Monthly Archives: March 2014

The Production of “Hair” At Billy Bronco’s

Daily Prompt: She Drives Me Crazy

It makes me crazy when people wear their shoes in my house. What habit/act drives you crazy? How do you prevent it from happening?

Long ago I’ve gotten over things that drive me crazy. Once you realize that there are a whole lot of things that you do to drive others crazy…

When I was a teenager a bachelor uncle lived with us. His eating habits were intolerable. To say he ate like a pig would be an understatement. After asking him on a couple of occasions to be less noisy and more mannerly with no improvement I ate elsewhere.

As in Krista’s situation if there are people who do not remove their shoes when entering your home and you have asked them, simply stop inviting them. If they should ask why they are no longer invited politely tell them why.

Here is a short story about a barroom discussion down at Billy Bronco’s, a mythical bar where all the Boise State faithful drink beer, talk Boise State football, talk sports, and drink beer. And they don’t remove their shoes. In fact there are some who don’t wear shoes.

The Production of Hair At Billy Bronco’s

Jerry Lucas

Jerry Lucas

Louie brought pictures of five old basketball players to Billy Bronco’s the other night. He laid them on the bar without so much as a word. There was some passing interest, but nothing to amount to anything.

Finally Sailor Sam said, “Louie, why on earth did you bring those old pictures in here?”

Louie replied, “Can anybody name them?”

“Hank Luisetti is one of them?” Dawg Breath said.

Bob Pettit

Bob Pettit

“Did you just make that up or do you really know who he is?” Sailor Sam said.

“I’m from Oregon,” Dawg Breath said, “and my grandpa said Luisetti was one of the first guys to use the one handed shot. It was the beginning of the jump shot.”

“There’s always been a jump shot,” Kevan, the bartender said, “Right?”

“That’s right,” Dawg Breath said, “my grandpa said he hit a 3 point jumper in the Idaho state finals in ‘55 to win by 1.”

“They didn’t have 3 pointers then,” Sailor Sam said.

Bob Cousy

Bob Cousy

“You callin’ my grandpa a liar?” Dawg Breath said.

“When did Idaho become a state?” Kevan said to quiet things a bit.

Sailor Sam made something up so as not to offend Dawg Breath. “Idaho experimented with the 3 pointer for one year. Of course your grandpa wouldn’t lie to you.”

Dawg Breath settled back into his stool at the bar. “He also told me he stuffed Chamberlain in a pick-up game in Pocatello in‘57.”

Sailor Sam spit out a mouth full of beer.

Charlie Tyra

Charlie Tyra

“Let’s get back to it, does anybody know these guys?” Louie said.

There was a collective, “No.”

“Tell us,” Sailor Sam said.

“Jerry Lucas, Bob Petit, Bob Cousy, Charlie Tyra, and Wayne Embry” Louie said. “What do you see different than you do players today?”

“There’s too many white guys to be a really good team,” Broadway Joe said.

“Well that’s obvious,” Louie said. “What else?”

“You ain’t gonna tell until somebody buys you a beer, right?” Sailor Sam said.

Wayne Embry

Wayne Embry

“Kevan,” Broadway Joe signaled. “Get the sap a beer so he’ll tell us.”

Kevan drew a beer for Louie and sat it in front of him.

“They’re all hairy,” Louie said. “Where has the hair gone today? Especially on the legs, but those guys are hairy all over.”

“It’s evolution,” Dawg Breath said. “We don’t need as much hair anymore; they don’t wear the short trunks like they used to. They hang almost to the tops of their socks now. We‘ve had to adapt.”

“Ahhh,” Sailor Sam said, “they shave their legs now days.”

“Just another way feminize a manly sport.” Dawg Breath said. “They won’t be satisfied until it’s coed and there will be two baskets at each end; an eleven foot basket for men and a nine foot for women.”

“It’s okay with me so long as the women shave their legs and arm pits.” Broadway said. “Remember some of those Russian babes from the 50s?”

