#writephoto — High Times

AE905F8A-D7C2-4572-B557-999E77C24FF0“Are you feeling anything yet?” Archie asked.

“No, not yet,” Willie said. “But it usually takes about an hour to kick in.”

Archie looked at his watch. “We got here about 45 minutes ago, so it should hit us soon, right?”

“Do you see the way the water is bouncing off the rocks?” Willie said. “It’s kaleidoscopic, dude.”

Archie started laughing. “Kaleidoscopic? Is that even a word?”

“Of course it’s a word, dude,” Willie said. “Don’t you see all of those complex patterns of colors and the diamond-shaped prisms of light? It’s a freakin’ kaleidoscope, dude.”

“Damn, Willie,” Archie said. “I think those tabs of blotter acid we each took have kicked in for you, that’s for sure.”

“Look at those ferns, dude,” Willie said. “Have you ever seen ferns that color? What color is that, anyway? Is that what they call fuchsia or tangerine or something?

“And the look at the moss on the rocks, man,” Archie said. “I see blue and green and purple. That’s really intense.”

“The waterfall is like a fireworks show,” Willie said. “Look at the explosion of colors.”

“Hey Willie, are you feeling anything yet?” Archie asked.

“You’re kidding, right?” Willie said.

Written for Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt

3TC — Put Out To Pasture

1E920CF7-01AD-4C2A-B810-3B706A500F52My boss called me into his office. “Have a seat, Matt,” he said, pointing to the chair opposite his desk. “Matt, we need to discuss your retirement.”

I was shocked. Sure, I was probably the oldest guy on the sales team, but I still had plenty of good years ahead of me. “Are you serious, Al? I asked. “Are you putting me out to pasture?”

“Face it, Matt,” he said. “This is a hard, thankless job. We need young, aggressive go-getters. You, my friend, are a dinosaur.”

“A dinosaur?” I said indignantly. “Al, my numbers are always near the top. I’m consistently one of your top performers.”

“The world is shifting rapidly, Matt,” he said. “The old ways just don’t cut it anymore. We have to come up with radical changes to the way we do things. We need to leverage the latest, greatest technologies to give us the edge.”

“So you’re firing me?” I said.

“No, Matt,” he said. “I’m retiring you. But don’t worry, my friend. We’re going to throw you one hell of a farewell party and you’ll get some great parting gifts.”

Written for Teresa’s final Three Things Challenge, where the three things are farewell, retirement, and pasture. Teresa is retiring her Three Things Challenge prompt after today. Farewell 3TC! And for Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (radical).

Sunday Photo Fiction — The Playhouse

78CBBBF6-0481-4433-8B4B-EFAFBBD25579Amanda came running into the house that her father and mother were looking at and excitedly asked, “Daddy, can we buy this house?”

“Do you like this house?” he asked her.

“Oh yes,” Amanda said. “There’s a playhouse in the backyard, Daddy. It looks like a Hansel and Gretel house.”

“Is it made out of candy and treats?” Amanda’s father asked her.

“Daddy, don’t be silly,” Amanda laughed. “But it looks like a storybook cottage. Come see.”

As it turned out, Amanda’s parents bought the house with the playhouse in the backyard. It came with a small table and chairs and shelves on the walls, and Amanda moved her dolls and stuffed animals onto the shelves and set up her tea set on the table. She would go to the playhouse every day to play tea party with her dolls, stuffed animals, and her imaginary friend.

Until one day when she came running into the house it tears. “What’s the matter, sweetie?” her mother asked.

“She tore apart my dolls and stuffed toys,” Amanda cried.

“Who did?” her mother asked.

“My friend who lives in the playhouse.”

Amanda’s mother followed Amanda to the playhouse and looked inside, and screamed.015B13FD-4F98-4AA1-8DF9-9D40B02AA12B

(199 words)

Written for Susan Spaulding’s Sunday Photo Fiction prompt. Top photo credit: Susan Spaulding. Old hag image credit: Google Images.

Song Lyric Sunday — Searching

This week’s Song Lyric Sunday theme from Helen Vahdati is “search.” I hope I’m not bending the rules too much by using “searching” as my theme word. Close enough, right?

Anyway, the song I chose is the classic rock song, “Don’t Stop Believin’,” from the band Journey. The song was originally released in 1981 as the second single from Journey’s seventh album Escape. It became a number 9 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 on its original release. It was written by band members Steve Perry, Jonathan Cain, and Neal Schon. Perry sang lead vocals.

The song is essentially about people searching, searching for a better life, for love, whatever. Keyboard player Jonathan Cain got the idea for the song when he went to Hollywood to pursue his career. Cain said, “I was in Hollywood, struggling with my career, kind of lost. I was asking my father, ‘Should I come back to Chicago and just give up on this dream?’ And he said, ‘No, son. Stay the course. We have a vision. It’s gonna happen. Don’t stop believin’.’”

Cain told Steve Perry about his idea for placing the song in Sunset Boulevard, and Perry had him describe it. “I described the menagerie of people who would show up on a Friday night,” Cain said. “All the dreamers that had dreams to become actors, producers, artists, lawyers, anything. They were all there on a Friday night.”

Perry explained that some of the lyrics originated during a series of gigs in Detroit when he found himself in a hotel room unable to sleep, staring out of the window. “I was digging the idea of how the lights were facing down, so that you couldn’t see anything,” he recalled. “All of a sudden I’d see people walking out of the dark, and into the light. And the term ‘streetlight people’ came to me. So Detroit was very much in my consciousness when we started writing.”

Here are the song’s lyrics.

Just a small town girl
Livin’ in a lonely world
She took the midnight train goin’ anywhere

Just a city boy
Born and raised in South Detroit
He took the midnight train goin’ anywhere

A singer in a smokey room
The smell of wine and cheap perfume
For a smile they can share the night
It goes on and on, and on, and on

Strangers waiting
Up and down the boulevard
Their shadows searching in the night

Streetlights people
Livin’ just to find emotion
Hidin’ somewhere in the night

Workin’ hard to get my fill
Everybody wants a thrill
Payin’ anything to roll the dice just one more time

Some will win, some will lose
Some were born to sing the blues
Oh, the movie never ends
It goes on and on, and on, and on

Strangers waiting
Up and down the boulevard
Their shadows searching in the night

Streetlights people
Livin’ just to find emotion
Hidin’ somewhere in the night

Don’t stop believin’
Hold on to that feelin’
Streetlight people

Don’t stop believin’
Hold on
Streetlight people

Don’t stop believin’
Hold on to that feelin’
Streetlight people

FOWC with Fandango — Radical

FOWCWelcome to September 30, 2018 and to Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (aka, FOWC). It’s designed to fill the void after WordPress bailed on its daily one-word prompt.

I will be posting each day’s word just after midnight Pacific Time (US).

Today’s word is “radical.”

Write a post using that word. It can be prose, poetry, fiction, non-fiction. It can be any length. It can be just a picture or a drawing if you want. No holds barred, so to speak.

Once you are done, tag your post with #FOWC and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Or you can simply include a link to your post in the comments.

And be sure to read the posts of other bloggers who respond to this prompt. You will marvel at their creativity.