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Cooled Down with “642 Things to Write About”

My sister has gone to Louisiana, for she’s going to college there. As much as I’ll miss her, I’m glad. I believe she’s in a better place to grow as a person. Nothing like leaving the nest to learn how to fly!

I hadn’t written something for “642 Things to Write About” in more than a year.

Prompt #93- Pick a country, and imagine we’ve been at war with it for fourteen years. Write a love story set in that world. 

(One of the longer ones. I think this’ll be good by itself)

Why would you rather see 2 men holding guns than holding hands? 

“Let’s be civil.”

“The Canadians are always like that- let’s be civil. They don’t fucking mean it!”

“I do mean it.”

Martin was likely to have believed it, if their set was one less Haroldson, but Haroldson was there, so Martin suspended his belief in the cold Alaskan snow. Haroldson had a brother in the army, but his section was two miles west, and these Canadian boys were half a mile too far up the Yukon. To be fair, Martin and his crew were thinking to walk just as too-far, at the same time believing it was safe and trying to be risky, as youths were prone to do.

“We can all just go the way we came,” said the only Canadian speaking. The other two spoke quickly to each other in something sounding like French. Martin’s stomach churned at the noises, knowing Haroldson was likely to take offense, especially since those from Quebec were the main French speakers. It told too much about these traveling boys.

Finally, another of them spoke up, “What are you going to do, ‘ey? Kill us? You got guns, like all the rest of them?”

Obviously the Haroldson of the group. The leader was quick to ease the tension: “Please, we don’t want trouble. We were just walking, same as you.”

Martin could just imagine it, but he didn’t want himself to think about it. Unfortunately, he couldn’t think of much else either. It was a cold day in Alaska. His mind went back to the boys traveling, same as them.

They had to have driven, just like them. They came from Liberty, except for Burke, who was Peter’s cousin up from Steele Creek. Most likely, the Canadians were from Clinton Creek. The Yukon was watched like a hawk from both sides, but time and too many frostbitten and/or hypothermic soldiers relaxed the border elsewhere, especially after the gates were bombed. A freezing war is an expensive war, as much as a fourteen-year one with such a close neighbor that had a lot of help. Sure, England, France, and Canada weren’t much military-wise for most part of the last century, especially against the giants of China and America, but combining them and a few secret alliances with the rest of North America, and then Russia, and it was just possible for a long fight.

Martin was two when the war started, so he didn’t know much about secret alliances and bombed borders, but he did know that the war with Canada was a war that was mostly Canada and friends. He was confused about the starting, something about multiple mass shootings across the border that America, supposedly, didn’t take accountability for, plus the Canadian sanctions and countries taking Canada’s side (like Russia, although not an official ally for another four years), and America being proud and beautiful and standing for their second amendment rights to bear arms out in the open anywhere and everywhere. That started ‘unrest’, as so many books put it, a Canadian official was shot somewhere and one of their diplomats ended up in a ‘completely unrelated car accident in New Hampshire’, and that started a war that Canada was quick on losing until England and France stepped in, ‘stabbing longtime friend America in the back’ while ‘so-called American citizens argued for peace and make-up’.

Martin was told by Haroldson that there was no way their history books were biased as the liberal ass Jacoby was always saying in class.

As a point for Canadian Haroldson (now isn’t that a paradox), they did have guns. Now, they were out. Canadian Haroldson blanched, and Martin knew that none of them had guns.

“Please, please, don’t do this.” A musical timbre was in the lead boy’s voice now, a warble.

Unable to face the music, even with his gun in his trained hands, Martin asked, “What’s your name?”

“Nathan.”

Martin has a cousin named Nathan.

“My name’s Martin.”

“Why are we telling each our names?” Haroldson demanded, but he has yet to pull the trigger, or even click off the safety. “It’s getting dark.” Then, another, “There are only three of them.”

When it seemed Haroldson was done, Nathan went on, “They’re Antoine and Eli. Brothers.”

Martin could see the resemblance, and the sudden gut-wrenching turmoil that would come from killing a brother in front of another, much more magical than a first kill itself, brings Martin’s gun down to hip level, off to the side safely pointed at no one.

“What are we doing?” asked Peter quietly.

His cousin Burke suggested, “Let’s let them go,” with the confidence of being a closer friend afforded him.

“Yea, we can’t kill them,” was the quick agreement.

“No, you won’t.”

I can’t, thought Martin, but he was equally afraid of Haroldson branding him as a traitor to his brother. He’s done it before and ruined a family that ran off all the way to boiling Texas. And that had been one of Haroldson’s better friends, not just a camping buddy. It was much like Canada and the United States, Martin’s mom has said once, quietly, the most bitter fights come from the longest friends.

Martin suddenly thought, We could have been friends.

“Let’s take them prisoner.”

It actually sounded like a good idea out loud, relative to killing the boys so far from home in the cold air.

The idea took, too juicy to pass up, and it sounded delicious to Haroldson too, and he went closer to the Canadians, but not too close. Just because they didn’t like guns didn’t mean they couldn’t handle themselves in other ways. As hotheaded as Haroldson was, he was a cautious young man when it came to actual fighting.

“Come on, you’re going to follow him-” He pointed to Burke. “-and don’t do anything stupid.”

The Canadian three followed, eventually pressing their hands to their heads without being told, and their boots crunched in the snow in a steady line behind a visibly nervous Burke, who shot several desperate looks at Martin. Martin hadn’t found his voice yet.

Haroldson followed in the back with Martin, behind one of the brothers, his sharp pistol aimed and ready, and smooth expression settling in his face as if this were a routine drill up at the Fort, which was where he used to live before his dad decided to move to Eagle. Haroldson had said that his dad was sort of liberal, and Martin had wondered if anyone was free from the boy’s two-dimensional view of the world.

They walked the distance back to the cabin they used as a waypoint between too far and close enough, not saying a word, although Burke shot looks at Martin, and Peter looked at Burke, and Martin stared at the ground while Haroldson watched their prisoners.

Martin’s read good books, the ones that are put in school curricula to help students learn and grow, where these sort of things end in tragedy. Although that might not be the view of everyone. Honestly, that view may not be Haroldson’s.

And all anyone had to do was say something.

They might have to kill Haroldson.

A weird breath went down his esophagus, sharper than the rest, and he began to cough hard. The cabin was in view, and he focused on that.

They piled in the cabin, the old house big enough for the seven of them and kept up by Burke’s wealthy uncle for just these sort of events. Camping, that is, not prison sentences.

Peter immediately sat down, face in his hands with a groan. His head then snapped up with an idea: “Let’s take them back to Eagle and give them to the adults.”

“You’re from  Steele, so you don’t know nothin’ about nothin’ about Eagle,” Haroldson answered, as if that was a proper reply. Peter looked dumbfound, and his eyes went to his cousin, who inexplicably sought Martin’s help.

Martin had his sights on Nathan, Antoine, and Eli, dodging the need to do something other than what they were doing.

He noticed Nathan’s eyes were a spectacular shade of green, and  he had long eyelashes.

“You’re pretty like a girl,” Haroldson said, not in a kindly way, brushing the gaping hole of his gun against Nathan’s hair at his temple.

Peter tried again, sounding more panicked than before, “We should bring them back to your place, back to your brother. He’ll know what to do with them.”

Haroldson whirled on him; Peter’s knuckles went white against his gun. This actually made Haroldson stop.

His voice was reasonable, “What if we lose them on the way there?”

