’22 A To Z Challenge – W

I recently had a visit, and a lovely conversation with J. R. R. Tolkien.  It’s been delayed because of COVID19, and the fact that he’s been dead for a while.  For the letter W, in the A to Z Challenge, he (strongly) suggested that I go with a High Fantasy theme.  He said that, since I’d conjured him up, if I didn’t, he’d come back to haunt me, and force me to go on a quest for a ring that was quite different from the ones on my beer-can pull-tabs.  He felt that I should write about

WARLOCK

a man who professes or is supposed to practice magic or sorcery; a male witch; sorcerer.

a fortuneteller or conjurer.

WIZARD

a person who practices magic; magician or sorcerer.

a conjurer or juggler.

Also whiz, wiz  [wiz] . a person of amazing skill or accomplishment:

WYRD

The Old English term wyrd derives from a Proto-Germanic term *wurđíz.  Wyrd has cognates in Old Saxon wurd, and Old Norse urðr.  It used to refer to one or all of the three Greek Fates, and, while it is sparsely used, has come to mean fate, or, that which happens.  The word slowly became “weird,” and Shakespeare turned the Fates into the three prophetic witches – The Three Weird Sisters – in Macbeth.

WYVERN

a two-legged winged dragon having the hinder part of a serpent with a barbed tail.

Smaug, eat your heart out – but barbecue it with your breath first.

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knew it sounded familiar.  My apologies to my longer-term readers.  Apparently, I forgot to delete a few candidate-words from my blog-notes list, and managed to more-or-less replicate my W Challenge post from 2019.  Oops!  Sorry.  😳

’22 A To Z Challenge – V

HUSBAND-SPEAK – or – LONG-MARRIED-LANGUAGE
How to say a lot, without saying anything

What do you want for supper?HMmmh?
Archon, I’m talking to you!  Are you paying attention??!Uh-Huh!
Shall I make Mac-and-Cheese?Unh-Unh.
What about liver and onions? –Ggcck!!
How about some potato pancakes?OOOyum!
We got our credit card statement today.  We owe $1200 this month. Oooff!
My sister called.  She’s coming to visit, Sunday. – Tthththbbh.

She says you should get your ass off the couch, and get more exercise. – Humph!

And now, some words about words that aren’t actually words.  They are

VOCABLES

any word, either written or spoken, regarded simply as a sequence of letters or spoken sounds, irrespective of its meaning – like Tabernacle – pronounced Tabber-nack – Which French-Canadians use as profanity.  Or Sapristi – which is used as an expression of surprise, or a meaningless intensifier.

a vocal sound intended to carry meaning;

I know how to keep my mouth shut.  I almost starved to death one time.  Wouldn’t tell my parents that I was hungry.  Never again!!  I better not keep this up, or I’ll end up saying nothing about everything.  The only things quieter would be a nod, or a head-shake, but you’d still hear the marbles rattle, and perhaps a few fall out.

Don’t slip on any when you come back on Wednesday for a bonus comedy post.   😆

Flash Fiction #292

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

AN ESSAY: BY ARCHON

My writing method – Teacher says to get marks, I have to make a story outline, then fill it in.
Doesn’t work.  I leave a space at the top, write the story, then build the outline.

I just open the mental floodgates and let the concepts spill out.  I take an idea from here, a pun from there, stitch it together like Frankenstein’s monster, and hope that creative lightning will weld it together into a coherent story.  Sometimes I win.  Sometimes you lose.  Then I use my patented,© push-broom, accurate, re-filing, storage system, ready for next time.

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If you’d like to join the fun, 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 #291

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

HAPPY  NEW YEAR!

With the fervent hope that that wish may be better realized than last year’s similar one.

2022 exits as it entered, with many of us still exiled and isolated in our homes.  The streets and shops are empty.  Merchants pray for trade, and only the likes of FedEx and Door-Dash delivery drivers, courting sickness and death, keep the economy limping along.

Things will improve.  Here’s a happy helping of confidence, and an optimistic quote from the Little Engine, who says, “I know we can!  I know we can!”

Let’s make it a great year, fellow Friday Fictioneers.

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

’22 A To Z Challenge – T

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my continuing program of offering as little useful information as possible, I present another little present from my Scottish heritage – not a Tartan, but a

TARTLE

Scottish dialect: a hesitation when introducing someone, because you forgot their name,
What does “pardon my tartle” mean?

From Scottish, it is also; to hesitate in recognizing a person or thing, as happens when you are introduced to someone whose name you cannot recall; so you say, “Pardon my tartle!”  They have you, coming, and going.

If you are wondering – as I do – where I get all this useless minutia, we can blame the wife’s Italian forebears.  The Romans had gods and goddesses for just about everything.  One of their lesser goddesses was

TRIVIA

Two roads diverged in the wood, and I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference.

