OLWG #5 – Biology

OLWG is back. I wrote something sweet for this intro.

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


Warren paused at the corner, waiting at the crosswalk for the light to change. When it did he crossed the street and headed on up the block towards home. It was Friday afternoon and he was thinking about his date tonight with Lucy. Lucy was the prettiest girl in school and Warren was excited. He was going to pick her up at 5:30 and they were going to go to the library where they would collaborate on their biology project. This might not really qualify as a “date,” but it was close enough for him. He would get to be alone with her! At the library! They could talk about science, biology! He figured he could call it a date, just not in front of Lucy. She might not like him the way that he liked her.

He chuckled a bit to himself and nervously pushed his glasses up before wiping his nose with the back of his hand. Lucy was not only the prettiest girl in school, she was the smartest too.

***

Lucy stood outside the door that led from the carport to the kitchen. She hitched her books up a little higher and tighter against her chest. She twirled her dark curls round and round on her index finger and puzzled on the fix she had gotten herself into. Warren was coming over to pick her up tonight and take her to the library. She had just blurted out agreement when he suggested that they should work together on their asignment. What had she been thinking? Did this qualify as a date? She wasn’t sure. Maybe she should ask her mom.

Warren was smart and she thought he was pretty good looking, with his pudgy cheeks and all. This was complicated; he might be thinking of this as just prepping for an assignment. How should she dress? How should she behave? Warren was smart but she was smarter. She pushed her glasses up and went inside.

***

“Hey Mom,” Warren hollered as soon as he got in the house.

“I’m back here,” his mother called from the laundry room.

Warren dropped his books on the table and found his way back to where his mother was working. “Can you give me a ride to the library tonight? My friend and I are working on a big Biology project together and we need the reference section.”

“Sure I can.”

“We’ll need to stop and pick up Lucy on the way.”

Mom turned her head away and smiled to herself. Her boy was growing up. “No problem, Warren. No problem.”

***

Lucy set her books on the kitchen table next to the elephant head salt and pepper shakers. Her parents were cooking and dancing around one another in the small kitchen. The room was really too small for two cooks but her folks always worked together at mealtime.

“How was school, Lucy?” her dad asked as he pinched some brilliant red powdered spice that she didn’t know the name of. Rubbing his fingers together to dispense the seasoning into a saucepan, Dad turned his attention to his daughter and waited for a reply.

“It was good,” she told them both, “but we are going to have to read Catcher in the Rye for English. I’ve already read it. I was hoping for Silas Marner.”

There was a moment of silence while Lucy and her dad watched Mom sample the sauce. Whatever it was that was simmering in the pot. It must have been good because Mom closed her eyes and smiled.

“I’m going to the library tonight to work on a big biology assignment.”

“I can drive you,” Dad said, “no problemo.”

Lucy walked across the kitchen and opened the pantry door. “It’s OK, Dad. Warren’s mom is going to drive us over.” She took out two Oreo’s and headed back towards her room. She was thinking that she might like to wear that flowered shift she and her mother had made together last Spring. It was going to be a warm night.

***

 


This week’s prompts are:

  1. There’s a hole in my sock
  2. Do as I say, not as I do
  3. Wait, is that a monkey?

Ready, Set, Go – 25 minutes!

OLWG #4 – Another New Duty Station

Oh no – not again!

This week’s prompts are at the bottom – Have fun!

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


Beauford stood in the shadows, near the foot of the pier,
studying the boat.
It was painted black, about 300 foot long with only a few feet showing
above the water line so, the beam was difficult to discern.
He knew though, how broad it would be.

Topside, just aft of the sail, he saw a non-designated striker
wearing dress whites – it was “The Watch,” whose shoes were blackened
but scuffed.
A holstered 45 on a webbed belt hung from his hip as
he wrote in a green cloth covered log book.

Beauford sighed and pinched the cherry from his cigarette –
saving the dog end for later, and tucking it inside the cellophane that wrapped
his pack, before
he leaned down; hoisted his sea bag over his shoulder, squared his hat, and
swaggered towards the brow.


