Monthly Archives: November 2013

Creative Writing homework: A one-sided conversation

 

Thelma, you will never believe what I saw while I was driving back from Costco yesterday. Well, yes I did get some good bargains at Costco. That new Amy Tan book, a basketball goal you hook onto your bedroom door, and a package of toilet paper, 40 rolls. Yes, I know, but it was so cheap I just had to go ahead and get it. We’ll keep it in the attic until we need it.

 

 Anyway, Thelma, I was driving down on Holbrook Campground Road. What? No they weren’t having Camp Meeting. They do that in the dog days of summer. I don’t know how they stand it in those cinderblock houses without air conditioning but those who go wouldn’t miss it for anything. I think it is Lois Bennett’s ice cream they go for. That’s what her husband Wayne says anyway.

 

 But listen, Thelma to what I saw. Of course you were listening, but…Yes you always listen. You’re a very good listener.

 

 It was a sign! I know there are signs everywhere but this one was hand written with a telephone number under it. No, well I did see some yard sale signs. No, there weren’t any yard sales in the yards, just the signs that were left over from last weekend. Yes, we missed the yard sales. Yes, and the garage sales, too. I agree, we do need to get out there and see what they’re selling. Yes, those American Pickers find some great buys in places like Cumming, GA. I know and that girl on Good Morning America, what’s her name? The cute blonde one that sits next to George Stefenapolis. You know the one who jumps ship sometimes and does those contests on HGTV where two couples go to flea markets and buy trash and try to beat each other by turning it into treasure. What is her name? Anyway, she may show up right here in Cumming one day and buy the stuff that should be ours. Alright, next weekend. Sure, but you have got to go early. All the good stuff is gone by daylight. Well, no, I’ve never been to one that early but my mama used to and that is what she said.

 

 But about the sign. I just can’t figure out who’d need to make a sign like this. Nobody I know has…Well I’m about to tell you. It said Lost….  No not lost dog. No not cat. No, No. It said Lost Peacock!

 

 Now, Thelma, you know I wouldn’t lie to you. I don’t know, Thelma. How do you lose a Peacock?

 

One is true, One is a lie. Which is which? Please let me know what you think.

Homework P124 Truth or Lies?

 

Write two stories, one nonfiction and one fiction. Give the stories to at least three people who don’t know the stories and ask them to tell you which is true.

 

First Story: SQWABBLICHY: Crazy Crosswords

Surfing the web for Christmas gifts, I found this great new game. You can buy it as an ap for your IPad, Kindle, or cell phone. You can also get it on a disc for Macs or PCs. It is called SQWABBLICHY: Crazy Crosswords. It’s a game I will love if someone who loves me wants to get it for me (hint, Santa)! Of course, isn’t that the way it always is, you’re looking for a gift for your sweetie, your BFF, or your kids/grands and find zilch for them but hundreds of wonderful stuff for yourself.  So you heart them as Favorites on Etsy or you put them on your Amazon Prime Wish List hoping one of those folks you’re shopping for who’s also shopping for you will be quick thinkers and check those gold mines of possible things you love and won’t return on December 26. Really, has that ever happened? Maybe once. Still, it’s worth a try.

 

But back to the point of this blog post, the great game I found. It is called SQWABBLICHY: Crazy Crosswords because it is a cross between Scrabble and Crossword puzzles. Of course they couldn’t say Scrabble because they’d probably be sued and besides they came up with this wonderful name which uses a lot of the letters that get you high points in Scrabble.  S (1) +Q (10) +W (4) +A (1) + BB (3 + 3) + L (1) +I (1) + C (3) + H (4) + Y (4) = 35 points.  The objective of the game is to make up words that haven’t been coined yet but should be and spell them creatively so that you use the highest points possible on the board that looks very similar to a Scrabble board. In addition to the word you create, you have to text the meaning for it in a text box that is monitored by an online computer named Edison. This computer is much like Watson, the one they had on Jeopardy a while ago that competed with Ken Jennings.  Edison judges your word and it’s meaning and tallies your score. You get 10 extra points per word if you can give the origin of the word that is plausible to the computer.  If you happen to use a word that is already coined, the total number of points for that word is subtracted from your score. Apparently Edison has been programmed with a sense of humor, too, so that if you coin a word with a comedic definition, you get 5 extra points for being funny.

 

Unlike Scrabble, there is no limitation to the number of times you can use any particular letter, so if you need an extra Q (10), X (8) or Z (10) or for that matter any of the other 26, have at it. The game is over when every space is filled with a feasible word (feasibility determined by Edison).

