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Going home again

November 30, 2021

THE DETAILS: Friday Fictioneers: 1 picture, 100 words, scores of people from around the world sharing their creativity and vision. Feel free to join in, just visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields to find out how.

THE PROMPT:
This week’s photo courtesy of Roger Bultot

Going home again (100 words)

She looked at me like who’s this crazy man when I asked if her flat had hot water.

Eldridge near Canal, fourth floor walk-up. No hot water, no heat. Now I hear they sell for over a million.

Pessis’ store down on the corner and a metal gate covers what used to be Shimmel’s Bakery. Best knishes in New York, take my word.

Trucks and people. Every day the street was busy. And the noise, like you wouldn’t believe.

“Zayde,” they said when I asked to visit the old neighborhood. “You can’t go home again.”

I guess they were right.

* Zayde = Grandfather in Yiddish

###

My Thanksgiving

November 28, 2021

I basted with barbeque sauce
and I topped it with smoked applesauce.
It wasn’t so swell,
and it didn’t sit well,
my meal was a certified loss.

Morning

November 27, 2021

Narrow shore
sunrise topping river birch
hungry carp jumping as
early morning walkers
modern mudlarks with arms
attached to metal detectors
hunt for left behind treasures

Downtown street
detectors mounted to
traffic lights monitoring
the mettle of passersby
hands poking from frayed sleeves
modern mudlarks hunting trash cans
for left behind treasures

###

wk 237 mudlark

Friendly skies

November 27, 2021

From Charli Mills at the Carrot Ranch is this week’s challenge.

November 25, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write about a canceled flight. Where was the flight headed? Who does it impact and why? How does a protagonist handle the situation? Go where the prompt leads!

Friendly skies

The announcement came at 7:55, just minutes before boarding.

“We’re sorry to announce that flight 497 to Minot has been cancelled—”

Thinking about the merger meeting at 11:00 I joined the grumbles from the other passengers. I opened my phone.

“—has partnered with Twilight Wish and today we’re fulfilling Edward Bendix’s wish. Mr. Bendix was an Air Force pilot during WW2. Today is his 100th birthday, and his wish is to pilot once more.”

The flight crew wheeled Edward toward the gate. His smile shone as bright as his Medal of Honor. I stood, returned his wave and applauded.

###

For Elise

November 26, 2021

When I read a word prompt, like today’s FURNACE, I go with the first thing that pops into my mind. Sometimes it’s not good and I erase it and go do something else, and sometimes it’s “good” (translation: something I like) and I go with it.

The last time I talked to anyone about a furnace was the repairman after my furnace had broken for the second time in two weeks in the middle of January. I won’t recount the story here other than to say it was a heated discussion.

The first thing that came to mind when reading FURNACE this morning was this piece of music. There are different versions, some faster and some slower, and some for solo piano and some for piano and orchestra. Regardless of the version, it’s got to be one of the most heard and recognizable pieces of Classical music ever.

Nut Goodies? It all Depends.

November 25, 2021

Akimbo. Outside of me frequently standing with my arms akimbo I don’t have much to say.

I know there used to be a mixed martial arts fighter named Kimbo Slice, and if I had an action figure of Kimbo, I could have taken a picture of me pointing to it and saying, “Hey, look, here’s a Kimbo!“. But I don’t.

I learned that Harry Potter made a movie called Guns Akimbo but I haven’t seen it so I can’t talk about it. Other than to say that I watched the trailer and Harry Potter uses the “F” word. More than once. That was a little dismaying.

So it’s Thanksgiving and even though I’m someone who doesn’t like grocery shopping because of the crowds, for some reason I feel drawn to the store on Thanksgiving because you feel you need one thing. This is a feeling I learned this morning that’s not unique to me. It’s not that I really need that one thing, or even know what it is going in, but I need it, if you know what I mean. There’s a sort of a thrill being around the action and watching the shoppers and wondering why they’re all here seven hours before dinner with with full grocery carts and making up stories about them.

This cold Minneapolis Thanksgiving morning I realized that I needed to head out to the store. Not because I wanted to experience the atmosphere of panicked grocery shoppers for some odd reason that I don’t fully understand, but because I legitimately needed something: a Nut Goodie bar. Why do I need a Nut Goodie bar? It’s because I thought I might watch the Harry Potter akimbo movie later and candy bars go good with movies. Nut Goodies are made in St. Paul and if they’re not sold where you are that’s unfortunate. The store didn’t have any so I bought some cole slaw and went to Walgreens.

