The C-Flat Diner

The dry-erase board in my office has the words “Attitude of Gratitude” written across the top. They’ve been there for at least a year and I have no plans to removing them. They serve as a constant reminder to count my blessings, not just at Thanksgiving, but every single day of the year.  

We all have good number of things to be thankful for. In addition to my health, family, and neighbors, I’m extremely grateful for all of you and your sense of humor. Thank you for stopping by, reading, commenting, and occasionally snickering at something I’ve written. Your presence, patience, and perseverance is much appreciated.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our Anniversary Girl and Jan Wayne Field’s “Diva of Desire” is the irrepressible Esmeralda 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 - Ted Strutz
copyright – Ted Strutz

The C-Flat Diner had everything going for it except customers, waiters, cooks, and food. The tables were spotless, the view spectacular, and the leather-clad menu, elegant.

Chrystal champagne glasses dangled from a rack above the bar. Mouths agape, their silent cries echo down the empty hall of a would-be morgue.

Evening falls and the hardwood floor blushes with embarrassment, devoid of the rhythmic cadence of stiletto heels. Yawning seats long to caress the curves of soft, smooth derrieres. But no one comes.

Where is everyone?

They’re all at home spending time with their families, you idiot. It’s Thanksgiving.

26 Comments on “The C-Flat Diner

  1. Dear Delbert,

    For a brief moment I thought this would be a completely serious piece. But, as always, and happily so, laughs are on the menu. Somewhere between O. Henry and Groucho Marx, Id say.
    You are one of those I’m thankful for, Sir. Friday Fictioneers is what it is because of authors like you and the reason it couldn’t die. Someday I’ll return that joy buzzer, but not today.




  2. “Attitude of Gratitude” i like that a lot 🙂 enjoyed reading your piece, couldn’t help but laugh at the description of the seats. also loved the description of glasses, mouths agape, very lovely. 🙂


  3. Hi Russell,
    Taking a break from writing this week and just reading stories by my favorite writers. C flat, wouldn’t that be B? I’d write more, but we’re off to McDonald’s for our Thanksgiving meal. Ron


  4. Great descriptive writing, you brought us right into the center of the inactivity. Hope you had a wonderful day.


  5. Loved this! One of the things that makes me so thankful for Friday Fictioneers is the never-ending supply of humor and mirth from authors such as your dear self. So many of us explore the dark side…you are a brilliant bright spot every week, making us laugh and promoting the flow of smile-induced endorphins. So…thank you!


  6. Dear Russell,

    One of your best and that’s saying a lot. I’m thankful for you. One day we’ll meet and fill up that restaurant. Cheers and…




  7. I’m ready for something awful or sad at the end thanks to the haunting build-up – and then the surprise joke! Very well done.


  8. Perry said it with great eloquence and I wholeheartedly agree. You baited the line and the fish were caught – hook, line and sinker.


  9. Humor, clearly being your “forte,” you just evoked a few “measures” of laughs out of me. “Sonata” serious story, which is good.

    Hope you had a great Thanksgiving.

    “Chordially” yours,



  10. Hilarious – and so sweetly written. All I could say after your last line, was “oh, god, it’s perfect!” And then I just laughed and I am still laughing as I type.
    I’m afraid I spent Thanksgiving in the empty diner….


  11. Ha ha! I thought you were going to say the it was the Apocalypse or something. Of course, it’s Thanksgiving!! I hope you had a great one, Russell. As you can see, I’m late getting to this party this week. Thanks for the laughs. I loved your story.


  12. I hope you had a Happy Turkey Day Russell. This post reminded me of the Thanksgiving I had with my family in San Francisco about 45 years ago. My father wanted to show how thankful he was to my mother and grandmother by taking us all out to dinner on Thanksgiving. We headed to our usual favorite restaurant, a rib joint on California Street called the Hick’ry Pit, only to discover it was closed! My father drove all over the city looking for a restaurant, or at least a C-flat diner, that was open, but every place was closed. We ended up at a crummy Lyons coffee shop in Daly City. Ironically, that’s the Thanksgiving I remember best from my youth.


    • I can understand that. When things go well, and according to plan, they seem to fade quickly from our memory. But when things go wrong, we hold on to those memories until our dying day.


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