Tour Guide at Belton Sanitarium

The Washington County Fair opened yesterday. I suppose the reason they call it a Fair is because it’s only slightly above ho-hum, average at best. It would be nice if they held an exposition that was knock-your-socks-off fantastic, but I guess we don’t want to set the bar too high, now do we?

There are two kinds of weather at the fair—dust and mud. Some years we get both. The fair is always a treat for the senses. Flashing lights, barking carnies, Popcorn, cotton candy, and the scent of fresh vomit beneath the rides. What are some of your favorite memories?

If you are new to Friday Flash Fiction, our barker of 100 word stories is “One Crayon” Katy Wisoff-Fields. To learn how to win a stuffed teddy bear in this weekly exercise in madness, head over to her blog for instructions. To rent a box in the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bulltot

Olive studied the photograph of a middle-aged woman with dark curls wearing a T-shirt and matching high-top sneakers. She had been committed to Belton Sanitarium after being diagnosed with an incurable affliction.

Surveying the overgrown, supposedly haunted ruins, Olive imagined her grandmother, a victim of addiction, imprisoned behind the granite hospital walls.

“Grandpa said they had a hard time finding a straight-jacket small enough to fit her. It must’ve been terrifying,” Olive whispered. “But haunted? Nonsense.”

“Iz es itst, grandoter?”

Olive whipped around in time to see a tiny imp, dressing in purple, vanish like a fart in a whirlwind. 

Note – The translation for the Yiddish is “Is it now, Granddaughter?”

They say imitation is the purest form of flattery. That’s my intention this week, as I honor our fearless leader in my own twisted way.


71 Comments on “Tour Guide at Belton Sanitarium

  1. LMAO! I am definitely hooting and snorting here, Russell!
    The imp is laughing too hard to comment, I see… 😉

    Liked by 2 people

      • So much fun to read… and that intro.. you kill me!

        How’s the ear?


      • Did it make you want to crawl around on the ground beneath the rides?

        No pain in the ear, but I have had a lot of discomfort in my jaw on the side where the surgery was.


  2. Dear Twisted Carnie,

    I thought I was suffering from deja vu but was merely suffering from What the…Who? After mopping the spewed coffee from my keyboard, I laughed until I stopped. This one goes in my scrapbook. OMG!


    “One Crayon” (and it’s purple) Katy W(T)F

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear “One Crayon” Katy,

      I hadn’t written about your affliction in a while and thought it was past due. Hopefully, some poor, tortured soul will read this and turn from color addiction before it’s too late.

      Best wishes with the straight-jacket,
      Twisted Carnie

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I laugh so hard — not from reading the story, but from reading the comments. Oh .. only Russel could write that last line and not only get away with it — but cause me to spill by coffee.


    • Sorry about the coffee, Mike. Since you and Nan live close, you might swing by Belton sometime and try to catch a glimpse of the little purple imp.


  4. This was very funny.
    Well, at least by your standards, luggy.
    I am greatly impressed by the multiple weather types you have there.
    I the part of Scotland where I spent my formative weeks, the Fair was called The Shows.
    They mainly showed how difficult it is to have fun in a deluge.


    • We’re a simple people, CE. We don’t like our weather too complex.
      As far as having fun in a deluge, it all depends on who you’re under the water spout with.

      Liked by 1 person

      • One of the reasons I left Scotland was that the weather was too changeable.
        Spring, it rains.
        Summer, it rains.
        Autumn, it rains.
        Winter, it snows.
        Who can possibly handle these vagaries, I ask you?

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Only you could get away with this, Russell. And even now I wouldn’t be too sure you have. The imp has a long memory and a short temper, I heard. Stay safe, bro.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m a bit groggy at 3 p.m. this afternoon, eyes rolling upward and head falling downward. So it took me a second to realize what you’d done here, and then go back, now that I’m awake, and read it again 🙂


    • I don’t blame you. When I stay up until 3 in the afternoon I can barely keep my eyes open either. Hopefully, after two or three reads the humor will come through.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Been to the Washington County Fair many times and your description is spot on! I’m so glad I know you Russell, you always write a Pulitzer Prize piece! Love Olive! Great story!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for validating my description of the Wash. Co. Fair. I go about once every 5 years. They ruined it for me once they stopped having the girlie show.
      I’m more likely to win a Pullet-sir Prize for my article on “Running of the Chickens”


  8. Loved your intro. And if imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, there’s a head somewhere puffed up with purple delight. Nevertheless, best be careful if you get a package with a stuffed teddy bear and a note saying you’ve won first prize. Soak it in water overnight.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Great advice Christine. Nah. 😉 Delighted indeed.:D I’ll put the two stories away for Olive to read when she’s older and can enjoy the full impact of a well done parody. But don’t tell Russell I said so. I wouldn’t want him to get a swell head.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Christine,

      I took your advice and soaked the note in warm water overnight. It did soften it up some but stained the water a sickening shade of lavender. Is that supposed to mean something?

      What am I supposed to do with the bear? It came with a little hangman’s noose around its neck–a rather odd necktie if you ask me. Poor little fellow looks like he can hardly breathe.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I was unwell all day. But reading your stories and all the hilarious comments gave me the best dose of medicine. So, thank you Doctors Russell and Katy W(T)F, I can go to bed restored to health 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  10. It didn’t quite sound/read like you in the beginning, I had to look twice. Then I had a ‘huh’ and a ‘what’ moment until the penny dropped and I started laughing, which went all through the comments. Wonderful idea. But better watch your back from now on…

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Your pastichery is farting… oops… fighting fit. Loved this, Russel. And how flattered Rochelle must feel to be pastiched. Now, about that colour of your nose on the front of your blog…


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Mandie Hines Author

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