 

This game is great to play with friends or as a single player. There is a link you can share to invite Facebook friends to play if you are competitive and also patient enough to wait on your friends to respond. Otherwise, play on by yourself.  But watch out, the website warned it could be addictive. It has 5 star reviews from 1389 players so far with only a few negative comments from people who didn’t think Edison was fair about words they coined that he said were already English words.

 

If you’re a word nerd like me, this might be just the game for you. The ap sells for $10.99 and the disc is $12.99 and can be shipped by USPS or any of the other private delivery services. Get yourself one and surprise your BFF with one of his/her own. That’s what I’m going to do.

 

Thank goodness for Paypal! Done…and Done!

 

 

 

Second story: Apology to Nice Asian Lady on Greenway

 

Today I had to go to the post office to ship a package to an Etsy customer. She bought my star pattern buttons to replace buttons on a coat she has. It turns out the ones on her coat are Zia ceramic buttons which are worth a lot of money and she wants to put my buttons on the coat, thus protecting her Zia buttons from loss or damage. I don’t know if she intends to put the Zia buttons in a safe deposit box to hold until she needs to sell them in order to send her children to college or if she is planning on selling them immediately to get the highest price out of them before the Zia button bubble bursts. We didn’t get that friendly on the convo in Etsy.

 

Anyway, I had to go to the post office so I decided I’d get my exercise on the Big Creek Greenway today. Walking is my favorite way to exercise and I am trying to lose the five pound I have gained being on that diet for Coumadin (no green veggies but 6 Krispy Kremes at a time if you want). I got to the greenway, took out my trekking poles and headed out. The trekking poles are great because they work your upper body as much as the walking works your lower body and besides they push you along so you get your walk in faster.

 

I got about a half mile down the way when an Asian Lady appeared coming toward me. She was clapping as she walked just like she was auditioning for Wheel of Fortune.

 

“Where you get this?” she asked me, smiling. I stopped and explained that these particular poles I bought from the teacher who taught the class through the parks and rec a few years ago, but you could get them on their website and you could also get similar ones at sporting good stores or even Target. I let her try them out and we had a very nice conversation.

“Do they help?” she asked.

“Yes, they really do,” I replied, “I go about 4 miles an hour faster with them than without.”

“Wow!”  she said and we parted with have a nice day, enjoy the rest of your walk.

 

Now, as I walked that number 4 was nagging at my mind. It just didn’t seem right but I guess I hadn’t been walking long enough to get the sluggish blood all the way up to the arteries in my head. You’d think thinner blood would travel faster, but I had been taken off Coumadin a couple of weeks ago so maybe my blood has thickened up again. Anyway it wasn’t until I had walked over three miles and was on the last mile of my journey that I realized the number was right, it was the words that were wrong. The poles make me go 4 minutes per mile faster not 4 miles per hour faster. I know this because my Nike ap measures and judges my performance ever time I walk.

 

So Nice Asian Lady Whom I Met On The Greenway Today if you happen to be reading my blog, or if you have a friend on my Facebook who reads my blog and happens to share it with you:

“I am so sorry, I lied to you, but it was totally unintentional. I apologize! If you get these poles, please don’t kill yourself trying to go 4 miles an hour faster. I would feel terrible. Thank you, Marie”

 

 

11-5-13 Writing assignment:

–       Write a hate letter; write a love letter from someone who doesn’t have a chance with the object of his/her desire.

Hate letter:

Dear John,

I hate you. Well, hate may be too strong a word. I didn’t mean to hurt your feelings but I really don’t like you a lot. I mean I like you less than a lot. Not much at all.  Really. I mean, you could be nicer to people. Especially me, who would like you a little if you were. But you’re not. So I don’t. But I would. If I could.  But I don’t.

Yours truly (not really yours as much as truly)

Guess Who!

 

Love letter from someone who doesn’t have a chance

Dear John,

Hi. My name is Ethel. Ethel Marie to be exact. I know you like ladies with unusual names like Yoko so I thought you would be interested to know that I don’t expect you to give her up for a stranger named Ethel. I realize she is your true love and that is fine. Really, it is. I was just thinking we could be good friends, you and I, unless Yoko wants to give you up for a career in the Navy or something. Then we could renegotiate. But as friends, I was thinking we could hang out. You know, go for pizza, maybe watch a football game with your pals, Ringo, George and Paul. Ringo really has a funny name. He might like an Ethel. You could ask him for me, but it’s okay if he doesn’t because I could be his friend, too.

