Damaged derrières

How many of you have attended a tent revival?  Mom dragged me to one in 1967. It was scheduled during the hottest week of the summer and held in large army-green canvas structures.  Inside, the heat and odors were suffocating. If bottled, the fragrance would’ve been labeled Eau de Gym Locker.

The evangelist was a silver-haired version of Ichabod Crane.  His boney fingers trembled even when he wasn’t pointing them at every lost sinner in the congregation. From his point of view, if you weren’t going to speak for an hour, why bother opening your mouth. Then came the altar call, which lasted a full thirty minutes. 

When we got home, I had to peel my clothes off and draped them over a chair. The next day they could stand by themselves. If Hell is anything like a tent revival, I sure don’t want to go.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the chirping beak who emcees this show is  Eleanor “Bird Woman of Belton” Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Bill Reynolds

The musical of group Ronnie, Ray, and Stevie, known as The Three Blind Mice, filed suit today seeking punitive damages against Eva MacDonald, wife of local farmer Ol’ MacDonald. 

The plaintiffs are asking for $3 million compensation for the loss of their tails, which they allege the defendant chopped off with a carving knife.

Lawyers for Mrs. MacDonald claim she acted in self-defense, fearing for her life. “The mice were chasing her. This lawsuit is clearly a promotional stunt to draw attention to their new album.”

The trio plans to release the recording under the name The Three Bob-Tailed Rodents.

Still Gettin’ Over It

A few weeks back my wife, Connie, went on a cleaning binge. According to the TV, Queen Elizabeth was fixin’ to turn 96 and the way Connie was working it appeared we would be hosting the celebration. My role in the preparations would be to scrub the toilet.

While polishing the porcelain throne, I wondered if the Queen did her own paperwork, or if one of the aides-de-camp attended to wiping the royal arse. At her advanced age, the terrain nust be the texture of a prune. Bending over the bowl, I inhaled deeply, begging the bleach-infused cleaner to flush the aforementioned image from my brain.

After recovering my senses, I installed a purple velvet cover over the ring and gently lowered the lid. Alas, the Queen never showed—she didn’t even call. How rude!

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our hostess, currently serving home detention in Belton, MO is Pity Party Shelley (P.P. for short—pun intended) Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

My neighbor, Carol, told me Jimmy was spending a lot of time at Sharon Peters trailer. When asked about it, he said he was just helping with a few chores. I had a good idea what chores he was helping with. 

Yesterday, I came home early. 

Jimmy wasn’t there. 

Grabbing my rolling pin, I marched down to Sharon’s trailer. When I walked in, she was wearing a purple lace teddy and Jimmy’s boxers were around his ankles. I caught her by the hair and knocked out a couple of teeth with the rolling pin. 

Jimmy ain’t feelin’ too hot neither.

Ring Around the Ankle

Lately, I’ve been feeling left out when listening to the conversation of friends my age and older. Most of them have some kind of aliment or medical condition they can ramble on about for hours. The only thing I had was an occasional flare-up of gout, which while extremely painful, was barely enough to rate an eyeroll among a crowd of suffering seniors.

The Good Lord must’ve taken notice of my silence on the sidelines. A few weeks ago, I noticed a tenderness under my right knee cap. The pain continued to grow, followed by inflammation. A visit to the orthopedic clinic revealed I had cracks in my meniscus (how’s that for medical terminology?).  On Monday, I underwent arthroscopic surgery and now have no trouble holding my own when the subject of medical maladies pops up in conversation. Boy, am I lucky or what?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the fastest moving feet in Belton, MO is Runny Babbit Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Roger Bultot

Outside the courtroom, Henderson spun Shelley around to face him. “What were you doing in there? Trying to get ten days for contempt?” Shaking his head, he grumbled, “I ought to knock two thousand off my offer for the car.”

“Too late.” Shelley handed him the envelope. “You’ve already written the check. Here’s the title. Now, go jump in your little Rabbit and hop, hop, hop all over town.”

She squeaked a pirouette in her purple PF Flyers and skipped down the hall into the waiting arms of Officer LePew, who fitted Shelley with her very own custom ankle monitor.

The Semi-Suite

The topic of today’s intro is nicknames. I’ve had several thrust upon me over the past sixty years and I’m sure most of you have been suited with a fitting sobriquet as well.  My dad was notorious for coining nicknames. One of my favorites was the renaming of a small creek on the Hancock farm, which Dad promptly dubbed, Footpussy River.

My father was so well known by his nickname that county officials named our street Pug Gayer Road. 

