Thursday, September 3, 2015


© Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Roger stood right on the edge, his heart pounding, his will beginning to waver.  

"JUMP! JUMP!"  shouted the voices that seemed to come from all around him. 


"Who are these people?!" wondered Roger. "What do they want?"

Roger was not going to disappoint them.  He said a quick prayer, leaned forward, and arms flailing at his sides, he jumped.

"Fourteen feet, two inches!" exclaimed the referee.  "A new world record in the standing broad jump!"

The crowd cheered.  Now Roger knew who they were: good folks of all kinds, whether sitting in the bargain seats or the brick enclosed skyboxes, whose inspiration had made him a champion.


Serves me right.  No sooner do I write this piece than it turns out nobody does the broad jump anymore.  So if we all shout "Jump! Jump!" these days we're more likely to hear Van Halen than see any great feats of "broad jumpitation."

However, if you click on the word Jump! right here, you will see the great feats of the other Friday Fictioneers relative to the picture prompt above. So say a quick prayer, lean forward, and click "Jump!"

Glad I could inspire you.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Chamber and the Unit (FF)

Copyright Claire Fuller

The Pressure had spiked out of control!

Poor Barley Lumpkin, responsible for keeping proper pressure in the chamber, had fouled up.  It was his first day on the job and running from latch to latch had been too much for him.

"What have you done?"  screamed Manager Cromwell.  Barley felt terrible but he helped Cromwell stabilize the pressure and remove the unit from the chamber. "Whatever this has done to the unit,” said Cromwell, “we'll have to go with it.” And soon the unit was placed on Donald Trump's head.

This proved the beginning of the end for Mr. Trump.  His neatly groomed hair, parted at the side, robbed him of much of his charisma. Soon the rest of the novelty wore off as well.

And Barley Lumpkin --- both to Democrats and Republicans alike --- became a hero.


Yeah, it's almost 140 words.  So it took me a couple of extra words to knock off Donald Trump.  Wasn't it worth it?

The other Friday Fictioneers have no doubt knocked off a thing or two themselves, and you can follow follow their exploits relative to the picture prompt above by clicking on the heroic name of Barley Lumpkin right here.

Maybe Barley Lumpkin can maintain the chamber that contains Mr. Trump's sensitivity next.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The NASCAR Driver, The Comedian, & Tiger Woods


    You've probably seen the commercial that's been on television of late in which NASCAR driver Brian Vickers, comedian Kevin Nealon, and professional golfer Arnold Palmer extol the virtues of a prescription drug that's helped each one of them manage certain individual health considerations.

That commercial has been so successful that a similar new commercial has just been produced.  Like the first one, it features a NASCAR driver, a comedian, and a professional golfer.   

Here's a sneak preview:

Scene opens with NASCAR driver walking on the race track.

Brian: I'm Brian Knickers, NASCAR driver.  Why am I called "Brian Knickers?" Because Perry is Jewish and  doesn't know a damn thing about NASCAR, so he just mangled my name "Brian Vickers" for this stupid parody.

Shift to comedian.

Carrot Top: I'm Carrot Top, comedian.  If you can call me that.

Finally to golfer.

TigerAnd I'm Tiger Woods, once successful professional golfer who has played lately as well as Grandma Walton. Know what the three of us have in common?

Brian:  We talked to our brokers about investing in Xarbelto. I had a serious cash shortage after my last divorce and I needed an investment that was going to pay off fast!

Tiger:  That's why I invested in Xarbelto too.  Oh boy, is that ever why I invested in Xarbelto too!  

Brian:  Xarbelto has been proven to return excellent financial results because its manufacturer has a sales/marketing team of unscrupulous slime balls expert at dispensing illegal perks to corrupt doctors to induce them to prescribe Xarbelto to whomever they can, regardless of whether anything's actually wrong with them.

Carrot Top:  And I invested in Xarbelto because I'm a goofy novelty act that wore razor thin in less than one tick of the atomic clock and somehow I've gotta eat! Xarbelto has been proven to produce substantial returns for people on the fringes of show business whose lack of cash has been caused expressly by lack of talent. 

Both Carrot Top and Brian join Tiger Woods at a patio table overlooking a golf course. 

Tiger: Hey, I'm glad we could all get together.  Any one of you guys got any dough you can lend me?

Brian:  Cut it out, Tiger.  At least until we see what Xarbelto closes at today.

Carrot Top: You know, guys,  I tried investing in another drug called Warburton but my portfolio took  a beating.  The Warburton sales team didn't know what to do. They were providing doctors with actual medical information, not getting them laid!

Brian:  Yeah, they didn't even know how to blackmail a doctor when necessary. Hell, the day the Ashley Madison thing broke, Xarbelto stock went up 37 points!
Waitress:  You fellas want anything else?

Tiger: I'll have another Tiger Woods.

Waitress: I'm sorry, Mr. Woods, but there is no such thing, 

TigerWho gives a shit?  Nobody else at this table has a drink named after them!   

