Footwork

Good news! Prunes are making a comeback. This shriveled fruit has long been maligned because her name is similar to that snob, Prude. But last night, I saw a new TV ad where a group of active, young people were fighting over a bag of prunes like it was the second coming of Doritos.

My mother served our family stewed prunes when I was a kid. After reconstituting the dried fruit in boiling water, she would refrigerate the gooey conglomeration for at least 24 hours before sneaking it onto the table. I remember fishing lumps out of the purplish-brown sludge and thinking, “This doesn’t taste like stew.”

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the 100-word chef, who can constitute a story from even the most ancient, dried-up photograph, is Matilda Brady 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 – J. Hardy Carroll

“Hi, Blanche. Long time no see. What’ve you been up to?”

“Working. I got a part-time job at the boxing place.”

“Isn’t that owned by Amazon? What do you do there, package items in cardboard containers?”

“Oh no, Marge. It isn’t that kind of boxing. It’s a place where young men with firm, muscular bodies workout in silk underwear.”

“Really? That sounds interesting. What’s your job?”

“I’m a dance instructor.”

“These men dance? Like Chippendales?”

“I wish, but no. I just help with their footwork.”

“What happens if they try to get fresh with you?”

“Pow! Right in the kisser.”

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Wardrobe Malfunction

Last night, Connie and I were talking about commercials targeting seniors (i.e. old people). In those thrillling days of yesteryear, each product had its own catch phrase or clever jingle that etched its way into your brain cells never to be forgotten. How many of you remember such clasics as, “Plop, plop, fizz, fizz” and “Please don’t squeeze the Charmin.”

My mother was a soap opera addict. Their progression of ads went something like this; Denture adhesive (we all have to eat), followed by constipation or diarrhea (take your pick), and finishing up with toliet paper (the job is never over until the paperwork is done). What were some of your favorites from the 60s and 70s?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, our advocate for fresh-wiped 100-word stories is Doris Whipple 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- Marie Gail Stratford

“Did you hear about Rosa’s faux pas on New Year’s Day?”

“No. She was going to be in the parade in Pasadena, wasn’t she? What happened?”

“Oh she was in the parade all right—on display in all her glory—if you want to call it that.”

“What do you mean?”

“Her float barely made it onto the street when she started shedding her petals—right there on national TV.

“That must have been embarrassing.”

“She claimed it was a wardrobe malfunction, but never blushed, just sat up tall and proud. Now, they’ve named a rose after her—Lady Godiva.”

Lady Godiva rose

 

Snow Job

Recently, I’ve started humming a lot. Connie says I didn’t do that before my hearing loss accident. She did some research on the intranet and evidently there’s a name for my condition; Musical Ear Syndrome.

Some people hear Symphonies, Rock & Roll, Country, or Gospel. So far, there are no reports of people hearing Rap (that would be a living hell). While my condition may be a little annoying to others, they can always change the channel just by giving my ear a twist.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the little keyboard tap dancer who hosts our 100-word ditties is Curly Templestein 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

One advantage of bellybutton lint farming is the entire crop can be grown and harvested without the aid of expensive farm implements. You don’t have to worry about drought, floods, or swarms of locusts. Occasionally, a dog tick might take up residence in your money-maker, but it’s nothing rubbing alcohol and tweezers can’t take care of.

According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the seasonal peak in North America occurs on Valentine’s Day. The additional belly-to-belly contact brought on by holiday celebrations has proven to stimulate lint production—providing participants keep their shirts on before, during, and after vigorous physical contact.


*the above is an excerpt from “The Ins & Outs of Bellybutton Lint Farming.” The complete story in available in my new book, One Idiot Short of a Village available on Amazon in paperback or Kindle.

Feel the Burn

I fear that our fearless leader is working too hard. Yesterday, I had to scold her, and remind her that loafing is important too. When she fails to do her share of the loafing, then I have to pick up the slack. I’m sure you can imagine how stressful is it to double-up on slacking and frittering away the hours just because someone else won’t do their part.

To prevent this from becoming a trend, I’m recommending that those of you who are feeling energetic, creative, and desire to feel a sense of accomplishment, visit my favorite website, Despair.com. There you will find dozens of Demotivational posters to put a damper on that enthusiam and help you pull your head out of the clouds. (You can thank me later.)

