If Looks Could Kill

Vicki always felt that she was living her life vicariously through all of the high-powered, totally fascinating people that worked in the firm. She would answer their calls, greet their visitors, run errands for them, do their bidding, and fantasize that maybe, one day, she might just be able to fly here, there, and yonder and work for the rich and famous just as they did.

She was lost in her thoughts when one of those beautiful people stood, unnoticed, in front of her desk. “Snap out of it, Vicki,” he said. “I don’t have time for this nonsense. Frankly, you need to get your head out of your ass and stop being so careless. I told you to handle the arrangements with the travel agent for my trip to Cannes next week, but I still don’t have my tickets confirmed or my hotel room booked, and that’s damn frustrating.”

Vicki frantically sifted through her notes, her emails, her text messages, and her scheduler and she couldn’t find any record of him having asked her to make these travel arrangements. She was quite perplexed. She looked up at him, shrugged her shoulders, and said, “I’m sorry. I’ll get right on it.”

He looked down at her, sitting in her desk chair, looking so forlorn. It was almost enough to make him feel sorry for her. But she was just a receptionist. Besides, she was generally pretty good at her job, is cute as a button, and has a body that would stop a clock. So this time he would let it go, as long as she continued to agree to stop by his office everyday at 5:00 and to, well, take care of his needs. “See you this afternoon, then?” he asked. But it was not a question.

Vicki smiled up at him and nodded her head. But as soon as he was out of sight, the expression that graced her face silently screamed, “if looks could kill.”

Written for these daily prompts: Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (vicariously), Your Daily Word Prompt (yonder/besides), The Daily Spur (snap), Word of the Day Challenge (frankly), E.M.’s Random Word Prompt (careless), My Vivid Blog (frustrating), Ragtag Daily Prompt (perplexed), and Weekly Prompts Wednesday Challenge (receptionist).

Fandango’s note: no offense meant toward the role of receptionists in businesses. They are one of the most important cogs in the office world, working in fast-paced work environments with a high level of often critical administrative responsibilities.

Fandango’s Provocative Question #156


Welcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question. Each week I will pose what I think is a provocative question for your consideration.

By provocative, I don’t mean a question that will cause annoyance or anger. Nor do I mean a question intended to arouse sexual desire or interest.

What I do mean is a question that is likely to get you to think, to be creative, and to provoke a response. Hopefully a positive response.

Republicans in 30 states are now seeking to remove books from classrooms and school libraries that offend them. GOP activists, school boards, lawmakers, and governors across the nation are issuing orders and crafting legislation to protect kids from books that discuss racism, sexuality, feminism, and other “dangerous” topics.

We’re talking about books like Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men and The Grapes of Wrath, George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and Animal Farm, Alice Walker’s The Color Purple, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eyes and Beloved, Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner, Ernest Hemingway’s The Farewell to Arms, Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughter House-Five, Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Joseph Heller’s Catch-22, and Anne Frank’s The Diary of a Young Girl. Not to mention Art Spiegelman’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Holocaust fable Maus and a whole slew of young adult and children’s books.

This ongoing “frenzy” of right-wing censorship is the largest since the 1920s campaign against teaching evolution. But today’s focus seems to be on books that have the potential to cause “discomfort” to straight, white Christians. Many critics are calling this a concerted and historic book-banning effort.

This week’s provocative question is…

How do you feel about state and local school boards and other jurisdictions banning of classic books such as those I’ve listed? Under what circumstances, if any, do you feel that banning of such books is appropriate and justifiable?

If you choose to participate, write a post with your response to the question. Once you are done, tag your post with #FPQ 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. But remember to check to confirm that your pingback or your link shows up in the comments.

FOWC with Fandango — Vicariously


It’s February 9, 2022. Welcome 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 “vicariously.”

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.