“I really don’t think they were women,” Dawg Breath said.

“Oh my, here comes the evil empire conspiracy stuff,” Sailor Sam said.

“Back to the pictures,” Louie begged.

“What’s your point?” Broadway said.

“Players just aren’t as hairy as they used to be,” Louie said.

Rony Seikaly

Rony Seikaly

“Yeah, come to think about it the last hairy guy was Rony Seikaly,” Sailor Sam said.

“What about beards?” Dawg Breath said.

“Beards don’t count,” Broadway said.

“It has all to do with the tattoos,” Dawg Breath said. “I mean who wants hair growing through a tat?”

“I’ve got one,” Broadway said “It was supposed to be of an old girl friend, but it looks like Elmer Fudd with hair. Well, she really wasn’t a girl friend, but alcohol was as much to blame for the tattoo as it was her.”

“Okay, Louie,” Sailor Sam insisted. “You must have a stupid point to make.”

“No,” Louie said, “ but there was a time when players had more hair on their body than they did their head and I wanted a free beer. This place is so easy.”

 

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Texting Or Talking?

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Daily Prompt: I Walk the Line

Have you got a code you live by? What are the principles or set of values you actively apply in your life?

It was Groucho Marx who said, “I got principles and if you don’t like them I got others.”

I don’t think you have to tell others what your principles are. I don’t think you pull out your principles at every opportunity and beat people over the head with them.

Have you ever heard or noted that in a discussion about something important or where a person’s integrity is called into question they say words to the effect, “That’s not who I am.” It is as if to say “I” am above what ever is being discussed. Of course a crook will say stealing is beneath him that’s all apart of the disguise. Of course liars will swear to the truth, that’s who they are. Words are deceptive. Principles are carried out by action and there is evidence of it.

That said and I’ll say no more, here is my short story for the day:

 Texting Or Talking?

Jake got a text from Bart. “Meet @ 6.”

Jake called Bart. “Hey, Bart, I can’t meet you at 6 it will have to be at 5.”

“Why didn’t you just text me back?” Bart said.

“I figured we could settle it by just talking,” Jake said.

“Texting saves time,” Bart said. “It’s the new thing. It’s how business is done now days don’t you know.”

“I can talk faster than hunt and peck,” Jake said.

“This is the new millennium, Pal,” Bart said. “You got to get into texting and the social media.”

“I don’t get it,” Jake said. “There’s nothing social about it; you text me, I text you. What’s social. I don’t see you are hear your voice.”

“It just saves time,” Bart said.

“It takes me too long to type,” Jake said. “I was last in my class in thumb wrestling and I got big thumbs. I always hit two keys.”

“Everybody does it,” Bart said.

“I’m a bad speller,” Jake said.

“Nobody spells,” Bart said. “Learn to abbreviate.”

“That seems like a lot to go through just to say, “’meet me at 6,’” Jake said.

“It’s quick and easy,” Bart said.

“Maybe it’s just me, Bart,” Jake said. “But I think this whole thing could have been over with a 15 second conversation.”

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Neurosis From A to Z

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Daily Prompt: Born to Be With You

Got a soul-mate and/or a best friend? What is it about that person that you love best? Describe them in great detail — leave no important quality out.

“Great detail.” I don’t know how I can take nearly 48  years of marriage and condense it into a daily prompt. Certainly it would be my wife.  She is everything I am not and where I do well she does better.

Anyway if not for neurosis and neurotics there would be limited subjects to explore. Here is my short story for the day.

 Neurosis From A to Z 

“Life is a very strange thing,” Herzog said. “It is so difficult to be balanced.”

“What are you attempting to say?” Ludwig said.

“You take a person who is messy,” Herzog said. “It usually means they don’t care. The have little self image or respect.”

“Yes,” Ludwig said. “I suppose you are right.”

“And as to those who are neat and has to have every thing in place,” Herzog said. “The are most likely hopeless neurotics.”