However, I challenge the Guinness World Records to find anyone who’s worn more nicknames than “What’s-Her-Name,” the illustrious leader of Friday Flash Fiction. If you scroll through my blog posts over the past ten-plus years, you’ll notice she’s worn over two hundred monikers—and counting.

Now, it’s your turn to play along. In the comment section, share a favorite nickname for yourself, a friend, a loved one, or someone you truly despise.  

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the Picasso of Pet Portraits is Michelle Angelo Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Brenda Cox

A female officer, who reeked of cigarette smoke, led Shelley to an open washroom. 

“You’ll find a towel, washcloth, and bar of soap over there.” The cop, whom Shelley had decided to name Piggy Le Pew, pointed to a small bench in the corner. 

“Get undressed and clean yourself up. When I come back, I want to see all that makeup gone. Understand? We don’t want any white face paint rubbing off on your new orange jumpsuit.” 

Shelley sniffed the soap. It smelled like insecticide. But what did it matter? It’s not like I’m going to the senior prom tonight.

A Hard Bargain

Watching the winter games on television has gotten my competitive juices flowing. I’ve started training for the 2024 Obese Olympics. If all goes according to plan, I expect to bring home the gold in several disciplines including The Bellyflop.

Getting in shape for the games requires a strict diet. I start my day with a large serving of biscuits and gravy, a half-pound of bacon, and six pancakes.  For lunch, it’s two Big Macs, large fries, and a chocolate shake. After my afternoon nap, I wake up starving and ready for a twenty-ounce T-bone, loaded baked potato, and three slices of apple pie smothered in ice cream.

The results have been amazing. I’ve had to cut large holes in the bibs of my overalls to keep the material from restricting my ever-growing gut.  Let’s hope the podium doesn’t collapse.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the Belton, Missouri used car salesperson known to drive a hard bargain is Illa Cheatum Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Bill Reynolds

“Good morning, Ms. Kohlen. I’m Richard Henderson, the attorney. You left me a voicemail regarding your car and legal problems. “Let’s deal with the most pressing issue first. I’m prepared to offer six thousand dollars for your 1984 Volkswagen Rabbit.”

What? Let’s talk about that after you get me out of jail.”

“Okay, how about seventy-five hundred?”

“No! I’m stuck in his hellhole and all you want to talk about is my car?”

Henderson grimaced. “All right, I can see you want to play hardball. Ten thousand—but that’s my final offer.”

Shelley sighed. “Let me think about it.”


*another excerpt from Criminal Mimes

Dirty Business

The other day I decided to purge some old files from my computer.  Right-clicking on the unwanted files, I selected “move to trash” from the dropdown menu.  Soon the mini dumpster in the bottom corner of my screen was overflowing with electronic garbage, so I clicked the “empty trash” button.

I have no idea where these trashed files go, but it stands to reason they wind up in an electronic landfill somewhere in cyberspace.  Once there, they join the millions of decaying spam emails and rotting recipes for failed fruitcake.  The stench is so overwhelming the cyber maggots must wear tiny nose clips.

According to the geeks at Tom’s Thumb Drives, the rising effluvia is creating a nebula of smog and threatening to choke the giant storage repository known as “The Cloud.”  If that happens, we’re all in for a cyber storm of epic proportions.  Better keep an umbrella and raincoat handy.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the tiny entrepreneur who is wanted for income tax evasion in seven galaxies is Marva the Martian Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Na’ama Yehuda

Arriving at the police station, Lowry helped Shelley from the car and led her down a long, dimly lit hallway. 

They stopped in front of a desk where a burly uniformed officer peered over his glasses at a computer screen. He looked up, studied Shelley from head to toe, and flashed a sly grin.

“It’s about time you brought one in decked out in full mime regalia. What did this one do Lowry, get into a yelling match with a parking meter?”

“Nah, even worse,” Lowry deadpanned. “She was arguing with a statue over who could collect the most pigeons.”

Upchucking Wood

Have you ever been watching TV or listening to the radio and decided to change channels when a commercial came on? If you’re like me, what you discovered is a hideous plot by advertisers to synchronize commercials.  Somehow, they manage to successfully block every route of escape.

It doesn’t matter if you’re watching the news, sports, or Uncle Zeb’s Cartoon Camp, your program is going to be interrupted by someone pushing drugs or auto insurance. Punching the remote is a waste of time and thumb energy. I bet someone in the booth even calls down to the field, “Hey, Coach, have one of your players fake an injury—it’s time for a commercial break.”

While synchronized commercials do provide adequate time go to the bathroom, cook dinner, and wash your car, I still find them extremely aggravating.  What pushes your buttons? 

