Flash Fiction #282

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

SHIVER ME TIMBERS

Drifting and dreaming, neither completely asleep nor fully awake, softly, gently, wafting upward towards consciousness, like a child’s toy balloon.  No blaring alarms, no beeping cellphones, shall I awaken?  What must I do today??

After half a century of faithful service to often unfaithful employers, I serve no man.  Master of my own fate, except for She Who Must Be Obeyed, Captain of my own ship, I chart my own course.  I eat when I am hungry, and sleep when I am tired.  I hear the siren call to compose another blog post.  Avast and ahoy my fellow Friday Fictioneers.

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If you’d like to join the fun with the Friday Fictioneers, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site, and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

Flash Fiction #281

PHOTO PROMPT © David Stewart

IT’S MY CELLPHONE AND I’LL CALL IF I WANT TO
(To the tune of Lesley Gore’s It’s My Party)

It’s Chinese water torture!  Drip!  Drip!  Drip! Like being nibbled to death by ducks.

Once, my telephone line was for MY use – to make calls to my friends, and to receive from them.  Now, strangers on other continents want to tie it up for their monetary reasons.

If an election were held tomorrow, how would you vote?
We are a reliable company who would like to clean your ducts.
You owe the IRS $1500, payable in iTunes gift cards.

I think every scammer should have to pay 50¢ on my phone bill before they call me.  I got their number.

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If you’d like to join the fun with the Friday Fictioneers, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

Flash Fiction #280

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

UNFOUNDED OPINIONS

Once, I was concerned about what other people thought, and thought of me – principals, parents, politicians, priests and preachers.  When I grew older and wiser – and entered elementary school – I realized that, no matter how smart they are, everyone has one blind spot, where their grip on reality is tenuous at best.  The further from reality, the more desperate and strident they are.

Because I would not blindly accept her religious claims, a Christian therapist suddenly accused me of watching porn and masturbating.  Her problem is not my problem.  I did not descend to insults.  I merely rose above hers.

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If you’d like to join the Friday Fictioneers fun, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site, and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

It’s Not Funny – Until It Is

Twice Upon A Time, I had 51 completed, composed blog-posts in a word file.  Then I accepted a challenge to Blog Every Day in April.  Even before the first of the month, my stash had dwindled to about 40.  I threatened to include a humor/joke post or two, to pad out the month, perhaps even a whole week of comedy, but I did not do that.

Instead, I plucked d one from here, and one from there on the list.  At the end of April I still had 26 posts in my list.  Still lots, right??!  Then I realized what they were.  There was a Fibbing Friday post for each month, until December.  That’s 9!  Likewise, I had an Atheism vs. Religion post for every month till December.  That’s another 9 – total 18!

I had 2 Book Review posts.  I could compose another one, but I’m sure my followers don’t want to always read about what I’m reading about.  I have a couple of Word Origin/Usage posts, but all word and no play, makes Jack (and Jacquie) unhappy readers.

Until the next load of bullshit is delivered, and splashed onto some pages, I need to keep my fans in good humor.  Here’s an extra dollop of funny for this week, and probably another next month.  Read ‘em and leap…. to the conclusion that Hump Day is as amusing as Mondays.

Late, Great, One-Liners

Procrastination is the art of….
….keeping up with yesterday.

Don’t be so open-minded….
….that your brains fall out.

He who farts in church….
….sits in his own pew.

God didn’t create anything without a purpose….
….but mosquitoes come close.

Dogs prepare you for babies….
….Cats prepare you for teenagers

I don’t want to brag, but….
….I finished my 14-day diet in three hours.

I have a pen that writes underwater….
….It can write other words, too.

Any salad is a Caesar salad….
….if you stab it enough.

There’s no snooze button on….
….a cat that wants breakfast.

Anyone who doesn’t know what shampoo tastes like….
….has never washed a dog.

If one door closes, and another opens….
….you house may be haunted.

Mix a four-leaf clover with poison ivy….
….and you’ll have a rash of good luck.

The five-second rule does not apply….
….when you have a two-second dog.

There’s a time and place for decaf coffee….
….Never, and in the trash.

Adulting is soup….
….and I am a fork.

Waffles are just pancakes….
….with abs.

Espresso may not be the answer….
….but it’s worth a shot.

What do you call dental x-rays?….
….Tooth pics.

I was trying to make a pun about quicksand….
….but I’m stuck.

Cats have 32 muscles in each ear….
….all to help them to ignore you.

Autocorrect can go straight to he’ll.

Autocorrect has become its own worst enema.

Rhinos are just….
….fat unicorns.

Pigs are magical animals….
….They turn vegetables into bacon.

