On the Way Down

Today’s Friday Flash Fiction post is my take on the photo prompt provided by Madison Woods. Visit her website    http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/  and find links to other Friday Flash Fiction stories from authors around the globe.

On the Way Down
Uh, oh. This is gonna hurt.
Slapped in the face by that sad realization that there’s no way I can catch myself. Mother earth is fast approaching.  
Arms flailing, cries of desperation pierce the forest in a long, deep moan of slow motion agony. I close my eyes and brace for the inevitable. My nose plows a furrow in the moldy loam beneath the leaves. Instinctively, I look around to see if anyone saw me fall.
What caused me to trip? All I can find is a broken mushroom. No greenbriar, no grapevine, not even an Indian powder-puff.
Stupid mushroom!


Workin’ on a Building

Workin’ on a Building
Sometimes I wonder how Connie talks me into these major projects. Am I extremely gullible, or am I like that little dog on the Looney Tunes cartoon that follows the bulldog around saying, “Can I help Spike? Can I? Huh, huh? Just say the word, Spike—I’ll get right on it.”
When we were young, she would skillfully employ her feminine assets to tempt, tease, or reward me. While there is still a strong allure to those magical powers, I must confess they don’t have the bargaining power they once held.
While I have worked hard to maintain a lifestyle of laziness and procrastination, Connie has earned a master’s degree in salesmanship and persistence. She forges strong arguments as to why we need these things and how much pleasure and enjoyment we will derive once the project is complete.
Presently, we are in the midst of constructing a 564 sq. ft. structure. People ask me, “Why do you need that? And what are you going to use it for?” The answer I’ve been given is that Connie will move some of her treasures out there and hold sales at strategic times throughout the year. This will, of course, will provide the resources to purchase new treasures, thus rotating the stock and stimulating global economic growth.
Everyone agrees that such a magnificent edifice deserves an equally appropriate name. Connie originally referred to the building as her ‘Woman Cave,’ which I quickly revised into ‘The Hen House.’ A title that would be more accurate, but would take up the entire north wall, is ‘Big Mama’s Little House of Horribly Old Stuff.’
Feel free to submit a suggestion, or offer a vote of confidence for one of the names above. Serious consideration will be given to all.
Yesterday, we laid the subfloor and stood the walls on three sides. The goal is to have the metal roof screwed down before I return to work early next week. I’m sure Connie will be posting construction updates on Facebook, and possibly some pictures in the coming days.
In the meantime, I am soliciting donations of BC Powder, Ben Gay ointment, and beer. Your support would be greatly appreciated—especially the beer.

I Hear a Symphony

Today’s Friday Flash Fiction post is my take on the photo prompt provided by Madison Woods. Visit her website    http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/  and find links to other Friday Flash Fiction stories from authors around the globe.

I Hear a Symphony

He extended a cupped hand as I exited the train.
Did he expect a tip?
It was the first time I’d ever been approached by a clean-cut, well dressed man asking for a hand-out?
But who was I to judge? Lots of people are out of work. Even the street musicians are barely getting by.
It was an awkward moment for both of us. The sadness in his eyes reaffirmed my suspicions.
Lowering his eyes, he mumbled something about paying the fiddler.
I slipped a ten into his palm and squeezed his hand.
“Here you go, Maestro. Long live classical.”



Today’s post is inspired by the weekly photo prompt—provided this week by Susie Lindau. Be sure and visit her web site  http://susielindau.com/ to enjoy her 100 word Flash Friday story. Read the comments and follow the links to other stories ranging from excellent to sublime.

The Adventures of Lard Boy

The main concourse appeared three stories above where he now stood. Droplets of sweat crawled behind his mask and stung his eyes.
Time was running out.
Moments before, his arch enemy, Skinny Craig, had texted a photo of Donut, Lard Boy’s sidekick, bound and dangling above a boiling cauldron of decaffeinated coffee—devoid of cream and sugar.
He strained to catch his breath beneath a sweat-soaked cape.
Where was the elevator?
Visions of poor Donut, bobbing in scalding coffee seared his mind.
He would have to take the stairs.

Ravenous pangs gnawed at his stomach. “Better have a snack first.”


Nuts about You

Today’s Friday Flash Fiction post is a tribute to series of cartoon skits known as “Fractured Fairy Tales” and one of my favorite broadcasters, Paul Harvey. I seriously exceeded the 100 word limit, but this story was just dying to be told.
Photo courtesy of Madison Woods   http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/

Nuts about You

Dale was known for his creative ideas. What others saw as common and ordinary, he viewed with possibilities and potential.
He plucked the sprouting acorn from his path and rolled it around in both hands. The tender shoot curved like a beckoning finger, triggering an explosion of ideas.