“It’s not like we’re walking,” Peter whined. “We can drive them, two in the passenger seats, and one in the back. We can tie them up with our extra jackets, or the scarves. We can just-”

“We can, we can, we can. We could have just killed them because they’re going to try and kill us!”

“No, they won’t,” Martin whispered, looking at Nathan’s rather long hair.

Neither Peter nor Haroldson heard him, but Nathan’s eyes turned wide on him, begging, but not voicing his thoughts as Haroldson again argued for dispatching these could-be terrorists, as he was in the midst of saying.

“And we’d be better off if they were all dead! Y’all are just afraid of killing people. Guess what? I’m not afraid.”

Eli or Antoine went into a tirade of fitful French, drawing close to his brother in such a proximity that only relations could give. He even held onto his hand. He was the younger of the two, and could have  been twelve or thirteen. His sixteen or seventeen-year-old brother squeezed his hand back and spoke softly in their language.

No guns. A boy barely a teenager. And Nathan.

“Why are you all so far out?”

Both boys looked at Nathan, and he delivered.

“I saw this cabin while walking some weeks back. We were going to check it out.”

The similarities were almost too much, Martin realized, and with stark clarity that wasn’t coming too easily to him at the moment he knew that if, somehow, they were going to kill these boys, he wouldn’t be able to pull the trigger, damn any and all consequences. And what sort of consequences would they be at the blue toes of three strangers?

“This is my house, so you’re just shit out of luck, now aren’t you?” Haroldson said, sort of lying.

“Are you going to kill us?” Nathan finally asked.

“No.”-“Yes.”

Both words moved breathlessly from small mouths. Haroldson and Martin then stared wide-eyed at each other.

Nathan reached out his hand to hold the older boy’s hand. The brother spoke quickly in French, looking scared out of his mind at Haroldson, jerking his hands away, but not strongly enough to be let go. His younger sibling suddenly let go, looking at his two companions in confusion.

Nathan.

“Antoine.”

Antoine, the Haroldson of their group, looked at Haroldson, and just as it dawned in Martin’s mind what was going on, Haroldson figured it out as well.

“A couple of fags.” 

Several bits of history went through Martin’s mind as he stood in front of the boys: the overturn of Supreme Court rulings regarding same-sex marriage, the liberal outcry of opposing Canada on flimsy topics (and the majority answer of, no, that’s not it, we’re fighting for religious rights, guaranteed by the First Amendment), and further religious liberty on many grounds (or homosexual persecution, as the liberals would call it).

Martin was more sure on this score. He had a gay uncle in Oregon, and his favorite sister was Martin’s mom. One day, she had told him once, they’re going to remember what a stupid war this was.

“-and you’re just going to stand there protecting some fags!”

Martin blinked, unsure of what just happened. Eli was on his legs, speaking blindly in French; both Antoine and Nathan were behind him as well; and Burke and Peter were off to the side, guns nowhere to be seen but well aware of Haroldson shouting everything to pieces.

Martin swallowed, “We’re not going to kill then, Harolds’. There’s no reason to.”

“There’s plenty of reasons!”

“Name five.”

This was a usual game for them, and the shock of betrayal lit Haroldson’s face like a flare. Martin will never come to this cabin again.

“So that’s how it’s going to be?”

Martin stood still.

“For some Canadian assholes.”

He would never move his gun fast enough, if needed.

“Would you die for them?”

Another spark of clarity: he wasn’t going to go out of his way, but he wasn’t going to let them die. Plus, he saw the cousins take out their guns behind Haroldson’s back, and a new sort of panic started to set in. He realized how much he really disliked Haroldson, but killing him would have different consequences that would have no equal in killing even the three they had as prisoners. The thought was disquieting.

He had to think clearly. That’s all.

They didn’t have to kill Haroldson, of course. Martin sighed in relief.

“Martin!”

Haroldson was breathing hard. He hadn’t noticed the others behind him, pointing. Martin got their eyes instead, shaking his head in refusal. Neither was calm, but they put down their arms into a less threatening stance.

“So what are we going to do with them?” Haroldson asked coldly.

“Let them go.”

“So I can’t come back to this house again?”

“Probably not. You’re going to kill them over this house that you come over to every once in a blue moon?”

Good, there was no shakiness in his voice. He could do this.

“It’s my house.”

“Haroldson, this is dumb. We aren’t soldiers, and neither are they. Let’s be civil-”

The bullet went through Martin’s leg, but he didn’t notice until he figured out that yes, Haroldson had turned off the safety at some point, and then afterwards came to where it might be aimed. The pain blossomed much worse than taking a shot into a bulletproof vest, and there was the hot blood in thick snow-proof trousers.

On the floor he heard two shots go off at once. And Martin prayed no one was dead.

“How did you miss, Peter? He’s right there!”

“You got his arm, didn’t you? Oh, shit, you killed him, you killed him dead.”

“I ain’t killed dead,” Haroldson groaned. Martin lifted his head to see him holding his shoulder, bleeding all over his neck, breathing through his nose.

Eli was suddenly crying.

Peter was digging into his pocket, and he came out with a pair of keys. Almost as if unthinking, he threw these behind Martin.

“It’s the white one. Just take it and get out of here. Burke, for Christ’s sake, get Harolds’ gun!”

Haroldson shouted in pain, but he didn’t reach the gun in time. All anxiety popped from from Martin like a balloon; relief went over him in bigger waves as the Canadians got up, the soft voice of thanks from Nathan, or who Martin believed was Nathan, and then Antoine’s voice afterwards, profusely in French, shaking his hand. Eli continued to cry.

“I’m putting all the guns away,” Peter announced, although two of of his listeners were incapacitated.

“What…” Haroldson whimpered, squirming on the floor, but managed to squeak out, “What are y’all going to tell everyone else?”

“The truth,” Martin spat derisively.

“You helped out some Canadian fags on our side of the border?”

“That’s good, too.” Better than anything else, and Martin’s vision wavered on the three boys long gone, two of them holding hands, before it went blank.

(Let’s play a game. You have to guess what I had to google to write this short-ass piece. You get a cookie if you think I know some of this stuff offhand)

Hellishly Hot with “642 Things To Write About”

The titles for this have changed but the quality of content has not. Sharing this stuff on Facebook makes me well-aware that I’m getting it out to the most amount of people I can, for free! I could actually do something with my tumblr or get a Twitter, but, meh.

Oh, yea, Facebook? Tiny, tiny drop, just as I thought.

Prompt #86-The president’s personal to-do list

My response:

1. Meet with theorists about Korean threat

2. Remind the fly-releaser that no one’s talked about me being the Antichrist for about a week

3. Listen in on Limbaugh/Fox/Far-right agency to see how well I’m doing- Remember, angrier they are, the better I’m doing

4. Smile less. Michelle doesn’t believe I’m not looking at pretty ladies anymore- remember secretary comment- Bad Obama!

5. Write speech- 500th one! (Subsequently reward self with a two-day golf vacation)

6. Fire the white guy who keeps talking about how great it is I’m a black president

7. Fire the white guy who keeps scoffing at guy in 6

8. Work out

9. Manipedi

10. Get teeth clean

11. Honor more promises

Sister’s response:

1. Peace- North Korea

2. Sign The Documents

3. Break- Hang out with family

4. Solve gay marriage and gun control issues

5. Take kids to the dentist

6. Photoshoot

7. Speech

Prompt#87- The general manager of the New York Yankees’ personal to-do list

My response: (I know more about butterfly migration patterns than the freakin’ Yankess- but here goes!)

