday.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  39. Mike May 12, 2012 at 12:54 pm #

    A great take on the prompt Doug. The adding of the extra photo added to the nostalgia of the story.
    As for stats – I like to be virtuous and say they don’t interest me … but I’d be lying!

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 6:12 pm #

      I looked until I found a photo where the astronaut appeared totally absorbed in the experience. The one I chose has him walk/runnig away from the camera and into the lunar day. Thanks for mentioning that picture and for commenting on the story. i hope/know we’ll return there someday.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  40. writingbothsides May 12, 2012 at 1:09 pm #

    Your imagery is captivating. Your words are like a hand-picked bouquet. I was thinking of using “starless” in mine but couldn’t get it quite right. You did, though. Excellent choice of subject.
    Here’s mine: http://wp.me/p1Tjpv-aJ

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 6:14 pm #

      Thanks for reading and commenting on Last of the First. I thought your story, The Line was a great use of the prompt and vivid in its intensity.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  41. Madison Woods May 12, 2012 at 1:56 pm #

    I liked the story Doug, it was very realistic and I imagine that’s how the last one must feel. Such an awesome experienced shared by only a few can’t possibly leave a man untouched. My only crit is the first line. “I remember skip-hopping, …” I expected to read straight into …something else. the comma after “skip-hopping” gave me an unexpected pause. I love the word, though, because it conjures up a specific image.

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 6:17 pm #

      Dear Madison,

      I know what you mean. i tripped over that speed bump several times myself. The reason I decided to leave it in was that it seemed to more closely reflect the way thoughts trip off the brain and into thought. Seemed appropriate for the old pilot/writer. Thanks for reading, commenting and organizing.

      May I send you a photo for a future prompt?

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • Madison Woods May 12, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

        Please do send a photo. I’m sure you have a lot of them! I’m keeping a pool of them and will be picking the one I like most from them each month for the first Friday post. So far there are two I think in the running for next month.

      • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 8:38 pm #

        T’ll dredge through the archives and see if I have any good ones.

        Aloha,

        Doug

  42. Brian Benoit May 12, 2012 at 2:48 pm #

    This is great Doug – as a space nerd myself I loved the descriptions. I often wonder what it would have felt like for the 24 (I think?) that have done it, and I think it would probably be a lot like this. The image of the parabolic dust arcs is perfect. Nice one!

    Thanks for already commenting on mine, but I’m a greedy stats monkey too haha.

    Brian (http://pinionpost.com/2012/05/11/the-runaway/)

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 6:00 pm #

      Dear Brian,

      Thanks for the kind comments. 12 men have walked on the moon. Not near enough considering how long we’ve had since then. Humans are short sighted, I guess.

      I love that my ‘greedy stat monkey’ comment has resonated so deeply with everyone. Pleases to add to yours,

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • Brian Benoit May 12, 2012 at 8:16 pm #

        Ah yes, I must be thinking of the poor guys orbiting who never got to go down (although what a view).

  43. Gilly Gee May 12, 2012 at 7:31 pm #

    Doug I hope you made the stat you wanted!My best day ever was 332 and I found myself getting addicted but i’m over it now πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ no I’m not, that’s a lie!
    I love your story, a unique interpretation and great use of language too πŸ™‚

    • dmmacilroy May 12, 2012 at 8:36 pm #

      Made 220 or so. Good day. I suppose I should be glad they all didn’t comment as I try to answer all of them. Thanks for your compliments re Last of the First.

      Aloha,

      Doug

  44. elmowrites May 13, 2012 at 3:30 pm #

    Sorry I wasn’t around to up your numbers on Friday, Doug. How did that go?
    I enjoyed your story – how amazing it would be to look at the moon like that? you gave us all kinds of sensory gifts in your reminiscing.
    I think you’ve already visited, but I’m over here: http://elmowrites.wordpress.com/2012/05/11/friday-fiction-halloween/

    • dmmacilroy May 13, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

      Hi Elmo,

      Made my number and then some. Can’t imagine breaking 220 now so I’ll probably go back to my old ways. The best stat is seeing your name come up on the feed. Thanks for visiting.

      Aloha,

      Doug

      • elmowrites May 14, 2012 at 12:23 pm #

        Such a charmer, Doug. Congrats on 220, I’ll have to make that my new goal!

  45. Sonia Lal May 13, 2012 at 10:18 pm #

    excellent description!

    skip-hopping – read this as sky hopping at first, which added an odd element.

  46. Charles Oyeleke Williams May 14, 2012 at 1:52 pm #

    Coming back after a while away…i sought to have your story to start my week…Thanks for this great effort…memories are always sweet to tingle. I can’t but imagine how it would be with me when i climax such age when i should be the only kind of my generation remaining…

  47. Claire 'Word by Word' May 14, 2012 at 8:48 pm #

    Stories in your pocket – thought you might enjoy this and even participate – why not http://gu.com/p/37hb8/tw via The Guardian

    My story is under the pseudonym ‘Red Bird Flies’ and its called ‘The Muster’ will post it on my blog on Wednesday. Bonne Continuation!

  48. bridgesareforburning May 15, 2012 at 4:08 pm #

    Hey Doug,
    As of 11 a.m. Tuesday, I have 122 views. How are you doing?
    Ron

    • dmmacilroy May 15, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

      Dear Ron,

      As of 6:15AM Tuesday I have 11 views and they’re probably just checking to see whether I’ve broken my long standing habit of not posting anything all week except FridayFictioneer stuff. I really ought to post more but I just can’t post for posting’s sake. The spirit has to move me, yes?

      Just down to the House of Stone (dorm facility for observatory staff at 9,000ft. Breakfast is on the desk next to me and sleep will be calling in about 1.5 hours.

      Have a good one.

      Aloha,

      Doug

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