100WW — Hot Air Balloons

6E44303D-5EEC-4028-AF78-D6326386858B“Look, Al,” Helen said, pointing to sky as they walked to their car after picking up a few things at the mall. “Hot air balloons.”

Al looked up and crinkled his brow. “Yes,” he said, “but it’s weird. They usually fly over in the valley, not anywhere near here.”

“They’re pretty,” Helen said.

“I suppose,” Al shrugged as he opened the car’s trunk and put the packages in them. He had just slammed the trunk shut when he heard the first explosion.

“Helen, get in the car!” he shouted when he saw the laser beams. “Those aren’t hot air balloons!”

(100 words)

Written for this week’s 100 Word Wednesday prompt from Bikurgurl.

Share Your World — Heaven Can Wait

Melanie, at Sparks From a Combustible Mind, brings us another episode of Share Your World. Here are her questions and my answers for this week’s sharing.

If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?  If you don’t think Heaven nor God exists, you might want answer by saying something outrageous, just for fun!

I’m in the heaven and God don’t exist camp. That said, if I did come in contact with God after I died, I’d love to hear him say to me, “Yes, I know I’m supposed to be infallible, but me dammit, I made a mistake. It’s not your time yet, so I’m sending you back.”

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

Having Donald Trump as president.

What do you think about when you’re alone in your car?

I’m rarely alone in my car anymore except when I have to run errands where I can’t walk or take a bus. So when I am alone in my car, I’m typically thinking about the fastest or shortest route to get where I’m going.

How would you rate your memory? 

I can’t recall.

And lastly:

What’s one song that always cheers you up, no matter how blue you’re feeling?

I’m going to reach way back into the vault and drift on up to the roof.

Song Lyric Sunday — Fun Fun Fun

Helen Vahdati chose the theme “car/cars” for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt. No fewer than six songs popped into my head when I read Helen’s theme, but in the end I decided to go with The Beach Boys and their song, “Fun Fun Fun.”

“Fun Fun Fun” was written by The Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson and Mike Love and was released in 1964 as a single, later appearing on the band’s album Shut Down Volume 2.

The song, which managed to reach number 5 on the Billboard charts, is a classic American song about girls and cars. A rebellious daughter borrows her father’s Ford Thunderbird, claiming she’s going to the library to study. Instead, she uses it to show up other drivers. Her dad eventually finds out and takes his T-Bird back, but she retaliates by running off with someone who fell in love with her after watching her drive.

There were many rumors about the identity of the girl in the song, but Mike Love said, “As far as I know, there was no particular girl that was the inspiration for that song. It was more generic. Because, what kid, when they get their driver’s license, doesn’t want to borrow the family car and go cruisin’ through the hamburger stand, or they say they need to go to the library, but who knows?”

Here are the lyrics to “Fun Fun Fun.”

Well she got her daddy’s car
And she’s cruisin’ through the hamburger stand now
Seems she forgot all about the library
Like she told her old man now
And with the radio blasting
Goes cruising just as fast as she can now

And she’ll have fun fun fun
‘Til her daddy takes the T-Bird away
(Fun fun fun ’til her daddy takes the T-Bird away)

Well the girls can’t stand her
‘Cause she walks, looks, and drives like an ace now
(You walk like an ace now you walk like an ace)
She makes the Indy 500 look like a Roman chariot race now
(You look like an ace now you look like an ace)
A lotta guys try to catch her
But she leads them on a wild goose chase now
(You drive like an ace now you drive like an ace)

And she’ll have fun fun fun
‘Til her daddy takes the T-Bird away
(Fun fun fun ’til her daddy takes the T-Bird away)

Well you knew all along
That your dad was gettin’ wise to you now
(You shouldn’t have lied now you shouldn’t have lied)
And since he took your set of keys
You’ve been thinking that your fun is all through now
(You shouldn’t have lied now you shouldn’t have lied)

But you can come along with me
‘Cause we gotta a lot of things to do now
(You shouldn’t have lied now you shouldn’t have lied)

And we’ll have fun fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away
(Fun fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)
And we’ll have fun fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away
(Fun fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)
(fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)
(fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)
(fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)
(fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)
(fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)
(fun fun now that daddy took the T-Bird away)

MLMM Photo Challenge — Lighter Than Air

411201FF-4DF3-43BA-B3EF-DD05ECEAA70BThe idea was to see how many helium-filled balloons it would take to get a car to fly.

The university’s engineering students found a clunker at a salvage yard and bought it for fifty bucks and then arranged to have it towed to campus. Once there, they removed the engine, the transmission, and the seats. The goal was to make the vehicle as light as possible before attaching the balloons.

One of the students suggesting having a campus-wide “guess how many balloons” contest. They decided to charge fifty cents a guess and the person coming closest to the actual number of balloons would win the proceeds from the contest. Engineering students, though, couldn’t participate.

After selling more than 1,000 chances, the engineering students announced the big day. A huge crowd showed up on the field at the east end of campus.

One helium-filled ballon at a time, the students started attaching them to the vehicle. Ten. Twenty. Fifty. Still no lift. One hundred and nothing. Some of those attending got bored after a few hours and the size of the crowd dwindled.

Finally, after about four hours of painstakingly attaching the balloons to the hollowed-out car, liftoff was achieved. What remained of the crowd started cheering as the car lifted higher and higher off the ground and then, catching a stiff breeze coming from the west, started floating toward the small town just east of the campus.

To the surprise and delight of all those who were witness to the event, the car continued to float over the landscape, passing over the town until it reached the shore, where it continued on its airborne journey and headed out over the ocean, never to be seen again.

As to the number of balloons it took to achieve liftoff, well, let’s just say it was a lot.

Written for this week’s Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Photo Challenge prompt. Photo credit: Vincent Bourilhon.

Another One of Those Days

Jason was getting pissed. He looked at his watch. The bus was running ten minutes late, based upon the schedule. Samantha, Jason’s wife, could sense his irritation. “Don’t worry,” she said, we’ll get to the theater in plenty of time.”

Jason and Samantha lived in a fairly large city. One of the advantages of being urban dwellers is that the city has a well-developed intra-city bus system. They owned a car, but it spent most of the time languishing in their garage. They mostly took buses because they had their pick of bus routes within a few blocks from their home that could get them to and from just about anywhere within the city. So there wasn’t much of a need to use their car unless they wanted to head out into the countryside.

“Finally,” Jason said, spotting a bus several blocks up the street. But as it got closer, Jason realized that it was a local bus, not the express bus he preferred. When the bus pulled up to the stop, Samantha started to get on, but Jason pulled her back. “Let’s wait for the R.”

The “R” label was for “rapid.” It meant that the bus would bypass those stops not designated as rapid bus stops. These express buses stopped at only about a third as many stops as the local buses.

“Oh please,” said Samantha. “The buses are running late, so let’s grab this one while we can. This way you’ll have plenty of time to get popcorn and we won’t miss the coming attractions.”

Jason looked at his watch once again. “Fine,” he said. “But I hate taking the local bus.” They boarded the bus, found their seats, and sat down. After reaching the third stop on the local route, Jason saw the “R” bus passing them by.

Jason’s face turned a deep shade of red and Samantha knew that he’d be blaming her for not agreeing to wait for the express bus.

It’s going to be another one of those days, she thought.

Written for today’s one-word prompt, “express.”