OLWG #94- Abilene, Party of Three

 This week’s prompts are at the bottom. Practice makes perfect. Let me know what you think.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.



Abilene hurried to answer the door when the bell rang. As she expected it was Nora so she let her in. Nora was dressed perfectly, wearing a white cotton blouse with a scoop neck and puffy short sleeves atop straight legged, high waisted blue jeans.

They slowed to wish Abi’s mom good night and took their leave after telling her that they would be studying at Julia’s house and would spend the night there. It was OK with Julia’s parents.

“I’ll be home before noon, Mom” Abilene assured her mother.

“OK, keep your cell phone on,” Mom called as they hurried out the door.

Nora drove as Abi dug through her backpack and pulled out a tight red leather miniskirt and a long-sleeved black crop top. She changed in the car; packed her jeans and tee in the pack along with her bra.

Julia was waiting on the porch when Nora pulled the car up in front of her house. She opened the door and yelled her goodbyes into the house before hurrying down the stairs and jumping into the backseat of Nora’s car.

“You look great, Abi,” she said as she wiggled out of her jeans revealing the Daisy Dukes that she already had on underneath them. She pulled off her sweatshirt and revealed a form-fitting blue tank top that left very little to the imagination.

“You too,” Abilene said.

Nora pulled into the Texaco to gas up her car and ran into the women’s room while Mr Lightner filled the tank; all while Julia and Abilene fussed with their makeup. When Nora came back out she looked spectacular. She was wearing embroidered Capri’s and a tight open back shirt. She handed Mr Lightner a ten dollar bill and climbed back into the driver’s seat.

Lightner leaned down to Nora’s window and tipped his hat. “Evenin’ Nora, Abeline, Julia,” he began, “You girls are all gussied up tonight. What’s goin’ on? Is there a dance at the high school?”

“No sir, Mr Lightner,” Julia answered. “We’re driving to Shelbyville. We’re going dancing at the new nightclub there, The Viper Room. Please don’t tell our parents.” Nora and Abi were nodding their heads in agreement as Julia explained their plans to Mr Lightner.

“No, I won’t say anything to your folks,” he said, “but have you considered that they might not let you girls in? They serve drinks there and Y’all are only high school students. What if they ask you for ID?”

“We thought about that and we’ve got fake ID’s Mr Lightner,” Nora explained. “We ordered them from an ad in the back of one of my dad’s magazines. The ad said that they were guaranteed to work so we’re not worried. We’ve been planning this for a while now.”

“Well, it sure sounds like you’ve covered all the bases then. You girls be careful tonight and have fun. Nora, don’t you drink and drive now.”

“No, sir, I won’t,” Nora replied as she started the car. The girls pulled out of the Texaco and onto the highway, heading east towards Shelbyville.

At the Viper Room, they stood in line for over an hour just to get to the door. The big man sitting on the stool by the door took one look at them and then looked at their fake IDs. He looked at the girls again.

“I can’t let you ladies in here,” he said. “Y’all don’t look old enough to be here and these fake IDs aren’t very well made. I hope you didn’t spend too much for them.” He handed the counterfeit driving licenses back to them and smiled politely.

Dejected, the three friends turned back and wove their way through the car park back to Nora’s car.

“Now what are we gonna do?” Abilene asked, “I told my Mom we were sleeping at your house, Jule.”

“Yeah, me too,” Nora echoed.

“I told my mom I was sleeping at Nora’s,” Julia chimed in, “but we can go sleep at my house. We can have a slumber party and stay up all night. I’ll just tell my mom that your stupid brother came home sick so we moved the party.”

They stopped at the Texaco again on the way back to change out of their clubbing clothes and take off their makeup. Mr Lightner saw the girls but let them be. He just waved as they walked back to the car together and left. They turned west on the highway heading towards Julia’s house.

Lightner chuckled to himself and watched their taillights recede into the darkness. He lit another Chesterfield and coughed out the smoke.


This week’s prompts are:

  1. everything, except the last thing
  2. it’s tragic
  3. rows and rows

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need and, have fun!

 

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OLWG #93- Abasdarhon

 This week’s prompts are at the bottom. Practice makes perfect. Let me know what you think.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.



Mark pulled his coat tight around him and listened to his stomach growl. The night was cold but at least it wasn’t raining. Finally he fell into a fitful sleep, or maybe he never really got to sleep before realizing that someone was shaking his shoulder.

“Wake up. Wake up,” the someone said

“Aw right, aw right, I’m going,” Mark grumbled. He was accustomed to the cops rousting him when he was sleeping rough. He sat up and pulled on his beard, trying to smooth it down.

