Call Your Lawyer

435616F3-73F0-4019-9B9B-6C8BFCAAF127“I really don’t want to fight about this. You need to let it go, Brenda,” her boss, Craig, said. “I know you expected a raise this year, but revenues are down and there’s no money in the budget. All raises have been canceled, not just yours.”

“All raises?” Brenda asked sarcastically. “So that means that your raise and raises for the senior managers have also been canceled. Is that what you’re saying?”

“Well, it’s complicated, Brenda,” Craig said.

“So you did get your raise this year.” Brenda said, looking at her boss with daggers in her eyes.

“Yes,” Craig admitted without looking directly back at Brenda. “But the CEO needs us on the senior management team to be agile and motivated so that we can right the ship.”

“So you managers, sitting in your ivory towers, are going to right the ship while those of us who do the actual work get screwed,” Brenda said. “Is that how things work around here?”

Craig reached out to Brenda and attempted to give her a hug. Brenda recoiled and said to her boss, “If you try to touch me again, Craig, you’d better call your lawyer and prepare for a sexual harassment suit.”

Written for these daily prompts: Daily Addictions (fight), Your Daily Word Prompt (raise), The Daily Spur (complicated), Word of the Day Challenge (agile), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (touch), and Ragtag Daily Prompt (prepare).

#writephoto — The Fringes of Reality

2E601259-487F-45B2-A60A-346AEF2F80F6The townspeople were split on what they saw in the distance. Some were in awe of the contrasts — the light blue sky above the dark, blue-gray clouds, and fiery golden-orange glow stuck between the clouds and the land on the horizon. They thought of it as a work of art and a lot of folks were out snapping pictures with their cameras and smartphones.

But others were worried that, with the record breaking heat and oppressive humidity, the gathering clouds preceding a forecasted cold front were an ominous sign of a wild tornado in the offing.

And then there were those apathetic townsfolk who were unfazed by the sky, neither in awe of its beauty nor in fear of the threat. They just went about doing whatever it is they normally do.

And finally there were the conspiracy theorists, those living on the fringes of reality, the “sky is falling” Chicken Littles. They pointed at the clouds and started shouting about government-created chemtrails generating toxic clouds designed to foul the air and poison the population, and they warned the others to prepare for the inevitable apocalypse.

Unfortunately for humanity, the conspiracy theorists were right. Well, mostly right, anyway. It was, indeed, a poisonous, toxic cloud. But it wasn’t from the government. It came from outer space.BA0294F7-5563-40CF-BE4D-4874D33164B7

Written for Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt. Top photo from Sue Vincent; bottom photo from the 1953 movie, “It Came From Outer Space.” Also written for today’s Ragtag Daily Prompt (prepare).

Friday Fictioneers — Wanderlust

74D87159-58D1-4C74-8FA5-43A41C9E7277Every morning before school, Hank would stand on the bridge that spanned the railroad tracks near the train station. He watched as the trains pulled into and out of the station. He watched as people would get on and off the trains. He made up stories about the people he saw. Fantasies about where they were going when they boarded the trains or where they had come from when they disembarked.

Then Hank would run off to school, but his mind was focused on the adventures he would someday have once he was old enough to board the trains himself.

(100 words)

Written for this week’s Friday Fictioneers prompt from Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Photo credit: Sandra Crook.

Fandango’s Friday Flashback — July 26

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of you earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember?

Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year. I’ve had this blog for two years, so I have only 2017 and 2018 to draw from.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 26th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.

It would be great if everyone who reads this post would scroll down to the comments and check out the posts that others provide links to.

I originally published this post on July 26, 2017 in response to a One-Liner Wednesday prompt from Linda G. Hill.

The Toilet Assumption

Aldous Huxley smoking, circa 1946

“Most human beings have an almost infinite capability for taking things for granted.”

When I read this quote, just one of many profound thoughts from Aldous Huxley, the author of Brave New World, I thought of one thing that most of us take for granted: the toilet.

Yes, the toilet. We all have them. There are three of them in our house alone and each one gets plenty of use multiple times a day.

Think about it. You feel the need to use the toilet, you take care of your business, and once all the paperwork is done, you flush. Poof, all that nastiness is gone. It’s magic.

But where did it go? Who knows? Who cares? Outta sight, outta mind, right?

That’s why Huxley’s words about taking things for granted reminded of a book I read in college, Philip Slater’s 1970 book, The Pursuit of Loneliness. 

Slater’s book was required reading for an introductory economics course I was taking. I don’t remember much from the book except for what Slater called “the Toilet Assumption.”

According to Slater, “Our ideas about institutionalizing the aged, psychotic, retarded, and infirm are based on a pattern of thought that we might call the Toilet Assumption — the notion that unwanted matter, unwanted difficulties, unwanted complexities, and obstacles will disappear if they’re removed from our immediate field of vision.

The Toilet Assumption, in essence, is based on the belief that social unpleasantness, once flushed out of sight, ceases to exist. This, according to Slater, is central to American culture.

So the next time you go to the toilet to accommodate your “social unpleasantness” and to eliminate your “unwanted matter,” remember that you should not take that remarkable, flushable toilet for granted.

After all, it is removing all that crap from your immediate field of vision.

FOWC with Fandango — Touch

FOWCWelcome to July 26, 2019 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 “touch.”

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.

The issue with pingbacks not showing up seems to have been resolved, but you might check to confirm that your pingback is there. If not, please manually add your link in the comments.

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