In many ways, 1969 was a memorable year. Fifty years ago, man first set foot on the moon, Woodstock was held in upstate New York, and the Beatles crossed Abbey Road.
Somewhere there is a fifty-year-old who took his first step, got potty trained, or whose uncle smoked his first joint—and took a trip without ever leaving the farm.
Not all these events are worthy of reenactment (except for the good bowel movement), but are still pivotal moments in our lives. What memory would you like to share from 1969?
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the Purple Pixie who posts our photo prompt each week is Aelfwine Twiggy 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.
I don’t know about you, but I’m starting to miss telemarketers. Making hateful remarks and slamming down the phone on a recorded message leaves me feeling empty and unsatisfied.
What if I want to pull a prank, or try to get extended vehicle coverage on our 1948 Ford truck? Who can I chew out over options to refinance my zero-balance credit cards? To quote Lucinda Williams, “You Took My Joy. I Want It Back.”
I guess the only thing I can do now is call Customer Service in New Delhi and ask for help with a deck of Bicycle playing cards that’s missing one of its Jokers.
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the Twisted Sister who ties our brains in knots each week is Dee Snidely 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.
Remember when TV stations had local programing? You do? Then you must be as old as Perry Block. For those under forty, let me explain. Back in the golden era of television, stations would do anything to gain viewers and improve ratings. One of the most effective ways to accomplish this was by bringing local children into the studio for fifteen seconds of fame.
Every station in our viewing area (all three of them) had a “Santa Show” where the kids would sit on Santa’s lap and stare dumbfounded at the camera while Santa attempted to gain their attention long enough to learn who they were and what they wanted for Christmas. (A ridiculous premise since he’s already supposed to know those things.)
My favorite local show was Uncle Zeb’s Cartoon Camp. It came out of channel 8 in Tulsa. Uncle Zeb dressed like an old prospector and was forever popping adult oriented one-liners. If the temperature was below freezing, like it is here today, Zeb would proclaim, “Hey, kids, it’s Brass Billy Goat weather out there.”
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“Hey, Randy, why do you think they boarded up the windows like that and spray-painted ‘No Trespassing’ on the building?”
“To attract attention. It’s a new marketing ploy.”
“That doesn’t make much sense.”
“Sure it does. Anytime you tell people NOT to do something, they can’t help but do it. For example, hang a ‘Wet Paint’ sign on a park bench and see how many people touch it to see if it’s wet.”
“Ah, that explains the gaps between the plywood.”
“Exactly, they’ll line up in droves to peek through those cracks.”
“But isn’t that the home of a supermarket gossip rag?”
“Yep, The National Inquirer.”
I heard a great piece of advice last week. “Don’t waste time judging yourself. Plenty of people are already doing that, and you don’t want to put any of them out of work.”
Just think of the freedom that statement offers. Now, instead of worrying about your own stupidity and social gaffes, you can stop beating yourself up and focus on something more productive, like what shade of purple to dye that unruly lock of hair that tends to flop down over your left eye.
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the capable engineer who keeps this train from derailing is Kacey Jones 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.
*the above is an excerpt from “One Idiot Short of a Village.”
When we hear stories about a particularly heinous crime, someone will always remark, “There’s a special place in Hell for people like that.”
What exactly does that statement imply? That the vile offender will be granted an exalted position in Hades as a reward for “Excellence in Evil?” If so, where does this leave the common, everyday sinner when cast into the fires of eternal damnation?
These are today’s burning questions (pun intended). Feel free to share your views in the comments section.
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our stage director, who always manages to connect with the audience, is “Sparky” Alma Edison 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.
“I’m on the nominating committee to fill that vacancy on the board of directors.” Richard’s voice was soft and reassuring. “You’d make a great board member.”
Edith blushed and bit her lower lip to conceal an ever-widening smile. She visualized herself on the annual report cover.
“The hot tub is full,” he said.
“Sounds good, but I didn’t bring a swimsuit.”