Carrot Top: Oh yeah?  I'll have a carrot juice. So fuck you, Woods!

Next comes a montage of Tiger Woods, Brian Knickers, and Carrot Top on the golf course --- teeing off, putting, and riding in their carts.

Announcer:   As with any investment, past performance does not guarantee future returns. This is especially true with Xarbelto because we're not really sure the stuff does anything. It may be a sugar pill. Some investors may experience a bleeding of cash and in some cases severe hemorrhaging of cash should the government push deeply into our practices, so make sure to vote Republican. Before starting investment in Xarbelto, tell your broker about any prior lawsuits you have filed, ethical principles you may have, and your tolerance for being fucked with.

All three are now putting on the 18th green.

BrianYou know, Xarbelto has been prescribed over 11 million times in the U.S. by doctors bought off with exotic junkets, drugs, and hot sex.

Carrot TopAnd that number is growing. 

Tiger blows a three inch putt.

Tiger: Like my score, damn it!  You guys sure you can't float me some scratch?

Announcer: Ask your broker, financial adviser, or one of these three greedy bastards about Xarbelto. 

Tiger approaches the camera.

Tiger: Investing in Xarbelto was the right move for us.  Unless the stock market tanks between now and January 1, then I'm SOL!

Announcer:  If you can't afford your investment in Xarbelto, please don't contact the company. We won't even talk to you.  We barely talk to Mr. Woods anymore. 

Brian (to Carrot Top): Poor guy.  He'll never get a drink named after him now!


Sunday, August 23, 2015

Tattoo Breakthrough!

Yes, I like it!   Kind of.

It was a moment in the history of the Western World unlike any other.

That is, in the history of the Western World in the immediate vicinity of one Starbucks Coffee Shop in Bala-Cynwyd PA within a four foot radius of my son Brandon and me on August 14, 2015.  As the young woman barista brought our coffees to us on that day, my eyes were drawn to a tattoo of an apparent butterfly on the underside of her left arm and before I could control myself, by God, it was out of mouth!

"That's a pretty tattoo,"' I said.

"Oh, thank you," she replied.

"Dad!" exclaimed Brandon as we walked out of her earshot, "That's a major breakthrough!"

"I guess it is," I said modestly. "And truth to tell, I didn't even really like her tattoo!"

I'm a Boomer and I've never quite gotten the allure of tattoos.  I've written about this twice before in two curmudgeonly posts that have probably cost me more millennials as readers than there are at this very moment downloading music by some artist we Boomers never heard of. When it comes to the rat tat tattoo, I've always found them rat tat tat wrong! because of how we all felt about them in the sixties and early seventies.

Back in those days tattoos were generally worn by the shorter haired folks we called greasers, sworn enemies of the freaks and pseudo freaks.  Yes, some hippies had tattoos, but they were as few in number as there were un-smoked roaches in my apartment at the end of a Friday evening.  Our rock heroes did not have them, the cool people we aspired to be like did not have them, and the hot chicks I never had the guts to approach that I'm still kicking myself about 40 years later certainly did not have them as well. 

But times have changed and tattoos today proliferate like Republican Presidential candidates.  My son doesn't have one but he has many friends who do, and none of them are greasers, bikers, or intoxicated sailors just waking up after a long weekend's shore leave.  Brandon has constantly admonished me to stop spreading negative vibes about tattoos, but until now I've virtually carried a soapbox with me to be ready for the opportunity.

"Dad, you don't have to go into a diatribe about tattoos and the 60's every time we see somebody who has one!  It marks you as, dare I say ... old."

"OLD?!! Why I'm only 64!"

"Wanna seem 62?  Lose the Tat tude!"

And it looks like perhaps, finally I have.

"So what brought that on, Dad?" said Brandon, as we return now to the greatest history making moment in a Starbucks since someone was able to readily afford a latte.

"I dunno," I answered.  "It just slipped out of me as something to say.  Like thanks for the coffee, have a nice day, or do you have an attractive mom in my demographic?"

"You know what that means?" Brandon said. "That means you accept tattoos as a legitimate expression of someone's  personality. At long last, they've become a part of your world."

So it seems I've made a Tattoo Breakthrough. But would I actually get one myself? Have I made a Tattoo Break on through to the other side?

What kind of tattoo would I have?  

A sailing ship? 

Nah, I'd get nauseous.  

A Jewish themed tattoo?

No, it's supposed to be proscribed under Jewish law. I don't need the Old Testament God making me even more neurotic. 

Or how about a lovely butterfly as on the barista? 


My luck it would turn back into a caterpillar, form a cocoon, and eat my esophagus.

No, I guess I'm not ready for any of that.  And I still don't like tattoos which envelop someone's entire body until he or she looks like a Triple A Map of the American Midwest. But if you're a Boomer and you want a simple not too sizeable tattoo, I won't say a discouraging word. In fact, I'll help you pick it out.

I might even like it.

"Welcome to Century 21, Dad."

"Thank you, Bran."