Flash

Traffic

Traffic had become unbelievable lately. Daryl would sometimes eat lunch during the commute, to maintain his stamina. He’d even started packing extra food and water, just in case.

Today the traffic was worse than ever. The clock in the truck didn’t work, and the jam stood locked in place so long that Daryl lost all track of time.  Seasons passed. Civilizations had toppled and rebooted. Children had stepped into the shoes of their ancestors. That’s what it felt like to Daryl at least. Forever plus one day. Of course he was overreacting.

It couldn’t have been that long, could it?

PHOTO PROMPT -Copyright-Roger Bultot

PHOTO PROMPT -Copyright-Roger Bultot

My entry for the Friday Fictioneers 100 Word Story Challenge, based on the photo prompt above.  Curated by the amazing Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.

Click on the link below to check out some of the other entries.

I was too busy to participate last week, and of course with school starting next week my life will basically be over. Or least significantly occupied by tending the childrens and sitting in traffic.

I always pack extra food and water, just in case.

One of Those Days

Ever had one of those days where nothing seems to go right, a day where everything, in fact, goes the opposite of right? A day that deteriorates to comic proportions, everything about it unraveling until it becomes almost predictable. Every joke’s on you.

It seems almost surreal, doesn’t it, like a conspiracy of the universe to destroy you? Karma is pissing on your head. Practice deep breathing and visualization, stress management techniques and transcendental meditation. Practice aggressive passive aggression. Stay calm in the face of cacophonous calamity. It could be worse, right? The universe can only nod its head in your direction, an unwavering affirmative to your inquiry and thanks for asking. It could be worse and so it is. Care to wager again, double or nothing perhaps?

Laughing helps, but there’s a point where laughter becomes hollow and painful, a point where laughter makes the hurt worse. At some point the body and mind become numb, survival mechanisms kicking in and flooding your neural circuitry with endorphins to lessen the anguish. It could be worse becomes it’s not so bad. Turn that frown upside down and buck up buckeroo.

There’s always tomorrow.

Having a bad day? (by Missy13d69 on Flickr) – CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Dad’s Castle

The land, willed to my father, had been in our family for generations. Everybody considered it useless and unbuildable. His dream became constructing something wonderful on the eroding bluff, somehow overcoming the treacherous pull of gravity. Every portion completed required constant reinforcement afterward. Even as the lowest levels crumbled away, more rooms and terraces were added on top. He was certain that one day a magnificent castle would stand atop this land.

When the land was willed to me, his dream became mine. Someday there will be a castle here.

I just hope I live long enough to witness it.

Björn 6

This week’s entry for the Friday Fictioneers, a 100 word story based on the photo prompt above.

Hosted by the phenomenal Rachel Wisoff-Fields. View other entries below.

Flying High

Both the pilot and copilot had taken ill. The doctor deemed it food poisoning. Ted looked out the window at the earth below, wondering if he could get the plane back on the ground. Nerves had ended his career as a pilot and he’d developed a severe drinking problem. He looked at the cocktail on the tray in front of him, wondering if it would calm his nerves or rattle them more. The doctor looked at him with gravity.

“Can you fly this plane and land it?”

“Surely you can’t be serious.”

“ I am serious, and don’t call me Shirley.”

PHOTO PROMPT- Copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

PHOTO PROMPT- Copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

This week’s entry for the Friday Fictioneers, a 100 word story based on the photo prompt above.

Kind of a cop out I know, recycling old content from the rubbish heap, but I just couldn’t help myself. My ‘ode to the silliest movie ever made, not including Sharknado.

Surely I must be joking. No, I’m dead serious. And don’t call me Shirley.

Airplane! The Movie

 

Donovan’s Dream

Donovan wants his franks, man. Donovan’s so hungry, like Donovan’s just a big empty stomach. Got some white bread in the cupboard at home, mustard, some packages of Burger King ketchup, fucking hot dogs it is. A dollar fifty-six for eight franks seems too good to be true, especially for Ball Park Franks. They plump when you cook them. They remind Donovan of Donovan’s childhood, of eating hot dogs at the A’s game with father when still very young. Donovan remembers catching a foul ball with an oily, spit covered baseball mitt that had the stitches coming undone. Donovan remembers being so happy, like maybe that was the happiest moment of Donovan’s life. Later, Donovan had forgotten the mitt underneath his seat with the souvenir ball still folded inside, and father had been drunk and angry because the A’s had lost by fourteen runs. Father had called Donovan the stupidest kid on earth and slapped Donovan a couple times. When thinking of Donovan’s childhood, that’s how it usually ends.