Trivia
Trivia, the Roman goddess of crossroads and guardian of roads. Her name is derived from the Latin word ‘Trivia’ meaning “three ways” from ‘tri’ meaning three and ‘via’ meaning way or road. In Latin, ‘trivialis’ appertained to the crossroads where three roads met, which came to be known, in towns, as the ‘trivium’, or the public place. As the guardian of roads, she watched over the public paths and roads and protected travelers. She was also recognized in three aspects as part of a triad of goddesses consisting of Trivia, Luna the moon goddess and Diana the goddess of the hunt.

While you rest your probably aching brain, I’ll get a little loony with Diana, and hunt up a theme for Wednesday’s post.

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Bonus Trivia

Where it says, “all this useless minutia,” above, Grammar Checker wants me to write, “this entire minutia,” which is not the same thing at all.  😛

Déjà Vu Fibbing Friday

Pensitivity101’s recycled Fibbing Friday

  1. What is the most intelligent life form on Earth?

Those are the viewers who come to read my Fibbing Friday output – and they are handsome, good-looking, and quite sexually attractive.  They are intelligent, and not gullible, or easily taken in with false praise.  They often wear rubber boots, and step high as they pass through.  After the last of them have left, I sweep this up, spread it on the garden, and grow gigantic zucchini.

  1. Why did we really go to school?

So that our Moms could have a little ‘Adult Time” with their friends, Merlot and Prince Valium.

  1. What did teachers do during recess?

Until Marijuana dispensaries became legal, party favors in the teachers’ lounge were provided by a guy named Stoner.  On a rotating basis, therapy sessions were provided by a circuit-rider psychiatrist, but there’s not much they can do in 15 minutes.

  1. How did you get to school?

After my Mother firmly insisted that I do so, I carefully placed one foot in front of the other, and repeated, until my nose bumped into the fount of education.

  1. What was life like before the Internet?

It was peaceful and quiet, yet, apparently people were unknowingly unhappy.  We didn’t have Influencers, to tell us what food, clothing and performance artists to ‘Like,’ as well as Woke Snowflakes, with boundless supplies of Presentism, to show us how we should be appalled at what our ancestors did in good faith.

  1. What is the best thing about social media?

The ability to opt out.  Some beautiful, two-digit IQ said something vapid and inane, and got 273,000 likes??!  Not from me!  Sorry, not sorry – I don’t give a F… damn.  Someone I don’t know ate a meal – or at least took and published photos, before going back to the anorexia clinic??!  I’ve got a real life – with perogies, and a good book.

  1. What is your favorite thing to put chocolate sauce on?

I’m not sure yet.  Research is still ongoing.  It’s quicker and easier to compile a short list of where it shouldn’t go.  So far, it shouldn’t go on Caesar salad, or nachos.   😉

  1. Doctors were all wrong…humans don’t need water. What do they need?

Many need a slap upside the head.  Find it almost impossible to drink eight glasses of water a day??  But eight beers go down quick and easy.  More??!  You want more??!

  1. Dolphins are not mammals. What are they?

They are NFL football players for the Miami team.  Even close visual inspection does not reveal whether they are demons, or space aliens – perhaps both.  One of their cousins – Herschel Walker – was a Cowboy, a Giant, a Viking, and an Eagle, before he became the worst type of animal, a hypocritical, Bible-thumping politician.

Even though he espouses “Family Values,” he has fathered four children with four unwed mothers.  Despite ranting about banning abortion, he paid $700 to prevent the birth of a fifth little bastard.

  1. There is a Lost Dutchman’s Mine, but where is it?

Remember the story of the little Dutch boy who stuck his finger in a hole in a dyke dike, to prevent a flood??!  Turns out, he was a lookout and distraction, and the hole was a concealed keyhole that opened a carefully camouflaged door.  The mine does not yield gold or silver, just scads of hydroponically grown tulips, tons of Gouda and Edam cheese that fell off the back of a truck, and wooden shoes, with a few Dutch Uncles as supervisors.

Flash Fiction #290

PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox

PARIS WHEN IT SIZZLES

I have the best anti-car-theft system.  I bought the world’s ugliest car.  Guys with BMWs won’t even park on the same block, lest parts fall off and hit their cars.

I combat Global Warming by installing an electric engine, but I can’t find an extension cord long enough to get to work, and out-of-town trips are impossible.

I ran it on flashlight batteries for a while, but cleaned out local suppliers.  Plus, there was the detour going home, to drop dead ones at the recycle center.

I added a Honda gasoline generator to charge the batteries.  Now it’s an eco-hybrid.

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

Dum Crinimals

I’ve stopped asking, “How stupid can you be?”
There is no upper limit!  Some people are taking it as a challenge.

Even more proof that crime doesn’t pay.

Next time, take off the blinders
Derek Pierson tried to rob a convenience store.  He walked in, looked directly at the clerk and told her to ‘give the money up.’  What he didn’t notice was that a member of an armed robbery task force – wearing a shirt marked ‘Shreveport Police’ on the front and back, as well as ‘Police’ on the sleeves – was standing in an aisle ten feet away.