Ice cream. White oak ice cream—what a wonderful idea!
Aware that his marketing skills were woefully lacking, Dale enlisted his best friend to help push the new flavor. It failed miserably.
Bankruptcy soon followed and they were forced to sell the business to a couple of young entrepreneurs named Ben and . . . somebody.
Undeterred by failure, they opened a dance studio for aspiring young men.
Perhaps you’ve heard of them—Chip & Dales?
And now you know . . . the rest of the story.

Today’s post is a poem I wrote several years ago. It seemed to fit well with the photo prompt, provided by Madison Woods for our weekly 100 word #Flash Friday fun. Be sure and visit her blog  http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/ each Friday to enjoy her story and find links in the comments to other stories ranging from excellent to sublime.

-a modern parable-

Outside the wind gently whispers
Darkness falls across the frozen snow
A lonely redbird is softly singing
Fluffing his feathers against the cold
“Come down, come down,” a voice is calling
“You need not be alone.
Take my hand and warm your body.
Touch my heart and feel at home.”
Cautiously, he drew closer
Stopping just beyond her door
She knelt and reached out to him
But the tiny bird had flown
He didn’t know that he had hurt her
She was only trying to be kind
But how was the bird to realize
That the little girl was blind

Guest blogger Rachel Crofton is back. Yesterday, she read Madison Woods’ blog http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/ and started badgering me to let her post a commentary. Rachel is not a woman of few words, so we had to break it  into two or three pieces.   Enjoy ~ Russell  

Modern Inconveniences – part 1

That loud, off-key, screeching noise you sometimes hear, is me singing the praises of modern science and technology. I’m extremely grateful for all the wonderful appliances, gadgetry, and software aps that have been developed to make my life easier and more comfortable.
They even have artificial intelligence now, which I am told is no match natural born stupidity. It may be in its infancy, but you can be assured scientists will keep working on it until they perfect a version that can write Russell’s blog for him. After all, how much intelligence could that take?
But everything comes with a price—and not just money. What are some of the things we have sacrificed to enjoy the benefits of a “new and better way?” Why are we obsessed with speed? Does faster always mean better?
In today’s society, people are forever in a mad dash from spot to another. If we can shave a few seconds off here and there, then we can cram in more activities, making our lives fuller, thus generating greater happiness, right?

Those of us who have celebrated more than one anniversary of our 39th birthday can remember full-service gas stations. This concept was based on the businessowner’s perception that the customer was “king.” When a car pulled up to the pumps, an attendant would come running out, ask you how much gas you wanted, check under the hood, wash the windshield, put air in the tires, and change the baby’s diaper. The driver left, feeling secure in a safe, well maintained vehicle with a dry baby and a fist full of Green Stamps.
Today’s drivers pull into a convenience store, slam on the brakes, set the stop watch on their iPhone, slide a credit card at the pump, fill the tank, hop back in the car, peel out of the parking lot and check the timer. Anything under four minutes is considered good. Three and a half or less and you’re a superstar.
Upon returning to the highway, our hero becomes stuck in traffic only to move forward one car length at a time. Rather ironic, don’t you think?


The Fingerprint Fly

Today’s post is inspired by the weekly photo prompt (originally from http://nanodeltech.com/), provided by Madison Woods. Be sure and visit her blog http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/ each Friday to enjoy her 100 word #Flash Friday story. Read the comments and follow the links to other stories ranging from excellent to sublime.

The Fingerprint Fly
Crime bosses from around the globe converged in Las Vegas this week for the 54th Annual Gangland Technology Conference.
Vendors and mad scientist demonstrated the latest in electronic gadgetry to a mildly enthusiastic throng of over 6,000 underworld leaders and third-world dictators.
Evidence Eraser LLC, a New Jersey company, debuted “The Fingerprint Fly” (shown below). This tiny engraver confounds forensic experts by duplicating the fingerprints of internationally known celebrities—including this year’s favorite, Charlie Sheen—onto the fingers of common henchmen.
Promoters consider the show a great success. One well-known don from Chicago was quoted as saying, “Dis shitz amazing!”

