The Shallow End of the Gene Pool

Well, I made it back from my four-day sabbatical in the wilderness (otherwise known as Silver Dollar City Campground in Branson, Missouri). Unlike Jesus, I didn’t fast for forty days, but I was tempted by the Devil.

Satan showed up with some beer and started ragging me about all the poor, hard-working Americans at the brewery who count on me for a paycheck.

Then he quoted Babe Ruth and said, “If you don’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams will be shattered. It’s better for you to drink this beer and let their dreams come true than to be selfish and worry about your liver.” How can you argue with logic like that?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our emcee—and the star of our show—is Bobbi Jo Barker 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.

-CJH WARNING – The post below contains crude, juvenile humor.

copyright – Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

 

Arvel loved submarines. As a youngster, he used to lie on his back in the bathtub and holler, “Periscope up!”

He joined the navy right out middle-school, having completed each of the last three grades twice.

Arvel had no problem treading water and could float like a Baby Ruth candy bar*, even propelling himself along, providing his diet contained the optimum mixture of broccoli and beans.

The highlight of his military career came while stationed in New England. Arvel led a group of drunken sailors protesting higher liquor taxes in what later became known as the famous Boston Pee Party.


* see this clip from the movie Caddyshack

 

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The Joys of Watching Moss

Since retiring, I’ve had to brush up on some of the skills I hadn’t used in a while. There’s always something to do around here and it’s really helps to be incompetent. If not, chances are I’ll be assigned more chores than I care to perform.

Being incompetent takes a lot of forethought and planning for most people, but for me, it just seems to come naturally. When I size up a task or project, I don’t even have to think about how to screw it up. It just happens. How’d I get to be so lucky?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the cat-herder who drives this clowder of 100-word authors is Jessie Chisholm Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Sandra Crook

You know what I love best about being a professional moss watcher, Rochelle? It requires such a high level of focus and Zen-like concentration that I sometimes fall into a meditative trance. Has that ever happened to you?

More times than I can count, Sandra. Last week, I got so caught up in the action that pigeons mistook me for a statue. It took three days to get the white washed out of my hair, and girl at Belton Laundry refused to clean the last blouse I took in. Nowadays, you’ll never catch me watching moss without a hat.

 

 

The Ugly Stick

Monday night, I ordered a sandwich at an Arby’s in Fayetteville. The young lady who took my order appeared to be 19 to 21years old (a college student?).

“Got a name?” she asked. Naturally, my first thought was a smart-ass remark, but I simply replied, “Russell.” She keyed it in on the register and handed me my ticket. It read, “RUSTLE.”

While I’ve been known to shuffle through a pile of dry leaves, I’ve never had the urge to steal cattle. I wasn’t sure if she was trying to be funny, or if she typically slept through English class. Where the hell are the Spelling & Grammar Police when you need them?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our facilitator is graduate cum laude from Walla Walla Bing Bang  Art & Drama Institute, the infamous Le Petite Voleur Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Roger B. Cloister

There are several types of beating sticks on the market.

One is the never popular Ugly Stick. You may know someone who’s been beaten with one of these. Or perhaps they fell from the top of an Ugly Tree and struck every branch on the way down.

Sadly, no amount of make-up or cosmetic surgery can restore the beauty stolen by an encounter with the Ugly Stick. To make matters worse, the ugly gene becomes embedded in the DNA and passed down for twelve generations.

If you have this gene, don’t blame your wife for having an affair with the mailman.

 

 

 

 

 

Lost Between the Lines

Have you ever been accused of rambling? Are you the kind of person who likes to talk just to hear their head rattle? Me neither.

People like us don’t mince words. We get right to the point. If you ask us what time it is, we’re not going to spend half-a-day telling you how to build a watch.

Do you know someone who does? I bet you do. You may even live next door to one of these talk-a-holics. Let it all out. Tell me how they drive you up the wall.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our head seamstress and fabricator of 100-word stories is Betsy Ross Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Sandra Crook

 

Coffee spewed from the chief’s nose and mouth.

“You want to do WHAT? Lowry, you’ve lost your freakin’ mind!”