 So this is my plan and I hope you like it:

  1. I am coming to your concert in May (please have my ticket at will call and could you get me a back stage pass and an after-the-concert-party invitation and just staple them all together with the ticket?! Thanks, that will be great!)
  2. It is fine for you to bring Yoko along to the party since we’re just friends right now and besides, I’d love to meet her, too. She might want to invite me over after she sees I am not after her man.
  3. We’ll hang out, have that pizza, watch a football game the next day and do a little sight seeing since I haven’t been to New York before.
  4. Then, if you and the fellows want to come to my sweet sixteen, you are welcome. It is on June 20 at my house in Knoxville, Tennessee. (1010 Tooles Bend Rd.) You are welcome to bring along your guitars and sing some. My friends are really nice and I know you will love them when you meet them. I told them you’d be there. They are really looking forward to meeting you. I don’t know why but a few of them don’t believe you and I are friends. I told them we are just friends, there is nothing going on between us so bring Yoko, too, if you want.

 Thanks a lot, Johnny. Can’t wait to see you at the concert.

 Hugs and Kisses to the boys,

Ethel M.

p.s. XOXOXOXO to you, too!

 

Write a Fight.

11-3-13

Writing Homework P. 98

Write a scene (summary of assignment) 2 people in love having a vicious argument; ramp up anger then ramp down to reconciliation and greater affection.

 The afternoon was longer than usual, or so it seemed. Jenna was waiting impatiently for Brock to get home. She could hardly contain her excitement. She had won a trip at the office for top salesperson of the year. It was a miracle, too, because in this economy it seemed like no one was buying anything, much less new mattresses. But somehow Jenna had sold a total of $157, 890 worth of mattresses. Mostly those new gel memory foam mattresses. She had had to work a lot of weekends and many a Friday night, but now it was all worth it. She had won this trip for two to Australia and she couldn’t wait to tell Brock they were finally getting their long awaited honeymoon.

 They had wanted to take their honeymoon right after the wedding, but they put it off, being practical, and packed all their hard earned cash, what was left of it after the wedding, and their wedding gift money into a down payment on their first house. It wasn’t a dream house, well not to most of their friends who thought there was too much fixer-upper and too little dream in it. But she had a vision when she saw it and she was able to describe her ideas in a way that Brock fell in love with the house, too. It had taken 2 ½ years and a lot more money than either of them ever anticipated to convert that vision into reality. Their honeymoon money kept buying grout and tile instead of airline tickets.

 But now! A free trip, all expenses paid. And a week off, paid vacation time, to take it. Why wouldn’t he hurry and get home? She texted his cell. “Hurry home. I have a surprise.”   No response. She called. After the fourth ring she got his usual message: “Not here. Leave a message or call me back. I can’t be gone forever!” She used to think that was cute when they were dating.

 It got late. 11:52. 1:17 a.m.  Could he be hurt somewhere, lying on the edge of a ravine. Why didn’t he at least answer her texts. This wasn’t like him. 2:02. She was texting again when she heard the downstairs side door from the garage open. Fuming she waited for him to climb the stairs and open the bedroom door.

 He tiptoed in but the door still had a squeak in it and it announced his arrival.

 “Sorry, honey! Are you awake?”

 “No, I’m not awake. I haven’t been awake all night worrying about where the hell you were and what if you were dead!”

 “My phone died and I had to work late.”

 “And nobody else had a phone you could use!”

 “I was just…”

 “Shut up! I don’t want to hear it. Just leave me alone.”

 Jenna threw Brock’s pillow at him.

 “Fine.” He grabbed the pillow and slammed out the door.

 Jenna buried her tears in her own pillow.

Morning burned her eyes and ached at her knotted stomach. Holed up in her bedroom, she listened for any sign that Brock was still there, but no. No coffee brewing. No computer noises from the office underneath her.

 Finally, Jenna pulled on her robe and twisted open the bedroom door. There leaned against the hall wall was Brock, propped up on his pillow with a big foamcore sign scrawled in his scratchy nearly illegible handwriting:

 “I lied.” The sign confessed. “I wasn’t at work. I was working an extra security job at the travel agency. I’ve been doing this all year while you were working weekends and nights. I wanted to surprise you with these. Happy Honeymoon! I love you, Brock.”

 Taped to the sign were two tickets to Scotland.

 “Oh, honey!” She cried, “I love you, too!” She dropped to the floor beside him. It wasn’t until much later that she remembered they were going to have two honeymoons now.