1. Send hate mail to Red Sox

2. Send mocking letters to Astros

3. Pray to Special Bat and Special Ball on Special Field

Sister’s response:

1. Practice 5AM to 5PM tomorrow

2. Wash all jerseys

3. Pick up all balls

4. Gameplay

5. Practice game with Giants

6. Have someone clean field

7. Have someone to do 2 and 3

(haha)

Prompt#88- A powerful Hollywood agent’s personal to-do list

My response: (Okay, it’s officially unfun now)

1. Call diet manager and trainer

2. Tip off The Inquirer and Us about tomorrow’s secret outing

3. Email The Others

4. Pay NYPD, LAPD, Holiday Inn, Motel 6, and the people between fortieth and fiftieth

5. No more gin, ever

6. No more coke, ever

Sister’s response:

1. Fire coffee lady

2. Fire make-up artist

3. Fire donut boy

4. Fire Jack Black

5. Fire camera crew

6.Fire designers

7. Hire new crews

(Sister has more of a story going on XD)

Prompt#89- Three objects in your childhood bedroom

My response:

I can’t really remember anything but my bed and siblings… Ah! In middle school, I had the BL manga Fake- which I managed to get even though it had plastic wrap and adult content; the blue radio which I skipped to; and the Harry Potter book- I think maybe the first. I still have Fake, and I have an iPod now. :D

Sister’s response:

Stuffed animals, bunk beds, and syrup stain.

Prompt#90- The toy you most treasured

My response:

I had a stuffed bear with blue paws. It was soft and big, though that might have been because I was small. At one point, we all had a favorite stuffed animal, and then there was a time that mine was in the best shape or not missing. Now it’s gone, and my sisters still have Penelope and Minnie Mouse.

Sister’s response:

Penelope. I don’t know why, but she is the best toy ever. She doesn’t do much, but when it’s playing time, she’s always there.

Prompt#91- What’s stored in your closet?

My response:

My and others’ clothes, suitcases, my Teahouse paraphernalia, some games I’ve beaten (Final Fantasy XIII, Silent Hill Homecoming and Downpour), a tea set, a Shakespeare set, books I’ve read (the Pendragon books) and several volumes of various gay pornography.

Sister’s response:

Twilight books, old clothes, stuff from middle school, about 30 folded chips bags, boxes, sister’s stuff, and ceramics, and stuffed animals.

Prompt#92- The next sound you hear and what caused it

My response:

The crickets outside are doing their thing. They used to annoy the flipping fuck out of me, but they are okay now. Not to the point of lulling me to sleep or anything like you might read elsewhere, but not nearly as maddening as when I heard them when I was younger.

Sister’s response:

My sister saying “The next sound I heard after ‘it’ were crickets”. What caused it was the prompt asking ‘The next sound you hear and what caused it’.

(She’s freakin’ hilarious!)

“642 Things to Write About” and The Block is Hot

Post 80 starts with prompt 80! Magic!

“It was the first time I killed a man”- Prompt #83 is the best thing I’ve ever written! Some sweet stuff from sissy on Prompt #82! And Ohmahgosh! Cool stuff from her on #84! Much love!

Prompt #80-The cleaning lady

My response:

We had a cleaning lady once. I think she was Hispanic. Anyway, Ma paid her to clean our big house, and do our laundry. I remember thinking it was cool, and it felt nice not having to worry about cleaning, since at that time I was in a phase where I did too much to get my parents’ love and affection.

I remember her being cheerful, and she brought her kid(s) over- though I don’t remember much about them, as you can probably guess.

I remember there being a falling out between Ma and her, and we never had a cleaning lady again.

Her name started with an H, I’m sure.

Sister’s response:

You have to keep a close eye on cleaning ladies. You never know what they’ll do. I remember when my teacher was talking about how he had a cleaning lady/babysitter and she took some figurines. Luckily, he had cameras set up everywhere.

(Bet they had a falling out too. FYI, my sister wasn’t old enough to remember the cleaning lady.)

Prompt #81-Waiting

My response:

I’ve always been told I am a patient person, though I’ve come to realize that perhaps I’m not patient, but I don’t mind for some things, while waiting for others afford me no patience at all.

For example, many times when I’m changing my niece’s diaper, I take off the used one, and then she runs off. Let me tell you, and you know how much I adore my niece, but I gotta admit I have absolutely no patience when she does that. However, she has yet to learn since pretty much everyone else chases after her. Now, I’ll chase after her with a game of run, or outside, even when it’s time to go back into the house. When I’m trying to get a diaper on her, I take no shit. (Sister pointed it out, but no pun intended, haha)

However, I realized the breadth of my patience long ago, particularly in high school. I was the only female on the wrestling team, and after practice was over, we had to weigh ourselves on the single scale in the room. I always went last after about twenty males, and they joked around and stuff like that, largely uncaring that I waited.

I also waited long times for roller coasters when I went to Six Flags. I didn’t go there for no damn teacups- I can get that anywhere. Nothing is better than reliving the hair-raising ups and downs, and telling others that you rode all the big ones. Oh, their incredulous faces!

Sister’s response:

I don’t mind waiting if I have something to do. I do have pet peeve on waiting though. If I’m leaving to go somewhere, and I feel like I’m going to be late, do not keep me waiting! I will get frustrated.

Prompt #82-An estranged mother and son who haven’t seen or spoken to each other in more than twenty years meet in line at the post office in December, arms full of packages to be mailed. What do they say to each other? 

My response:

They recognized each other, but didn’t think the other noticed themselves. The son thought that the dreadlocked hair carrying on down his back , gaged ears and multiple piercings might have have made him unrecognizable while the mother was nearly seventy pounds lighter with a blonde wig and pressed-on nails. The line they were in was for the sole purpose of sending last-minute Christmas gifts, and there were four others there, to make it embarrassing and awkward should either of them make the first move.

The son sucked on his lip ring nervously. He noticed that, much like him, his mother had hardly aged to fifty-six and looked more in her late thirties, while he backed down from that to a good twenty years. She always said that her family had good genes chained up her next cigarette, filling the living room up with smoke that made his asthma so terrible, though he didn’t realize that until much later, in therapy after he left. The therapist also made him realize that he had left his mother, who most likely went to an abusive man when he had gone. The guilt that often flooded him at that realization was swept away.

The mom was in front of him, balancing the gifts that her husband of twenty years had gotten for some girlfriends. Her shoulders felt rigid and achy, and not because of the weight of the packages. The burden, previously feather light, of letting her son go wherever was nearly making her healthy back creak. Twenty years ago her only son had left the house, thinking himself unloved and uncared for. At the time, she didn’t care. He was a few months or so from reaching the age of majority, though her then-boyfriend didn’t want any kids at his place, no matter how old. She was quick to move into his place.

Now, they waited, hoping for the line to get moving so that they wouldn’t have to say anything. But the person in line was rearranging some packages, since a box broke.

The son cleared his throat and saw his mother twitch and look behind quickly before looking away again. Then he knew. And she knew. He knew she knew. He cleared his throat again. She knew he knew.

“Who are the packages for?” he asked quietly.

“Girlfriends. And the old boyfriend- he’s my husband now” The curtness made her sad for some reason.

“Rita and Tanya?” Frankly, the son was surprised they were still together.

“Yea.”

“You’re still friends with them?” The bitterness in his voice was inescapable, all the same.

She steeled herself against the accusation. “Yea.”

The boxes were all fixed, and the line was moving.

“Big earrings you got,” she said. “I’ve seen a lot of young folk wearing them.”

“I got them a long time ago.”

“They all droopy when they come out?”

“Yea.” He winced as he used the short response.

She turned around  to see them and everything clearly. He watched her eyes roam. He saw a tattoo across her chest that wasn’t there before. It was of a cross.

