Act 1: Do a Coup
Act 2: Oust the Cuckoo
Act 3: Blue Skies
Act 1: Do a Coup
Act 2: Oust the Cuckoo
Act 3: Blue Skies
Part 1: Domestic Bliss
“Buck . . . buck . . .”
Part 2: Disturbance Behind the Screen
“Kuh . . . kuh . . . KACK . . .”
Part 3: Runaway
“Cluck . . . cluck . . .”
(1st of a mini-series of taking poetic license)
I made a decision.
Stop with the inquisition.
It just is.
My mind is made,
Nothing more to be weighed.
It just is.
Simply admire the gloss,
And accept that I’m my own boss.
It just is.
There’s no age limit
To getting a mullet.
So get used to it.
[A trilogy of “seamy” stories about the lure of ugly sweaters. 3 of 3; see 2]
Detective David LaFoote, along with his new junior partner, Detective Tobias LaFitte, shoulder their way in through the door. They look around the studio apartment, struck by the multitude of paper types pinned to a big bulletin board on the wall. Beneath all the newspaper clippings, invitation cards, and business letterhead is a large map of the metropolis. Different strands of colored yarn, connected by pins, point to specific locations on the map. Suddenly they hear a gasp and see a man cowering in the corner.
“I didn’t do anything wrong,” the man whines. He is wearing a green sweater with a big snowman on the front, grinning back at them. “I’m taking what’s been due me for years . . .” He rubs his nose, as he asserts himself.
“Save your breath, buster. When I was growing up I was told to crochet my own sweater. I got a ball of yarn, while my classmates had their ugly sweaters already made.” LaFoote shakes his head, marveling at how his deeply buried memories so readily surface.
“I’m really sorry to hear what happened to you, but at least you were given some colorful material to knit something new. All I ever received when I was growing up was a picture of an ugly sweater from a mail-order catalog.” The man is now raving on and on.
“Spare me any more sob stories. You’re going down.” Detective LaFoote motions to his partner and speaks with authority. “Book him, Danno–for burglary and grand larceny!”
“Um, David. The name’s LaFitte.”
“Can’t you just be Danno for today? I’m really feeling like the 5-0 right now,” says LaFoote, harkening back to his grade school years of adoring the original “Hawaii Five-0” series on Friday nights. LaFoote strides away, glad but weary from the long hours of finally cracking open the Ugly Sweater Serial Stealer case.
[To see the first story, see 1.]
[A trilogy of “seamy” stories about the lure of ugly sweaters. 2 of 3; See 1 of 3]
Christmas music plays through the tinny speakers in the function room of the once popular downtown hotel. In spite of the worn carpet and faded drapes framing the bottle glass windows, the people getting ready for the Annual Ugly Sweater Convention are happily lining up chairs to create a stage. One of the highly anticipated events is the ugly sweater parade around the room and the judging. The grand prize winner receives an original, one-of-a-kind ugly sweater crocheted by one of the judges.
“I can hardly wait until you show us what you’ve crocheted, Henrietta,” Jody says to the petite woman helping her set up the chairs.
“Tell us the story behind what you’ve created.” Linda, another judge pipes in, as she joins them in getting their stage ready.
“Given that I had a whole year to think about it, I feel as if my hands connected well with my brain, because I just let them both go to town,” Henrietta says, smiling about the experience.
By this time, the rest of the judges have joined them. Henrietta beams at the attentiveness of her four colleagues toward her work. “The setting is classical–a wintry scene with a half-created snowman; that’s because Santa was interrupted by Rudolf the Red-nosed reindeer whose nose had fallen off. The elves are crawling about under a Christmas tree, which happens to be topped by Rudolf’s red nose.”
“How clever. It sounds intricate,” Donny, the only male judge says.
“Yes, I used a lot of different colors to make them all stand out.”
“We better get a move on. People are streaming in. Why, look at that ugly sweater.” The other judges look in the direction she’s gazing. Suitably impressed, they conclude all the sweaters are ugly. They disband and mingle with the crowd.
Soon after the end of the ugly sweater story telling event, the parade starts. About a hundred or so people walk around the room, proudly displaying their frontal artwork to the five judges, each absorbed and taking notes, some murmuring among themselves.
At long last, the judges come to their final decision. As the one who crocheted the prize, Henrietta announces the winner. She wheels in a clothes rack, which has a vinyl garment bag hanging from the top. Eagerly, she unzips the opaque casing. As she takes out the sweater, she gapes as she sees a plain red sweater without the swirls, pomp-poms, appliques, ribbons, and yards of yarn she has applied. She sputters, “This is not the sweater I made!”
One of the judges cries out, “Someone has stolen it!”
Never before in the history of the event has this ever happened. Without much experience in such matters, the Ugly Sweater Convention planners promise the good people that day that they will launch a full investigation. Leading the charge will be the famed Detective David LaFoote, well known in their town as the sharpest tool in the shed.
Warm-up: 180-Swivel Head Flex
“Unh. . .”
Core: Torso Flex
“Uff . . .”
Cool-down: Reverse Reflux
“Ukh . . .”
A belated THANK YOU to Thumbup for nominating me months ago to participate in the 3-Day Quote Challenge a Day. To be more specific, it was a couple of weeks after the 4th of July (so I’m not that late). With Halloween-tinged trickery, I deliberately applied malapropism to three well-known sayings:
“When the groin gets tough, apply lotion to it.”
— Mr. Magoo (a cartoon character who has extreme myopia)
“Keep your hands close and your enemas closer.”
— Book of Toilet Dilemmas (a rear book)
“Two bongs won’t win the fight.”
— Chee [a Cheech-wannabee]
Thank you kindly, vcreationss, for nominating me for the Quote Challenge. Because I’ve already done this challenge, I’m doing something a little different. Three of the attributions below are fictional, while one is not. Your mission is to determine how quote challenged I am. Which one is quoted by another? The answer is at the bottom of the post.
“Happiness is a warm gum.”
— Comedian George Burns in his nineties
“Forget putting my face on the $20 bill. Just put it in my pocket.”
— a working stiff with shallow pockets
“We can’t make people change, but we can ask them for spare change.”
— the NYC naked cowboy
“Spread the table with good-looking food and no one will notice you left out the salt.”
— Julia Child
Answer: A working stiff (who happens to be an office colleague)
Cora from customer service assured the irate woman on the telephone that she will get her money back. “Of course, we will be happy to refund your money. First, you must repack what you have received and include the receipt and we will happily credit your account. Also, please provide a thorough explanation of why the product didn’t work for you and how we may satisfy your needs in the future. A minimum of five paragraphs will be required. Thank you for ordering our course on How to Smoothen Your Coarse Composition Style.”
A Series of Ludicrously Bad Hair Days, Day 3; see Day 2
[Poetry mashed with a short story]
Rebecca, who is known in their circle as Thin Hair, and Harry, who we know is False Hairy, find a coffee shop near the place of group therapy. They eye each other hungrily, as they feel the heat emanate from their respective chemistries.
“False Hairy, I hope you won’t think me forward, but as an older woman, I tend to get straight to the point. You make my heart beat as I gaze at your face so sweet.”