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Cliche Stories….

….almost. It has been (again) a crazy week. But I think I am ready for Christmas–finally. Are you?

I have picked out a cliché this week, I just haven’t gotten time to think about an actual story.  I am reading Jules Verne for the first time this week too, which is great fun since I just watched  Journey to the Center of the Earth 2, Mysterious Island (I am a sucker for The Rock, aka Dwayne Johnson) while wrapping presents. I had picked up 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea as my Verne book–and Capt’n Nemo’s Nautilus does show up towards the end of the movie.

Now that I have seen the movie, I think more reading of Verne is in my future. They did pull from quite a few of his books, as well as Treasure Island (something I skipped when assigned) and Gulliver’s Travels. More books to read, although I had, in fact, put Treasure Island on my summer reading list, which is an actual pile of books I pulled from my library that I think I should read.  I am half way through now, having finished Dr Faustus and  After the Fall. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea was just on top of Treasure Island when I went to grab a new book.

My version of 20,000 Leagues was my father’s, and cost 50 cents in the 1960s when he purchased it. It is also single spaced with very compact print, which makes the reading extra special fun!

I can absolutely see why Verne’s novels have lasted as long as they have. He is extremely detailed and imaginative, although I will admit to my eyes glazing over during some of his more scientific explanations of how Capt’n Nemo’s inventions work. And, occasionally, I feel the need for a dictionary. That is mostly during his scientific or plant/animal descriptions. Although my father had a PhD in Zoology, I never learned the Latin names of oceanic  flora and fauna.

I feel that Verne started with a solid scientific base (he was clearly interested in science and the natural world), before he started expanding into the more fantastical inventions of Capt’n Nemo’s. I’m not familiar enough with the science of that time to know exactly where the line is, but fun to wonder about  submarines and when exactly divers started carrying their own air as Nemo did, instead of being tethered by an air hose.

I am fascinated by the language he uses, the depth and breadth of it as well as how some words have changed in meaning since he wrote this in the 1860s. I did find myself a little offended by the main character’s complete faith in killing a large sea animal that was never been seen before, just so that he could say he did it, and bring some piece of it back to his museum.  I realized that was a common enough attitude in the 1800s, however, when man was conquering the planet and feeling justified about doing it (of course, some trophy hunters of today still feel that way, but that is a whole other subject). So I try to see that as more historical context. Especially as it turned out to be the Nautilus they were hunting, and not some defenseless narwhale.

I’m only about a third of the way through, as I am so busy that I only get to read a half hour a day at lunch. But I am looking forward to my next lunch break.

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WordPress Prompts: Coincidence

“You know I don’t believe in coincidence”, she insisted, staring at the glint of gold on the table.

“Then how do you explain this?” he asked, easily falling back into their familiar argument. “How do you explain our meeting when you ran out of the library, and I was going in?”

“You weren’t looking where you going, that’s how! It was pure luck that you saw my copy of Treasure Island and started talking about treasure.”

“You believe in luck, but not coincidence?” he retorted. “And everyone needs a treasure.”

She looked at him, catching the tenseness around his eyes despite his flip tone. That made her feel better, knowing he wasn’t sure about the  ending. The setup, their friends, the restaurant, it had made her feel that he was assuming the answer.

“I think you might be my lucky charm,” she said archly, as she extended her hand.

The room erupted in cheers as he put the ring on her finger before pulling her to him.

 

 

 

 

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Adrift

Scrolling through my Reader this morning, I found inspiration. WordPress puts out a Daily Prompt to write about–fiction, nonfiction, long, short, whatever finds it way onto your page. So here is my story based off today’s one word prompt: Adrift.

Angelique looked around the funeral.

His poker buddies on one side, leaning against each other. Work cohorts on the other, shocked looks still on their faces. In the front, where Angelique should also be, was his mother, sopping tissues in hand.

They didn’t know. None of them knew.

She had spent hours plotting his death. Each plan more elaborate than the last. Only to have it taken away from her by a random car accident. She supposed she still had a surprised look her face too.

When the cops came to the door, Angelique had felt only relief. Relief that he wouldn’t hit her again; relief that when his friends left on poker night the critique would never again start on how she was clumsy and had almost spilled beer on Tom; never have to worry about his mother complaining about the house and him taking it out on Angelique when she left.

And now she was free.

Angelique looked around again, at his friends and family. His. What was hers?

Angelique suddenly realized she had no plans. All her plans, all the ways for him to die, ended with his death. Nothing further. What would she do with her life?

Angelique burst into tears.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

via Daily Prompt: Adrift

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You might have noticed that I skipped Cliche Sunday this week. Not only was it Easter, but we worked outside around the house all weekend and I was whipped. Clichés will return this week–and almost thru the alphabet we are too! Never thought I would get there. What shall I do next?