I don’t understand why it’s “Walgreens” and not “Walgreen’s”. The company name is the Walgreen Company and it was started a lot time ago by a guy named Walgreen. So why not Walgreen’s? And if it’s “Walgreens” then shouldn’t their pharmacy department be advertised as “Walgreens’ pharmacy”?

Anyway, I’m at Walgreens (or Walgreen’s if you’re like me) and it’s not too busy. I grab my Nut Goodie and I’m walking up and down the aisles checking out the action when what do I see? The song is true: once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right because there in front of me on a package of Depends is a picture of a happy guy with arms akimbo.

Score! Reward = double back for a second Nut Goodie bar.

Thanks for reading and sticking around and if you’ve ever given me a ‘Like’ or a comment in the past, thank you! I hope you’re enjoying the day.

Conspiracy!

November 24, 2021

This Ragtag Daily Prompt of CONSPIRACY is appropriate coming just two days after John F. Kennedy’s assassination. This could, in and of itself, be a conspiracy? Or maybe the conspiracy is that no one seems to remember JFK’s assassination. Hmmm . . .

+~+~+~+~+~+~+~+

Conspiracy! My dear you see;
that everything’s conspiracy.

They’ll find you now, they’ll find you later;
there’s a clone of you cooking in a large duplicator.

Spacemen have landed and Elvis is still here;
and Santa’s really Satan! It’s true, Virginia, dear.

Politicians who are birthers and the folks who are flat earthers;
There’s a monster in Montana and something’s odd in Susquehanna.

You can laugh and you can snicker, cuz some are so absurd;
like it’s not true(man) Capote wrote To Kill a Mockingbird.

Don’t let yourself get nervous or feel you are hard put;
it’s just a silly shadow and it’s not that thing Bigfoot.

Politicians who are birthers and the folks who are flat earthers;
There’s a monster in Montana and something’s odd in Susquehanna.

Take a breath and think it through and I hope you will agree
that everything we think and see’s just more conspiracy.

<drum roll>

Oh say, can you see, there’s a conspiracy.
What so loudly we claim, are just thoughts that we’re scheming.
And wild stories and claims, from our day-to-day life,
Rants and raves we do watch of imaginative daydreaming.
And the statements they claim, they just fan up the flames,
of anger and appall till one just sits down and bawls.
Oh say why do lies and misinformation still wave,
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Politicians who are birthers and the folks who are flat earthers;
There’s a monster in Montana and something’s odd in Susquehanna.

###

Poison Ivy with a twitch

November 22, 2021

The word is “twitch”.

Back in 1981 I bought Bob Weir’s Bobby and the Midnites album. This was a side project for Weir and not a Grateful Dead album. I listened to if a few times and my thought was, “Eh, this isn’t the Grateful Dead” and I ended up selling the album not long after.

Flash forward to the summer of 1984, a wonderful time when I was still able to stay up late at night, and Bobby and the the Midnites played First Avenue in downtown Minneapolis and I went to see them. I knew it was the Grateful Dead, but the thought of going still seemed cool. Other than being happy with the small venue and the ability to stand near the stage, my thought was, “Eh, this isn’t the Grateful Dead”.

Here’s Bob Weir and his band singing Poison Ivy. Oh, FYI, it isn’t the Grateful Dead.

Measles make you bumpy, and mumps’ll make you lumpy.
And chicken pox’ll make you jump and twitch.
A common cold’ll fool ya, and whooping cough’ll cool ya.
But poison ivy, Lord’ll make you itch!”

Richie

November 21, 2021

From Charli Mills at the Carrot Ranch is this week’s challenge.

November 18, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write about tools. Whose tools are they and how do they fit into the story? What kind of tools? Go where the prompt leads!

Richie

The guys asked Richie to do bad things. Once they asked him to go into Wagner’s drugstore and steal a Playboy magazine. Nice Mr. Wagner, but he did it anyway.

Once they said, “Richie, ask Jenny Edwards for a date.”

“She doesn’t like me,” he said.

“C’mon, it’ll be funny,” they said.

Jenny and the guys laughed. Richie laughed with them, but he was scared, and he hurt.

