The Spit Compass

Submitted into Contest #180 in response to: Write a story that hinges on the outcome of a coin flip.... view prompt

4 comments

Funny Fiction Contemporary

Flip a coin, reader. If it lands on heads, read on. If it lands on tails, STOP. You are not ready for the stellar knowledge contained within. Trust the coin’s judgement—it knows more about you than you might think. It’s not just a flat piece of metal that we ascribe monetary value to, but a discerning disc more incisive than the dowser of any mystic, more intuitive than we’ve been led to believe by conventional ‘science’. 


When you flick the coin into the air with your thumb, its gyrations are not random; they are affected by your energy field. The coin decides how to land in the palm of your hand. You cannot trick it. The coin accounts for tossers who flip it over a second time, slapping the coin onto the backs of their hands by manoeuvring itself accordingly. Do not be mistaken. It will decide when you are ready for the information pertaining to your freedom. 


Flip the coin now, reader. No tricks. Heads, and you continue reading. Tails, and you may continue in a month. Reading on without the permission of the coin is very bad juju (Only consult the coin once a month. No multiple tosses at one time. This can be very draining). 


Congratulations, reader. The coin has deemed you worthy. Now, let’s begin your journey to spiritual freedom.


Being buried by an avalanche physically, emotionally, or spiritually is no fun. It leads to discombobulation. It’s hard to know which way is up, which way is out, and which way to dig.


The spit compass is the only surefire method to get one’s bearings and move towards freedom. I appreciate that slavering all over yourself may sound counterintuitive when you’re already knee deep in slurry, but consulting the dial on your spit compass is the most effective way to appraise your situation. Of course, having tiptop salivary glands helps. If you suffer from xerostomia (dry-mouth), try chewing some gum, or visualising biting into a lemon as a viscosity booster. Thick spit is what we aspire to.  


The condition of your saliva—particularly its viscosity and velocity (when expelled)—are reliable barometers of spiritual health. Analysing the nuanced facets of your expectorate under our microscope allows us to quantify your needs. My laboratory can analyse your sample for a modest fee. Then your journey begins. 


Let’s get back to reality. You’re stranded on a mountainside under tonnes of fresh powder. My advice would always be to spit. Spit, spit, spit. Everywhere. Don’t be shy. Dehydration is just a myth. Observe the spittle’s direction of travel. If saliva runs down your chin, you know you’re positioned upright because gravity has a habit of being honest. If drool dribbles onto your forehead, you’re upside down, my friend. Either way, you’ve got some serious digging to do. Observe the trajectory of your loogie and dig in the opposite direction through the snow (It helps to visualise yourself as a mole with big claws before digging. If you have a problem with moles, think of yourself as a hydraulically-powered earth excavator). 


Sounds gloriously simple, doesn’t it? Admittedly, spitting is easier if you’re ticked off about being trapped under tonnes of snow. But the snow isn’t literal most of the time. It’s more common for people to be buried by intangible psychic ‘materials’ that are nebulous, subtle and metaphysical. Spiritual injustices and micro-aggressions subliminally chip away at our personas for years; passive-aggressive relationships, exhausting quests for romance, dimwitted colleagues, society’s expectations, or the hijacking of our reward circuitry by the footwear industry. Day by day, billions of us are being buried in crevasses created by society, and we often take out our shovels and lend a hand. Crazy, huh? 


We’re adept at subconsciously creating obstacles for ourselves. Change—even for the better—is scary. Many of us are comfortable being buried because we don’t know any different. Others have an inkling that something is amiss and have spat their glands dry trying to get their bearings. The poor souls are encased in dried cocoons of their own spittle, limbs held fast—unable to dig themselves free. I can provide you with the pickaxe of positivity to break through. It’s an uncomfortable process, but the rewards are ample. Everything that is painful is worth doing (This is mostly true. I once weed on an electric fence at a music festival just out of curiosity).  


When experiencing doubt, try to visualise me smiling proudly, tousling your hair as you crest through the surface of the snow and flop onto land like a satiated seal. While we are on animal metaphors, I am an Artic fox. Like my vulpine brethren, I always have an ear to the ground. I am a sleek, mercurial creature with great powers of discernment. Listeners like satellite dishes. I hear you under the snow, wriggling and moaning—except you are not my prey. I am here to beckon you to the surface, where the air is fresh, so we can gallop graciously over the snow together, our feet leaving no impression in the powder. What a joy that would be. You can make this happen.


Holding that thought in mind, I want you to flip the coin again. Ten times. If you’re not an avid tosser by now, I think that the spit compass mindset is not for you. Think of this toss as the passport control in the airport of your soul; it will tell you if you are ready to advance to the next stage. 


But won’t tossing ten times be draining? I know I warned you earlier that tossing this much could be draining, but now you are psychically armoured. Resilient. Resplendent. Rambunctious. All those knowledge knuggets bashing around in your brain box. You’ll be fine. If the majority of your tosses are heads, you are ready to advance to the next stage of soul cleansing. If tails dominates, you must stay buried for another month and cogitate. Cogitate! Do not vegetate. Put your soul into a state of suspended animation if needed. Contemplate the resulting rewards of respecting the coin and waiting until the time is right. If you feel like it, worship the coin. It is good. It is shiny. Its ways are enigmatic and mysterious. Lick it, if the mood strikes you. But do not swallow the coin. If it flips and rotates inside you, it might misconstrue this as a toss, and you’ll be in some very bad juju. You have been warned. Respect the coin. 

January 13, 2023 10:32

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4 comments

Aeris Walker
22:16 Jan 13, 2023

Ah, a good old Jim Firth story, where readers will, without fail, discover words and phrases combined in such a way as to form completely novel, chuckle-inducing sentences. Here I am, saying yet again, I don’t know where you come up with these ideas lol. I like the POV choice for this. Very direct and self-assured, and these last lines are hilarious. “Lick it, if the mood strikes you. But do not swallow the coin. If it flips and rotates inside you it might misconstrue this as a toss, and you’ll be in some very bad juju. You have been warn...

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Jim Firth
09:36 Jan 14, 2023

Aeris! I'm so pleased that chuckles were induced, and your saying the sentences feel novel is high praise. What a lovely way to be welcomed back. Thank you, yes, it feels great to be settled in and writing again, and I'm definitely staying put for the foreseeable!

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Wendy Kaminski
21:53 Jan 13, 2023

Congratulations, I think you just formed a cult of tossers. :P Your parens in this were absolutely hysterical. The whole thing, really, but every time I saw one of those, I knew not to take a drink because I was likely about to crack up. (It helps to visualise yourself as a mole with big claws before digging. If you have a problem with moles, think of yourself as a hydraulically-powered earth excavator). hahah! (This is mostly true. I once weed on an electric fence at a music festival just out of curiosity). LOL! This was so much fun,...

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Jim Firth
09:26 Jan 14, 2023

Cult of Tossers might be a better title, actually! It sounds as though you timed your sips wisely and I'm glad you didn't spray drink all over your computer. Such lovely comments keep me going, so thank you :-)

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