The Big Game

750D5B81-424D-42F0-BEFC-FBED1CAFBD08The atmosphere was electric as the drone hovered over the high school football stadium. There was an indubitable excitement, despite the incongruous pairing of these two teams, one undefeated and the other unvictorious, for the league championship. No one thought that the overture by the members of the alumni association of the unvictorious team would be able to orchestrate this unlikely, colossal mismatch.


Written for these one-word prompts: Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (electric), Scotts Daily Prompt (hover), Your Daily Word Prompt (indubitable), Word of the Day Challenge (incongruous), and Ragtag Daily Prompt (overture).

Rory’s Friday Questions

856D667F-1861-4E8E-BC2C-04A2E298A688Rory, a Guy Called Bloke, is at it again. He’s asking more questions and it’s Friday, so why the hell not?

Sports

Before 2005, who was the last English captain to win the Ashes?

Um, what are “The Ashes”? Does it have anything to do with Arthur Ashe?

In which Year was the FA Cup Final described as the Matthews’ Final”

Um, what is the FA Cup Final?

With which sport do you connect William Webb Ellis?

Um, who is William Webb Ellis?

Which race did Red Rum win three times?

Um, the Race for the Red Rum?

What was boxer Muhammad Ali’s former name?

Ooh, ooh, I know this. Cassius Clay.DD00C927-49CF-49B1-89AF-04DB3B753779

How many Olympic gold medals did Sir Steve Redgrave win?

Um, Sir Steve Redgrave? Is he related to Vanessa Redgrave?

Who captained England in the 1966 World Cup Final?

Captain Morgan?759258B7-379A-48B0-BA96-8028EB3D9980

At which weight in boxing was John L Sullivam the world champion?

I don’t know what weight class John L. Sullivam was in, but John L. Sullivan was in the heavyweight class.

In which sport was Rachel Heyhoe-Flint a star?

Wasn’t she the one on “Friends” who dated Ross?

Which year were the Olympics last held in London?

1215. Oh no, that was the date of the Magna Carta. Sorry.

GEOGRAPHY

What is the capital of Australia?

Um, New Zealand?

Which three countries have a land border with European Spain?

Portugal, France, and …. Wait, is this a trick question?

What is the major chain of mountains in South America called?

The Andes.

In which continent is Equatorial Guinea?

Africa.

What is the former name of Sri Lanka?

Ceylon.

Wellington is the capital city of which country?

New Zealand, which, as I established earlier, is the capital of Australia. Amiright, or what?

In feet, to the nearest 1000 feet, what is the height of Mount Everest?

29,000.

Into which ocean does the River Congo flow?

Atlantic.

Antarctica is a continent. True or false?

You bet your bippy it is.

Of which country is Ulam Bator the capital?

Ulaanbaatar is the capital of Mongolia.

FILM

Who was the female star of Breakfast at Tiffany’s?

Audrey Hepburn.B2CC6830-2FA1-413F-9B73-C96EDC1849BB

Who played the male lead opposite Vivien Leigh in “Gone with the Wind”?

Clark Gable.4A056D3D-6F19-44E6-A4A7-0C976392B20E

Who received an Oscar as best supporting actor in “From Here to Eternity”?

Frank Sinatra.

Which film actor did Elizabeth Taylor marry twice?

Richard Burton.

Name the two main actors in the “Rainman.”

Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise.

What kind of animal was Alex in Madagascar?

I have no idea. A giraffe?

Who starred opposite Humphery Bogart in “The African Queen”?

Katherine Hepburn.89DDB21A-0B17-4ED2-9DBA-D36B3DC80237

Who played the female lead opposite Hugh Grant in “Four Weddings and a Funeral”?

Julia Roberts, maybe?

 Who played Henry V on film nearly fifty years after Olivier?

Hmm. Would that have been Kenneth Branagh?

Which American singer played in the 80’s remake of “The Jazz Singer”?

Neil Diamond, I think.

Are Dead People Voyeurs?

CEB274F9-BD76-4B99-A978-93702D2271F0I was watching a TV show the other night when one character said to the other, “You’re father would be so proud of you. I bet he’s looking down from heaven right now with a big smile on his face.”

Yeah, right. Do people really belief that their dearly departed friends and relatives are looking down — or looking up, as the case may be — at them to see what they’re up to?

“Oh my God, Dan, that was the best sex ever. I bet your mom is looking down on you from heaven with a big smile on her face.” Oh wait, maybe it was Dan’s father who was looking up at him from hell and masturbating while watching Dan having a hot time with that blonde he picked up at that party. Hmm. Do the souls of dead people masturbate?

Do people really believe that the souls of their deceased loved ones are spending their days in the afterlife spying on their earthbound family members and pals? Do they do it all the time, or do they only do it when something extraordinarily good or bad happens?

And where’s the line? Are there boundaries, safe zones, where you can escape the prying dead eyes of the deceased? Like the bathroom, maybe. Is my mother watching me sitting on the toilet taking a dump and beaming about what a big boy I am?