The agent, who had stopped by on a routine security check, pulled his gun and arrested Pierson without incident.  The officer described him as looking ‘like a deer caught in the headlights.’  I guess I picked the wrong place Pierson told police.

Talking trash
Minutes after getting a report of two men trying to break into parking meters, police began looking for suspects.  It wasn’t hard.  Witnesses said one wore an all-black outfit, while the other was dressed in a bathrobe.  Police located one likely suspect near the scene of the crime.

They began searching the neighborhood for the second suspect, when they were attracted to a garbage dumpster by the sound of a ringing cell phone.  When they lifted the lid of the bin, they found the second man inside.

Ignoring the rule of thumb
A robbery at a Git-N-Go Convenience Store in Des Moines was called off for lack of convincing theatrics.  ‘Well, I could tell he didn’t have a gun.’ said the clerk at the store.  ‘I knew it was his finger.  I could see his thumb sticking out of his coat pocket.’  The would-be robber, who acted tough and even inserted a harsh expletive in his demand for cash, wanted to argue.

‘It is a gun,’ he told the clerk.  ‘No it isn’t,’ the clerk replied.  The frustrated suspect left the store, but paused a moment in the parking lot, perhaps to go over in his mind the argument he’d just lost.

Thief tracking made easier
Kurt Husfeldt and two others were arrested in Lindenhurst, NY in possession of 14 stolen electronic devices that they apparently assumed were cell phones.  However, they were actually global positioning devices from a nearby municipal facility, and police just followed their signals to Husfeldt’s house.

Googled
A man was arrested in connection with a 2005 bank robbery, after leaving a trail of cyber-clues.  Police said that he was staying with a woman at the time of the robbery, and spent a great deal of time on her computer.  He borrowed her car the day of the robbery, and returned with a lot of cash, claiming he’d won it at a casino.

Police say that he walked into a Liberty Bank branch and handed the teller a note demanding money.  A week later, his woman friend contacted police, saying she recognized him from a surveillance photo on a newspaper website.  A police search of the computer revealed numerous searches concerning bank robberies, including one for the branch he hit, and another for ’How To Rob A Bank.’

Banks for telling me
A would-be robber in Austria, was arrested after he tried to hold up his local town hall, mistaking it for a bank.  Wearing a mask, and waving a toy gun the unemployed man burst into the town hall, and shouted, ‘Hold-up!  Hold-up!’  The building has a sign indicating that it has an ATM, on the outside wall.

He realized his mistake when a town employee explained to him where he was, and he then fled into the nearby woods.  He was arrested when he came back to pick up his motorbike, which he had parked outside the town hall.

😳   😆

’22 A To Z Challenge – P

You dirty, rotten, stinkin’ Polecat, expectin’ me to come up with a theme for the letter P on short notice.  (Notice that I wasted three weeks of lead-time??!)  There I was, contentedly looking up the meaning of ‘lollygagging,’ – idling, loafing, slacking off – goldbricking – American slang = shirking responsibility, when Matilda the Muse pointed out that Monday deadline was bearing down on me.  She’s often overbearing.

I always want to provide food for thought, so I thought that I would provide a post about providing food.  Ready or not – here comes

PROVENDER

any dry feed or fodder for domestic livestock
food in general

The NEW COVID-inspired, grocery-store concept of ‘We shop for you, and deliver it’ isn’t new at all.  The vocal group Home Free recently released a compilation of sea-shanties, a couple of which refer to whale-hunting around Australia, in the mid/late 1800s.

One song mentions
Soon may the Wellerman come
To bring us sugar and tea and rum

A ‘Wellerman’ was a captain who worked for two brothers named Weller.  They had five supply ships that serviced the whaling fleet.  They would sail out, and haul back the processed products – rendered oil, blubber, salted whale-meat, baleen ivory, and ambergris.  In return, they would bring out supplies, so that the whalers could remain at sea for weeks and months.

Neither is my concept of an ideal job.  I complain about computer elbow.  There’s no mention of crazy Captain Ahab, and his white whale obsession.  He hung out in the Atlantic off the coast of Messyshoes….Massawhositz….Maine, but couldn’t get a good therapist delivered.  I thought Moby Dick was a venereal disease.  😉

Flash Fiction #289

PHOTO PROMPT © Alicia Jamtaas

I’M STUFFED

For those of us Baby-Boomers, and even pre-Boomers, who remember the Second World War, and perhaps the lingering results of the Great Depression, (All hail modern medicine!) many of us succumb to the Keep it.  It might be useful someday Syndrome.

Boomers are not the only ones who do it, but we’re a bit crazy.  We leave our valuable cars in front of the house, and fill our garages with junk.  As memories deteriorate, we’re not sure we still have what we search for, and usually don’t find it.

“Why am I here?  Oh yeah, to turn off the light.”

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If you would like to join 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.