Richie wasn’t stupid. He ignored their loud whispers; he rationalized their laughter. He told himself he wasn’t a tool.

Making friends was difficult, and Richie believed this was better than nothing.

###

Blue

November 21, 2021

For the Weekend Writing Prompt #236.

wk 236 blue

oceans are blue
skies are blue
your eyes were blue

don’t understand oceans
don’t understand skies
didn’t understand you

maybe you’re happy now

do you ever think about me
wherever you are
and does that make you blue

###

Dare I air?

November 19, 2021

Derriere my sad story? I’ve a haunch that it might seem fanny to some, but it’s a sad story that made me feel a little rumpy. I’ll share it to prove I’m no bum.

Thank you to Sheryl at ‘Your Daily Word Prompt‘.

= = = =

I can avouch
I sat on the couch.
A spring broke free
and I said “Ouch!”

Yes I did soar
and you bet I swore
I hopped around
cuz my butt was sore.

I looked around
then I slowly sat down
before I had
a nervous breakdown.

The End

Free wood

November 19, 2021

THE DETAILS: Friday Fictioneers: 1 picture, 100 words, scores of people from around the world sharing their creativity and vision. Feel free to join in, just visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields to find out how.

THE PROMPT:
This week’s photo courtesy of Dale Rogerson.

Free wood (100 words)

I love November. Short days, long nights, cold winds. Humans are abundant in November chopping wood to heat their homes. Always hasty, the humans make mistakes. Like thinking they can get something for free.

My sign worked beautifully. Like moths to a flame, “FREE FIREWOOD!” brought dinner to my doorstep.

My Wendigo family eats well tonight: chilled eyeball crudités, lung tourtiere pot stickers with nasal fluid dipping sauce, ribs with belly fat glaze and liver pudding with warm blood drizzle for dessert.

Care to join us, friend? You’ll eat well, too. It’s BYOB so don’t forget to bring your body.

###

With the band

November 15, 2021

From Charli Mills at the Carrot Ranch is this week’s challenge.

November 11, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story using the phrase “carry on.” It can be an expression of perseverance or behaving in a particular way. It can even be luggage you take when traveling. Go where the prompt leads!

With the band

It had been Shawn’s dream since the first day he picked up a guitar to play in a band. So it wasn’t that he was unhappy with where he was at now, a steady gig and getting paid for making music, but the dream was more the Shawn Williams Band rather than guitar in classic rock cover band.

The house lights dimmed.

“Ladies and gentleman, give it up for “Not in Kansas Anymore”!”

The stage lights rose to mild applause. Tony’s eyes dimmed as he stepped to the microphone and started singing the lower harmony:

Carry on, my wayward—”

###

Just in case there’s someone reading who hasn’t heard the song and would like to listen to it.

Cobwebs

November 13, 2021

Ragtag Daily Prompt Saturday: COBWEBS

“I want to dust cobwebs with you.” I guess that’s love, huh?

Lucky me

November 13, 2021

This is for the Weekend writing prompt #235

wk 235 mirror

Lucky me

I broke a mirror which means bad luck
I thought, “Well I’m really an unfortunate schmuck.”

I went through the day filled with worry and with dread
and I couldn’t toss those thoughts from my overly anxious head.

I went for a walk, so careful where I stepped
I stayed on sidewalks, only ones that were swept.

Tentative steps so I wouldn’t slip on slime
when I happened to notice a bright, shiny dime.

I bent, picked it up, and reveled in my glory
and that, my dear friends, is the end of this story.

###

Destination unknown

November 12, 2021

THE DETAILS: Friday Fictioneers: 1 picture, 100 words, scores of people from around the world sharing their creativity and vision. Feel free to join in, just visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields to find out how.

THE PROMPT:
This week’s photo courtesy of Ted Strutz.

Destination unknown

I watched her sit on the stool next to mine. One long leg slowly crossed over the other, a tight dress pulled tighter leaving nothing to doubt. My eyes worked their way up and eventually focused on two evergreen eyes.

She smiled. “Buy me a drink?”

First night in Seattle, could I be luckier? I signaled the bartender and ordered two very dry martinis.

That’s the last thing I remembered.

I woke foggy-headed and found myself on a strange ship heading out to sea.

Shanghaied? That’s the stuff of fiction. Of history. It doesn’t really happen. Not anymore, right?

Right?