“You don’t gotta go, mate,” the voice said. “Just sit up for a bit. Talk to me. I got some questions to ask, but I wanna sit down.”

Mark rubbed his eyes and peered at the someone behind the voice. “You’re from England, aren’t you?” Mark asked thinking he recognized the accent.

“No, I’m from France actually, but I’ve had the operation.”

Mark grinned at the old joke and sat up. The someone sat on the wooden slats next to him and felt around his coat pockets till he found a flask which he removed and screwed the cap off of. He took a drink and offered it to Mark.

Mark shook his head, “no thanks.” He stretched, “whatcha want to know?”

“My name’s Abasdarhon,” he said, “you sure you don’t want some of this?” he held the flask out again.

“I’m sure. How’d you say your name again? What kind of name is that anyway? Is it English? Or French?”

“It’s neither, actually. I guess you could say it’s heavenly.” He took another sip from the flask. “Until tonight I worked there, but I quit, or maybe I got fired. Anyway I don’t work there anymore. I was cast out and I landed here.”

“What’d you do there?” Mark asked wishing he was more awake.

“I was an angel. Specifically, the angel of the fifth hour of the night.”

“Get outa town!” Mark exclaimed, “You’re that Abasdarhon?”

“Fraid so,” the someone said, “You’ve heard of me?”

“Sure I heard of you,” Mark said, “I was an altar boy.” He reached for the flask now, which the angel surrendered willingly. “What’re you doing here, Mr Abasdarhon?”

Abasdarhon eyed Mark and took the proffered flask back as Mark wiped his mouth with the back of his sleeve, “I’m thinking about joining up with the likes of you, Mark. Seein’ as I’m not working in heaven any longer. What d’ya do down here besides nap on park benches? Oh, please call me Abe. Only my mother called me Abasdarhon; and then only if she was mad at me.”

“You’re kidding, right?” Mark was flabbergasted.

“O’course, I’m kidding. Angels don’t have mothers. Jeeze what’re ya thinkin’!” He took another swig from the flask.

Mark’s voice took a serious tone and he said, “Well, sometimes, I panhandle or manage to snag an odd job ever now and again. Some days I run a three card Monty game down at the beach.” He reached out his hand and Abe put the flask in it.


This week’s prompts are:

  1. should I come back later
  2. The closet was locked
  3. Time becomes elastic

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need and, have fun!

 

OLWG #92- Anniversary Blues

 This week’s prompts are at the bottom. Practice makes perfect. Let me know what you think.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.



I glanced at the screen and saw that it was my brother calling.

“Hey, Simon ’sup?”

“Robbie, Francine told me I should call you,” he answered.

This was a little puzzling, but Francine was our sister so I figured I should roll with it, “Well, you’ve called me, did she mention what you should say? Why you were calling?”

“She said I should tell you that I found almost ten thousand dollars in Pop’s toolbox.”

“Oh, no; Simon. What have you done.”

“It wasn’t my fault, Robbie. Pop never goes into his toolbox anymore. I can’t remember the last time he fixed or built anything. I figured he must have forgotten that he had stashed money in there. I figured he would never miss it, but I left the money alone anyway and walked away. Stayed away for almost an hour, too before I went back.” He stopped talking and I let the silence linger on the line waiting for him to continue. He didn’t though. He outwaited me.

Finally, I broke the quiet, “Did you take the money, Sime? If you did you need to put it back. Francine and I have been socking that money away for years. Next month is Mom and Pop’s fiftieth anniversary. That money’s going to help them take that trip to Paris that Mom’s always wanted. It’s a gift from all three of us to them for their anniversary.”

“You never told me about that,” Simon said. “You never asked me to contribute any money. How was I supposed to know?”

I tried to explain, “Simon, we never asked you for any money because you never have any money to spare. Francine and I were kicking in for you as well. You’re right though we should have told you. We were going to tell you before we gave it to them. Just put it all back in the toolbox and no harm’s done.”

“Can’t do that, Robbie, it’s gone. It wouldn’t have been enough for a good trip to Paris anyway. It only lasted one night in Vegas.”

“What! One night. Jeeze, Sime, how could you spend all that in one night?”

“Well, I had to buy gas to drive there.”

“Doesn’t take that much gas to drive to Vegas, Sime.”

“Well, I got a really nice hotel room, and had a great dinner.” He went quiet again.

“What else, Simon?” I finally asked.

“I met some really nice girls,” he said.

“That’s enough, man. I don’t want to know anymore. We’re gonna need some money from you now. If we each pitch in twenty bucks we can get them a gift certificate at The Golden Corral. It’s not a trip to Paris, but it’s an all you can eat buffet. Pop oughta be able to get his money’s worth.”