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the tiny fairy who sprinkles all the photo prompts with Purple Pixie Dust is Tinker Belle Merlot Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Dale Rogerson

Hello. I’m Marty Woodchuck. You may remember my cousin, Gordon Dale Groundhog, who was brutally murdered a few years ago.

What you probably don’t know is why he was killed. In addition to being a top-notch weather forecaster, Gordon excelled at chucking wood. In fact, he was the odds-on favorite to win gold at the Wood Chucking Olympics.

Conspiracy theories abound as to who killed Gordon. Some blame the Chinese, others the Russians. 

Today, prosecutors uncovered evidence linking Rowdy Beaver to the crime. Beaver, who was having an affair with Gordon’s wife, is said to be hiding in Montreal, Canada.

The Dressing Room

Recently, a friend of mine referred to a mutual acquaintance as “one sharp cookie.” I know he meant this as a compliment to her intelligence, but the visual image that flashed in my head featured shards of glass and razor blades stuffed discreetly inside a round confection.  While she is a sweet person, I’m not sure she’d like to be called a “cookie”—unless of course, that was her actual name.

Speaking of compliments, a good buddy of mine once told me I was “sharp as a marble.” Naturally, I was flattered. Who wouldn’t be? Everyone knows marbles are perfect spheres, smooth and polished, with no sharp edges. Even if you swallow one, it’ll pass right through, slickernshit.

 What was the best compliment you ever received?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the lady who runs this show (and does Geritol commercials on the side) is Betty “Snarky” White Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Liz Young

“Have you been to the J. Jill store at Fashion Valley lately?” Mallory tucked a blonde lock behind her ear.

“No.” Raven blew a pink bubble and popped it. “Do they have any cute clothes for fall?”

“Totally. But the changing rooms, they like—barfed me out.”

“Really? How so?”

“For one thing, no hooks to hang your clothes. But what’s worse, the walls are made of glass. Ugggh . . . I was down to my thong when I saw people watching me. I literally died!”

“That’s grody to the max.” Raven popped another bubble. “So, what’d ya buy?”

the unwelcome wagon

Today, we’re going to discuss magazines. Why is it you can’t go into a waiting room without seeing the never popular Good HousekeepingBetter Homes & Gardens, and Southern Living?

Hidden in the plethora of advertisements, you’ll find articles with photos of neatly manicured homes. This is obviously the work of hired professionals who design and create these little edens.

What we need is some “real world” alternatives such as Messy Housekeeper, Nasty Gnomes & Gargoyles, and Northern Getting By. Name a magazine you’d like to see.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, little entrepreneur who runs this enterprise is Sidewalk Selling Sally Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Roger Bultot

Two men and a woman stood on the front steps. 

Lowry opened the door. “Can I help you?”

“Yes,” the woman said. “We’re with Neighborhood Watch. Is Shelley home?”

“No, Ms. Kohlen isn’t here, and yes, everything is fine.” He flipped open his wallet and showed her his badge. 

Anguish spread across the woman’s face. “Oh no . . . what happened? Is she in trouble?”

“I can’t go into that. But I’m sure she appreciates your concern.”

Shoulders slumped, the committee exchanged whispers, and trudged away.

“Who was that?” Blockson asked.

“Welcome Wagon. And they didn’t even bring cookies.” 

sloshing the delaware

I read an interesting article this week about sidekicks. The job description of a sidekick involves laughing at jokes that aren’t funny and making the hero (or late-night host) appear smarter than they really are. The sidekick can also be the butt of the jokes, which is where the “kick” comes in.

After all these years of going it alone, I’ve decided to take on a sidekick. I know the hours are horrible and the pay is less than nothing, but if you’re up for the challenge just drop me a note in the comments. I’m sure the two of us could knock ’em dead doing a comedy tour at nursing homes and insane asylums.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the little firecracker, who in 1976 created the first American flag made entirely of beer pull-tabs is Betsy Ross Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

“If you’re looking for a bargain, I can make you a real deal on this baby.” The salesman pointed to the GMC Vandura.

“This is the van George Washington drove across the icy Delaware Bridge to make a beer run on Christmas Eve. According to Once-upon-a-time-epedia, the colonial troops were pissed because the taverns closed early and they had no ale to wash down their Christmas dinner of boiled socks and shoe leather. As you can see, there’s plenty of room in the back. It can haul twenty-five kegs.”

Wow, twenty-five kegs!” The teenager peered inside. “Who was George Washington?”

Mandie Hines Author

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