The Weather

Four-Minute Fiction: Security

When Trop first decided to have podcasts, one of our ideas was to record readings of Trop writers’ short fiction. This was a pretty natural thought. We are, after all, a collective of fiction writers.

We had some other ideas too, though, and we’ve been focused on turning them into the best damn Tropcasts in the world.

But, last week, that old short fiction idea bubbled up again. Peter Nichols happened to be in town. He and I spent some time in a parked car together. And, next thing we knew, we were ready to launch that short fiction series.

We’re calling it Four-Minute Fiction for two reasons. One, it’s safer to call facts fiction than fiction facts. And, two, public radio stations think all stories should be exactly four minutes long.

I’m totally open to breaking those rules. If a story is true, nobody needs to know that. And if we find a great piece of writing that reads out to six minutes, six minus two is four, so we’re covered.

The story you’re about to hear is called “Security.” I found it right here in The Weather. And it’s less than four minutes long, even with a little pre-story scene-setting. And that means that, going forward, I’m going to keep mining The Weather for audio-friendly stories.

But I’d love to record other stuff too. So, if you have something that you think would be good, send it my way. It doesn’t matter whether you’ve written for Trop before or not. We’re always looking for new voices, especially ones we can hear. My email is jake at

That, friends, concludes our introductory details. It’s time for “Security,” which, to this pair of ears, is a story about fear, intimidation, improvisation, and Clint Eastwood’s America.


Jake de Grazia is Trop's Musical Theater Correspondent.

Peter Nichols is a poet, rock climber, and vagabond originally from Toledo, Ohio.