Short Story Of the Day Let Me Eat Cake (flash fiction) by Bill Chance

“I saw the world I had walked since my birth and I understood how fragile it was, that the reality was a thin layer of icing on a great dark birthday cake writhing with grubs and nightmares and hunger.”
Neil Gaiman, The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Before and After – Recycled bathroom fixtures.

I have been feeling in a deep hopeless rut lately, and I’m sure a lot of you have too. After writing another Sunday Snippet I decided to set an ambitious goal for myself. I’ll write a short piece of fiction every day and put it up here. Obviously, quality will vary – you get what you get. Length too – I’ll have to write something short on busy days. They will be raw first drafts and full of errors.

I’m not sure how long I can keep it up… I do write quickly, but coming up with an idea every day will be a difficult challenge. So far so good. Maybe a hundred in a row might be a good, achievable, and tough goal.

Here’s another one for today (#47). What do you think? Any comments, criticism, insults, ideas, prompts, abuse … anything is welcome. Feel free to comment or contact me.

Thanks for reading.


Let Me Eat Cake

I knew my girlfriend was mad at me when she brought me a birthday urinal cake.

It only had one candle instead of the sixteen it should have had. I’m not sure you can get sixteen candles on a urinal cake.

That one candle was the kind that doesn’t blow out. Pretty funny haha.

Do you get a wish if you blow out the candles on a urinal birthday cake? It shouldn’t matter… but I don’t know how these things work. Nobody sang the happy birthday song. Does the song make the wish come true?

It doesn’t matter because I couldn’t blow the candle out. I already told you, it was one of those trick candles. Another indication my girfriend was mad at me.

Now that I think about it I wonder if you pee on a birthday urinal cake burning candle and put it out does your wish come true? My wish would be that I had a real birthday cake and a girlfriend that isn’t mad at me. But that’s sort of a bootstrap paradox thing (if I had a real cake I couldn’t pee on a urinal birthday cake candle…) so I guess that’s not possible. Or sanitary. It’s pretty damn hard to pee on a urinal cake if you don’t have a urinal to put it in.

The cake stunk. It was new and didn’t smell like pee. It smelled like mothballs. I have seen and smelled a few mothballs in my day, but I don’t know what they are used for and have no idea why they are called mothballs.

There is an old joke:

“Do you know how mothballs smell?”


“How did you get those little legs that far apart?”

Not a very funny joke, but the only mothball joke I have heard.

The only uninal cake joke I have heard is one that Conan O’Brian told in 2013:

A company has developed urinal cakes that will tell you if you’re drunk. Basically, if you can hit the urinal cake, you’re not drunk.

I was too young in 2013 to watch Conan O’Brian and would not have understood that joke at nine years old, but now, with the internet, everything lasts forever. Even jokes about urinal cakes.

The urinal birthday cake was plain… except for the one candle. I guess I should be glad she didn’t put frosting on it; I might have tried to eat it. Does that mean she is mad at me, but not too mad? If she was really, really mad she could have frosted it and tried to get me to take a bite.

She could have frosted it and, in tiny letters, wrote something like:

Urine Trouble
Don’t Piss Me Off
Go Back to School, Get a Pee HD
You Think Urine Love?
You Take the Cake

Or something nasty like that.


Their Prowess is Potent

Reluctantly crouched at the starting line,
Engines pumping and thumping in time.
The green light flashes, the flags go up.
Churning and burning, they yearn for the cup.
They deftly maneuver and muscle for rank,
Fuel burning fast on an empty tank.
Reckless and wild, they pour through the turns.
Their prowess is potent and secretly stern.
As they speed through the finish, the flags go down.
The fans get up and they get out of town.
The arena is empty except for one man,
Still driving and striving as fast as he can.
The sun has gone down and the moon has come up,
And long ago somebody left with the cup.
But he’s driving and striving and hugging the turns.
And thinking of someone for whom he still burns.
—-Cake, The Distance

Bicycle Drag Race, Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge (Large Marge), Dallas, Texas

Oblique Strategy: It is quite possible (after all)

I was sitting at a bar, I had a few minutes to kill before my meeting, drinking a cup of coffee. This was in the cold, dark, heart of urban hipsterdom. There were two millennial women sitting near me, talking with the bartender/barista loud enough and close enough I could hear clearly.

They were discussing “old people.” I could have interrupted and said something, but I did not – they were enjoying themselves too much.

What I could have said was, “You know that old man you see every day shuffling down the sidewalk, using a cane to keep from falling into the street, head bowed, moving with incredible difficulty as if he was walking through a sea of invisible molasses. You see him and wonder where he is going, why he is using such energy for so little purpose; you wonder why he even bothers to get out of bed – that is if you think of him at all.

Now you see that sixteen year old boy shooting hoops, jumping high, not a care in the world.

Remember, they are the same people. Those are simply two points on one line. In his head, the old man is still the sixteen year old boy. It’s hard to understand, hard to believe, impossible for you to comprehend, but undoubtedly true.”

Cause he’s going the distance.
He’s going for speed.
She’s all alone
In her time of need.
—-Cake, The Distance