2011 in Retrospect

2011 was an odd year. In fact, evidence has been uncovered to support the theory that eleven falls somewhere between ten and twelve. Eleven is also a prime number. I guess that is supposed to designate it as ‘special’ since it can only be divided by itself and one. Personally, I find such numerals rather (yawn) boring and refer to them as ho-humbers.
Today, I sit here struggling to find something memorable about 2011. Let’s try the weather. It’s usually a safe subject. I say that only because I once worked with a guy who always asked your thoughts or opinion on a given subject then immediately chose the opposite. He would argue (debate was the word he used) the color of grass, a cloudless sky, and whether fried green tomatoes were fruit or vegetable.
Now, back to the weather.
Our little slice of heaven (Goshen, AR) set new records for cold temperature, snowfall, rain, high temperature, drought, and Republican debates. This is a double-trifecta by my calculations. I wish I could say I had some money riding on this, but who knew there would be so many candidates seeking the nomination.
All of the usual things happened in 2011. People were born, people died, and millions of unfortunate souls were afflicted with (or became) hemorrhoids. Scientists made new discoveries, technology advanced at break-neck speed, and the heavily burdened tax payers were thrown another anchor and told to sink or swim.
On a personal note, I gave birth to my first blog in October. Blogs are different than babies in that the labor pains begin after the birth. Talk about needy! Mine wakes me up at night screaming for new material, photos, and anything else it can scarf down. It constantly clamors for attention and throws little hissy-fits when people read the posts and fail to comment.
The good news is that I’ve become acquainted with other blog parents from around the globe. These wonderful folks have been incredibly supportive and encouraging. Without them, I would have probably put the little guy up for adoption or thrown him in the dumpster. So, thank you one and all.
What 2011 event was special/important to you?

Santa and his Hos

I’ve always been envious of Santa Claus. What a sweet deal. He works one night a year making deliveries and spends the rest of his time kicked back in the easy chair delegating activities to his “little people.” You may have heard them referred to as elves, but they could just as easily be called dwarfs or a midgets, except no one uses the term midgets any more unless they are speaking of a peculiar wrestling match or an even more peculiar porn video.
Legend has it that these industrious little folks manufacture and package toys and other goodies for Santa’s annual run. They are also responsible for reading the majority of the incoming mail, the exception being letters from naughty girls. Those are routed directly to Santa’s most private quarters, where even Mrs. Claus is not allowed to enter.
Technology has come a long way at the North Pole. The electronic games, toys, and gadgets that he delivers today are a far cry from the cap guns and mute dolls of my childhood. The information age and world wide web have made it easier to track our individual behavior. Now, he can simple read someone’s Facebook page, check their tweets, or scan their emails for incriminating evidence.
Just imagine Santa sitting in front of his computer smoking a bowl (Oops, I mean his pipe) deciding who makes the “A” list and who gets the jigsaw puzzle of a white cow in a snowstorm. The good news is Santa has a forgiving nature and he’s never actually been known to bring anyone a bundle of switches unless they specifically requested them in the aforementioned letters.
Knowing that he can’t be everywhere at once, I applied for a Santa position at a local mall. This would be my way of helping the Big Guy while making a little jingle of my own. Who wouldn’t want to hire me? My belly fills out the suit, I have gray hair and beard, I can be jolly and make people smile, and I look good in red.
Everything was going great during the interview until I asked about the Hos. Why does Santa have only three? Another thing that bothered me was the impersonal nature in which he refers to them. Surely they have names. How hard could it be to memorize Betty, Mildred, and Wanda?
The interviewer stared at me expressionless for what seemed like an eternity. Then she leaned over and in a very low voice whispered, “I’m sure you’d make an exceptional Santa. So good in fact, that I’m afraid you’re over-qualified.”
I was a little disappointed, but didn’t let it dampen my holiday spirit. On my way out I turned to all the would-be Santas in the waiting room and roared, “Betty, Mildred, Wanda and a M-e-r-r-y Christmas to all!”
Mandie Hines Author

Horror, Psychological Thrillers, Poetry, Flash Fiction

The Phantom Rem

Stories From Within

Lorna's Voice

Finding ways to make words sparkle

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...

Or the three people I guilted into reading this blog, whatever.

Rochelle Wisoff-Fields-Addicted to Purple

Growing older is inevitable. Growing up is optional.


I may make you feel, but I can't make you think.


All the Blogging That's Fit To Print



Dimitris Melicertes

I don't write, I touch without touching.

Lame Adventures

A Humor Blog

Linda Vernon Humor

Stylistically Abusing Language for the Betterment of Mankind


Straight up with a twist– Because life is too short to be subtle!

Lori Ericson, Author

An author's perspective of mystery and more.

The Best Things in Life

And the worst things. And all that weird stuff in between.