Monday’s Rune: Halloween


The Last October Night

Last night, as I sat with my extended family, a mixture of baby boomers, Gen X’s, and Millennials, we spoke of haunting experiences: fear intentionally endured for fun. Few of us said we wanted to repeat those ‘fun’ occasions. They were things that fell into the it seemed like a good idea at the time category, but now we wished we hadn’t risked them.

We have learned that Halloween can be fun and scary without doing long term psychological damage. What adrenalin rush is worth the walk into nightmarish darkness? I recall the fun: the costumes, the parties, the doors to knock on, the treats, the stories, and the songs we made up and sang. We were having fun. But when scared, boy did we run!

I recall winning a Halloween party costume contest as an adult. I was not in the best costume. Was I given an honor for courage? Was humor involved? Did my green legs catch the judges’ eyes? No one fears a giant tomato.

What I like about Halloween is that I owe no one anything for it. It has a strange history and a life of its own with unique childish traditions. It is when it is, on the last day of October, followed immediately by November. Halloween has as many bizarre religious undertones as it does silly religious rejections.

With nods to the goths and the goolies, to the vampires and fried eggs, to the ubiquitous hobos and fun folks in clever, challenging outfits, I like Halloween and I know I’m in good, scary, company.


Look both ways on those dark October nights.
Mind the gaps where memories of youth dance and sing because it is time for all of that.

 

But this Halloween tragedy was way over the top.

Friday Fictioneers for October 21st, 2022

This week our magical Mistress Rochelle pulled a mare’s nest from order to muddle my muse and trigger my call to organization.

Texans might say I’ve been feeling puny (ill) for a few days, so I was uninspired until today (Friday – imagine that).

It’s all Rochelle this week as she scattered a photo of her own randomly into the blogosphere. If you think you’d like to push a stormy story of fewer than 101 words, find your way to join the free-for-all by clicking on her photo and seeking order at her purple patterned blog page. Click >here< to read other chaotic stories.

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Genre: Therapeutic Fiction
Title: Bollix Minds
Word Count: 100

***

 

Why did you bring me here?

I wanted you to see this metaphor for your mind.

Ridiculous. I’m neat. I hang-up clothes, organize socks, and straighten art. My OCD would organize this fast.

Bill, you were arrested for tampering with a murder investigation. The judge ordered counseling as part of your plea deal.

I simply organized and cleaned up blood. The detectives got upset.

This chaos is how you see the world. Do you understand?

Not true. I do have leads on jobs.

Tell me more.

Stores want me to follow customers around and straighten things up after they pass.

***


Look both ways for all sorts of metaphors.
Mind the gaps and try to understand, things will never be perfect.

This musical bit (If the youtube will not play for you, try this imbedded link.) brought a chuckle to my mind and almost a bit of relating to the song.

dVerse Quadrille #162: Cowbell Fever

I wrote this silly, nonsensical poem for the dVerse Quadrille #162 – “For whom the bell tolls” (a 44-word poem) where any meaning or form of the word bell was to be included. Click here to find more awesomely ringing poetry.


 

More cowbell!
Cowbell fever
removes reaper fear.
Play more cowbell.
Cure your Oyster.

This poem needs more cowbell.
Walken wanders and wonders,
Is there more cowbell out there?

Play the saw or rub your washboard,
a cowbell makes music from hell—
needs more cowbell!


Look both ways when you hear a cowbell because you are not the bull.
Mind the gaps to beat the raps.
Some skits and actors shall live forever.

The cowbell skit from SNL that took a life of its own. Since my previous link did not work outside of the USA, maybe this one will.

 

https://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/more-cowbell/3506001

If that doesn’t work and you still want to see it, try this: https://vimeo.com/425939085

 

 

 

Friday Fictioneers for October 14th, 2022

The sweet, delightful, and flashy Mistress of Fiction, Rochelle, has prompted my muse with a bit of rain for the second week in a row. Combining strokes from her purple lane, she has splashed the Friday Fictioneer gang with a Roger Bultot picture of a modern, colorful, children’s playground park, seemingly after some precip.

Feel free to dive into our un-juried pool of players with your own fiction of fewer than 101 words. Avoid any litigiousness by giving Roger’s pic a gaveled tap, which will sentence you to review the brief code of conduct behind the purple bars on Rochelle’s blog page. You may want to get setup to be served weekly with a summons write early each Wednesday morning.

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

Genre: Shakespearean Fiction
Title: Time for Pettifoggers
Word Count: 100

 

I took my nephew, Dicky, to the playground after the rain had stopped.

