Going By the Book

“I feel totally humiliated,” Ellen said. “Richard said last night that I lack imagination. What an awful thing for him to have said. You know, there ought to be a handbook that explains the best techniques.”

“There is,” Arlene said. “It’s even illustrated.”

“Really?” Ellen said. “With sketches? Unbelievable. How did I not know about this?”

“I don’t know,” Arlene said. “It’s not as if it’s a well kept secret. I’m sure we can find one at the bookstore. We can head over and get one whenever you’re ready.”

Ready, set, go,” Ellen enthusiastically said.

About twenty minutes later, the two young women arrived at the bookstore and Arlene went up to the guy behind the counter and whispered something in his ear. He looked at Arlene and at the other girl she was with. He got a knowing smile on his face and then pointed to a corner of the bookstore.

The two women headed where the guy pointed. When they got there, Arlene started looking at the books on the shelf. Suddenly she yelled, “Cha-ching, here’s what I’m looking for,” and pulled out a large, heavy book. She handed it to Ellen and said, “This should spark your imagination. I’m sure Richard will be very pleased.

Ellen took the book from Arlene and started leafing through it. “Oh my gawd,” she exclaimed. “This is a feast for the eyes! So erotically ethereal. I have to buy this. Richard is not going to know what hit him!”

Both girls started giggling.

Written for these daily prompts: My Vivid Blog (humiliated), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (handbook), Word of the Day Challenge (sketches), JusJoJan (unbelievable), Scott’s Daily Prompt (ready, set, go), Ragtag Daily Prompt (cha-ching), the Daily Spur (feast), and E.M.’s Random Word Prompt (ethereal).

Share Your World — 01/24/2022

It’s Monday and Melanie is out with another edition of Share Your World. This week Melanie has solicited questions from other bloggers. Let’s see what they want us to share.

Cyranny (Cyranny’s Cove) asks, What’s the worst day of the week for you? Why?”

As a retiree, I’d have to say that every day is pretty much the same as every other day, so I don’t have a specific day each week that is either the worst day or the best day. But in general, some days are better than others.

Mrs A (Jazzocracy) asks, “Would you ever consider posing naked or semi-naked for the camera or a live audience (acting in a play)?”

I might have in my younger days. In fact, back in the day, I did occasionally go to a naturist/nudist park where I, along with everyone else, was nude. And there used to be a flooded rock quarry where my friends and I would go skinny dipping. But those days are long over. Who wants to see an old fart like me posing naked or being naked on a stage? Ew!

Di (Pensitivity101) asks, “With the recent energy crisis here in the UK, would you prefer electric, gas, oil or some other means of heating your home?”

Our home is heated by natural gas. We also have a gas range in the kitchen, a gas fireplace in our family room, a gas fire pit in our backyard, and a gas barbecue grill on our patio. So I’m partial to natural gas. That said, we have an electric car and electric bicycles.

For what it’s worth, we would have preferred a wood burning fireplace and fire pit, but local laws would not permit those due to environmental concerns.

Marilyn (Serendipity) asks, “In your household, who takes care of the bills, taxes, and other financial stuff? Is one person responsible or is it a shared chore?

That would be me. It’s not a shared chore. I take care of all of our financial matters. That way, if I’m ever arrested for tax evasion, my wife can claim no knowledge of my misdeeds.

Yinglan (This is Another Story) asks, “If you can have any one job (real or fiction) in the galaxy (yes, the galaxy, I’m widening the search radius, imagining relocation to other planets possible), what is that job?

Intergalactic blogging phenom.

And finally, Melanie asks, “Who are you grateful for?”

My wife, who keeps me alive by making me eat healthy meals, who makes me go on long, vigorous walks with her to keep me physically fit, and who keeps my mind sharp by forcing me to use my brain periodically when I’d prefer to just veg out in front of the TV.

Blogging Insights — Out Of Fashion

For her weekly Blogging Insights prompts, Dr. Tanya provides us with a quote about blogging or writing and asks us to express our opinion about said quote.

This week’s quote is from Justine Larbalestier, an Australian writer of young adult fiction.

“Blogging, I love you no matter how out of fashion you are.”

Overall, I believe that blogging is pretty much alive and well. In fact, one site I saw recently claimed that there are more than 600 million blogs in the world today, out of over 1.9 billion websites.

But of those 600 million blogs, how many are from bloggers like us? There are, it seems, two broad categories of blogs in the world: “personal” blogs, which are often focused on the writer/blogger, and “commercial” blogs, which focus mostly on content marketing. A personal blog can be filled with journal-like entries that fill readers in on the writer’s opinions, struggles, and major life events. It may also be a venue for people to showcase their flash fiction, poetry, photographs, etc. A commercial blog is essentially designed to sell you something.

I’m going to focus on personal blogging, which is what I do and what I believe the vast majority of you do, as well. There are those who contend that personal blogging is dying out, that it’s a thing of the past. They claim that social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) video sharing (YouTube, Tik Tok), podcasts, and streaming have replaced personal blogging. But I contend that blogging is still a part of many people’s lives.

I do admit that most of the bloggers I follow are “older.” Like me, many are senior citizens. Or you may be a younger Baby Boomer or a Millennial. I am not sure that the short-attention-span, click-bait, younger generations have the patience to write and read personal blogs. So once we Baby Boomers die out, maybe tradition, personal blogging will, in fact, fall out of fashion.

In the meantime, though, I say:

Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge #153

Welcome to Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge. Each week I will be posting a photo I grab off the internet and challenging bloggers to write a flash fiction piece or a poem inspired by the photo. There are no style or word limits.

The photo below was provided by fellow blogger Li @ Tao Talk. Thanks, Li.

For the visually challenged writer, the photo shows seven green plastic army men in various exercise positions spread out across a colorful, laminated diagram showing acupuncture points on the bottoms of feet.

If this week’s image inspires you and you wish to participate, please write your post, use the tag #FFFC, and link back to this post. I hope it will generate some great posts.

Please create a pingback to this post or manually add your link in the comments.

FOWC with Fandango — Handbook


Welcome to January 24, 2022 and to Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (aka, FOWC). I will be posting each day’s word just after midnight Pacific Time (U.S.).

Today’s word is “handbook.”

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. Please 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.