This week’s prompts are:

  1. Time to excavate our relationship
  2. A twenty dollar shine on ten dollar boots
  3. It’s a handicapped spot

Ready, Set, Go – 25 minutes!

OLWG #3

Thought I would try something a little different this week. The prompts are down at the bottom, as always.

Have fun!


It was the summer of 1869 when Captain Joseph Beal and his crew of twelve sawyers felled the giant redwood on the north-west face of Loma Prieta Peak. In those days, crews would go out into the woods for up to sixty days at a time. They hunted their own food, they maintained their own tools, and they were charged with felling, limbing and bucking all the trees that they cut. Other crews would follow behind the sawyers to haul the logs to the mills. Sawyers were paid by the board foot. Most of the crews practiced clear-cutting but Captain Beal and his crew would seek out the giant trees, the monsters. They left the clear cutting to the weak and lesser skilled.

They had to braze two ten foot crosscut blades together to fell this tree. All of the crosscuts were Lance toothed with rakers except the ones that Sims used. Sims preferred his whips with Champion teeth. The stiffer bucking saws that they had brung were mostly Lance toothed as well. Thirty six axes and a dozen mauls had finished out the compliment of equipment that they carried. All told there were enough saws for each man to wield five at a time. Evenings were spent sharpening and cleaning their equipment. They made their own springboards and wedges.

The twenty foot long, two man misery whip, that they used for this tree, had a handle at each end and the men worked in shifts of two pulling from opposite ends, as they felled the giant tree. It took four days of labour, and when the tree finally fell, it fell at night when the crew slept. It fell with a sound that woke them all. It even rousted Vaughn, who had spent most of that evening in communion with a bottle of whiskey that he had smuggled up the hill from Santa Cruz. The weight of the giant Sequoia sempervirens brought its own self down leaving a hinge that was almost a foot and a half wide.

After limbing the bucking sawyers took another two days to cut it into twenty foot lengths, as was the norm, the tree was tagged, and they moved on. The crew were pleased to find that when the tree fell it killed an adolescent male brown bear. By all appearances a limb had snapped when the tree landed; the force of the limb, as it was flung away from the trunk was sufficient to kill the bear without crushing him. They butchered him before they moved. There would be plenty of fresh meat for the foreseeable future.

 


This week’s prompts are:

  1. I have to find a way to tell them
  2. Nothin’ special
  3. This was not what she needed right now

Try not to overthink it. Have a good time.

WordPress happiness engineering assures me that pingbacks are fixed. They say that everyone playing should ensure that they have checked “Attempt to notify any blogs linked to from the article” in WP Admin -> Settings -> Discussion.

 

OLWG #2 – How Much Sugar?

OLWG #2



I stopped what I was doing and turned back to the book.
That couldn’t be right.
Could it?
I peered through my half moons
Studied the words

1t (4.2g)               granulated white sugar

That’s hardly any at all
‘Specially for a berry pie.
Well, Mom always said,
“Follow the recipe the first time”
“You can make it your own after that.”

Everyone oohed and aahed when I brought out dessert
The blackberries were just shy of ripe
How much sugar?
Hearty slices with a scoop of vanilla
Puckered faces ’round the table.

“Maybe a bit more ice cream, please!”
“Oh yes, me too.”
“That sounds like a good idea.”
“Just a bit more ice cream for me, as well!”
I took a taste.

Damn, out of ice cream.


 

OLWG #2

The following story is just me having fun. The prompts are down at the bottom.

Enjoy!


Roland was focused because the traffic was bad and it was raining. Not a hard rain but a slow, steady drizzle that seemed worse than it really was because of all the cars. All the cars next to him on the road that were slinging water up onto his windshield. His wipers were slapping back and forth. A metronome, with a swoosh instead of a knock.

