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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Selfishness (02/14/05)

TITLE: Where Do You Live?
By Jessica Schmit


Welcome to a world familiar to your own. A land where people eat and drink to excess; where the townsfolk decide their life changing choices based on what their heart wants or desires. Welcome to the Land of Selfishness.

“Ok, everyone. Please sit down,” Mayor Disorderlys’ booming voice quieted the excited group.

Just then a door from the back of the crowded room burst open and Laziness sauntered to his seat beside Adultery.

“I slept in,” was his defense.

“The reason why we’re here today is... Now, where did I put it? Has anyone seen the agenda lying around?” Mayor Disorderly looked questionably around the room.

“Is this it?” a seductive voice questioned. There was Adultery holding the piece of paper between her two perfectly manicured fingernails.

“Why don't you walk your handsome body this way and I'll...?” Her words were like poison, capturing anyone who got in their way.

“Just give him the nonsensical agenda so we can get on with the day. You're all a great symbol of what happens when you combine stupidity with foolishness!" Anger’s eyes raged as he spat out his words.

“Nicely said, Anger! And on that note, the reason why we’re all here together is to discuss the future of Selfishness. As you all know our city’s main, and only industry, is the Selfish Power Plant. Last year, our city experienced extreme power losses, and encountered lengthy food shortages. Someone has been short circuiting our selfish deeds and now, we don’t have enough power at the plant to supply all the needs for us to survive this upcoming year. Many of us and our families… aren’t going to make it.”

Waves of disapproval and resentment rose up among the crowd heading full speed towards the Mayor.

“Now hold on folks! Everyone just sit down. We need to find the reason why our selfish jobs are no longer feeding our families anymore!” Mayor Disorderly exclaimed to the exacerbated crowd.

“I know why this is happening,” Pride’s evil voice rang out. “Our power is being depleted. Actually, stolen is a better word.”

“Hey, don’t look at me!” Theft replied.

“Who has access to the control of power at the Power Plant?” Pride asked looking down at the crowd with a haughty smirk.

“I can’t remember,” Disorderly replied.

“Well, I’ll tell you. It’s -ugh- Love. Just saying that name makes me want to throw up. Ever since He took over, our power has been slowly depleting. But, He’s not working alone. Love is giving his orders to someone in this very room. This traitor used to be one of our confidants. Essentially, all of us were his personal advisors. Yes, ladies and gentlemen it’s none other than our long time selfish resident, Greg!”

Greg, a man small in stature, arose from his seat and walked solemnly to the front of the room. He looked around at the angry, hurt and rejected faces around him. Angers' towering, muscular frame walked towards Greg.

“Don’t you remember the great times we had tormenting your ex-wife? Remember how good that felt? The letters, the words, the…”

“Other women,” Adultery finished off.

Just then a huge presence swept mightily throughout the room. Anger crumbled to the ground. Adulterer ran sheepishly from the room. Groans of pain surfaced from the crowd.
Only one person could generate that kind of response in this town.

“You called for me?” Love asked Greg compassionately.

“Yes. I never knew this would be so difficult. These people around me have been like family. I realize now, thanks to you, how each of their selfish jobs contributes to keeping this miserable city alive, but I can’t stop them by myself. They know my weaknesses. I need your strength Love.”

Thump. Pride fell to the ground, bleeding from wounds that would never heal.

“Greg, you’re not going to defeat this city with swords or words, but with a daily choice to call out to Me. You’re going to have many people in this town tempting you to leave Me behind and follow what they’re suggesting you to do, but always remember I’m with you and will never forsake you.”

Greg smiled as he soaked in the words of Life that Love spoke to him.

And from that day on, the town’s name changed to “Selflessness.” Greg still had struggles with Disorderly and Laziness. And Pride and Anger never stopped trying to entice him. But with Love’s help, the city slowly changed, with every day bringing a new beauty suiting to this new town’s name of Selflessness.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Shellie Power02/21/05
Really appreciated your writing. Reminded me of that Kids' series Little Miss Grumpy, Mr. Topsy Turvy etc.

Shellie Power02/21/05
I should clarify: Just the fact that you named sins for what they were--laziness, pride--that reminded me f those other titles. However the content is something we all need to ponder.
donna robinson02/21/05
What a delightful read! I love the characters and how together they can manipulate us till all we see is our selfish selves. It was amusing and thougtful, taking the sting out of the truth.
Crista Darr02/24/05
Very creative and a good question: Where do you live?
Phyllis Inniss02/26/05
A soul searching article "Where Do You Live?". It was written with humour while depicting the truth. Very good and lively piece.