###

Veterans Day

November 11, 2021

Veterans Day is almost over but I don’t think it’s too late to share this section from Walt Whitman’s Song of Myself.

This is a long poem which is something that usually turns me off, and I admit to not being overly fond of this one. I don’t like to feel like I need a dictionary and a CliffsNotes study guide in order to understand a poem. Having said that, section #8 did make sense to me and it seemed a nice tribute to veterans.

And to you, sharp reader who is wondering how, if I don’t like poems like this, I happened upon section 8 of this unwieldy poem today, it’s because it was highlighted in Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac today.

The full poem has 52 sections and you’re on your own if you want to read the entire thing.

Here’s section 8:

With music strong I come, with my cornets and my drums,
I play not marches for accepted victors only, I play marches for conquer’d and slain persons.

Have you heard that it was good to gain the day?
I also say it is good to fall, battles are lost in the same spirit in which they are won.

I beat and pound for the dead,
I blow through my embouchures my loudest and gayest for them.

Vivas to those who have fail’d!
And to those whose war-vessels sank in the sea!
And to those themselves who sank in the sea!
And to all generals that lost engagements, and all overcome heroes!
And the numberless unknown heroes equal to the greatest heroes known!

Take me back

November 8, 2021

From Charli Mills at the Carrot Ranch is this week’s challenge.

November 4, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about a film festival. It can be a small-town indie fest or the Festival de Cannes or anything in between. Who is in the story? An audience-goer, filmmaker, actress, or something unexpected? Through in some popcorn for fun. Go where the prompt leads!

Take me back

Tin film canisters. Messy handwriting on faded masking tape offers no clue to origins or contents.

Spliced haphazardly when transferred to video, we’re modern-day time travelers. First watching baby’s first steps. Then a mother’s sweet 16. There’s Ben and Bunny’s 40th anniversary. Back to a baby’s first bath in a kitchen sink.

Someone’s swimming in a motel pool. Thanksgiving dinner. Who’s that playing cards? Children in birthday hats laughing at a clown. They’re getting married. He’s proud in cap and gown.

Lives–
Lived.
Gone.
Missed.

They’re not much, these old films, but I watch and savor their faded memories.

Oh, the horror

October 31, 2021

From Charli Mills at the Carrot Ranch is this week’s challenge.

October 28, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that features a candy kitchen. You can interpret the phrase creatively or stick to the traditional. Is it sweet? Ironic? Any genre will do. Go where the prompt leads!

(This mini 99-word memoir inspired by this 10/21/21 blog post)

Oh, the horror

Despite all the sinister ghoulishness of Halloween, the day isn’t about costumes or trick or treating to me. Even though I have fond memories of my folks turning the garage into a haunted house one year, Halloween for me is horror movies. And not modern horror movies that leave nothing to the imagination, but the good horror movies*.

Ok. Halloween is also about candy and I can’t resist those snack-sized bags of candy. Bags and bags that fill my cabinets and turn my kitchen into a candy kitchen.

Danger!

Stay away!

Sorry trick-or-treaters, the candy’s all mine, Mine, MINE!

###

*Definition of good horror movies: The Horror Incorporated Project.

Peek-a-boo

October 28, 2021

THE DETAILS: Friday Fictioneers: 1 picture, 100 words, scores of people from around the world sharing their creativity and vision. Feel free to join in, just visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields to find out how.

THE PROMPT:
This week’s photo courtesy of Douglas MacIlroy.

Peek-a-boo

The assignment was simple: paint the railings and catwalks, sealcoat the floor. A crew of four and we’re in and out in a day. What I didn’t know was we’d be working at Keck Observatory.

Talk about cool?

Looking past the MOSFIRE I was surprised to see a floor to ceiling mirror. Why’s that here? I guess scientists are as interested in how they look as they are in science?

Me being me, I put down my roller, stood, waved and took a selfie. Gotta get this on Instagram, I thought.

“Hey, movie star, get back to work!”

“Yeah, boss.”

###

Guy Clark, one of the best songwriters of our time, wrote this song about a special photograph. If you watch the video I hope you enjoy it. At the beginning of the song he explains how the photo came to be taken and he mentions Townes: “Me and Townes were in that house drunk on our ass“. He’s talking about fellow songwriter (someone who was every bit as poetically brilliant as Guy), Townes Van Zandt.

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