A lion wouldn’t drive drunk….
….but a Tiger Wood.

I Was Once Human-Trafficked

In my first two years of high school, I did not form any of the romantic relationships that my Mother had threatened would occur.  There were two reasons for that.  First: the junior girls quickly attached themselves to sophomore and senior boys.  Second: I was a dork!

All that mysteriously changed, early in my third year.  By the end of September, I had acquired a girlfriend – or rather, apparently, a grade ten girl had acquired me.  I quickly went from wandering the halls with a steadily-decreasing crowd of drones, to doing it with a gorgeous female by my side.  Overnight, I stopped sitting at the loner, loser tables in the cafeteria, and moved over to the ‘dating’ section, to learn more about couples’ development.

We hung out at school, and after school, at Pop’s Diner.  We managed to see some movies, despite the fact that the theater was in my home town, she lived in the next town, five miles away, and my principal method of transportation was hitch-hiking.  Many times I walked her home after school.  I met her mother, who approved of me.

I was punching WAAAYYY above my weight here.  Puberty had been generous to this young woman.  I just didn’t get to reap all the benefits that I’d have liked.  We had some necking and petting sessions, but I didn’t have the aggressive self-confidence to demand or expect more.  We just didn’t have the time, or place, or privacy.

Still, it was an idyllic year, but it was fated not to be. At the beginning of the next school year, I walked her home one day…. and she gave me The Talk.  I was a nice guy, (Damn!  That smarted.) she really liked me, and we could be friends, (we were) but she had decided to be mature beyond her years.  There were things that she wanted, that I just couldn’t provide.  She wanted an older guy, with a job, and an income, and a car.  She wanted someone to take her dining and drinking, and dancing, and partying – to drive her around and show her off.  She was willing – perhaps anxious – to pay for the privilege, in the inevitable coin of the female realm.

It was not a total loss.  Before we amicably parted company – like a second-hand, Thrift Shop purse – she passed me off to her year-younger sister, who had expressed an interest in me.  This gal was more my social and emotional speed.  We shared many tastes and likes.  She was nicer, kinder, than her sister, and smarter.  We got along very well.  The biggest problem in our relationship was not US.

We were both blue-collar children.  My Father worked in a factory, as did hers.  I/we still had that transportation problem but, her best friend in high school was the daughter of the town’s successful doctor.  He lived in a big, fancy house, and drove a big, fancy car.  Her boyfriend lived in my town.  His father was a very successful insurance agent, who lived in a big, fancy, brick, century-house, and drove a big, fancy Lincoln Continental, which he got the occasional use of for double dates.

He did not approve of my girlfriend, and the doctor’s daughter did not approve of me.  We were socially inadequate.  It was not long before we too, parted ways.  I began dating a girl from my town, whose next boyfriend, who eventually replaced me, did sixty-days in jail.  The course of true love never runs smoothly.

This BEDA Challenge has run its course.  I’m going to sleep in, and take it easy tomorrow. (As opposed to what??!)  CU Monday, I hope.  🙂

Fibbing Friday XI

I went to Pensitivity101’s country club, and asked if I could join.  They said, Congratulations, you’re her new caddy.  Apparently she worked the last one to death.  I did come away with a lovely matched set of golf-based prompts to erect lies around.

  1. What is an Arnold Palmer?

It’s the new name for an old drink at country club bars.  It contains rye and rum and vodka.  It used to be called Panty Stripper.  You promise her that you’ll give her a long stroke with a big club, but it’s usually just a short putt out.  😯  She said, “I’m tight.”  He said, “I’m stiff.”  And they were both liars.

2.  What is a niblick?

That’s the name of the extra snack(s) I used to have at night, before my doctor said she might have to get out the defibrillator paddles if I didn’t cut back.

3.  What is a mashie?

It’s the white, fluffy carbohydrate stuff that Scotsmen eat with their mushy peas and haggis.

4.  What’s the difference between a hook and a slice?

A hook was also known as a boarding-house reach at mealtimes, back when families were large.  You needed it to get your fair share of sliced ham or roast beef.  While you were doing that, someone else was making off with the butter and rolls.

5.  What name is given to a single hole score of three under par?

If you golf with me and my friends, it would be called a damned lie.  Yell fore – take six – put down five.  The only time I even got a birdie was when a pigeon flew across the fairway as I teed off.

6.  What’s a bogey?

He was a 1930s and ‘40s film noir actor.  If he could put up with Katherine Hepburn’s shrewish tongue in The African Queen, he wasn’t afraid of gold-stealing bandits with guns, in The Treasure of the Sierra Madre.  We don’t need no stinkin’ badges!