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the overworked artist who rides herd on our 100-word stories is Georgia O’Keeffe Burns Wisoff-Fields (boy, that’s a mouthful). 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

I plodded down the hall with the speed and enthusiasm of a death-row inmate approaching the gallows. On the way, I contemplated my last words before the executioner’s paddle would bruise my tender buttocks.

The door was open and the principal, Mr. Kerr, sat behind his desk filling out some type of paperwork. It could’ve been a report on the number of spankings in the last thirty days, or a requisition for new paddles.

Rumor had it that Hillerich & Bradsby, the famous baseball bat manufacturer, had expanded their “educator series” by releasing a new product known as the Louisville Swatter.


*an excerpt from “The Backside of Knowledge,” which can be read in its entirety by ordering One Idiot Short of a Village.

The Gap

Have you ever done something right when you had no clue what you were doing? It makes it real hard to repeat the accomplishment. One of the ironies in life is that success teaches us very little, while failure is a sage professor who burns every lesson into our memory.

 Recently, I started working on a presentation on How to Write Humor. In the course of my research I discovered there were several things I was doing right despite my ignorance, and uncovered some new tools. One of keys to writing humor is “thinking like a five-year-old.” How am I doing on that one?

 If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the straw boss who oversees our 100-word stories is Rosie “The Word Riveter” 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

 

Marta smiled, displaying a gap between her teeth I hadn’t noticed before. It wasn’t as wide as the Grand Canyon, but let’s just say there was room to park Brad’s Kia and still open both doors.

“This is the video room,” said Marta, once again displaying THE GAP. By now, she couldn’t open her mouth without me mentally parking the Kia. “We have over 5,000 instructional and 12,542 entertainment videos.”

“Can they learn to make a bomb?” I asked.

“Oh no,” said Marta. “We discourage that. But they can learn to brush their teeth.”

Again she flashed that Cheshire-cat smile.


*the above is an excerpt from “The Academy of Spoiled Rotten Brats” in my new book One Idiot Short of a Village soon to be available on Amazon. Stay tuned!

Spin Cycle

There was a letter to the editor in our local paper last week regarding TV drug ads. The author had watched numerous “wonder drug” ads and decided he wanted to feel the same joy, contentment, and fun times as the people in those ads.

He went to his doctor and asked for the drugs. His doctor refused to prescribe them because our friend didn’t have any of the illnesses the medication was designed to treat—but, he did recommend a doctor who would prescribe them (wasn’t that helpful?).

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the voodoo witch doctor who is always willing to prescribe 100-word stories is Marie Laveau 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. Bring a live sacrifice for payment.

copyright – J Hardy Carroll

“Mr. Crabappleton,” began Father Kowalski, “Say I, pronounce your full name and repeat after me the oath of your office.”

“I, Delbert Q. Crabappleton* . . .”

“Do hereby solemnly swear.”

“Do hereafter sit-in-de-chair”

“To faithfully execute the office of Goodwill Ambassador”

“To flick-a-flea on de cute officer of who-let-de-cat-indoors”

“To the best of my ability, so help me God.”

“To divest of my infidelity—wid’ no help from Maude—fer sure.

Father Kowalski exhaled in a long, drawn-out sigh. Turning, he looked at the mayor.

“Close enough?”

“Yeah, I think he got the gist of it,” said Mayor Peterson.


*not his real name. To find out who really got the job as Village Idiot in One Idiot Short of a Village you’ll have to read the book, which can be ordered here

 

Muscaphobia

Let’s talk about tipping. Not the kind where you knock over a sleeping cow, but the custom of giving someone bonus money for just doing their job. I don’t know the history behind tipping, and I’m too lazy to do the research, so I’ll leave that to one of you.

I don’t have a problem leaving a tip if I receive exceptional service, but the whole thing has gotten out of hand. And it’s not just restuarants. Everybody expects a tip these days. Even the pan-handlers on the corner by Walmart have started demanding a 15% gratuity for mediocre begging services. What’s next? Will bloggers soon have a tip link at the bottom of their post?