He saw it happen, he saw it coming. It was only a pebble, a small rock thrown up by the rear tire of the car in the outside lane, just ahead of him. He saw it coming and had time to worry about it before it hit his windscreen. Tick, and it was gone. In its place was a pit in the glass. In less than a mile a crack appeared, spreading laterally from where the stone had damaged the tempered glass screen.

This is not good, Roland thought to himself, but the crack seemed to stabilize when it was about four inches long and he breathed a little easier. He knew he would have to get it repaired but maybe he could make it to Brenda’s before dark and he could get it fixed later. He had about 45 or 50 miles to go.

He had made it almost five miles when disaster struck. There was a muted “whumpf” and that crack instantaneously transformed from a single crooked line, a few inches long; to a spider web in front of him that covered the entire windscreen.  The glass bowed inward for a couple of seconds before a baseball sized section collapsed on the passenger side. It littered his dash and the floor on that side of the car with small bits of glass. Rain came in right behind the glass. Roland hit his turn indicator and checked his mirror – he had to pull over.

It reminded him of wind chimes when the rest of the glass collapsed into the car, musical. Now the dash was completely covered. His lap was full of broken bits and the rainwater was beginning to soak everything. When he got to the shoulder he pulled as far off the road as possible, turned on his emergency flashers. He beat his palms against the steering wheel.

“Shit, shit, shit,” he yelled even though there was no one to hear except him.

Traffic continued to whoosh by as Roland gathered his wits about him. He was not too far from an exit and he made out the  glow of some lights ahead. A large yellow sign with red letters “EAT” it said, and he hoped for a truck stop. The rain was relentless. He was getting soaked as he put the car in gear and began moving slowly up the shoulder of the road; blink blink, blink blink – the flashers mocked him.

There would be a phone up ahead and he could call Brenda. Maybe she would come pick him up and they could stay the night in a motel. There must be a motel around, somewhere nearby. Would she do that for him? Would she drive all the way out here in the rain? They hadn’t known each other that long. He wasn’t sure.

He thought that he should probably call his wife too. Let her know that he was stuck outside Evansville until sometime tomorrow when he could get a new windscreen. She shouldn’t expect him home until early afternoon.


This week’s prompts are:

  1. Mom, I need to go to the emergency room
  2. How much sugar?
  3. And other such skullduggery

Don’t stop to think about it. GO!

Hey guys – Pingbacks are not working here so I won’t know if you link up. WordPress is working on it but until it gets fixed could you please just mention your post in a normal comment for me? We all want to see what you’ve come up with and this is the only way I can do it until they get this fixed.

 

Daily Prompt; Brassy

Daily Prompt; Brassy



It was a Sunday in February just like any other Sunday, only colder. On Sunday’s, I always went to Grandma’s. I would bring food and we would share lunch. I would keep her up to date on family “going on’s.” She, in turn, would tell me delightful stories.

I could seldom figure out which stories were true, which were embellished, and which were complete poppycock told by Grandma just to amuse herself, and maybe to entertain me, at the same time. I probably inherited that gene from her. On this particular Sunday it was cold; really cold. In fact; it was so cold that on the way over to her house, I had seen a dog frozen to a fire hydrant.

Grandma didn’t come to the front door when I knocked. Concerned, I went around the back and spied through the kitchen window. Grandma was in a chair wrapped in blankets, I could just see her nose peeking out. She was perched on a hard-backed rocker in front of the oven. The oven glowed red. I knocked on the door and she looked up before beckoning me inside from beneath her woolen covers. The back door was unlocked and when I entered I noticed that the house was really cold.

“Grandma, what’s going on? Are you OK?” There was a modicum of heat flowing into the kitchen from the open door on the oven.

“I’m fine TN, just cold.” she said, “The fire went out last night and I couldn’t get it relit this morning. Maybe you can help. There’s wood in the box in the living room.”

“Sure thing, Grandma. I’ll take care of it.”

