Thursday, July 30, 2015

Garbage Day

They had it down to a science. 

Every Tuesday, the day preceding garbage pickup, Edna emptied the small trash cans while Ed gathered the big stuff and hauled the garbage cart out onto the street. 

One sunny Tuesday afternoon in June, Edna slipped quietly past Ed as he sat watching TV in his favorite chair. With their wedding anniversary coming up tomorrow, Edna needed to sneak his present inside. 

Proud of herself for slipping past undetected, Edna reentered the room and plopped down next to Ed. “Remember what day tomorrow is?” Edna asked.

“Of course,” Ed replied. “It’s garbage day.”

Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Gamblers

They arrived early for the show and wandered into the casino to kill time. Edna tried desperately to distract Ed.

“Let’s tour the gardens.” 

Ed ignored her as he stood before a vacant dollar slot machine that seemed to be calling his name.

“Let’s grab a quick bite.”

Ed opened his wallet, inserted a dollar and hit SPIN.

“Let’s visit the shops.”

The machine lit up, clanking away as it tallied a $1000 payout.

Ed remained surprisingly calm. “Now’s the time to go!” he said while cashing out.

Edna looked on with bug eyes. “Actually, dear, what’s the rush?”

This 99-word story is my contribution to the July 22 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to "write a story that has a shift in perspective."

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Fitness Tracker

“Seriously?” Ed said. “I have to wear this?”

“It’s the hottest thing in fitness,” Edna replied.

Ed opened the packages and held up his FitCardio strap for inspection. He attempted to lace the unit around his ankle when Edna’s laughter stopped him.

“They go on our wrists.”

For the next week Edna walked daily, challenging Ed to match her step count. While she was gone, Ed laid on the sofa watching TV and moving his left arm repeatedly.

At week’s end Edna checked the steps recorded on Ed’s unit.

“Excellent!” Edna exclaimed.

“You were right,” Ed answered. “I feel great.”

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Truly Breathless

After a brief lesson Ed and Edna put on fins and masks, adjusted their snorkels, and pushed off into the water.

Edna swam slowly and effortlessly, enjoying the aquatic plants, coral and brightly colored fish. Ed tried to keep up, but was more concerned about breathing than sightseeing.

Edna swung her arms excitedly under water as she pointed out each approaching fish. Her arm brushed Ed’s snorkel, knocking it loose and causing him to gasp.

Ed quickly stood in the shallow water, followed by Edna.

“How is it?” the instructor asked.

“I’m breathless!” Edna exclaimed.

“Me too,” Ed replied.

This 99-word story is my contribution to the July 15 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to "write a story about a breathless moment."

Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Phone Offender

That Marla’s something else . . . .

Ed looked at Edna.

And Raymond is no prize . . . .

Ed surveyed the room. He and Edna seemed to be the only ones put out by the woman’s loud cell phone conversation, which could be heard throughout the otherwise quiet waiting room.

Don’t know what he sees in her . . . .

Edna pinched Ed’s arm—a clear warning for him to behave. Ed remained silent but continued staring down the offender. 

Gotta go. They’re calling my name.

“Hallelujah!” Ed said a little too loudly as the woman left. 

All eyes turned toward Ed, with smiles and nods all around.

Monday, July 13, 2015

The Infographic

Ed turned his tablet computer sideways and waited for the image to reorient itself. Edna studied it, shaking her head in frustration.

The maze of lines, boxes and arrows—all color coded—was very pretty but made absolutely no sense to Ed or Edna. “This thing’s giving me a headache,” Edna muttered.

The elderly couple wanted to understand their “carbon footprint”—whatever that meant. Their Internet search for information led them to this confusing thing called an infographic.

Edna threw up her hands in defeat.

Finally, Ed had seen enough too. “If they can’t explain it, to hell with it.”

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Packaging Science

Edna examined the 64 GB thumb drive Ed bought her at the warehouse store. It’s exactly what she needed for her digital photo collection.

There was only one small problem. The tiny drive was firmly encased in a hard plastic sheet the size of a legal pad. How to get it out?

Ed couldn’t tear the plastic or cut it with scissors. Frustration grew as Edna watched Ed try his pliers, box cutter, and hunting knife—all to no avail.

A determined Ed bolted for the garage. He came back with his chain saw roaring.

“Have at it!” Edna yelled.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Hot Stuff

The huge grassy field was filled with tents, tables and flags. Edna loved the culinary samples at the International Food Festival, but Ed was less venturesome about trying new foods. He stuck mostly to drink concoctions.

Multiple tastes of Raki, Sake, Sangria and Ouzo had Ed feeling his oats. As he approached the India table, something orange caught his eye. Ed plopped the sample labeled Bhut Jolokia into his mouth before Edna could intervene.

Seconds later Ed’s eyes widened as sweat poured from his brow.

Edna held up the placard: 

aka Ghost Chili Pepper
WARNING: It’s a hot one

This 99-word story is my contribution to the July 1 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to write a story that includes the phrase, It's a hot one.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Golf Tip

“Check this out on our swing path analyzer,” the TV announcer said. A slow motion video of the perfect golf swing played on the screen. “Notice the posture, takeaway angle, lower body transition, and torque as he drives into the ball,” the announcer explained. 

Ed and Edna watched closely. 

Ed scratched his head. “I don’t understand, Edna. That’s the way I swing, but my shots are all over the place.”

Edna smiled. “I do see one slight difference, dear.”

“Really? What is it?”

Edna cleared her throat and paused before answering.

“Well, his eyes were actually open the whole time.”