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the photo-prompt server and author of exceptional 100-word stories is Carla Tortelli 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 fashionable hairstyles of the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here. Be sure and leave a tip.

copyright – Victor and Sarah Potter

Hey, Blanche. What’ve you been up to? I swung by last night, but no one was home.

Nadine invited me over for dinner. We hung out for a while.

Sounds like fun. Her place is close to the feedlot, isn’t it? A fat, juicy fly sounds delicious.

Oh, Nadine won’t eat flies. In fact, she has a terrible fear of them.

Why is that? Flies taste great, and they practically catch themselves.

She says it because they live on cow dung.

So, what did you have?

Randy came by, hoping to mate. Neither of us was receptive.

Yum. Sounds tasty.

Everybody Loves a Parade (well, almost everybody)

Has this ever happened to you? You’re cruising down the aisle of a supermarket, you know exactly what you want and where it is, but when you get there, someone has parked their cart parked between you and said item while tediously browsing the shelf across the aisle.

In my case, it was a grandmother with two young tykes. A debate was raging amongst the tykes regarding which toothpaste Grandma should buy. The older of the two insisted on bubble gum flavor, while the younger one demanded cotton candy. I threw a box of Preparation H in Grandma’s cart while she wasn’t looking, grabbed a tube of Crest, and went along my merry way. I hope she got the hint.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the statistician known for her subtle nuances regarding the 100-word limit is Countess Purpula 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 fashionable hairstyles of the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Roger Bultot

In its wake, the parade left a path of destruction that included a porta-potty containing “Blind Rutabaga” Keller and Stevie.*

“There was a horrible roaring,” said Blind Rutabaga. “I had torn off some tissue and was doing the paperwork, when BAM! Something slammed into the building. I thought a tornado had hit. Then KABOOM! The toilet exploded and threw me and Stevie out in the street. My whole backside was wet and a band was playing ‘When the Saints Go Marchin’ In.’

“I thought we’d died and went to heaven, except for having my pants around my ankles, of course.”


*Stevie is Blind Rutabaga’s seeing-eye dog

the above is an excerpt from “One Idiot Short of a Village.”

What the Hell is It?

How many of you have at least one pair of holey underwear? No, I’m not talking about the kind of “holy” you reserve for religious holidays; I’m referring to the type with non-factory openings for extra ventilation. Okay, you can put your hands down now.

Well, here’s some good news. In today’s fashion world you’re more in style than ever. People pay a fortune for jeans and shirts that look like they lost a fight with a weed-whacker. Consider yourself ahead of the curve—possibly even a trendsetter. Viva la holey bloomers!

If you are new to Friday Flash Fiction, the Chief Inspector who checks for 100-word skid marks, is “Skivvies” Hanes Wisoff-Fields. To learn how to submit your tale to the weekly collection, zip over to her blog for instructions. To rent a box in the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Ted Strutz

The Resource Center turned out to be what people of my generation would call a library.

Twenty-first century libraries have become more of an entertainment center than a repository for books. The one at The Academy of Spoiled Rotten Brats was no exception. It featured a wide array of multi-media options, each partitioned off by a hideous piece of modern art.

One look at this fiasco told me it was the work of Claude Bawls, Professor Emeritus at Joe’s College of Mobile Home Design and Shoe Shine Institute, and a disciple of the man who invented the cocktail umbrella.


* the above is an excerpt from “The Academy of Spoiled Rotten Brats.” This tale and others are featured in One Idiot Short of a Village, now available for pre-order from Pen-L Publishing.

Three Monkeys

As we head into the cold & flu season, expect to hear these phrases; 1) Sounds like you’re trying to catch a cold. And, 2) You couldn’t have picked a worse time to get the flu.

My responses;

  • Yes, I sat at the bus stop, waiting for six hours, then had to chase the damn cold up hill for three blocks in a snow storm. It wasn’t easy, but I finally caught the SOB.
  • The Flu and I had originally discussed getting together in mid-January, but she was overbooked and this was the only time slot she had left.