Is there a statute of limitations? For example, are these dead voyeurs watching over us forever? Or are we sentenced to a finite number years after their death to be subjected to their constant observation? And how large is this circle of voyeurs? Just your parents or does it go back multiple generations and include more watchers than your immediate family and closest friends?

In the interest of full disclosure, I’m an atheist and I don’t believe in the notion of an afterlife. But I’m genuinely interested in hearing from those who are believers. Do you believe that the souls of your deceased loved ones — your parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and closest friends — are looking down at you, watching what you’re doing day in and day out?

I’m not trying to be an asshole. I really want to know what you believe. Tell me in the comments or write your own post and link it back to this post.

Thanks!

Murder He Wrote — Part One

7EA72AEF-4548-4769-98D3-9D05EBB29BB8Brian felt defeated as he approached the door to their rather run-down, one bedroom flat in the Adams Morgan neighborhood of Washington, DC. The echoing sound of the key turning in the latch and of the tumblers slowly disengaging the lock filled the hollow hallway. Brian twisted the knob and the door slowly swung inward, revealing a long, narrow foyer.

The hot, stale air coming from inside the apartment offered no relief from the 95 degree heat wave hovering over the city. With a long, low sigh of resignation, Brian entered the hot apartment and started to walk toward the living room. He stopped in front of the small, half-table where he threw his keys.

A slight man, barely 5’ 6” and small-boned, Brian weighed in at only 120 pounds. On this day, he seemed to have an especially lean and hungry look about him. He looked frail and pale, with sunken cheeks and empty, gray eyes. His already short stature somehow appeared even shorter. His shoulders were rounded and he was slightly stooped over, giving him the look of deflated man.

Emily, Brian’s wife, spent most of her days reclining on the couch in front of the TV watching soap operas and game shows, drinking glass after glass of Pepsi and snacking on chips, nuts, and pretzels. Emily was just a bit taller than Brian, and, as a woman with a fairly large frame, even when they were first married around six years earlier, she outweighed him by maybe ten or 15 pounds. But over the years, her sedentary life style and poor eating habits had taken their toll; she ballooned up to around 180 pounds.

Emily neither loved nor respected Brian, but she enjoyed being married to him. She made all the decisions. She managed their finances, even though she contributed nothing to the pot. She was a formidable woman and Brian, having been dominated by his mother and sister when he was growing up, was used to having a dominant female in his life. He needed to have someone take care of him and Emily wanted someone to take care of. So, from that perspective, their marriage to that point had been a success.

Like any other married couple, early on they had their fair share of arguments, but Brian quickly learned that arguing with Emily was a fool’s errand. She had to win all arguments, and that was that. Probably for that reason alone, they rarely argued anymore, and when they did have an occasional parting of the ways, it was all one-sided.

Much to his chagrin, Brian proved to be impotent, and Emily never let him forget it. Why was she putting on weight? Because of her anxiety due to her husband’s inability to get it up. Why couldn’t Brian hold down a decent job? Because he was only half a man. Brian’s impotency was Emily’s scapegoat.

Emily looked up at Brian as he walked into the living room. She looked at her watch and then back at Brian, who met her gaze but quickly looked toward the floor.

“It’s only three in the afternoon. Don’t tell me,” Emily taunted. “Did the little mouse get canned today. Did they finally figure out that you’re the little man who isn’t really much of a man? Did they ask you to do some man’s work and you couldn’t hack it? Is that what….”

“For crissake, Emily, stop it!” Brian shot back. “Just knock it off.”

“Well, am I right? Did you get the ax?”

“Yeah, yeah,” Brian said. “I got the ax.”

“Why?” she demanded.

“The company is downsizing and laid off about 20 of us,” Brian said, his voice taking on the tone of a little boy confessing to his mother than he’d done something bad.

“Jesus, Brian,” Emily said. “That’s what, the third job you’ve lost in the past two years?”

“The fourth,” Brian admitted.

“When did this happen?” Emily asked.

“They told me first thing this morning.”

“Looking at her watch again, Emily asked, “So where the hell have you been all day? It’s after three. What have you been doing since you got dumped?”

“I had some thinking to do,” Brian responded, so softly that Emily could barely hear what he said.

With cruel and biting sarcasm, Emily said, “Thinking? What could such an impotent little mouse possibly spend almost the whole day thinking about?”

Brian’s spontaneous answer was almost as much of a shock to him as it was to his wife. “I was thinking about how I’m going to fucking kill you someday.”

Friday Fictioneers —Cyber Distraction

A91CDF1D-3715-4707-BC58-0D0FB6D62E27David was happy with the progress he was making on the homemade globe for his science class project. He’d applied a layer of papier-mâché all over a round balloon to give it shape. Once dry, he used a layer of chicken wire to provide structural integrity before applying the next layer of papier-mâché.

David’s mistake happened when he decided to take a short break. He opened his laptop and logged on to Facebook. Six hours later he realized that his “short break” meant he’d have to pull an all-nighter to have his globe ready in time for class the next day.

(100 words)


Written for Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Friday Fictioneers prompt. Photo credit: Douglas M. MacIlroy.