He said, “Everything’s all wet, Uncle Billy.”

“Water keeps the insufferable brats and bullies away. Now, go play.”

“There’s lots to climb on. But why no swings or rides?”

“Lawsuits. The lawyers forced the city to take them all away.”

“What are lawyers?”

“People who profit from the misery of others.”

He ran off to play on the wet climbers and such.

“After this,” he yelled, “the first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.”

“A noble goal, Lad. You’re a chap after the old bard.”

 


Look both ways for the future of the young.
Mind the gaps and dangerous traps, but a life without risk can be dry and vapid.

Note: “Let’s kill all the lawyers” is a line said by Dick the Butcher in William (Bill) Shakespeare’s Henry VI (Part 2, Act IV, Scene 2). It is among Shakespeare’s most famous and most controversial lines.

Click on the cartoon to fire up more wonderful flash stories by the fantastic Friday Fictioneers writers.

 

Friday Fictioneers for October 7th, 2022

For Yom Kippur and the first week of October release, our wonderful server, Mistress Rochelle, and boss lady of Friday Fictioneers has selected a David Stewart dining room photo from her menu and served up a challenge for us to roast some fine micro or flash stories of fewer than 101 words long.

Please read mine below but click on David’s pic to be seated at Rochelle’s perfect purple blog café where you may order up some artful items. We try to abide by and to play nice as we swim in our own creative lanes.

PHOTO PROMPT © David Stewart

 


Genre: Pervert Fiction
Title: Rainy Day Rip
Word Count: 100

***

It was a lovely day. I’d made special arrangements—a table for two near the windows. I planned to propose.

After we were seated Margaret said, “Why did they seat us here? I hate this miserable rain.”

“What? I told you I’m a pluviophile. I’d manage our religious and political differences.”

She replied, “I thought you said pedophile. As in pedicure and pedestrian. I thought you were kinky about feet.”

I could feel my temples throbbing.

“That’s podophile. I’m also a logophile who’ll get you a subscription to the Collins dictionary. I also think we should start seeing other people.”

***


Look both ways within the pages and on the screens for the dictionary meanings of words.
Mind the gaps to avoid any rainy-day confusion.

Click the girl dancing in the rain to breeze over to the squares where you’ll discover more excellent stories.

 

Friday Fictioneers for September 30th, 2022

For our October’s eve challenge, Mistress Rochell has worked her magic of Friday Fictioneer redux by reviving a past portraiture of her own. It’s a busy time of year for our illustrious maven.

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, commenced at sundown this past Sunday, marking a time of the high holy days. Soon to follow will be Yom Kippur, then Sukkot.

Click on the picture of Rochelle’s lamps to be magically whisked to her blog page where her cauldron formula for fewer than 100-word stories can be realized.

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Genre: Semi-speculative Fiction
Title: Lamps of Enlightenment
Word Count: 100

***

“Whale oil lamps? Your witch’s coven meets here tonight?”

It’s our October bridge meeting. Don’t call us witches. We play cards.

“Tarot cards.”

Dammit Jim, I’m a doctor—a scientist. Rochelle will explain magic and witches in the Bible.

“She’s Jewish. They don’t believe in witchcraft.”

She’ll explain. The Witch of Endor is in ‘Samuel’ when Saul calls her. I want you gone.

“No worries. I don’t play bridge. They scare me.”

Before you go, please fetch my broom and large cauldron from the attic?

“Sure thing. Double, double, toil and trouble; lamps to burn and a cauldron to bubble.”

***


Look both ways when learning about friends.
Mind all the gaps lest someone put a spell on you.

Click the coven to be spell-cast into other lamp oriented fine fictional stories.

Friday Fictioneers for September 23rd, 2022

For the last full day of global top-half summer, our waving but unwavering maven of history’s mysteries, Rochelle, has boxed-up a deal with Alicia Jamtaas. That duet has flat-out challenged our fictioneer muses to contrive artful `songs or stories of fewer than 101 words. I don’t think titles or postscripts count, lest she DQ’s me.

Click any box, bike, or item in Alicia’s photo and UPS will pick you up and creatively deliver you to Rochelle’s post of purple passions to open the what-ifs and where-how’s of joining the fray.

PHOTO PROMPT © Alicia Jamtaas

Genre: Murderous Mystery
Title: Friends in Low Places
Word Count: 100

***

“You didn’t have to shoot him, Bill.”

“His last bad joke. My gun’s in the blue-handled box.”

“Nothing’s priced. What’s up behind the curtain?”