When she nodded and turned around, it was her turn. She got her stuff done and left. A bit disgusted, the son followed suit, but when he went outside, she was there waiting.

She held out a card. A gift card for iTunes. Seventy-five dollars. His chest tightened. With it, he still fumbled around for the pair of earrings that were supposed to go to his boyfriend’s niece, wrapped in superfluous paper in some bag. They were real gold.

They exchanged gifts.

“You welcome at the place,” she said over her shoulder, walking in the opposite direction, to the same car she’s always had.

“Yea.”

He didn’t wince this time, and she wasn’t sad anymore.

Sister’s response:

Mother: “Yes, I’ll like to deliver these.”

Postman:” Okay….. I’m sorry, this one doesn’t have a name.”

Mother: “Oh, I’m sorry. Make that out to “Todd Stanfill.”

*a man behind the woman turns away from the person he’s talking to*

P: And who are you?

M: I’m Clara Stanfill.

P: Clara? As in Clara T. Stanfill?

M: Yes?

P: There are a bunch of mails and packages for you. Like, twenty years’ worth. The manager wanted to throw them all away after Christmas. Good thing you’re still here. Please stay, I’ll be right back.

M: Okay…

*postman comes back with three boxes full of stuff*

P: Here. They’re all from the same person. Todd Campbell. There are more boxes.

M: Who’s that?

P: I’m sorry, he wanted me to say Todd… Steinfield? No… Stinfull? No…

Man: Stanfill!

*mother turns around, wide eyes in tears*

M: Todd?

Todd: Mom?

(*heart*)

Prompt #83-Write a scene that begins: “It was the first time I killed a man.”

My response:

it was the first time I killed a man. (Last time, too, I hope. I heard it gets easier the more you do it, and I don’t want to be the kind of guy that does it all the time. Don’t wanna be no gangster or hitman, you know. And I told the police this. For some reason, they seemed awful confused about me and my confession. I told him how I drove the car, that guy ran across the street and I pressed the break and it broke something awful and I went full speed into the boy and he crashed into my windshield and bounced off the top and landed somewhere behind. I got out to fill out insurance papers for damages (Here the policeman told me you don’t fill out insurance papers for this sort of thing and he called a doctor and I told them I didn’t need no doctor and I was fine and they gave me a smile and I thought that was awful nice of them to smile though it was the first time I killed a man (Last time, too, I hope. I heard it gets easier the more you do it, and I don’t want to be the kind of guy that does it all the time. Don’t wanna be no gangster or hitman, you know. And I told the police this. For some reason, they seemed awful confused about me and my confession. I told him how I drove the car, that guy ran across the street and I pressed the break and it broke something awful and I went full speed into the boy and he crashed into my windshield and bounced off the top and landed somewhere behind. I got out to fill out insurance papers for damages (Here the policeman told me you don’t fill out insurance papers for this sort of thing and he called a doctor and I told them I didn’t need no doctor and I was fine and they gave me a smile and I thought that was awful nice of them to smile though it was the first time I killed a man (Last time, too, I hope.

Sister’s response:

It was the first time I killed a man. I regret nothing. I’m glad he’s gone. Now I can have everything he owns. And the best part about it? No one suspects a thing.

“Sir?”

“Yes?”

“Your step-father’s will?”

“Yes, about getting his stuff, right? No… My father’s stuff. Because, you know, he took it from him before he died.”

“Uh, yea, I think we’re done here. What are you going to do?”

“I’ll give it to my mother. I’m sure she’ll want them back.”

(Awesome!!!!)

Prompt #84-Write a scene in which a person is leaving a restaurant with her husband and bumps into a former lover. What words are exchanged or not exchanged? What do her body positions say?

My response:

Donald knew his wife did not enjoy the meal, and he felt an extreme annoyance towards the dastardly waiter for not checking the food. All he needed to do was look down at the plates just once, for more than eight seconds, and realize the corn wasn’t the one she wanted. It should have been obvious if he had committed to memory that she wanted baby corn, not loose corn. And now she was irritated, and she would irritate Donald, and Donald will have to strangle an imaginary puppy.

In her stiff strides, she ran into a man, or more like banged him with her shoulder. The man turned around angrily and yelled, “Princess!”

She snapped back so quickly, bringing up a hand to show a quite universal sign of affection, and her fingers crumpled a bit. Within two seconds, the slight shock on her face melded itself into a snarl, and the hands curled at her sides. Donald’s been hit by those hands, and he would pinch her if she got too crazy.

She pushed her chin forward, eyes simply flashing dangerously. “Seems like dog is trying out some new treats?”

Donald suddenly recognized Doug. He began to strangle the puppy in earnest.

“And princess has a new knight in shining armor?”

A woman came up to Doug and whispered with wide, pretty eyes, “Is this Princilla?”

“Yea, this is princess.”

“Hello, Doug…” Donald said reluctantly, trying to keep the conversation civil and undramatic. “And?”

“Precious,” the lady introduced herself with an expression that implied strangling perhaps a cat.

The way they had forever poisoned each other seemed to seep into the energies of Donald and Precious, and their eyes said that to each other, while the seething banter continued between Doug and Princilla. She pulled on his wrist, he pulled on her arm but it wasn’t until they were yelling at each other at the top of their voices did they stop.

That waiter had come by to tell them that they were banned. This was the third time this month that they knocked into each other there and everyone, everyone had had enough.

While leaving for the last time, Donald imagined a cat, a sweet little thing, with big pretty eyes.

Sister’s response:

*Couple 1, walking in- couple 2, walking out* Couple 1 bumps into Couple 2*

C1, man: Oh, excuse me.

C2, man: No problem.

*both keep walking*

C1, woman: Wait. *abruptly stops husband*

C1, m: What is it?

C1, w: Nothing… I thought… Nothing.

C2, w: Hold on *turns around abruptly*

C2, m: What?

C2, w: *mumbles to herself* So, she’s dating men again.

Prompt #85-Not yet! (as in, we can’t do this one yet)

My response:

Sister’s response:

“642 Things to Write About” and The Great Gatsby

I watched the movie today. More on that later. Or right now, with terribly cynical words for 642.What would Fitzgerald say about boxers or briefs? #76?

Also, I had a rough conversation with my dearest brother, that highlighted all the differences between us. #78

Actually, really great entries from us today. Yes, I’m tooting our horns like nobody’s business.

Prompt #74- The greatness of sandwiches

My response:

Not including hamburgers (as I’m sure many don’t), I found sandwiches the bane of my existence, avoiding it at all costs. They seemed to represent all that was wrong with being less than wealthy. Sandwiches now, and forever. Jelly, baloney with cheese and mayo, bacon-egg-cheese- hell, even Nutella.

Towards the time when I realized that I could starve myself with idiotic discontent, I noticed that every sandwich I made was out of desperation. I was hungry, and in order to fill me up, it was quicker to put that jelly or baloney or egg on bread.

Now, I usually skip the sandwich deal. It reminds me of being poor and hungry. But I eat the bread alone, the ‘deli’ ham between my fingers rolled up like a burrito, and shredded cheese is sprinkled into my mouth. I don’t remember the last time I’ve had mayo, but no part of that can go without a sandwich, and that, too, has been buried.

Sister’s response: 

Sandwiches can really describe the person who’s eating it. You can learn a lot from sandwich. For example, the creativity of it. How the person organizes it or what they put on it. There are thousands, maybe millions of variations you can do to make a sandwich. Not too mention that you can organize it in your own special way that no one will get. And, it tastes good.

