“Mom, I am so upset,” Elaine said. “I just checked on Yelp and my favorite neighborhood restaurant went out of business.”
“Oh, honey,” her mother said, “no wonder you’re looking so forlorn. But you know, sweetheart, this part of town is in transition and a lot of those hipsters are buying up a lot of properties and are taking over the neighborhood, so some of the older, established businesses can’t afford the higher rents and are taking flight.”
“I know that, Mom,” Elaine said, “but that place was so adorable and it had the greatest split pea soup in the city, next to your homemade split pea soup, of course.”
“Elaine, I have a great idea,” her mother said. “I got a circularyesterday from the farmer’s market. They’re having a special on dried split peas. How about we head over there, pick some up, and I’ll whip up a kettle of my world famous split pea soup for you. Would that make you feel a little better?”
“You’re the best, Mom,” Elaine said, giving her mom a big hug.
Written for these daily prompts: Word of the Day (yelp), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (forlorn), Ragtag Daily Prompt (flight), Your Daily Word Prompt (adorable), Daily Addictions (circular), and Swimmers (peas).
Teresa, The Haunted Wordsmith, has started another one of her intriguing stories where she gets thing started, tags another blogger to pick up where she left off, and then that blogger picked someone else to keep it going. It just so happens that I am the blogger Teresa tagged for part two.
Andy sat in the front row every night and watched the small family circus perform. There were clowns, acrobats, dog tricks, and even a high-wire walking monkey. His favorite though was the juggler. Andy watched as he threw balls, flaming torches, rings, and knives in the air and caught them with ease. Everyone in the circus seemed so happy and nice. He longed to join them.
Late one night after the final performance, Andy mustered the nerve to find the circus owner who traveled with them.
“I’ll do anything. Please let me join you.”
Mr. Tall looked at the scrawny boy and scratched his chin. He walked around Andy and looked him up and down. “What could you do for us?”
Andy spared no time to think. He blurted out a laundry list of menial tasks he could do.
“I have plenty of people to do that.” Mr. Tall shook his head and stared at Andy. “I asked what you could do for us? What are your talents? Your secret talents?”
Andy gulped. Few knew his secret, but those who did knew it immediately. Could Mr. Tall be one of them? Could he risk telling the truth? Not telling the truth? Andy took a deep breath and swallowed his fear. “I could …”
My addition to the story:
…change my appearance.”
“What do you mean you change your appearance?” Mr. Tall asked.
“I’m a shapeshifter,” Andy said.
“You mean that mythological crap about being able to transform your physical form or shape?” Mr. Tall said. “Get out of here, kid. You’re wasting my time.”
“I can transform into anything I want,” Andy insisted. “Think of something you want me to change into. Don’t tell me what it is. Then close your eyes and I’ll let you know when to open them.”
“This is stupid, but fine.” Mr. Tall thought for a moment. “Okay, boy. Now what?”
“Close your eyes until I tell you to open them.”
Mr. Tall closed his eyes and waited a few seconds. He then heard a voice from overhead instructing him to open his eyes. Mr. Tall looked up, but all he saw was a red-tailed hawk perched on the high wire near the top of the tent.
“So?” the hawk said, looking down the shocked circus owner. “You thought of a hawk, right?
“Am I hallucinating? Did you slip something in my drink?”
The hawk opened its wings and started circling above, slowly working its way back down to the ground. By the time it hit the sawdust covered floor, Andy was, once again, a scrawny, human kid. “So, Mr. Tall, can I work in your circus?”
Mr. Tall just stood there for a minute or two before he found his voice. He looked at Andy and said …
Teresa’s rules for Finish the Story are:
Copy the story as you receive it.
Add to the story in some fashion.
Tag another person to contribute to or finish the story.
Please use FTS as a tag so Teresa can find it or link back to part 1.
And now — drum role, please — I tag Scott Bailey from The House of Bailey. Scott, let’s see where yo take this.
“Cathartic” is defined as “providing psychological relief through the open expression of strong emotions; causing catharsis.” And catharsis is defined as “the purging of the emotions or relieving of emotional tensions, especially through certain kinds of art, as tragedy or music.”
Now that we have our definitions out of the way, for me, blogging is cathartic. In these very troubling times — thank you Donald Trump and all of your lily-livered Republican congressional sycophants — blogging has kept me sane. The act of writing posts for my blog does, indeed, relieve strong emotional tensions. By giving me a vehicle to express my anger, frustration, and antipathy, I am experiencing a critical and much-needed psychological release.
I can also use the half a dozen or so daily, one-word prompts to challenge me to knit together random words into a cohesive piece of flash fiction, thereby diverting my attention from the chaos and lunacy of Donald Trump and his associates and distracting me, albeit only temporarily, from all of the terrible, horrible, malevolent, malicious, dangerous, moronic, insane, and damaging things he says and does every goddam day.
Phew, it felt really good to write that. Very cathartic, in fact.
Jim Adams continues to host Song Lyric Sunday while Helen Vahdati is dealing with some health issues. This week’s theme is simply the word “no.” And, as a longtime fan of the glam-rock duo, Daryl Hall & John Oates, the song “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do)” immediately came to mind.
The song was written by Daryl Hall and John Oates, and co-written by Sara Allen. It was released in 1981 as the second single from their tenth studio album, Private Eyes. It became their fourth number one hit single on the Billboard Top 100. It hit number one on the R&B charts as well.
“I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)” was a phrase Daryl Hall used when he was pressured to go along with the crowd against his wishes. After a recording session for the Private Eyes album, Hall, Oates, and engineer Neil Kernon improvised this song. Hall and his girlfriend, Sara Allen, fleshed our the lyrics.
John Oates said that what might sound like a guy telling off his significant other is actually “about the the music business.” He explained that it’s about not being pushed around by big labels, managers, and agents and being told what to do, and being true to yourself creatively. Calling it “typical of a lot of the lyrics we’ve written over the years,” Oates said, “It seems like it’s about one thing, but it’s really not. What we have always tried to do, and if we have any kind of philosophy for our lyrics over the years, it was to try to take a universal subject and somehow make it seem personal so that people could relate to it as if it was a personal thing.”
I found this explanation for the song interesting because I had always interpreted the song to be about a man not willing to make a commitment to a woman. Whether leaving his wife for his mistress, or marrying a girlfriend he just doesn’t want to marry. Either that or it was that his wife or girlfriend wanted him to do something really kinky and despite loving her, it just wasn’t something he was interested in. What do you think?
Here are the song’s lyrics.
Easy, ready, willing, overtime Where does it stop Where do you dare me To draw the line You’ve got the body Now you want my soul Don’t even think about it Say, no go I, I-I, I ‘ll do anything That you want me to do Yeah, I, I-I, I’ll do almost anything That you want me too, ooh Yeah
But I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that Can’t go for that Can’t go for that Can’t go for that
I can go for being twice as nice I can go for just repeating The same old lines Use the body Now you want my soul Ooh, forget about it Now say, no go
I, I-I, I ‘ll do anything That you want me to do Yeah, I, I-I, I’ll do almost anything That you want me too, ooh Yeah
But I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that Can’t go for that Can’t go for that Can’t go for that, yeah
Yeah, I, I-I, I ‘ll do anything That you want me to do Yeah, I, I-I, I’ll do almost anything That you want me too, ooh Yeah
But I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that, nooo (No) No can do I can’t go for that Can’t go for that Can’t go for that Can’t go for that, yeah..