“I know bringing in mimes for a line-up sounds unusual, Chief, but how many mimes can there be in the Kansas City area. We’ve got some good photos of the suspect, and Mr. Wingnut volunteered to look over the line-up.”

“Two mimes would be two too many. And how do you propose to find these mimes?”

The chief rose and walked around the desk.

“Do you have a mime detector?” He made a sweeping motion as if searching for explosives.


*an excerpt from Criminal Mimes

 

 

 

Tone Deaf

When you’re stuck in traffic, have you ever noticed how many people in the cars around you are picking their nose? A friend of mine pointed it out one day. We counted twenty-two pickers from the city of Rogers to our exit in southeast Springdale (approx. 1.4 pickers per mile).
According to Ripley’s Believe It or Don’t, there’s actually a name for this. The act (or art) of picking your nose is called Rhinotillexis. Don’t ask me how to pronounce it, but it sounds like a great name for a heavy metal rock band. I expect a band with that name to “boldly probe where no finger has gone before.”
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our facilitator is Liz “Twitchy Finger” Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.
copyright – Anshu Bhojnagarwala

 

“Did you hear about Schroeder from the Peanuts cartoon?” Penny asked.

Bjorn shook his head. “No, what happened?”

“He disappeared while on holiday in Scotland. The authorities spent over two years searching for him. Initially, they thought he might’ve been kidnapped, but now they presume he was murdered.”

“Are there any suspects in the case?”

“Just one. According to witnesses, there was a tall, elderly gentleman who became incensed at Schroeder’s non-stop piano playing.”

“That’s terrible. Have police been able to gather enough evidence to link him to Schroeder’s disappearance?”

“No, and they’ve not found Schroeder’s body either.”

 

 

Deli Dreamer

How good is your memory? I like to think mine is pretty good, although sometimes when I go from one room to another to get something I have a hard time remembering what I went there to get.
To keep my recollections of the past in order, I file them in two categories, the Memorable and the Forgettable. The Memorable includes births, celebrations, and fun stuff. These memories are pleasant, but often fuzzy and lack detail. The Forgettable is comprised of events such as prepping for a colonoscopy, root canals, and slamming a car door on my fingers. My recall of these incidents is vivid and crystal clear.
Now it’s your turn. Please share a favorite memory or something you’d rather forget.
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our hostess (who is writing a novel on the joys of being vertically challenged, entitled “Short Women”) is Louisa May Alcott Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.
copyright – Jean L. Hays
Decorating cakes at a grocery store bakery was hardly the dream job Shelley had in mind after earning a master’s degree from Walla Walla Bing Bang Art Institute.
She’d always loved art. Her mother often joked that Shelley was born with a purple crayon in her hand. Over the years, she mailed dozens renderings of “Winky” in response to the “Draw Me” ads in newspapers and magazines.
The art instruction school’s reply was always the same. You appear to have talent. Submit again when you’re older.
Finally, at age thirty-two, she was accepted.

*speaking of memory, I may have posted this excerpt from Criminal Mimes previously. I honestly can’t remember. If so, that post was neither memorable or forgettable.

Gilded Gossip

People in the workforce get one to two days off every week and vacation time based on their years of service. I have been retired now for over 16 months without a single day off. I can’t even call in sick and sneak off fishing. It’s ridiculous and unfair.

With the amount of stuff retired people have to do, and the limited number of hours we have to work with, you’d think the Department of Labor would step in and rectify this terrible injustice. After all, we spent our entire life working and paying taxes, and just because we’re retired doesn’t mean they can walk all over us.

I encourage all of you, retired or not, to contact your representatives in Congress, Senate, Parliament, etc., and urge them to pass legislation to address this critical issue.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our on-site bloggers rights activist is Susan Bee-ann “Tony” Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Rochelle Wisoff-Fields
Linda put on her best plastic smile and edged closer to Michael as they pretended to mingle.
A few of the women offered pathetic smiles, then turned to gossip with the nearest prima donna about the little tramp across the room who didn’t know the difference between dressing sexy and looking like a slut.

Two hours into the affair, the delusional beauty queens let down their guards. One even pretended to be nice.

She tried to convince Linda that she was no longer a member of the Wicked Step-Sister Sorority—Stab-Ya, Stab-Ya, Die.