“What about you, Herzog,” Ludwig said. “Which camp do you find yourself in?”

“Oh,” Herzog said. “A card carrying neurotic.”

“I find that hard to believe,” Ludwig said.

“I’m obsessed with being normal,” Herzog said. “My messes are in alphabetical order. Ascot untied to the front along with dirty ashtrays. Next is bottle cap on floor next to bowling shoes.”

“You sound quite complete,” Ludwig said. “Now allow me to challenger you neurosis. Do you have Zs.”

“I would not be a true neurotic if not,” Herzog said. “Zucchini bread, molded, in the refrigerator. And finish with Lionel Hampton album on the coffee table.”

“But he’s a xylophonists,” Ludwig protested. “That’s an X.”

“Yes that is to cover the Xs and Zs,” Herzog said. “I must end in Z. Hampton’s genre is jazz.”

“You are so accomplished,” Herzog,” Ludwig said. “The perfect neurotic.”

 

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Expectation Unrealized

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Daily Prompt: Singing the Blues

We all feel down from time to time. How do you combat the blues? What’s one tip you can share with others that always helps to lift your spirits?

People! The blues feeds off loneliness. And if I’m around others who have the blues I look at them as a project. Be around people, talk to them, listen to them, help them, and if need be annoy them. The important thing is to think of others and not yourself. Consume yourself with caring and helping others. Yeah, but it doesn’t work for me. Try harder. If that don’t work there is always drugs, alcohol, or The Golden Gate Bridge. (I’m being funny.)

Anyway it seems that yesterday my short story was about a man named Parker who needed space to be introspective so he tossed his survival partner overboard. Today Parker finds dry land and is rescued. What else could a man want?

Expectation Unrealized

Seven more days past at sea. In the distance a patch of green emerged from the horizon. Parker slowly paddled toward it ever checking over his shoulder to use it as fixed point.

He knew it would take hours, perhaps most of the day to finally reach the shores.

He talked as if someone were with him.

“There is green so there must be water.”

“There will always be fish from the sea.”

“Coconuts will be and excellent source of needed vitamins.”

“If I find berries I’ll rub them on my skin, touch them to my lips, and hold them in my mouth to check for reactions.”

“I can start a fire and stir-fry some crispy bugs to sprinkle over seaweed or greens. And with some ingenuity I’m certain I can render oil from coconuts.”

As Parker pulled hard on the oars he envisioned with his imagination the fine meals to be prepared. He rationed for several days and was hungry most of the time. He imagined the harvest he might gain from the sea; clams, crabs, and fish. He thought about salads with plump sweet berries.

The rowing was easy because his thoughts were about creating and not just surviving.

He heard the sound of breakers and at last his raft hit bottom. He sprung from the raft like young goat in spring. He tugged the raft to shore and collapsed in it. He was exhausted beyond reason or movement. Falling a sleep would be inaccurate, it was more akin to passing out from exhaustion.

Later, much later, one day, two days, a week; Parker did not know, but he was awakened by two strangers. One, a face of a man beaming brightly. The other, a woman’s full of concern and compassion.

“We have steaks,” the man said. “And plenty of other foods.”

“There is much to drink,” The woman said. “You are now safe with us. We will take care of you. When was the last time you had a beer?”

“Yes,” the man said. “We have friend chicken remaining from last night. In moments we can have feast for you.”

Parker dazed and confused looked at them oddly. “I was kind of hoping for some stir-fried grubs.”

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A Time For Introspection

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Daily Prompt: The Great Pretender

Are you full of confidence or have you ever suffered from Imposter Syndrome? Tell us all about it.

Maybe, just maybe it’s not a syndrome after all. Perhaps it is something, if used properly, can keep us mentally and emotionally healthy. Another term that might be used is humility or modesty. Which person would you rather be next to or married to; the one who says, “I really deserve the praise received,” or “That was something unexpected I really don’t deserve that. I was only doing my job?”