Prompt # 75-Parades

My response:

I remember only one kind of parade that happened from year to year. The Martin Luther King Parade in Beaumont, Texas. For some reason, it was always a huge affair, something I always looked forward to. The people in the great slow line would throw beads and candy, so, so, so much candy. One year I lost a tooth to a Tootsie Roll from the parade; that Halloween I lost another to another.

It always gave me great anxiety to see it winding down, and the way it so concretely began to make outward signs that, yes, it will be over.

One year, it rained. Not many people came, and my elementary self had been close to tears at the disappointment. No candy was thrown, or beads, since there was water everywhere and it was slippery. Dancers and bands and performers had canceled, so there were gaps and it was quick. Too quick. I remember thinking that parades were fast enough, and the rain had hastened them all away.

I made a note early never watch parades on TV- like the Macy’s one, or the New Year’s one. To hear it thrillingly from articles and people who had visited kept it alive far longer than if I had been there.

One time I had gone to a Christmas parade in Beaumont, on Crockett street, closed down now. Our class was on our way to a grand, grand, grand theater to see a magnificent rendition of A Christmas Carol. We were watching the parade beforehand, to pass the time. It is still bright and glorious, with horses dressed in red and green lights and a thousands Santas marching. It’s been neverending.

Sister’s response: 

Parades to me are like bubblegum. The first ten minutes of it s good, but after awhile, it’s bland. There are times when I just be happy about it but deep down, I just want to go home. I remember the MLK parades when they passed beads and stuff. I did enjoy that part, like any other kid would. But, I’ve been in parades like five times. Tiring, tiring stuff. Marching up hills while playing music. I do love festivities, so my feelings about it are neutral.

(MY! We are just on a blaze, aren’t we?)

Prompt #76-Boxers or briefs? Discuss.

My response:

Depends on the character. You can’t just put boxers or briefs on a man or woman and pretend it’s always going to be so. That’s like saying someone should always wear sweaters, while another always V-necks.

Cupping a nice package in briefs is all I think about with briefs. The package can be in the front or the back, but it should be well-formed and fulfilling. Briefs for my attractive people, the muscular and shapely, the curvaceous (and BBWs). It just won’t work with men, unless their erections can fill as much as their stomachs covers.

Boxers are mostly for style and comfort- oddly enough. Free-falling and airy, with much more room for decoration, which is always good if your pants go down to your thighs.

Boxer-briefs, mostly.

Sister’s response: 

I prefer boxers because whenever I see guys wearing briefs, I tend to stare by accident. It’s like, right there… Like, a girl with big boobs. A lot of times I see sexy men wearing briefs, so I really can’t help staring (look up Ian Somerhalder).

(Perverts! The both of us!)

Prompt #77- Screw you.

My response:

Whenever I hear someone say that some book I like was boring, I have the extreme urge to say “Screw you”. I find the word in league with phrases like ‘too-PC’ or ‘hyperfeminist’ or ‘Obummer’. It’s a word to say towards something that has a lot more to it, most of the time. In essence, it’s one of those words many use without really trying to say anything. It’s somewhat dismissive.

Ah, screw you!

Sister’s response: 

I find it rude. But then again, they could say worse, like f-off or something. I still don’t like it though. Seems kind of hurtful and mean.

(It is!)

Prompt #78-Write about a difficult conversation you’ve had recently. Then rewrite the conversation, saying what you couldn’t say at the time.

My response:

My brother came to visit for Mother’s Day. And when the rest of the family went to church (except for my youngest brother and my niece- and brother, of course) I asked Brother if he could take me to the gas station so I could get me some Dr. Pepper.

I couldn’t find my debit card in my wallet or anywhere, and I asked Youngest Brother to ask my parents if they’ve seen my card. I was sure they had taken it without my permission, for I had recently given my mom my pin number so that she could withdraw money to buy some… uhm… medicine. I had already checked my bank account, and it recorded a transaction for that day that I didn’t do.

My parents sent a message back saying ‘Didn’t no one touch your card’.

Incensed at the cowardly display of fibbing, miles away at a cultish church, I told Brother I no longer wanted to go, and he asked if I was mad and of course I was.

He soon went on a familiar rant about how I needed to leave the house, get my life together, be successful, go somewhere, anywhere than my parent’s place. He remarked how I shouldn’t be surprised about that charge, how I probably wasn’t, and shouldn’t be, again.

As his voice radiated in the house, my niece froze in place. I could see in her eyes the nervousness she always displayed when someone was angry, for her shitty father would get like that and be unkind to her.

I could see father in my brother’s eyes. They may have wanted what was best, but it came off so patronizing, so agonizing. But I couldn’t tell my brother who had PTSD from my father that he was anything like him. I couldn’t tell him that I was, obviously upset, but, on the whole, my sister and niece was making this the best place to be in the world right now. I didn’t want to leave. I wanted to stay with them.

He told me how I shouldn’t be working at Denny’s, how I needed my own place, how I needed to take out loans, and make plan B’s and C’s just in case Temple University didn’t accept me.

Where should I work at? How would I get my own place? Should I go back and be miserable at Johns Hopkins?

Who the fuck do you think you’re talking to, thinking that I can’t get into Temple University?

did immediately get defensive with that. I don’t know if he noticed; but he’s sensitive. He might have. I told him I would like to live on my own, somehow, and he was quick to say that things didn’t just happen that way, and I was careful to say that I had no choice then.

But I didn’t say, simply, that I didn’t want to. Unfortunately for him, whenever he visits he is addressed by panic attacks, tearful fits, triggers from Dad- Dad with his fake laugh, and passive aggressive way of asking for favors (He works in Murfreesboro, and he told my brother that he might need to hang at his house one day. Ugh.) and all that crap. Fortunately for me, my subconscious deals with this and I deal with it all subconsciously. But consciously I immerse myself in my grand imagination, my sister’s wit, and my niece’s laughter, the narrator from Far Cry or the NPCs of Skyrim. I’m also perfectly confident and complacent in my superior wit, intelligence, and empathy (but not diligence to the seriousness of this world, my world) to anyone who tries to come against me.

Where the hell do you get off thinking I can’t get into Temple University? That I can’t be successful just because I bide my time collecting money so that I will be able to pay my way through just a few more years of college and the great beyond. You with the PTSD with the many boyfriends of all types, and hundreds of followers, and forty likes for a status on an imaginary snippet on closing an elevator on a group? You who have always had friends and the love of so much of the family, who no one would ever just call cute so that they can’t honestly say that I’m unattractive in the general sense?

I’ll stay here. I’ll go to Temple. I’m fine.

Sister’s response: 

My sister versus my brother and me on God. She’s an atheist and we were figuring out why she doesn’t believe. She made some valid points and so did my brother, but I ran out of things to say. At one point, she said that, there’s no proof that God exists and that she lives for fun.

I wanted to say that I wish I can die and see heaven so that I can come back and tell her about it. I felt doubtful if God exists or not, but I know in my heart that I do believe.

(so heartfelt…)

Prompt #79-Write the copy for a cereal box so that someone would actually want to buy this exciting new flavor

My response: (Hilarious, since most new flavors aren’t new at all)

Trix Cereal now made with REAL FRUITS! That’s right, lemony yellow and raspberry red are now tinged with luscious lemons and riveting real raspberries. Try these delightful swirls in your favorite type of milk- try it with some vanilla soymilk and let the creamy goodness bathe your receptors with an almost yogurty wave!

Sister’s response: 

Kix! Now with flavor! Go on… Add sugar to it… Keep going… Pour all that sugar in it… The whole Kix will still taste like the box it was made in… Buy new Kix now!