“Porno auditions. You should try out.”

“Focus, Bill. We need that damn gun. This shooting people over jokes needs to stop.”

“It wasn’t the joke. He was an asshole and an organ donor. I made the world a better place with one shot.”

“Oh? HE was now? Okay. We’ll pick up what’s left at the morgue tomorrow. She wants a grand for the box. She must know.”

“Well, crap! Ask her if she’s an organ donor.”


Look both ways to make your world better.
Mind the gaps, especially in murder plots.
“Remember what the dormouse said, feed your head.”

Click on the man with a gun to read more boxes of fun. Was that the punch line?

Monday’s Rune: The Value of Time

 

When Dad’s a Dick

I returned to your place of business, like I said I would.
A clown-man there told two jokes. At first,
I glared at him to the silent end. The other
I interrupted so I could give you my coffee order.
I allowed him to finish. I again stared
before telling him his joke was unfunny and that his
comedic skills were woefully lacking behind his
overflowing obnoxiousness. Was he your father?

You would not take my money. He paid.
I sat quietly, typed my poem, drank the
Americano and chewed the muffin.
Now I wish I hadn’t. You
did not look at me or say another word. Then,
you left.

Sorry. Henceforth, the city library
has much more to offer and
better silence, too. No jokes.
Is Divinely Beautiful your real name?
Tell your father that my low opinion
of him has declined and my vote
is not for sale.

No apology necessary.


Look both ways but think on your feet.
Mind the gaps of silence when the wind passes.

Expect the unexpected, they say. How?

 

Sammi’s Weekender #276 (bandage)

Click the graphic for Sammi’s blog and more bandaged 61-worded wonders.

Keepin’ Safe

‘hello-‘ello! C’mere, lad.
I hope you’ll be keepin’ well.

It happens every year
after a wee bit, a donnybrook
somewhere near here,
sorry now, so
me shillelagh’s swingin,
callin’ fer bacon.

Not well then are ye?
wackin’ the cod,
wi’ narry a nod, nor a bandage
or pad to be had.

T’ank you for feelin’
brave to go, smart to not.


Look both ways on whisky drinkin’ festival days.
Mind the gaps at the tube and lads at the pub.

The annual Donnybrook Fair near Dublin included fiddlers and dancers, but it was best-known for the frequent eruption of whiskey-fueled fighting – often involving heavy clubs known as shillelaghs. “Bacon” is Irish slang for police and “cod’ for fool.

Friday Fictioneers for September 9th, 2022

What day is it boys and girls and other less binary-specific people? It’s not Howdy Doody time with Buffalo Bob. It is Wednesday’s Friday Fictioneers time hosted by the magical and majestic Mistress Rochelle, who by now we all know so well.

By slipping us a Lisa Fox pontoon boat photo taken in front of Preacher (formerly Buffalo) Bob’s Church of What’s Happenin’ Now, we are to be blessedly inspired to contrive a little lily-white, fib-ological story in all its radiant glory.

If you want the whole homily about telling your own fewer than 101 words heavenly-inspired story, clicking on Li’s pic should do the trick.

PROMPT © LIsa Fox

Genre: Magical Get Realism
Title: The Bigger Boat
Word Count: 100

Wanda said, “The kids are grown and gone. Let’s buy a boat and sail around the world.”

Alfie said, “Great idea, Honeypot. Preacher is selling his.”

At the church Brother Bob says, “Praise God. Wanda and Alfie. We ain’t seen y’all in a coon’s age.”

“We are empty nesters who wanna buy your boat and sail around the world. Wanda’s idea.”

Y’all’s boaters?

We ain’t, Preach. We aim to learn, quit our jobs, sell the house, and go for it.

Well dang, Alf! You’re gonna need a bigger boat. I’ll pray for y’all.

Thanks, Preacher. A bigger boat you say?


Look both ways, find what you love, and let it kill you.
Mind the gaps and check the weather.
The sharks are always biting.

Click HERE to link up with a parcel of other inspired stories, good to go until next Wednesday when we will discover another fine photo with which to proceed.

This story is not truly 100% fiction, but the line about the bigger boat I bogarted from the Jaws movie.

And the humorous nature of my Li-inspired lie was partly set to sail by a scene from Caddyshack.

 

Dale mentioned the Styx song “Come Sail Away” in THIS recent travel post, so I was tempted to use it. But I steal enough stuff.

 

Note: While I double check every link, I cannot determine if youtubes work outside of the USA. But it’s all about the micro-fiction. The links are ancillary.