If you are new to Friday Flash Fiction, the Director of the CBC (Centers for Blog Control), who has issued a strong waring for posts exceeding 100 words, is Brenda Sneezingfitz Wisoff-Fields. To learn how to submit your tale to the weekly collection, zip over to her blog for instructions. To rent a box in the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

copyright – Bjorn Rudberg

Happy Holidays from Three Monkeys Outfitters

It’s not too late to buy the perfect gift for that gossip on your list. We have a wonderful assortment of blindfolds, earmuffs, and mouth plugs, all at holiday prices and gift wrapped at no charge.

This week, we’re running a special on hand-knitted “No-Hear” hats. Patented sound-blockers inside the flaps prevent even the smallest rumor from becoming Jerry Springer talk show material.

If you act now, we’ll also include our most popular black velvet hoodwink and unisex gag FREE. And it all comes with a 90-day no-malicious-talk guarantee.

Give ‘em the Monkey.


*this week’s post limited to 99 words due to my excessive overload of 101 words two weeks ago. You may have also notices I was missing last week–serving detention with my nose stuck inside a tiny circle on a chalkboard.

Seasoned Greetings

 

Merry Christmas from Russell the Red-Nose Writer & Connie the Green-Thumb Gardener

 

Greetings Friends & Neighbors,

We’ve been blessed to survive another year (you probably figured that out when you got this card). Some of you may have suspected for years that Russell had mental issues. Well, now it’s official—he’s retared.

They say, “Ignorance is bliss,” and you’ll never meet a guy any happier to have this affliction.

Rather than bore you with the trivial events that occurred in our lives in 2017, we’ve decided to share some of the things that didn’t happen.

  • We didn’t win the lottery (again)
  • Russell’s book didn’t make the NY Times Best Seller List
  • We didn’t secretly meet with Vladimir Putin
  • No one offered to make a movie about us
  • Neither of us aged a single day (wishful thinking)

Yet despite all these failures and shortcomings, we feel happy and blessed. The Lord has been good to us. Praise God.

It’s our sincere wish that each of you have Joyous Christmas and a Happy, Healthy, and Blessed New Year.

__________X_____________               __X_________________

(his mark)                                                                    (her mark)

The Ice Woman Cometh

How much time do you spend waiting in lines? According an MIT study by Richard Larson (I wonder if he’s related to Gary Larson—The Far Side cartoonist?) American’s spend 2 years of their lives waiting.

Briton’s call it Queuing and average about 67 hours a year, or 5 months, 2 weeks, and 5 days of their lives standing in lines. Last Saturday, Connie and I took 2 grandkids to Silver Dollar City and used 4 of our 6 hours at the theme park standing in lines. The other two hours were spent wedging our way through crowds trying to find the end of the lines.

One place where you never have to wait is Friday Flash Fiction. Speedy Gonzales Wisoff-Fields posts the photo promptly at the crack of midnight on Wednesday and you can join the fun whenever you’re ready. To learn how to submit your tale to the weekly collection, zip over to her blog for instructions. To rent a box in the FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block click here.

 

copyright – Dale Rogerson

 

I’ve never met a woman

Who’s more like the weather

She can change for the worse

At the drop of a feather

Forget that the forecast

Calls for 90 and sunny

Better put on your coat,

The Ice Woman Cometh

 

Like a frigid arctic blast

Sweeping down from the north

The temperature plummets

When she walks through the door

Suddenly you remember

What you like about summer

Better put on your coat

The Ice Woman Cometh

 

The stare “chill-factor”

Is way below zero

Her silence so deafening

It cuts to the marrow

Better put on your coat

The Ice Woman Cometh


*the above is an excerpt from a poem I wrote about 25 years ago. It’s been modified to come in at 101 words.

Mandie Hines Author

Horror, Psychological Thrillers, Flash Fiction, and Poetry

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The Incoherent Ramblings Of A Moose

This is the blog of a woman who is seriously on the edge and I mean right ON the edge…no, not there… just a little bit further… further than that…no, further still…just a tiny bit more… just move slightly to the right a little…no, that’s too much…just move a tad to the left…that’s right, just there…now you’ve moved too far to the left… Damn, what part of the ‘on the edge’ do you not understand? Oh, and her matricidal boy genius, come devil spawn.

Sharing sarcasm, snark, and satire with the world...

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