(I love Kix!)

“642 Things to Write About” and Are you my Mommy?

Sometimes I wish I was my niece’s mother. That, and you know where my house is, and what’s on my Nook.

Prompt #68- Write, in ridiculous detail, directions on how to get to your house

My response: (Starting from where though? Nevada?) 

Starting from the [MY ADDRESS]’s mailbox, take two, nine-inch steps to the right. You will find yourself at the beginning of our driveway. A slight left will find you on the sloping curb to the street. Take about five ten-inch steps and you will get to the anthill in the first segmentation. Another five of the same steps and you will get to the second segment. Now take two eight-inch steps to the left diagonally at about forty-five degrees. You should now be on the sidewalk leaning to our steps. Two ten-inch steps, one segmentation, another two, the second, a light right at about twenty degrees, you will get to the last one and the first step. This step is about five inches high, the on it adds another half-inch. So lift your foot about five-and-a-half inches (or higher), bring forward until your entire foot covers the first step. Repeat in straight line, alternating feet, three more times. A two-foot step later, you should be at our door hanging a bit off the hinges. Welcome.

Sister’s response:

Start from [Sister’s high school]. You get out from the front of the school. Take a left or right. If right, go down the road until first turn. Turn left past the tennis court, past the middle school, and turn at the right corner. If left, go to stop sign, take left, past the baseball field, and down the road to the three lights. Take a left, and keep all the down to the next light. You’ll be surrounded by Mapco,  Subway, Publix, an unfinished Taco Bell, and a gas station. Take a left, down the road, to the stop sign. You can take a right into my neighborhood. Keep going straight, turn, straight, turn, straight to my bus stop. Turn into the second to the last house on the right. Thirty-seven steps up to the driveway, five steps up to the porch steps, and two steps to my door.

(Good luck!)

Prompt #69-A useless love- a connection or affinity that doesn’t fit into the plans of anyone concerned

My response: (Totally uninterested)

Paul liked Beth. Paul wanted to be a researcher for cancer. Beth wanted to be an actor. Paul admired Beth for her effortless social skills; Beth enjoyed someone with so many secrets, one who could keep things private, and that of others.

(Okay, I hate this, bye!)

Sister’s response: (No clue)

There’s no such thing as useless love? Teenage power? *holds up  “Black Power” fist*

(Alright)

Prompt #70- You are a midlevel Greek deity, hoping to move up the ranks of Olympus. What are your powers, and how will you use them to impress Zeus and the others? 

My response:

I am Block. I stop an arousal as it happens, or even when it is just about to end. I can even control lower-level gods!

Don’t think that’s impressive? Really, Zeus? Alright, next time you find some poor woman to take as some golden Pegasus you’ll see how impressive you are when you can’t get her pregnant. Yea, you’re seeing the implications, now, don’t you? You, Athena, sprinkling your love on this guy or another. Just how much would he appreciate you if he couldn’t get relief over a few years.

You get it, don’t you? I can do it all day and night, baby, and keep the good stuff for myself.

Does it work on women? Hell’s yea. Those nymphs have nothing on me. Men are going to sacrifice their children just to have a bunch of horny dames crowded around their houses. Armies will collapse as men go on a futile search for the penultimate time to ease their frustrations.

Yea, you think that’s good? Good, good…

Can I get it up? Huh? Yea.. Yea… I can… I think….

Sister’s response:

I’m the goddess of Happiness. I bring joy to those in deep pain and depression. But there’s a catch. In order to relieve your pain and depression, you must give up your most valuable item, or your prized possession. And I will know how valuable it is.

(We’re terrible)

Prompt #71-List five cultural events that impacted you greatly. Then write about one of them without mentioning yourself.

My response:

  1. Aaliyah died
  2. Gay marriage debates started in earnest
  3. Gundam Wing started on Toonami
  4. Social media started taking off (Xanga, Myspace)
  5. Massacre at Virginia Tech

Aaliyah died in an airplane crash almost at the height of her popularity, which skyrocketed after her death for quite a while. Other artists, especially Missy Elliot mourned the loss of so great a singer. She was too young, one of the biggest stars of R&B at the time. Then, suddenly she was gone. Her spots on weekly music countdowns lightened the weight of her departure from this world, as if she wasn’t really gone. For short time, some thought her like Tupac (or Elvis) and she wasn’t really dead. In any case, her music is still alive, and anyone can remember her that way.

Sister’s response:

  1. North Korea threat
  2. Michael Jackson’s death
  3. The “No Seatbelt Song” curse
  4. Facebook
  5. Sandy Hook

Sandy Hook had a great impact. Little kids died just because someone wanted to shoot up the school. It’s sad how people can be. Some people believe that it wasn’t real, which resulted in a Youtube rage war. Some people thought that after the incident people would stop shooting schools. They were wrong, and now there is a gun law going on and more shootouts.

Prompt #72-Pick a person, then ask yourself: What is the hardest choice this person has ever had to make?

My response:

My older brother came out to my parents. He told me like a year or so before. Ma told me in the garage and I was like… I already knew, like, long time ago. I had told him not to tell them, but, in the end, it’s all good.

Sister’s response:

[Me] when she decides to create a character for a game.

(Jerk…. But I do take a very long time- No, fuck off!)

Prompt #73-You’ve just realized that you’ve lost something valuable in a nightclub (a necklace, a wallet, a phone). What happens next?

My response: (Like… doesn’t everyone just go back and look for it? Anywho- fiction!)

I checked my purse for the thousandth time that night. All throughout the dance party, I had made sure my Kindle Paperwhite was still there. I had brought it because I knew that I would eventually get bored and want to read something to get my mind in gear for more dancing.

But, at long last, it wasn’t there. The nearly two-hundred dollar e-reader was my pride and joy. Though I had a Nook before, there was something about 3G service and a built-in light that made having such a device completely awesome.

I asked around, receiving the oddest looks for my serious request, especially since I referred to my Kindle as Paperwhite. Since most people my age that went to clubs didn’t really read, I had to explain further. More confused looks. Why did I bring that if I wanted to dance?

Well, it was either read or sleep, which I cannot help when I’m not entertained adequately.

And I need my damn Paperwhite! Where the hell is it?! I start to panic, the anxiety building as it always does oh-so-quickly whenever I lose something for too long a time.

Then I see a crowd of guys around something bright. As they laugh, eyebrows raised, falling back in surprise, I know it is my Paperwhite, and that they were reading one of my gay BDSM stories. I come close to the group and see that I’m right. I ask for my e-reader back, and they laugh, patting me on the back, calling me crazy.

I cradle it to my chest, smiling for so many reasons.

Sister’s response:

If it’s not my phone, I would go back and look for it. If it’s not in the area I thought it would be, I would ask the manager. If the manager doesn’t know, I would give up until I come back to that nightclub, and see if anyone has it. They’ll probably lie, but it wouldn’t hurt to try. If it was my phone, I would try to call it.

(WOOO!)

“642 Things to Write About” and Where are my kids?

How do we want to die? #66 is a go! Sorry for my silence! ~_^

Prompt # 62- A man giving a speech to a crowd is suddenly caught in a bald-faced lie.

 My response:

The bigger they are, the harder they fall, was the old cliche that immediately went through Harold’s gleaming head. Despite his extreme alopecia, there was something about a muscular, elegant white man in a suit that always attracted others to him. The money helped, too, and the dips into charity pushed immensely towards magnificent PR.

