Time To Write — All in the Family

F49C8E6E-A29A-4938-84E3-BDE895E4855D“Welcome to the family,” the woman said upon opening the front door.

Dan was both confused and dazzled. The woman was radiant. He had never seen, in real life, anyway, a woman of such dazzling beauty. Dan took a deep breath and simply said, “I’m from UPS with a package for Arturo Bianchi.”

“Yes,” the woman said. “We’ve been expecting you, Daniel. Please come in.” She stepped aside and waved him through the door.

“How do you know my name?” he asked as he stepped inside the large foyer.

The woman took the package from Dan. “As I said, we’ve been expecting you.” Once he was inside, she closed the front door behind him.

Dan took out the little electronic device, about the size of a smartphone, from his belt holster and held it out to the woman. “You need to sign this,” he said, holding the device out toward her and handing her a stylus.

“That won’t be necessary, Daniel,” she said,  grabbing his hand and leading him into large room at the center of which was sitting a heavyset older man with a shaved head. “This is Arturo, my husband,” the woman said.

Arturo got up from his chair, moved over to Dan until he was standing right in front of him. Arturo stood on his tiptoes, placed both of his hands on Dan’s shoulders, leaned in and kissed him on each cheek, and said, “Welcome to the family, Daniel.”

Dan stood back and said, “There must be some misunderstanding. I’m from UPS and I am here to deliver a package.”

“Ah, Daniel,” Arturo said, “There’s no misunderstanding. You are the package.”

Dan looked at the woman, who was smiling at him in a very sexy way, or so it seemed to him. Then he looked at Arturo. How could this short, fat, bald man who was at least three times her age be the husband of this young, strikingly gorgeous, statuesque woman, he wondered. “What do you mean I’m the package?” Dan asked Arturo.

“Your supervisor, Angelo, has told us about your special skills, Daniel,” Arturo said. “He said that you are a problem solver. That you know how to deal with people. That you can be very, shall we say, persuasive.”

Dan was a big guy, standing around 6’4” and weighing in at 225 pounds. Arturo reached over and squeezed Dan’s bicep and smiled. “You’ll do just fine in our family, my boy,” he said.

“Do just fine doing what?” Daniel asked.

The woman who greeted Dan at the door, came over to Dan, stood right in front of him, moved in close enough so that he could smell the subtle scent of her perfume. “My husband is getting older and he needs a bodyguard and an enforcer,” she said. “You’ll be very handsomely compensated and will have generous fringe benefits.”

“I don’t know,” Daniel said.

The woman moved in and pressed her body against Dan and, in a throaty whisper, said, “I’m one of the fringe benefits, Daniel.”

Dan looked over at Arturo, who looked back at Dan and smiled.

Written for Rachel Poli’s Time To Write – Sentence Starter prompt, where the sentence is “Welcome to the Family.” Also for Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (radiant).

How Does Anyone Think This Is a Good Idea?

A339CBA7-4D49-41F9-BA84-CCE3C2DEFD5FKentucky requires people to get a permit before they can carry a concealed firearm in the state. To do that, they have to undergo a background check, complete some gun safety training, and pay a $60 fee.

Personally, I am not a fan of concealed carry laws, but at least those who, for whatever reason, feel the need to walk around with a concealed handgun do have go through a background check and get some training.

Wait! Hold the presses.

Legislation that would let people carry concealed guns in Kentucky without first getting a permit is on its way to becoming law.

On Wednesday, the Kentucky state senate passed Senate Bill 150, allowing permitless carry in the state. Despite the fact that the Kentucky State Fraternal Order of Police, along with several other law enforcement agencies, was against the bill, citing safety concerns, the measure, which is backed by the NRA, passed the Kentucky Houset today by a 60 to 37 vote.

The bill would allow concealed deadly weapons to be carried by persons age 21 and over — without a license — in same locations where concealed carry license holders may carry them, is now heading to the governor’s desk. And he is expected to sign it into law.

Can someone please tell me why anyone would think that this is a good idea?

Rory’s Fantastic Four

E798C977-7442-40DF-95FC-C60A52FCE660So Rory, A Guy Called Bloke, has this thing he does each week called the Friday Four, and it’s fantastic. Okay, maybe calling it “fantastic” is a bit of an exaggeration. Let’s just use a different f-word: “fun.”

So here we go again.

1] If you are in a bad mood, do you prefer to be left alone or have someone to cheer you up?

I’m not someone who is typically moody. I live my life on a pretty even keel. But, on those occasions when I’m not a happy camper, I generally prefer some quality alone time until my mood brightens up.

2] What’s the one thing that people always misunderstand about you?

I’m really a what you see (or read) is what you get kinda guy. There are no hidden agendas and not much to read between the lines. So there’s probably not much about me that people misunderstand.

3] What do you think about when you’re by yourself?

I’m rarely by myself (except when I’m in a bad mood), so, in order to be “present,” I think about what I’m doing and who I’m with.

4] What are three things you value most about a person?

Truth, Justice, and the American Way.3726F370-8328-4B5C-849E-E5BEF8D1B818

Bonus Series 1 Question:

If heaven is real and you died tomorrow, would you get in?

I’m an atheist, so I don’t believe that heaven is real. And if I were to die tomorrow, that would be the end of everything. Yes, I am a little bit solipsistic, as I explained here.

Friday Fictioneers — Progress?

4421A0D0-720C-4EBD-AA64-75BF19D7B8B3Joe’s Red Mountain Market & Deli attracted a lot of long haul truckers back in the day. The store was about an hour and a half west of Albuquerque, right off Interstate 40.

These days, though, Joe felt lucky if half a dozen customers showed up on any day. A Love’s Travel recently opened on I-40 about 10 miles east, as did a Flying J Travel about 10 miles west, taking away most of his business.

Joe had little choice but to close the place. He locked the store’s door for the last time and walked away. Looking back, he sighed and thought, “progress?”

(104* words)

Written for the Friday Fictioneers prompt from Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Photo credit: Jean L. Hays. *Sorry, went over the word limit by four words.

50 Word Thursday — Best of Friends

830C467A-B6F9-4F75-8CA3-F496399F5AD8The four best friends from college made a pact after graduating that they would always vacation together at least once a year. They would agree on a venue and would meet there and spend a week enjoying each other’s company. They traveled in comfortable companionship, talking about their daily lives.

(50 words)

Written for 50 Word Thursday from Kristian at Tales From the Mind of Kristian. The idea is to take the photo provided plus a random phrase (in italics above) and write a piece in multiples of 50 words to a maximum of 250 words. Anything is acceptable — poetry, story, anecdote.

The phrase for this week was taken from Tears of the Giraffe by Alexander McCall Smith.