“You’re not mad at me are you, Robbie?”

“I’m furious with you, Sime. What the hell were you thinking?”

“I guess, I wasn’t thinking. I just saw all that money and… well, I don’t know.”

“Shit, just give your twenty to Francine for now.”

“Uhm, Robbie? I don’t have twenty bucks. I spent all I had in Vegas.”


This week’s prompts are:

  1. my outfit is entirely vegan
  2. it had to come to this
  3. unique isn’t always useful

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need and, have fun!

 

OLWG #91- Friendly Skies

 This week’s prompts are at the bottom. Practice makes perfect. Let me know what you think.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.



“Well, I don’t think its right.” Hugh exclaimed. “Just because I’m a large man…”

“I completely agree, sir it’s not right at all, but it is policy, and there’s nothing that I can do to change it. I’m just a lowly customer service agent and this process was actually defined in the Geneva Conventions of 1933. It has remained unchanged for all that time, even with the updates that were negotiated in ‘48. The fact that this policy has existed, intact for this long means that it is now unimpeachable, and a challenge could not hope to survive; not even in the ninth district.”

The young man stopped speaking and stared at Hugh. He seemed to be waiting for some type of argument.

“Are there any alternatives?” Hugh asked. “I mean, it seems pretty harsh, don’t you think. Are exceptions made for hardships, or low income situations? Can I get a scholarship or financial aid of some sort?”

“I’m truly sorry, Mr uh?” the attendant looked down at the itinerary that Hugh had shown him, “Uh, Mr Jass. Jass, is it? Did I pronounce that right?”

Hugh nodded.

“The only way to avoid paying full fare for the second seat is to check yourself as baggage and fly in the luggage compartment. We can do that for the cost of a single Business Class fare.”

“Isn’t it cold in the luggage compartment?” Hugh asked, “I mean, what kind of altitudes do you guys fly at anyway?”

“Rest assured sir, that if you should choose the luggage compartment we will provide you with a complimentary blanket and a thermos of hot coffee. Now there’s something that isn’t even available in first class, an entire thermos of coffee all to yourself.” The young man stopped and stared at Hugh again. Again, he appeared to be awaiting a response.

“What about my luggage, Timothy?” Hugh asked as he eyed the ticket agent’s nametag, “I have a suitcase that I need to check.”

“One checked bag is allowed with no charge, sir. Will you be selecting the luggage compartment option then?”

“You don’t give me a lot of alternatives, do you Timmy?”

“Very well, sir. Your current ticket is for Coach, I’ll need a credit card for the difference in fare and I need you to step on the scale.”

“Why?”

“Why what, sir?”

“Why do you need my weight?”

“There’s a charge for checking items that weigh over fifty pounds. I need to verify that you weigh less than fifty pounds if you want to avoid that surcharge.”

“How much is the surcharge, Timmy?”

The young man blanched, “Ten dollars, sir.”

“Just go ahead and charge it then.” Hugh resignedly handed over his American Express Card and watched as Timmy ran the transaction.

“Thank you for flying with us Mr Jass.” Timmy said as he handed back the card. “You may be contacted sometime in the next sixty days for a survey. If they ask about me, please note that my name is Timothy Guinan. I’ve made a note of it here on your receipt. I appreciate your patronage.” Timmy looked around Hugh and called out, “Next in line! I can help you here.”


This week’s prompts are:

  1. a gypsy cab glided to the curb
  2. It’s a shame about your future
  3. she knows too much

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need and, have fun!

 

OLWG #90- Pink Cadillac

 This week’s prompts are at the bottom. I wrote the mess below for practice.  Practice makes perfect. Let me know what you think.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.



It was just after midnight and, Officer Bradly Hartnell was patrolling on the southeast side of town. His assignment was to cruise from the airport to the cemetery in the area bounded by Piedras Ave., on the north and Edgemere Blvd on the south. He was getting tired and was about to call in a Code 7. He wanted to get a couple of tacos and a cup of coffee at Lupe’s. He also knew that Marisol would be working tonight. It was always pleasant to spend a little time with Marisol, especially when she wasn’t too busy and could make the time to slide into the Naugahyde booth across from him. She would ask him how his night was going. She always seemed genuinely interested in what he had to say. She listened to his stories and laughed at his jokes. They would talk about movies, books, and TV, but that night was a little different.

When Bradly pulled into the Taqueria’s parking lot he saw another prowl car there. He recognized Frankie Keene a patrol officer who worked out of the third precinct. Keene played third base on the softball team. Bradly had a memory of him being a pretty good ball player.  What was he doing here? Keene was inside talking with Marisol. She seemed pretty agitated.