But it was just the wine talking.

Dinner & Drinks

Bumper stickers have long been a part of American culture. People apply them to their automobiles to express their political views, advertise their sexual preference, brag on their honor roll student, or just to say, “Hey, look at me. I’m an Idiot.”

While you won’t see one on my automobile, I do enjoy the ones that are cleverly worded and funny. Here are a few of my favorites.

  • The weather is here, wish you were beautiful
  • My kid can beat up your honor roll student
  • Horn broken, watch for finger

What are some of your favorites?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our Blog Donna (who made the “Good Behavior” list at Jackson County Correctional Facility) is Gertrude Lythgoe Wisoff-FieldsIf you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Anshu Bhojnagarwala

 

On camping trips, a lot of families opt for simple dinner fare such as hotdogs or cold-cut sandwiches. Not us. To ensure that our children got to enjoy a genuine camping experience, Connie insisted on charred animal flesh grilled over an open flame.

Nothing heightens the bliss of a weekend excursion more than hunkering over red-hot coals on a 104-degree day.

After supper, the mosquito clan dropped by for cocktails. It was a rather large family reunion. All their kinfolks from surrounding campsites buzzed by for a quick bite and a double-shot of Bloody Connie, Bloody Russell, and Bloody Kids.


*the above is an excerpt from “Adventures in Camping”

Steamy Windows

Who remembers when they saw or heard their first phone pager? My first question was who needed one and why?. When a pager started beeping or buzzing in a crowd, everyone assumed it must belong to a doctor or some other critical profession where being able to contact that person was a matter of life or death. Otherwise, why would anyone want to be tethered with such a short rope?

It’s interesting how attitudes change and how quickly the public can embrace new technology. In today’s world, being “connected” is considered an absolute necessity. And if you fail to answer your phone or respond to a text within three minutes people accuse you of intentionally ignoring them. Standard excuses for not responding immediately include;

  • My phone was on the charger
  • I was on the pot
  • Wheel of Fortune was on

What’s your favorite “go to” excuse?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the Gorilla Glue who holds this band of misfits together is Koko No-Go Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Ted Strutz

“There used to be a drive-in theater right here.” Mr. Carroll made a sweeping motion with his right hand.

“The concession stand and projector room was there.” He pointed to a pile of rubble. “And the screen stood at the far end of that thicket.”

“Wow,” whispered his grandson. “People watched movies outdoors?”

“Yeah, but most of the action took place inside the cars.”

“You mean like virtual reality?”

“No.” Mr. Carroll chuckled. “See that old car? That’s where Speedway Randy was conceived. I still remember what was showing that night.”

“What was it Grandpa?”

“Invasion of the Body Snatchers.”

 

Subtle Aspirations

Last week we tackled the delicate issue of how to eat an animal cracker. Today, we’ll address a less violent act of dining, how to use a paper napkin. Upon observing a group of diners last night, I can say with absolute certainty that most napkin users fall into two categories; the Folder, and the Wadder.

The Folder gently folds his napkin in half, or quarters, before gently wiping his mouth. This method allows the user to refold the napkin multiple times, always having a clean surface to work with. The Wadder scrunches the napkin into a ball and swabs at his mouth as if he’s polishing his favorite pair of shoes. He rotates the ball after each swab, always having a clean surface to work with.

Both methods prove to be effective. How do you use a napkin?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the resident authority on 100-word count etiquette is Elizabeth Post-Toasties Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise of madness, head over to her blog for step-by-step instructions. To view the ensemble of practicing fic-titioners in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Dale Rogerson

 

“Keith, why the duct tape on the door?”

“My neighbor has been spying on me, Neil. She’s a young widow, very attractive.”

“Why would she be spying on you?”

“Recently, I’ve been flirting with the idea of joining a nudist colony. So I thought I’d get comfortable by practicing at home.”

“But why just use patches of tape? She can still see in.”

“Based on the angle from her window, she can only see part of me. The taped section hides my modesty.”

“Has it proved to be effective?”

“Yes. So far, she’s brought me two pies and bread pudding.”

 

 

Mandie Hines Author

Horror, Psychological Thrillers, Poetry, Flash Fiction

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