“Neither did I.” Richard flashed an impish grin.
She removed her dress and draped it across a chair in front of the mirror. “Edith Cox, board member,” she announced to her reflection. I like the sound of that.
We just returned from a weeklong, fact-finding mission along the Missouri River. At the insistence of Detective Lowry, we spent one night in the thriving metropolis of Belton, MO.
The purpose of this stop was to locate, and investigate, the home of that dastardly criminal mime known as “Le Petite Velour.” Unaware of our mission, she graciously welcomed us into her abode. While Connie kept her busy with idle chitchat, I scanned the premises for Do-Not-Remove tags. None were to be found. One can only conclude they were squirreled away with the tags stolen from nearby homes and stashed in an invisible box (also stolen)—which I was unable to locate.
Ironically, Ms. Velour’s residence is only a few blocks from the Belton Police Station.
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the director of this weekly production of 100-word stories is Zelda Rubinstein 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.
“You guys were great,” the producer said. “I can’t remember ever working with anyone quite like you. Your performance today put Hollywood back forty years.”
It was an “Aww, shucks” moment for Connie and I. We looked at each other and blushed. The glory days had returned to Hollywood.
The roar of applause followed us through the back door and spilled onto the patio. Members of the production crew came over to offer congratulations and shake hands.
The way they carried on, you’d have thought Colonel Sanders had just arrived with a bucket of fried chicken.
*the above is an excerpt from “Saving Hollywood,” and can be found in my second book, One Idiot Short of a Village.
“From the moment I picked up your book until I laid it down, I convulsed with laughter. Some day I intend on reading it.” – Groucho Marx
I learned a new word this week. Pentheraphobia is a fear of your mother-in-law. While I was never afraid of mine, I know people who cower at the mere mention of their mother-in-law’s name—and with good reason.
Mothers are a protective lot. Sometimes overly protective. If her Baby stops by, or calls to vent about a relationship problem with a spouse, whose side do you think Mommy is going to take?
The tension escalates when Baby’s spouse appears to be “a lazy, no good, worthless piece of horse dung.” To which the spouse responds by pointing out Mommy’s exceptional talent as “an overbearing, Nazi witch.” Now, the table is set for a long and resentful relationship.
Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our resident advice guru on Outlaw In-Laws is Jeanne Phillips 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.
Detective Lowry’s phone hadn’t stopped ringing since the release of the murder victim’s name. Confessions poured in. At first only ten people admitted to the crime, but that number had passed twenty-five and was still growing each day.
It seems everyone who’d encountered the old Scot wanted to see him get his just deserves. According to Medical Examiner Gayer, the causes of death were drowning, strangulation, blunt trauma, knife wounds, and gunshots, among other things.
“This man truly died a thousand deaths,” Gayer said.
“It could’ve been worse.” Lowry shook his head. “At least he wasn’t trampled by pink pachyderms.”
We were at my daughter’s house the other day and she was watching “Hollywood Medium” on TV. This is a show where a handsome young man scribbles on a notepad while visiting with celebrities about their deceased relatives.
It seems to me that people in the income bracket these actors enjoy could afford someone a step above “Medium.” Why settle for average, or middle-of-the-road when you could order a “Supreme?”
If I was going to the time, trouble, and expense of hiring a psychic, I’d at least try to get one who could provide me the winning numbers for the next Mega-Millions Jackpot.
If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our wave-swept leader (who writes to her invisible friend, “Friday,” on Wednesdays) is Robin Crusoe 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 – Susan Eames
Darren was a patient man, but his patience was wearing thin. The minutes turned into hours, and the days into weeks.
From his perch high above the sand, he scanned the distant horizon in hopes of seeing a tiny spec that would grow into a boat or seaplane.
He’d grown accustomed to the long days, and the even longer, lonely nights. The only thing that kept him going was a dream of deliverance. Shaking from the hunger pangs he punched in the 800 number and waited.
“Hello. Domino’s?” He shouted into the phone. “Where’s my damn pizza?”
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