He had just finished his speech about growing up poor in Kentucky, feigning the country accent after years of practice, promising this, slashing taxes that, your guns are yours, and the rest.

And then some old fart brings to the stage a little Powerpoint that including pictures of him with his family on their large estate somewhere isolated in England. It looked photocopied, and Harold racked his brains to grab hold of which sorry bastard relative had the picture last and was able to sell it to this little bugger.

Off to the left of him, the flash struck off his scalp straight into their eyes, and still they stared, waiting for his next move. They waited until he bowed and exited the stage and the crumbs of his campaign fell in trail after him.

 

Sister’s response:

“People of Xerzseville, vote me to be mayor! I promise that I’ll help those in need, especially chidren. I am a family man, and children always come first. I will never leave a child behind, no matter what!”

“But, sir, didn’t you have a child that you put up for adoption?”

“…No?”

(ahahahahaha)

Prompt #63- What a character wearing something red is thinking

 My response: 

I wish I was flippin’ burgers. A fuckton more exciting than this shit. Why in the Sam blue hell I have to wear a nametag anyways? Don’t none of the customers see me, none of the managers even know my name- I ain’t remember theirs either, though. 

Nah, wait, there’s Tanya… But she’s like top manager, no ways. Purple is lead, right? Blue is section… Light blue is regional. Ain’t that bitch coming today?  ‘How ya’ doin’?’ Ol’ stupid-ass fake-ass accent, tryin’ to be like us sweating over this stupid stamp grill. You don’t get nails like that workin’ in no joint like this.

Alright, been a minute- Shit! Fuckin’ poppin’ grease, shit! Where’s the damn spatula? Don’t no one else needs the goddamn spatula! Who the hell- oh, there we go. Alright, nice an easy- we need some new burger holders. The grease caked on this shit is ridiculous. I wonder how anyone can eat this shit after workin’ here. 

‘K, this spot is free, I think, push it slowly in to make sure.

Fucking Christ, that spot wasn’t free! I hate this job!

Sister’s response:

Man, I look great! I knew this color was for me. People keep saying I’m a blue person, but I don’t think so. Red is definitely my color. All I need are my shoes and I’ll be ready for the party. Now, where are those shoes? Ah, here they are. Blue? Where are my red ones? Oh yea, I sold them. People kept telling me I was a blue person that I never bothered to get red clothing after that…

(:D)

 

Prompt #64-Your favorite moment in film

My response: 

This is kind of hard, since I don’t really have many favorite things, but things I’m in the mood for, and because something can quickly fall out of fashion with me, I have the transitory feeling towards every great thing that I experience.

What come to mind are the man hitting his leg on the rotor when falling from the Titanic in The Titanic and when either Rose or Jack imprints their hand into the steamed window of the car they are having sex in, the first fight scene in Sucker Punch where Babydoll goes up against the Samurai giant things with the bladed staff, machine gun, and katana, and the countdown to the deathmatch in The Hunger Games, where everything was completely quiet.

Sister’s response:

In Spongebob: The Movie when Spongebob was depressed for not getting the promotion and he went to Goofy Goobers with Patrick and they both got ‘drunk’. And in The Incredibles when Dash was running from the villains, and Jack-Jack fighting Syndrome.

 

Prompt #65- The menu for your last meal

My response: 

Honestly, I don’t want to spend my last moments eating. I find eating a tremendous chore, unless I’m craving something. If I’m anticipating death, I probably won’t be craving anything, anyway.

For the sake of the prompt, I’ll probably eat a bunch of stuff I’m allergic to- watermelon, try scallops and lobster for the first/last time, eat a bunch of crab and shrimp, stuff my mouth with apples and honeydew covered in honey.

Heck, this will be a last meal in any case.

Sister’s response:

Ice-cream, cake, pizza, hot wings, cookies et cetera. All my favorite foodsssssssss~

 

Prompt #66- Choose how you will die.

My response: 

Surrounded by my gigantic family, six or seven children, dozens of grandchildren, dozens upon dozens upon dozens of great-grandchildren. All my nieces and nephews and their children. All my brothers and sisters, even the five older, my parents, too! I won’t be too greedy and wish for my Momo as well, but that would be a plus. I need not be old or famous or rich, the death need not be painless or short, but if so many will be by my side as the lights go out, that’s all I can really ask for.

Sister’s response:

I always picture myself saving someone, probably from getting hit by a car, usually rescuing a child. Or maybe… A giant Titan appears in my window and I die of a heart attack.

(Woo!)

 

Prompt #67- What would you be doing if you weren’t doing this?

My response: 

Skipping. I would be using the last of the juice in my iPod to skip to my heart’s content until I feel like writing a new post!

Sister’s response:

I would play card games with my brothers and friend, study for my Spanish project, watching anime shows with my sister, and taking a nap, all at the same time- or in one hour.

(Yea!)

“642 Things to Write About” with 642 Things to Procrastinate With Pt. 2

And this is the rest of my sister and I catching up! What is the best thing and worst thing that could happen to us? Go to prompts 58 and 59 to find out!

Super random mofo for #60!

Prompt #54: Finding a bag of cash

My response:

Take a bunch of pictures of me with the money, and then I’ll turn it in to the police and hope that no one claims it in 30 days. I hope the local news catches wind of it and I get a key to the city and a monetary reward. At the very least, astounding recognition from all those who will benefit me in future.

Sister’s response:

First, I wouldn’t believe it. Second, don’t tell a soul, especially my family. Third, buy clothes, shoes, jewelry etc. Fourth, go on trips. Last, give the rest to someone less fortunate, maybe my family. I’ll probably end up telling them about it anyways.

Prompt #55: Would you rather win the Nobel Prize or be a rock star?

My response:

Well, my deepest love goes to writing. Although I want to be famous like a rock star, I want to write more than whatever rock stars do. I’d rather win the Nobel Prize because those who care about such things would be the ones reading my books, and not a lot of fans of rock stars would read the stuff I write. Nobel Prize for Literature, and I’ll have all the smarties reading volumes of my works. Oh, heaven!

Sister’s response:

Nobel Prize. People would appreciate and most likely be less critical of me. Not only that, but I’ll go down in history, even if I screw something up.

(Yay!)

Prompt #56: Thoughts on your favorite pet’s personality

My response:

We’ve never kept a pet long enough for me to really discern personalities from them, much less make one a fvorite, you know, with six kids in the home and all. All I remember is that I mostly hated the rabbits because they were shy and would run away, and that was just freakin’ irritating.

For about three days though, we had a lost dog at our house. He was extremely well-trained and well-taken care of, and for some reason, he liked us.

When I mean trained, I mean he could fetch, sit, shake hands and bark on cue. He just seemed eager to please and enjoyed our company. Unfortunately, such a great pet had to belong to someone, and that someone most likely wanted it back, so my parents searched for the owner, a man who was eeeeeeextreeeeemely glad to have the dog back.

Sister’s response:

Um, well, we did have this one pet, a bunny rabbit named Snowball or Snowflake (we had one of each). And she was reeeeally shy. But as I went out and played with her, she became attached to me. She even let me pet her until my other family came out. We did have a dog, but he ran away.

(One moment- we need to clarify these conflicting endings with our mom. Verdict: Sis was right! That dog ran away. I wonder why I remember it differently? Was that another pet?)

Prompt #57: The moment you knew you were no longer a child

My response: (How is sis supposed to answer this? Maybe they mean child child- or something)

I remember sometime in high school my brother didn’t do his chores. I told my mom and she said, “You did the same thing when you were a kid. Well, you’re still my kid, but you know what I mean.”