Grandma had an old Franklin stove in the living room and I was able to get it stoked and lit in short order. I was curious about a number of brassy coloured BB’s that were lying on the floor in front of the stove. I couldn’t figure out where they came from, or what they were. The BB’s you could buy in town were normally copper and, what would Grandma be doing with BB’s anyway?

I could not explain these but I swept them up and put them on the table next to Grandma’s overstuffed chair. The room warmed up pretty quickly and  I helped her move next to the fire so she could warm up too. While she thawed out I went back to the kitchen to heat our lunch. I had brought left over fried chicken and tomato bisque. We hollered back and forth about the weather and the scandalous behavior of all my cousins until I carried  in a tray laden with soup and chicken. I helped Grandma unwrap and she continued telling more stories as we tucked into our food.

After she told me about my cousin Sandy and the iguanas Grandma noticed the BB’s on the table, next to her.

“What in heaven’s name are these, TN?” she asked.

“I don’t know Grandma. They were scattered on the floor here in front of the fireplace. I gathered them up and put them on your table.”

Grandma clucked her tongue and looked up at the shelf over the Franklin. The shelf where she kept her figurines, she had a menagerie of ceramic, glass and metal animals, that she had collected in her travels over the years, housed on that shelf.

“My oh my, it really did get cold in here last night. I’m sorry boys.” It was almost as if she was apologizing to her collection.

“What is it Grandma? What are those brass balls? Who are you apologizing to?”

“Them.” she pointed up to the lower shelf where she kept her “No evil” monkeys. She had gotten them on a trip to China with Grandpa before the war. They were cheaply cast brass souvenir monkeys, and I had seen them on that shelf my entire life. One kept his hands clasped over his eyes, one with his hands over his ears, and the other was covering his mouth. They were different now though. All three of them had their hands in their laps and looks of anguish on their faces.

“Oh my God,” I said as I realized what the small brassy balls that I had scooped off the floor were. “Do you think they can be re-attached?”


It’s almost Sunday! There’ll be fresh prompts here on Sunday.

Come play.

Daily Prompt; Portion – of Potion

Daily Prompt; Portion



Sophie Chalice was planning to spend the day in the kitchen. She had accepted a commission from Melody Le Torneau to whip up a batch of her famous love potion. Le Torneau hadn’t always been Melody’s name, for that matter Melody hadn’t been her name for very long either. Sophie remembered when Ms. Le Torneau had been Lavander Naxxremis.

She changed her name when she began trying to catch the eye of Kaspar Graves. Kaspar was a hopeless bureaucrat who worked at the courthouse. Sophie found him dull, tiresome, and not very good looking either, but Melody had changed her name to try and catch him. Now she had hired Sophie to make a potion.

She was in the process of bringing the base stock to a slow boil and reached for her box of fluxweed powder. She remembered only then that she had used the last of it to season the brisket she had cooked the weekend before.

“Damn,” she said out loud causing the cat to raise her head and squint. “Isadore,” she said to the cat, “Fly quickly to the bodega and fetch me a new box of fluxweed, won’t you?”

The cat hissed and lay her head back down, “I’m not your minion. Fetch it yourself.” Isadore replied.

***

Sophie gathered her accoutrements and headed out the door and down to the bodega where lo and behold she ran into Melody, nee Lavander .

“Good afternoon Melody.”

“Sophie, it’s so good to see you. I hope you’re keeping busy.”

“Oh, indeed. I’m brewing a potion even as we speak but I find myself a tad short of fluxweed powder.”

“Fluxweed, you say? Sounds like you might be making a ‘love portion’” Melody said smiling.

“It’s a potion, not a portion, Melody.”

“Yes, I know a portion.”

“No, a potion.”

“That’s what I said. Now drop it please.”

Sophie rolled her eyes, “As you wish, Ms. Le Torneau. If you’d like you can come by at midnight and pick up your portion. You can collect Mr. Graves portion of the potion as well.”

Melody’s eyes drifted shut, and she shivered, “Ohhh, yesss,” she whispered. “That sounds delicious. I’ll be there. I can scarcely wait.”