“We Are On Spin,” by Richard Foreman

Dec 20th, 2023 | By | Category: Fiction, Prose

We are on Spin. It’s got the latest, before it’s too late. Cash is so, like, last century and plastic is a slow draw. Spin’s now. See it. Yours today. Now. Wear it, hold it, eat it, drink it, watch it, sit on it. Now. We love Spin, plugs every gap in our deep need profiles. See it, grab it, let the device track the debts – not a worry, they’re just feeding the economy. Flash spin and the wheels keep turning. Yeah. New wheels, we could use some of those. Check the screen. There they are. Soon get a bleep from DeliverE. Window in a couple of hours.

Just time for a BoxFlix binge, then. ‘Celebrity Massacres’ is good. Latest one’s a shock nail-biter. Agnes in over her neck. Has to mow down Kim, Angelina and naughty Natalie if she wants to stay a contender. One chore: microwave a SnakPak each and then we’re into the show. Dead witty script. Jump cuts and dazzle. Suck from the Pak. Lemon and coriander flavour. Yum. Got nutrients too. What’s yours, Brad? Ciliegia and basil. Wow. Got to be a next-time-must have. Oh look. There goes Kim, pushed out through a window twenty floors up. No wonder she’s shrieking.

Ping. Front door. Can’t be DeliverE yet surely. Not even the Polish drivers get here that fast. Better see who it is. Out of the sofa. Just a mo to set footsteps – might as well clock it up – and I’m in the hall. Another ping. Can’t some people wait? I open up. Person stands there. Man with grey hair and some kind of period costume get up. Like in a Flik. Raincoat, black trousers, brogue shoes. Smiles but in a sort of embarrassed way. “Hello, sorry to bother you, but I need a bit of help.”

“Cando maybe. What is?”

Blank look from him. Quick frown then tries to hold the smile. “I’m sorry. Er… What did you just say?”

“Said candomaybe. Justmo… Brad! Pauseit. Could be a while this!”

“Goodsdone babe! Prob?”

“Dunno,” I say, turning back to the bloke. “Whasprob?”

He nods, “Ah, prob… yes, problem, yes… My wife and I, we’ve just moved into number 37 up the road. We can’t seem to work out how to get the… what do they call it nowadays? The house-system. We can’t seem to get the house system up and running. It’s all supposed to be some sort of smart network thing and frankly it’s got the pair of us baffled. No instructions. No manual. Well, I’m assuming you have the same sort of… But if you could just give us a pointer or two, I’m sure we could get it going and get some heating on at least…”


“Er, I beg your pardon. What did you say?”

I slow it right down for him. “Are… you… on… Spin?”

He shakes his head, slowly. “No. No idea what you’re talking about, I’m afraid. Is that the name of something? A service or something?”

“Spinsinstant. Get on Spin. Sorted.” The device is in my hand, of course. Show him the Startscreen.

He looks at it. Frowns. “So sorry, I don’t have the right glasses on. This is, er… one of those ‘applications’. Am I right?”

“Appyes. Gotcredit? Noprob.”

“No, I’m just wondering if there’s some way we can just deal with this ourselves. Manually or whatever.”

Not sure what he’s at. Clock despair in his eyes. Bit sorry for him, slow it right down. “Spin… The… Only… Way… Is… Spin… Understand?”

His head sinks. “I see. Um, perhaps I’ll try next door. I’m sure there must be more than one way to… Anyway, sorry to have disturbed you. Thanks for… er, trying…”

He turns away. Fat chance, I think. Close the door and back to the living room.

Nat’s paused onscreen, loading her weapon. Brad looks up from his device. “Who wassit?”

“New guy, just moved in at 37.”

“Whassee like?”

“Dead meat.”


A former comic strip scripter, community arts worker and performer, Richard Foreman writes poems and stories. He scripted Black Orchid on a monthly basis for DC Comics in the 1990s, and photo-stories/comic strips for Who Cares (a UK national magazine for young people in care) for 20 years. Recent work has appeared in Confluence, Spank the Carp, Tears in the Fence, Tigershark, Albedo 1, and on websites Molly Bloom, Fortnightly Review & International Times. His short story collection, Wilful Misunderstandings, was published by Lepus Books in April 2016. He is an associate editor of Tears in the Fence magazine. Website: https://www.richeff.co.uk/home

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