Greetings, Weekend Writing Warriors! For the next few weeks I will be sharing one of the first short stories I wrote. Its was inspired by a collection of short stories The Itch of the Twitch , by Harvey Tyson, a South African writer. This week we are exposed to more of the unique dialect that Twitchers (birdwatchers) use amongst themselves. As before, I have included a short glossary of Twitching terms at the end of this post.
This story takes ‘twitching’ into the future, and the Multiverse of Homo Galacticus.
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Due to a rather unfortunate flaw in my personality, I had also claimed, out loud, in front of the rest of the local twitching community, that I was going to list the Xenica. So, now I was committed, and would not be able to face down a failure. To dip out afforded one the worst forms of ridicule imaginable to a dedicated lister.
I lay, rigidly still, breathing shallowly through my mouth, to filter out the intensifying smell of the lair. Slowly the rain thinned to a dismal drizzle. The heat of my body and the coolness of the rain had caused a slight mist to film the eye piece of my binoculars. A malevolently red and black millipede-like bug trundled centimeters past my left elbow. The larger, more dangerous fauna knew better than to dawdle in or around a Xenica’s range, so we were safe in that regard.
© Kim Magennis
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Glossary of Twitching Terms
Twitching – birdwatching; LBJ – little brown job, a common, often unidentifiable brown bird; Mega– a very rare bird; Chook – already seen or common bird; Jizzer – someone able to jizz, or identify a bird with an overall impression given by the general shape, movement, behaviour, etc; to dip out – to fail to see a bird the twitcher is looking for; Lister – a birdwatcher who keeps an extensive list of all the species they have seen.