Officer Hartnell entered the restaurant to find out why Keene was out of his jurisdiction and why Marisol was upset.

“Bradly, thank god you’re here,” Marisol said when she saw him push through the front door. She was standing in front of the counter along with Frankie Keene. Keene looked over his shoulder and he didn’t appear too happy to see Bradly.

“Hi, Marisol,” he said, “what’s going on here?”

Marisol pointed out the side window, towards the car park, “Did you see that pink Cadillac in the lot?” she asked, “According to Carmen and Esteban it was there all day and it’s been there my whole shift, so far.’

Brad, “I only noticed the patrol car. What are you doing here, Keene?”

“I was driving by, that’s all. I noticed the Caddy. We got a heads up on pink cars at our pre-shift huddle tonight. Did you guys talk about ‘em too?”

“Huh-uh, what about ‘em?”

“Been a lot of ‘em turning up around town. Nobody knows where they’re coming from. They’re all wiped clean. None of ‘em reported stolen. VIN’s trace back to Midwest states like Ohio, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska, and the like. Heartland spots. Recently deceased former owners. Kinda mysterious, really.”

“OK,” Bradly said, “Is this one of ‘em?”

“Maybe, but this one’s different.”

“How so?”

Bradly watched Marisol sit down at a booth, with his peripheral vision.

“This one,” Keene said, “This one has a lot of blood in the passenger seat and seventeen ears strung together with coat hanger wire dangling like fuzzy dice from the rear-view mirror. I’ve called it in.”

Hartnell turned and looked at the waitress who shrugged her shoulders and held her palms up.


This week’s prompts are:

  1. man-eater
  2. white noise
  3. just break the glass

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need and, have fun!

 

OLWG #89- Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One

 This week’s prompts are at the bottom. I wrote this little tongue-in-cheek piece for practice.  Practice makes perfect. Let me know what you think.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.



Bertram (my friends call me Bert), was on holiday at the beach when he happened across a bottle tangled up in some kelp and sitting just above the high water line. He had snuck out early from the timeshare he was sharing with his wife and 2.5 kids. He’d gone for a walk. All by himself. It was good to get away from the clamour of his family. I mean, he loved them, and all, but it sometimes seemed that they just never stopped talking. Wouldn’t shut up.

The bottle looked pretty old, not just a Coke bottle or something like that; it looked special. It was tall and slender. Dark blue glass with a heavy round stopper in the top. He picked it up and was cleaning it off with his shirttail when guess what?

Yeah, a genie, bet you didn’t see that coming.

I know? Right?

Anyway, the genie says to Bertram, “Dude, thanks for letting me out of that bottle. I’ve been trapped inside for centuries. How can I repay you?”

Bert stares at the genie, afraid to blink, “Aren’t you supposed to grant me a couple of wishes?” he asks.

“I s’pose I can do that,” genie replies, “I’ll grant you two wishes. How’s that work for you?”

Bert, “That’s cool.”

“OK, what’s your first wish, Dude?” Genie.

Bertram closes his eyes and thinks for a couple of seconds before blurting out, “I wish I was rich.”

“All right,” says the genie, “What’s your second wish, Rich?”


This week’s prompts are:

  1. he leaned back and lit a cigarette
  2. Window to the stars
  3. ulterior altruism

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need and, have fun!

 

OLWG #88- Sausalito

 This week’s prompts are at the bottom. I wrote this haibun for practice.  Practice makes perfect. Let me know what you think.

Here’s how to play along, if you are unsure.



Ellen left home in the middle of the night. She was sixteen and she ran off with a boy she went to school with. His name was Sam, but everyone called him Sausalito. He was of average height; he had dark hair that hung in ringlets framing his face. Ellen thought he was the best thing that had ever happened to her. He thought he was the best thing that had ever happened to her too. When Ellen came back she had been gone for 14 months. She said that she and Sam had been living inland, not far from the state line. I’d never seen her so skinny. She didn’t look well, but the baby she held in her arms looked healthy. She told me that his name was Sam and that he was my grandson. She said that she and Sausalito couldn’t take care of him anymore. She asked if I would. I reached out and took the child. Ellen turned and walked away without another word. I stepped out onto the stoop when she reached the street and watched her look over her shoulder as she ducked into an old black car; a fastback with tinted windows.

Like a thief, he stole
my baby, I hate him for
that. My daughter brought
me a perfect little man,
I’ll always love her for that.


This week’s prompts are:

  1. veinticinco
  2. pointy toed
  3. What do you have against theatres?

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need and, have fun!