Anywho, this was a nice little prompt. I wish there was more time to explore it more fully and deeply and spin it into a meaningful and intriguing story. But here’s one about getting rid of all distractions in order to meditate and think more fully and deeply.

 A Time For Introspection 

Darrell and Parker drifted for three days in a rubber raft in open seas. Only hopelessness, water, eternity, and nothing lay beyond the horizon. They had water and rations along with despair and loneliness.

At what state and when does madness set in Parker wondered.

“Strange things happen when you’re at sea,” Darrell said. “You begin to think like you have never thought before. You sink deep into thought and perhaps for the first time in your life have the time to really exam who you are. You think about things not tried, secret passions, words left unsaid. You know, that kind of thing.”

“I’m pretty much thinking about finding land over the horizon,” Parker said. “Introspection is a luxury best enjoyed when alone.”

Darrell went on as if Parker said nothing. “Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a member of the opposite sex for just a day? What do you think life would be like?”

Shocked, Parker said. “You talkin’ to me?”

“Well, I suppose,” Darrell said. “There’s nobody else on the raft.”

Darrell looked off to the vast horizon at the ocean’s edge.

Parker counted to 10. He picked up the oar and cracked it over the top of Darrell’s head. Darrell slumped over the side of the raft with his hands dangling in the water. Parker grabbed his legs and swung them into the water and than pushed the rest of Darrell’s body in the ocean.

“Now I have the time and space for introspection,” Parker said. “I wonder why I did that?”

(Continued tomorrow.)

 

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God And Fish and The Daily Prompt

Daily Prompt: Que Sera Sera

Do you believe in fate or do you believe you can control your own destiny?

People will use fate to offer some sort of reason or explanation of why they couldn’t change something or do better to control an outcome. If fate truly is the way things work, why blame anyone for anything. Why not celebrate the most heinous of crimes and those who carry them out because, after all, they are merely victims of fate and have no control over their impulses. Fate is poppycock.

By the same token, those who feel everything is predestined by God are in the same boat. Believing that God has predestined things is to make him a partner in evil. It means that every unrighteous act is an act of God. Again, people use it as a crutch to blame something or someone else for their own failures or inadequacies.

The Bible clearly states “time and unexpected events overtake them all.” – Ecclesiastes 9:11.

Here is a short story about a man who knows better than to believe in God’s predestination, but uses it to add a measure of humor to his life. He knows life and things that happen in life are the consequence of his own behavior, but recognizes goodness is a product not of fate, but of God. He is a simple man who doesn’t have all the answers yet will admit it is due to his lack and not that of God’s or anyone else. Enjoy reading.

thA9DGLAGYGod And Fish

Diego and Manuel had just laid down their nets in the calm waters of the Sea of Cortez.

“Now we rest. In the old days fish jump in boat. They glad to get out of water. It was too crowded.” Manuel said. “Now, we wait for the fish. Do you know a fish song, Diego?”

“No songs from me today,” Diego said. “Don’t want to scare fish away. Maybe we should talk about things that make us happy; like our net full of fish.”

“Fish hear that and that not make them happy,” Manuel said. “That scare them away. This is not your day to come up with good things to catch fish.”

“What do you have?” Diego said.

“I tell secret,” Manuel said, “and fish come near to listen.”

“What is secret?” Diego said leaning close to Manuel.

“Here is a secret,” Manuel said. “It is a proud day when you become a father. It is a beginning.” Manuel stopped. His face tightened and finally relaxed and tear streamed from his eye.

“But why do you cry now?” Diego said. “Your son is all grown.”

“I work hard to make him a good man,” Manuel said. “I pray too. I think, I worry. I pray more and more again. I’ not good example. He really need God’s help. Can’t do it on my own.”

“So what is the secret,” Diego said. “Everybody know it is a proud day when you become a father.”

“The secret is when he becomes a man,” Manuel said, “when he succeed.”

