Sunday, August 30, 2015

Mad Scientist

Ed rose at 4 AM again. Edna heard him scratching around in his cluttered study. What’s he up to this time?

Around 8 AM Ed plopped his laptop on the kitchen table and grabbed a cup of black coffee. 

“Big project?” Edna asked.

“Biggest one yet,” Ed answered solemnly. 

“’What about?”



“WERELO,” Ed repeated.


Ed motioned for Edna to lower her voice and move closer. “Weather Relocation,” he whispered. “Moving weather patterns. Getting rain to drought and fire areas.”

Edna knew her husband had absolutely no scientific training.  “But how?”

“That’s where I’m stuck,” Ed replied.

This 99-word story is my contribution to the August 26 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to "write a story about the need for help in an extreme weather event."

Thursday, August 27, 2015


Ed leaned the tall ladder against the house. “Just hold it here,” he told Edna. 

“Let’s just pay someone to clean the gutters,” Edna pleaded. 

“Don’t be silly,” Ed answered. “Just yell ‘whoa’ if the ladder looks shaky.”

Ed took his first step. “Whoa,” Edna screamed.

Ed stopped and frowned, then took another step. “Whoa.” 

He shook his head in frustration, but slowly continued. “Whoa.”

Ed finally reached the top despite Edna’s constant warnings. He tried to steady himself while scooping out gutter debris. 

Edna wanted to be encouraging. “Looking good.”

Whoa” Ed said nervously. “Maybe we should pay someone.”

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Tears of Joy

“I’ll take it from here.”

Ed had thoroughly researched how to slice onions without crying. Edna backed away.

Ed plopped a stick of gum in his mouth, softening it with a few chomps. He then curled his tongue while putting a slice of bread in his mouth, making sure it hung out at a 90 degree angle. Next he put on and adjusted his goggles while reaching for the sharpest knife in the drawer. Finally, he held the onion under the faucet and sliced it.

Ed remained tearless, but not Edna.

She stood across the room laughing like crazy.

This 99-word story is my contribution to the August 19 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to "write a story that includes onions."

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Luxury Box

Ed opened the glitzy package and rolled out the multicolored brochure. Luxury Box Seats Now Available said the headline from the local college athletic department.

Ed read on, learning that a $25,000 donation qualifies him to purchase two football seats in the luxury box for only $1,200 per seat for the six home games this season. That’s assuming, of course, that he becomes a premium member of the football booster club at the $2,000 annual giving level.

Ed stared at the materials, daydreaming about the VIP treatment he would receive.

“Hey Edna.”

Forget it,” she screamed from two rooms away.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Legal Maneuvering

Judge Stone called Ed to the podium and read the charge. “How do you plead?”

Ed stood nervously.

Not guilty,” someone proclaimed from behind. All eyes turned toward Edna, whose loud voice surprised even her.

The Judge was startled, then amused. “Does she always have your back?”

Ed answered immediately. “Guilty as charged, Your Honor.”

Judge Stone didn’t know if Ed was admitting he ran the stop sign or proudly affirming he has a supportive spouse. 

The Judge smiled, scratched his head and then announced “Charge dropped.”

Ed ignored Edna’s signal to remain silent. “The defense rests,” he said.

This 99-word story is my contribution to the August 12 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to "write a story about a character who is called to have the back of another."

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Sneeze Protocol

Ed took a seat in the crowded waiting room. He felt a tingle in his nose and quickly raised his upper arm to cover his mouth with his sleeve. ACHOO!

“Bless you!”



Ed nodded sheepishly to those acknowledging his sneeze. Edna patted his leg and handed him a tissue.

A new arrival entered the waiting room and plopped down in the chair next to Ed. The new guy sat fidgeting for a spell while coughing openly. Suddenly he faced Ed directly and let out a loud ACHOO.

“Bless you!”




The last one was Ed’s reply.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

The Birdie

Ed sized up the shot, grabbed his seven iron and struck the ball. Small branches shook as the errant golf ball grazed the tree line on the right side of the fairway.

A tiny robin fluttered to the ground.

Ed’s playing partners teased him about finally making a birdie. Not funny, he thought.

Arriving home, Ed unzipped the large compartment of his golf bag. Edna watched curiously as Ed gently used both hands to scoop out and cradle what appeared to be twigs and leaves.

“Bring the golf course home with you?” Edna kidded.

Ed smiled sheepishly. “Sort of.”

This 99-word story is my contribution to the August 5 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to "write the common premise: 'I ran over a deer (or other animal) and have decided to nurse it back to health.'"

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Creepy Toll Road

Ed drove up to the window. The young girl in the booth seemed annoyed as she took Ed’s two dollars.

The private toll road company was reportedly facing bankruptcy. She should be glad to see us, Edna thought.

Ed quickly reached the tollway speed limit of 65 MPH—there was no other traffic. Suddenly, a car whizzed past them going over 95. Edna frowned.

As Ed approached the exit toll booth—which cost another $2—his eyes widened with shock. Edna looked at the booth and turned pale.

The same girl stared at them—and she was even more annoyed.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

The Literalist

Ed rose early, turned on the coffee and grabbed his phone.

He opened his twitter feed and was alarmed by a tweet from City Hall. URGENT: RESIDENTS MUST BOIL DRINKING WATER UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.

Ed quickly sprung into action. He retrieved the largest pot he could find, filled it with water, and placed it on the hot burner. Within minutes boiling water spewed as it flowed over the top.

Edna woke from the commotion and was horrified. “Whattha?”

Ed held up his hands. “Stand back, Edna!” he shouted. "We have to let it boil until they tweet us again.”

This 99-word story is my contribution to the July 29 Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge to "write a story that is ripped from the headlines." My story idea involving literal interpretation was "ripped" from a real news story in which being literal actually worked out a little better.