First, I had thought, No, I wasn’t like that. I did my chores, I did other people’s chores, I didn’t do that. Second, I’m not a kid? 

I had filled out an application to go to a science summer camp- now, I remember, sometime in 10th grade this was- and did it on my own, on a whim. I was accepted to the camp and realized all that I could do on my own, without anyone telling me. I was no child.

Sister’s response:

Since this is a late prompt, I’m going to the past of Friday, April 12, 2013. I applied to a JOB and had an interview. I’m grown, now…

Prompt #58: The worst thing that could happen

My response:

Well, this includes a lot of things, some reasonable, some unreasonable. The one with the longest term effects- like eternity- if some god proved itself without a doubt that it existed and wanted me to change my ways. Unless it was totally cool with me being a kink-loving sex-positive bisexual who has a fetish for homosexual lovin’, well, things would go to shit real quick.

On a more reasonable level, a number of things, the biggest is if certain members of my family die. To be honest, my niece, sister, and brother. Everybody else has a reasonable death date in my mind which bars are easily reset to different heights for any reason.

Sister’s response:

My mind is filled with knowledge of terrible things… My niece screaming from downstairs and finding out she had gotten a hold on a knife that my mom was using and her hand is missing. Not to mention my father screaming at the children, saying, “Why wasn’t anyone watching her?!” And I say, “Why was the knife sitting out in the open?!” and he breaks my neck and goes get the car keys while my mom sits there crying. I’m dead,  my oldest sister frozen in fear, brother acting like a hero, and my niece’s mom still sleeping on the couch, too tired to get up.

(Aaaaalrighty, then!)

Prompt #59: The best thing that could happen

My response:

At the moment, someone contacts me wanting to publish the Maléan series or, equally, I finally find my eye for art and start making drawings I’m truly proud of.

Sister’s response:

Finding that bag of cash.

(LOLOLOLOLOL…. Seriously, though, why is are best shorter than our worst?)

Prompt #60: Write a short story that is set in Detroit in 1956, in which a car floor mat plays a crucial role.

My response: (blaaaaaaaaaah- well, better than a tea cup in Argentina)

Six-year-old Ernest wanted a sister named Amber. Living in the dreariest part of Detroit with his doting Pa and pregnant Ma, that seemed like a possibility. He learned about amber and trees in school, learned that a group of trees, really large group of trees, bigger than parks and playgrounds, those trees were called forests and old trees oozed sap that got hard and that was called amber.

Ernest also knew that Pa got real mad at a white man because he hurt Ma, and somehow the white man hurt Ma enough to make her pregnant. For some reason, the dark spot underneath the old car mat was something Pa didn’t want anyone to know about.

“Not until Ol’ Man Pepper can fix it,” Pa had explained, fingers sweaty as he arranged and rearranged the mat, and he repeated, “Not until Ol’ Man Pepper can fix it.”

Ernest didn’t get a birthday present this year because they needed the car fixed, but his sad Ma was awful proud that he could count from 1950 and figure out his age. Maybe she was proud enough for him to name the baby.

On the way home home from church that morning, they stopped at a donut shop for a Sunday treat. Pa, Ma, and Ernest stood in the colored line. In the white-only line were some police officers. They looked at Ma, who Earnest always heard was pretty for a black woman. At least, that’s what all the white men told her when she took Ernest with her on errands.

The officers came up close to them. They were behind the cord which sectioned them off. To Ernest, the cord was the horizon beyond his wildest dreams. It was better on that side because even if you were fourth in line there, you would get your food before the first people in the colored line. How great it would be to be white!

“You have yourself a pretty pregnant glow there, girl,” one of the men said, leaning on the cord.

Ma squeezed Ernest hand. She had always been quick to say ‘thank you’ and be polite when people complimented her, especially white men. Now, she faced the counter and became stone.

“I said you’re pretty, girl!”

She said nothing. Pa coughed nervously and stood at her shoulder to block the white man’s view. Ernest could see this a bit and watched the white men to see what they would do.

The one who spoke whispered to the other; they both looked at Ernest’s family. As they waited in their long line where they were the only people, the officers were seen to and so was the rest of their line. Then it was their turn, finally, but they didn’t serve chocolate donuts to colored folks and so they all got plain. Ernest was happy because the white donuts were sweet, and nobody liked chocolate colors anyway.

They exited the shop and the officers were there. Said that some boy’s- a white boy- had his bike stolen and they thought perhaps Ernest had taken it and wanted to see inside their car. This confused Ernest there weren’t any white children in their neighborhood.

Pa told them there as no bicycle in their car.

“Well, then there’s no reason why we can’t have a look-see, right?”

The white men had a look-see, then. Ernest’s toy truck was on the car mat. He remembered. The officers checked the back seat and the trunk and Ernest said, “He can have my truck, since he lost his bike.”

The officers smiled at him, looked at each other.

“That’s kind of you,” said the flirty one. “I think I’ll take  you up on your offer.”

Pa’s hand clenched as the officer took the toy, pinky touching the mat. He threw the truck up in the air and bid them good day. His friend followed him. When they were gone, both Ernest’s parents let out deep breaths.

When they were in the car, Ernest asked with his usual eagerness, “Can we name the baby Amber if she is a girl?”

“Child, we’ll name your brother Mary if that’s what you wanted,” Pa answered with a shaky chuckle. Ma joined in on his laugh.

Not quite sure if that was a yes or no, Ernest decided not to push his luck and gave the mat a little kick instead, feeling the emptiness of the air of where his toy used to be.

Sister’s response:

A baseball team, the Detroit Tigers, are going to the championship game. Six people are sitting in a taxi to go to the stadium. After practicing for an hour on a muddy field, they hadn’t washed their cleats.

“Please wipe your feet outside. I don’t want my car floor mat to be too dirty,” said the taxi driver.

Five of the guy did as the were told. The sixth guy laughed and stated, “Whatever, you just don’t want to clean it.”

As they were piling into the car, the sixth guy purposely wiped his feet on the floor mat.

The taxi driver ground his teeth and started driving. As they arrived at the stadium, the five guys climbed out to greet the rest of the team. The sixth guy told the driver, “Thanks for the shoe cleaner! ” and did one final wipe.

The map slipped from under his foot, and he fell out of the cab and cracked his head on the curb.

“You’re welcome.”

(So cool.)

Promp #61: A woman thinks she might be living next door to her grandson.

My response:

The old woman lived alone now. Like father, like son, her only child left as soon as he got some woman pregnant. The old woman made do with what little she had in her comfy apartment where the landlord was no shark and was always willing to lend a very helpful hand.

There was a child and his mother next door. The boy’s name was Tyreese and he liked her peppermints. His nose had a bump just like her son, Tyrone. The resemblance as the next few years went on began to show in odd ways. The shape his eyes took when he squinted in the sun. How he licked his lips when he was lying. Every time he kicked aimlessly when he was bored and waiting for her handmade apple pie.

The mother was never around, having to work most of the time, doing enough for Tyreese to get the CPS off her back, but no real mom. She handed that off to the old woman, it seemed.

Tyreese liked her, and the old woman saw whatever bad seeds that implanted themselves in the boy’s father and grandfather didn’t take root in him.

The old woman kept what little distance they had though. She couldn’t bear to lose another one.

Sister’s response:

Hm… His olive skin… Thick, dark hair… Clean cut nails… He couldn’t possibly be…My son would have told me about it… Why wouldn’t he?… Not only that, he goes to that house before visiting me… I must find out… I shouldn’t go to that kid’s house… His mom would think I’m weird or something… I should ask my son instead…

(Woooooooo!)