“Your son make you that proud?” Diego said.

“And I cry because God help,” Manuel said. “I can not do it on own. And God give you a good son you don‘t deserve.”

Diego laughed. “We did many foolish things when young. God must have forgiven you.”

“Yes,” Manuel said. “It was foolishness… that gave me a son. But you grow up or give up.”

“But you grow up real quick,” Diego said.

“I just pretend,” Manuel said. “I still foolish at heart, but my son, he is a good man. He is more of a man than me.”

“You cry again, Manuel,” Diego said.

“Yes,” Manuel said. “Because a good son means God has forgiven you.”

“Look! Manuel,” Diego said. “The fish are many. They like to hear good stories about good sons.”

“Yes,” Manuel said. “And God was listening too.”

“Yes!” Diego said. “God and fish like good stories. He tell the fish where the good stories are told. They come to listen.”

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The Daily Prompt and a Short Story Named “Lobe”

Daily Prompt: Moments to Remember

What are the three most memorable moments — good or bad, happy or sad — in your life? Go!

1. The day I graduated from high school.

2. The day I got out of the Army.

3. The day I retired.

Sure, there are more important moments; wedding day, birth of children, and so on, but there was a certain degree of jubilation attached with the three above. It’s like Andy in the Shawshank Redemption; he crawls through a sewer pipe to freedom.

Here’s my short story for the day:

Lobe

Jennifer needed an account representative. She was halfway through all the candidates. She walked to the lobby and smiled at a young man. “Carlton Jones?’

“Yes,” he said.

“This way please,” she said and he followed her to an office.

“Have a seat,” Jennifer said and she sat behind her desk.

“I see that you included adding your nickname, Lobe, to your application, Mr. Jones,” Jennifer said. “Why is that?”

“Yeah,” Lobe said. “I got named Lobe when I got them stretched and I want people to feel comfortable enough around me that they’ll call me by my nickname rather than Carlton.”

“Does Carlton bother you?” Jennifer said.

“Oh no,” Lobe said. “It just seems formal and I want people to relax around me.”

“Have you always been that way?” Jennifer said, “wanting people to feel relaxed around you.”

“Oh yeah,” Lobe said. “For as long as I can remember. Honesty has always been important to me.”

“Than this will likely come as no surprise to you,” Jennifer said. “Your application and resume are satisfactory, but your appearance is disturbing. That stretched earlobe is distracting and disturbing. It will turn clients in the other direction.”

“I don’t know what that has to do with it?” Lobe said.

“To the contrary of what you indicated about wanting people to be relaxed around you,” Jennifer said, “the stretched earlobe makes people squeamish, painful, and uncomfortable.”

“People like that are not accepting and tolerant of differences,” Lobe said.

“No they aren’t,” Jennifer said. “They are normal.”

“Tell me what normal is?” Lobe said.

“How can I explain normal to you?” Jennifer said. “Clearly you have some sort of issues that have driven you to distort your appearance, you could never understand what normal is.”

“Look,” Lobe said. “I’m tired of people judging me for how I look. You can’t judge a book by it’s cover.”

“That expression comes from a time when all books had the same cover,” Jennifer said. “There were no graphics or pictures on the cover. When I see blood, chain saws, tattoos, and stretched earlobes I know what’s inside; you’ve told me.”

“But I’m kind and gentle,” Lobe said.

“Don’t believe it for a moment,” Jennifer said. “You like grotesque so much you decided to do it to yourself.”

“Your so closed minded,” Lobe said. “Ted Bundy looked normal.”

“Ted Bundy deceived,” Jennifer said. “I will give you one thing, Lobe, you are honest.”

“I would never harm a fly,” Lobe said.

“But you would stretch you own earlobes beyond recognition and a large enough to pass a quarter through them.”

“You are discriminating, you know?” Lobe said.

“The whole idea of an application, resume, and interview is to discriminate,” Jennifer said. “Go protest in the streets, Mr. Carlton.”

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