AN ICE CREAM SHOP

You walk to the counter and there some ten yards away are the employees staring back at you behind a counter of their own. Between you and them, parallel to the counters, lie the barrels of ice cream. Yelling, for the music is somewhat loud and fuzzy, you call out your order for a single-scoop cone. An employee takes hold of the crank that operates the overhead scooping system, positioned some ten feet above the floor. Judging by eyesight, the employee plunges the scoop, more like a claw really, into the barrel. The scoop rises and the employee quickly uses the drive belt to whisk the ice cream towards you. Grabbing a cone from the counter, you hold it under the dripping scoop which is now about five feet above your head. The employee releases the ice cream from the claw and it lands onto your cone. There are no reorders for ice cream that is lost in transit, misses or otherwise shatters a cone upon landing.

 

THROW A BALL, MAKE SOME SOUNDS

Entering the gallery, you become curious about a room-sized, unassuming white cube standing silently. You approach and find a hole just big enough to fit your arm into. Trying to peek inside, you’re rebuffed by fabric and the absence of light in the room. But wait, there’s a box full of superballs placed near the hole. You quickly take one, thrust your arm into the hole and throw the ball. Some sort of plastic object clatters to the ground, what could be several empty tin cans fall upon each other, clanking about. You feel delighted until you hear shattering glass, something large indeed. When you hear the cat screech you hurriedly walk away.

The room is a twelve foot square structure. Aside from the hole, the only other surface break is the locked maintenance door on the backside. Inside can be found shelving with precariously placed objects, various items hanging from the ceiling such as thin sheets of metal, and throughout the room are flat buttons that trigger a pre-recorded sound. Each button triggers a unique sound. Speakers are placed in the middle of the room for amplification.

Recorded sounds, when mixed with live sounds, will add emotional content and blur a visitor’s deductions. Such recorded sounds could include the shattering glass and screeching cat as well as water splashing onto the ground, an igniting flame, and someone yelping in surprise.

Additionally, a video camera could be placed inside; a wide shot framing someone’s protruding arm and the objects falling down. This could be a silent, live feed to another location. In this set-up, sight and sound are only conjoined by a visitor throwing a ball and then later watching the live feed in a different gallery. Or visa-versa.

 

NON-FUNCTIONAL CELL PHONES MADE OF SOFT WOOD FOR ALL

 

ASH MACHINE

Cut a hole, five inches in diameter, on top of the globe of a gum ball machine. Take out all the gum balls. Now use as an ash tray. Put a quarter in to retrieve your ash.

© 2019 Rick Danielson