However, speaking of alphabets, if you are jonesing for some phrases this week; I invite you to check out my fellow blogger, Prakash Hegade. He is doing the A-Z challenge for April and has chosen to do an idiom a day: in alphabetical order, of course. Not only does he provide that meaning of the idiom, he provides a poem for each one too! Definitely worth a read or two 🙂

 

 

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April 19, 2017 · 7:30 pm

United Airlines and the Internet Mob

Exceedinly well expressed outrage! Read, enjoy and pass it on.

Author Amie Gibbons

neganWe all know the United Airlines story by now. It’s a tale of woe, of a man trying to get home, an airline at the mercy of federal regulations and just trying to survive the internet mob sicced on it by those silly peons who think they have the right to something if they pay for it.

Yeah, if you can’t tell by my intro where I’m going with this, well, it’s okay, you’ll get it soon and I’ll get a chuckle 🙂

I did a post on FB about how the doctor’s past was irrelevant and it blew up, got shared over 20 times (hey, that’s a lot for little ol’ me!) and it really went into the rough in one friend’s share especially. There were a lot of arguments around the whole thing, when I was addressing one part of it, so I’m here to address more of…

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Story Day Deadline

So not sure if anyone noticed, but down past the twitter feed and the tags on the right column is this little button that promised a longer story on Feb 28th.

I certainly didn’t notice! I picked that day arbitrarily in January and then totally forgot to post the promised story. Not that I didn’t have the story, just that I forgot to post it.

So this week I will be posting an installment each day. The first installments are from a series I started for my Flash Fiction posts; both Friday Fictioners and Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.

No longer being bound by word count, I did a bit of editing and tied them together a little better. The last installment is one I planned, but never posted. I hope you enjoy them all 🙂

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March 27, 2017 · 7:42 pm

Friday Fictioneers

I finally made the time to join the fun of Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers again. I do hope she will forgive me for the extra twenty words I used 🙂 The idea is to write a story based on the photo prompt using (roughly) one hundred words. Do read all the other stories HERE. And thanks for the wonderful photo this week to J Hardy Carroll.

PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll 121 words

Lorelei traced the smooth metal as her mom pulled her firmly along the sidewalk.

“Now, when we get there, you be good,” Mom was saying. “I just don’t know how Missus feels about you there. I mean, I told her, but….”

Lorelei let her hand swoop up as the metal arched. A house appeared, set back behind the fence. Lorelei had never seen a place so fancy, not even on the scratchy screen of the little black and white.

Her mom stopped at the entrance, looking down at her.

“I know you are a good girl,” she said, “but today is important. I need to keep this job.”

Lorelei nodded her head, nervously patting down her skirt, before following her mom.

 

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Cliche Sunday

This is my Superbowl version of Cliche Sunday–that is to say, there won’t be any cliches today due to the Superbowl, in which my Patriots are playing for their fifth title.

Cliche Sunday will appear later in the week  🙂

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Friday Fictioneers

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February 1, 2017 · 8:22 pm

Cliche Sunday

A week into the new year, and I better get it in gear! I haven’t been checking my feed to see what all the other bloggers are putting out there, and I totally skipped last week on my running blog. I would like so say I have been busy, and I will admit that last week was the longest four-day work week ever; but really there has been a lot of Wordy and Solitaire in my life. I might have an addiction problem. I do waste a lot of time that way.  Probably better than Twitter (which I also spend a lot of time on).

I believe we left off on the “G’s”……

get it in gear: to start to work effectively and with energy.* I have to say this is one of my failures. While I can easily find what this phrase means, I can’t seem to find where or when it came from. I can say I heard it a lot growing up 🙂 There was rumor that it came from the 1950s, and was a reference to moving your car-which makes sense, but is completely unsubstantiated.

gee whiz: expletive, like good gracious, good grief, or good lord!  The gee is an actual reference to Jesus, shortened so it doesn’t offend. An Americanism from the 1800s, ‘gee’ was also a popular phrase to indicate surprise or disbelief.

“Gee-wees!…I’ll bet one hundred dollars on that hand!”
Cody and Arlington’s Life on the Border, 1876

gild the lily: to over embellish an item (or person) that doesn’t need it. ‘To gild’ is to cover with a thin layer of gold, so ‘gilding refined gold’ is obviously unnecessary.**  The origin of this lays, once more, with Shakespeare. While he may not have actually come up with the phrase, he is the first one to use it in print:

SALISBURY:
Therefore, to be possess’d with double pomp,
To guard a title that was rich before,
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
To throw a perfume on the violet,
To smooth the ice, or add another hue
Unto the rainbow, or with taper-light
To seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish,
Is wasteful and ridiculous excess.
King John 1595

go over like a lead balloon: to be a complete and utter failure. This one arose on both sided of the pond. In England it was first used in the beginning of the 20th century, and actually started as “went down like a lead balloon.”  It was coined in America in the early 20th century as well, although at first the phrase went over like the proverbial lead balloon. It was in the early 1950s that it was revived and became popular.

 

 

 

 

*the free dictionary

**phrases.org

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