It Ought to be a Crime

I think everyone ought to spend the night in jail at least once. It teaches a lesson in humility and gives you a whole new appreciation for many of the things we take for granted—like toilet paper. You also learn how to sleep with one eye open and that not all Asians are good at math.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the warden of the Grammar Correctional Facility for Wayward Writers is Bernice “The Baton Bearer” (or B.B., as we like to call her) 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 - Jan Wayne Fields
copyright – Jan Wayne Fields

(to be read with a British accent)

Good evening, I’m Robin Leach.

Welcome to Lifestyles of the Rich and Infamous. Tonight we’ll take a behind the scenes look at celebrities serving hard time at the Ritz-Carlton Correctional Facility in beautiful Sun Valley, California.

Our hostess, that divine Diva in Orange, Martha Stewart, will share the secrets of designing a proper table setting in such squalid conditions.

After dinner, Robert Downey Jr. will give us the dope on which prison pharmaceuticals to avoid.

Then, we’ll join Bernie Madoff for the pros and cons of insider trading inside the joint.

And finally, Mike Tyson will tease the senses by nibbling your ear before saying goodnight.

Stay with us, won’t you.


And that’s not all. My publisher is offering a special deal on the Kindle edition of “The Perils of Heavy Thinking.” Between now and February 14th (the sly dog) you can order this fun filled tome for the ridiculously low price of only $.99. That’s right. Better than a Big Mac, more satisfying than sex, and won’t rot your teeth. Just click on the title and place your order.Book Cover1


65 Comments on “It Ought to be a Crime

  1. Dear Robin,

    There’s prison and then there’s prison. Between Robert Downy Jr. sharing the dope and Mike Tyson nibbling ears I contracted a case of the giggles for which there’s no antidote.




  2. I read everything in a British accent, Russell! Some lovely subtlety in your humour on this one again – you’re on top form this year!


  3. What a great idea using the prompt as a luxurious prison for famous former incarcerated figures! I won’t stay with them, no thank you, but I’d love some straight dope on insider trading inside the joint — a terrific double drug, double insider trading reference. Just keep Martha Stewart away from me, think I”d rather bunk down with Mike Tyson. Great work, Big Russ!


    • I hope O.J. doesn’t track me down and pull the magic glove trick on me. Didn’t mean to slight him. It’s hard to get every celebrity in with only 111 words.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Really enjoyed the story, Russ, but I’d like to hear more about your time in prison and your firsthand experiences that obviously informed the intro, if not the story.



    • I knew I could count on you to ask about that, Janet. It was a long time ago in another galaxy. I was arrested for minor in possession (twice actually) and once for marijuana. My buddy and I spent the night in the drunk tank. It was a miserable learning experience. That’s why the correctional facility in central Arkansas is referred to as Tucker Tech.


      • I’m pretty tame now, but your should have seen me in my teen years in the Andromeda Galaxy. Those were some wild times!


  5. I concur with the comment about OJ Simpson. A sad omission which may possible affect my viewing selections for the evening. 🙂 I’d be pleased to read your research notes…


    • Well, obviously he popped up when researching celebrity felons, but I was afraid he would track me down and rip out my lungs if I included him in the same flash with Martha Stewart.


  6. Didn’t know you did time, Russell. I agree that would be more interesting than all the others put together. That was quite a group you assembled. Hilarious. 😀 — Suzanne


  7. Dear Russell,

    My British accent is not so hot so i read it as Robin Leach…

    Loved the cast of inmates and their areas of expertise and I enjoyed hearing that your publisher is such a magnanimous fellow. Here’s hoping you’re never short of TP and that you always have a calculator handy.




    • You know, I’ve been tinkering with the idea of writing one with a Hawaiian accent. Yes, I was devastated to learn that about the Asians. I hope they don’t accuse me of racial profiling.


  8. I read the whole thing in Robins voice too, with that theme music running in the background of my mind as well. Too bad this is fiction, I would have loved to see that episode were it real!!!


  9. Fun stuff as always, Russell! You can be sure that wherever she may be, the Duchess of the Orange Jumpsuit, Martha Stewart certainly will be puttin’ on the ritz.

    All my best,
    Marie Gail


  10. Okay, I admit it: you’re still the king of flash-fiction comedy. And I wish I had a digital reader. I can only imagine what’s inside “The Perils of Heavy Thinking.”


  11. Well, I hope I never spend a night in jail, Russell. I’m sure it would make for great stories, however. Maybe I should commit a crime, hmm? Funny, as always! Great read.


    • I hope you never spend the night in jail either, Amy. Here’s an idea. Put on an orange jumpsuit and go shopping at Walmart. I bet you could get a story out of that.


  12. Dear Russell, Great story and very well done. “The Ritz” is a great idea for a correctional institution! Love it and orange isn’t a very good color for anyone. Nan 🙂


    • I believe that sheriff in Arizona mad the male inmates wear pink. I guess the old black & white stripes are no longer in style.


  13. Such a great cast of characters I can’t see anyone missing your show.
    Thanks to your publishers my Kindle just got one book heavier. 🙂


  14. Brilliant, love the cast of ‘inmates’ would love to be a fly on the wall when they all get together! I’ll be placing an order for what promises to be a hilarious read too.
    Well done Russell, on both counts.


    • Maybe they could squeeze you in during cocktail hour. Thanks for the order, Dee. You should get a few grins and chuckles from it.


  15. Nice one, per usual, Russell. You’ve captured each of the character flaws and records of the celebrities here. I kept thinking there’s another phrase for the ear… but I can’t remember. Another turn of a phrase, that would be right up your alley. 😉


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