HOW TO OPERATE A MIRROR – flash fiction

05 Apr


How to Operate a Mirror

Please read the instructions carefully before attempting to operate the mirror. Do not remove the mirror from the factory packaging before you are familiar with the operating instructions and capable of properly and safely using the product.

The mirror operating surface is the outer face of a circular piece of treated glass, one foot in diameter, mounted in a handling assembly. The mirror is equipped, for your handling safety and convenience, with five ergonomically designed handles; one each on the mirror’s top, bottom, left side, right side, and mirror back. The handle marked “T” is the top handle. The convenient wheel assembly connecting the four side handles provides for hand grips at all points on the circumference of the mirror. Packaged with the mirror are four 3/4 in., 900 lb. test, nylon straps with carabiner connectors that correctly fit the wheel assembly. The straps may be used to secure the mirror to your arms and legs during active mirror operations. All these parts are for handling purposes, are non-reflective, and should not be used as mirrors. All of these non-reflective surface parts are provided for your safety and convenience. Removal of parts voids all warranty protection.

The mirror is equipped with 48 colored filters which may be placed on top of the reflective face of the mirror in any combination at user discretion. All filters are rose-colored. No particular desired effect of filter application is warranted. The manufacturer is not responsible for the final appearances of reflections observable in the mirror.

The mirror back is silvered, gilded, and blackened with lenten ashes so dark, so reflective, that bacteria trapped in the stygian blackness between the mirror and its back are protected perfectly from the antisepsis of light and flourish there. Breaking the mirror and releasing these most potent microbes will give rise to an infection from which, should you survive it at all, it will take fully seven years for you to recover. Handle the mirror with prudent care and caution. Do not strike it with or upon hard objects. Breaking the mirror voids all warranty protection.

Do not operate the mirror on a flat surface facing upward, outdoors in an unshaded position, in equatorial regions around either the vernal or autumnal equinox, nor in other regions during the local summer solstice, as looking down into the mirror under such operating conditions can terminate sight function permanently. Furthermore, the mirror can not be so used without either providing a hole for the back handle or removal of the back handle. Again: Removal of parts voids all warranty protection. The manufacturer is not responsible for damages to any premises resulting from improper operation of the mirror. Do not operate in any region at any time with the sun over either shoulder, as damage to sight function ranging from mild to severe may result. Operating the mirror in any prohibited or unintended manner voids all warranty protection.

Reflection acquisition operation: Look into the mirror’s outer, reflective, face to observe a reflection. Movement of the mirror may distort said reflection. Holding the mirror in any manner other than perpendicular to your sight line will distort the reflection. Viewing the reflective surface through any filters, including those furnished with this product, necessarily will modify the reflection. Viewing in the context of any expectations or preconceived notions is likely to result in distortions to the reflection. Prolonged viewing, i.e, gazing, is certain to distort the reflection.

By removing the mirror from the factory packaging, the user assumes control of the product and assumes any and all risk that can or may result from its use. Operating the mirror in any manner whatsoever voids all warranty protection. The mirror is not returnable under any circumstance. We hope you enjoy this fine mirror product.

— Denis M. Garrison

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit
First published in an online collection entitled How to Operate a Mirror, at on June 22, 2005.



One response to “HOW TO OPERATE A MIRROR – flash fiction

  1. inkbiotic

    April 5, 2016 at 4:45 am

    This is bizarre, I like very much 😀



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