7.  What’s the difference between a regular golf course and an executive golf course?

The $100,000 per year membership fee, and not having to wait for and talk to the riff-raff.

8.  What unique award is given to the winner of the Masters Tournament?

He gets his own, personal slave, complete with controlling No-Bark collar and leash.  The year Tiger Woods won, he got a white, Joe Dirt redneck.  Rumor is that Elin got him in the divorce settlement, and she’s very satisfied.

9.  Why do golf balls have dimples?

So that you’ll pick them up and keep them with you when you find one.  Aren’t they cute little dickens??  Their mother told them to smile, and they’d go far.  250 yards, Mom.  Just not in a straight line.

10.  What is the 19th hole?

That’s the porcelain god that you’ll wind up, lurched over and praying to in the washroom, if you spend more time at the clubhouse bar than you do out on the lynx.  Oops, that’s a Canadian golf term.  That should read ‘links.’

’22 A To Z Challenge – A

A word for our times – fake news – faux news – Fox News.  Also see: Donald Trump.

AGNOTOLOGY

Agnotology is the study of culturally induced ignorance or doubt, particularly the publication of inaccurate or misleading scientific data. The neologism was coined in 1995, by Robert N. Proctor, a Stanford University professor specializing in the history of science and technology. Its name derives from the Neoclassical Greek word ἄγνωσις, agnōsis, “not knowing”, and -λογία, -logia.  A basic characteristic of the conservative movement, since conservative beliefs regarding race, class, and foreign policy are all shown to be failures.

“Dude, all the scientists who are believe in (sic) global warming are part of a universal conspiracy to gain research dollars by destroying American industry.”

There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that “my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge”.

Isaac Asimov, 1980

Within the sociology of knowledge, agnotology (formerly agnatology) is the study of deliberate, culturally-induced ignorance or doubt, typically to sell a product or win favor, particularly through the publication of inaccurate or misleading scientific data.  More generally, the term also highlights the condition where more knowledge of a subject leaves one more uncertain than before.

It is a disappointing fact, that there are segments of the American public who consider intelligence and intellectualism, as suspect.  😯

And so, I’m off to another great start.  I could have reserved the letter A in this year’s challenge for the word Asshole, but we’re already overstocked.  😉

Flash Fiction # 279

PHOTO PROMPT © David Stewart

A WEIGHTY PROBLEM

Paleo??!  Keto??!  Vegan??!  Ovo-Lacto??!  Why can I not find a diet to help me get rid of this Molson-muscle roof over my tool-shed?  Six-pack?  Looks more like a keg.

Visceral fat??!  Sounds gruesome!  What exactly is a calorie, and why do they want to take up residence around my beltline?

The doctor said to watch my food intake, so I put it right here by the computer – good stuff.  I’m beginning to like this COVID remote, working from home deal.  I don’t even have to walk to the bus stop anymore, or up to the office.  It’s to die for.

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If you’d like to join the Friday Fictioneers fun, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

BEDA Warning

For years I have been lithely and nimbly avoiding the April A To Z Challenge trap, by spreading my weight out over the entire year.  This year I have been ensnared in the BEDABlog Every Day in April Challenge.  I have decided to – not abandon my Monday, Wednesday, Friday posting schedule – but add to it.

To my 13 regularly-scheduled April posts, I will add another 17, to sate the month, and my readers.  Many of the extra posts will be like little mental flickers from a 4th of July sparkler – like my 100-word Flash Fictions – a quick, bright idea, there and then gone.  Others may be a little wordier.  Oh good.  Thanx for the warning.

I had 45 unpublished posts in the can, in a Word file, when I found out about this, and I’ve already composed a couple of short new ones.  If any of my readers have an idea, a topic, a prompt, something they wish discussed, researched or satirized, feel free to submit your subject in the comments.

Why couldn’t I do this in February, when there’s only 28 days??!  😳

Onward and upward!  Excelsior!

Flash Fiction #278

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

WRITTEN IN STONE

We’re getting a new city hall??!  This is the third in fifty years!  Another monument to bureaucracy??!  😯

Drug addicts and paraphernalia litter the streets.  Guys sleep in alleys and on vents.  The police force, social services, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, abused women’s homes and food-banks are underfunded and overwhelmed.  Still, council budgeted $24 million, most of it siphoned from the capital contingency account.

This will be a glorious legacy project to exalt outgoing, long-time mayor Priapus Swaggart.  He must really know where the bodies are buried.  The drunks will appreciate a new, warm lobby to sleep it off in.

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If you’d like to join the Friday Fictioneers fun, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.