Donovan has a five spot in his pocket, and no more coming in for too long to think about. That kid bleeding Donovan’s money and life away, and that two-timing whore that is the baby mama of Donovan’s son. Donovan doesn’t want to think of any of that. Donovan wants to mow some dogs, but Donovan’s thirsty too. Donovan has enough money for a forty. Forty ounces of Coors is two twenty-nine, so Donovan doesn’t have enough money for two forties unless Donovan puts the franks back, but then Donovan sees that twenty-twos only cost a dollar nine. Donovan does some math and decides this means less money for more beer. Donovan ain’t so stupid now, is he? Donovan grabs two twenty-twos. What a fucking bargain. Donovan buys a watermelon Jolly Rancher for dessert, the last one. Fucking gore-met and shit.

But the line at Day’s Market is un-fucking-believable, and when Donovan has to wait Donovan gets angry. Donovan gets crazy when Donovan’s hungry, man. Fucking reflex, man. Donovan feels like kicking some ass right now. Donovan likes kicking ass. It makes Donovan feel better. Donovan’s gonna open his beer while waiting. Donovan doesn’t care. The beer is cold, man. It tastes as good as a beer can taste.

Donovan wants that beer to last forever, to climb inside that can and go swimming until he drowns in beer. That would be awesome. It is Donovan’s dream, and someday Donovan will make his dream come true.

Coors Banquet (by mikedemers on Flickr – CC BY-NC 2.0)

Pass the Ketchup

 We’d been driving all day by the time we pulled into town, and my dad was even more pissed off than normal. We were all hungry and tired. The motel sign read no vacancy, and the only restaurant still open was a hole in the wall Chinese joint.

“What the hell is this?” he asked. “First no fries or cheeseburgers, and now this shit?”

“They’re chopsticks, Henry,” my mom said. “Use them to pick up your food, like this.”

“I don’t do friggin chopsticks,” he said, stabbing his orange chicken with one chopstick. “Now, pass me that dang Chinese ketchup.”

PHOTO PROMPT Copyright – Marie Gail Stratford

Written for Friday Fictioneers – hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

My 100 word story written about the photo prompt above. Read more below.

Too Long in London

The day starts with you in front of a tube station in south London. You and your traveling partner, who has really started to get on your nerves recently, as the two of you nickel and dimed (euroed and franked) your way across certain parts of Europe for the past month. The hostels and camping had turned weary, tired, every night the beds less comfortable and home further away. It is the twenty-first of May, the day of your return flight to America. The plan is to take the tube to Heathrow airport, which for the both of you costs three more pounds than you can scrape together. You knew those last few pints the evening before had been a bad idea. Your last night abroad had been a beer filled celebration, but it was all a blur now.

It is eight in the morning, the bustle of a weekday London morning, the entrance to the London Underground a river of umbrellas and raincoats. Did I mention the rain? The both of you look the part of the greasy vagrant, unshaven backpackers begging money so you could catch the train to the airport. In half an hour you’d only scraped up a few schillings. Then one business-dressed lady stopped for a moment, having a bit of a problem closing her umbrella. Excuse me, you say. Do you have extra money so that we can make it to the airport and get home to America? After she manages to close her umbrella she turns to the two of you and has a long disappointed look at you.  So you’ll be leaving the country then, she asks. She agrees to give you money, all three pounds that you need. But before she hands it over, she makes you promise that you wouldn’t return to Britain. Ever.

So you purchase your fare and take the tube to Heathrow. On the map it looks like Heathrow is very close. Actually it feels hours away. Much like London, the train ride seems to go on forever. At Heathrow you stand in line for an hour at check-in. You study your tickets about fifty times while you wait. Nonstop, London to San Francisco, May 21st. You get to the counter and show the lady your tickets, relieved to have finally made it through all the obstacles, to verge so close to your homecoming. Then she tells you that your flight isn’t until tomorrow.

The 21st of May, you say.

Yes, today is the 20th

Rainy Day In London (by oatsy40 on Flickr – CC BY 2.0)