In Other Words — Upside Down and Backwards

EAFE9919-CEF8-4687-8586-85899927811EEverything is upside down and backwards.

Lies are truth, facts are fake, and down is up.

Wrong is right, guilty is innocent, and bad is good.

Friends are enemies and enemies are friends.

Reality is surreal; topsy-turvy.


In other wordsWritten for the In Other Words prompt from Patricia’s Place. The challenge this week is to write a story or poem of five lines or fewer using the picture above and/or the word “topsy-turvy.” Photo credit: Garak01 from Pixabay.

FOWC with Fandango — Surreal

FOWCWelcome to August 7, 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 “surreal.”

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.

Song Lyric Sunday — Hotel California

For this week’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt from Helen Vahdati, she has asked us to post a song with a metaphor in the title or lyrics.

The song that came to mind for me is the classic Eagles song, “Hotel California.” That song is arguably the Eagles’ most iconic song. It was a Billboard chart-topper, selling more than 16 million copies in the U.S. alone and was on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for 19 weeks, peaking at No. 1. In 1978, the song won a Grammy award for Record of the Year.

Written by Don Felder, Glenn Frey, and Don Henley, “Hotel California” is a metaphor for materialism and excess. While California is used as the setting, it could relate to anywhere in America. Don Henley said the song is “about the dark underbelly of the American Dream, and about excess in America which was something we knew about.”

Another popular interpretation of the song is that it’s a metaphor for Hollywood. The Eagles compare the fickle, temporary, and false nature of all the glamor found in Hollywood to that of a short-stay in a hotel. No one knows how long they are going to be famous, so they have to make the most out of it.

Whatever it means, it’s a haunting, surreal song. And here are the lyrics.

On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair
Warm smell of colitas, rising up through the air
Up ahead in the distance, I saw a shimmering light
My head grew heavy and my sight grew dim
I had to stop for the night
There she stood in the doorway
I heard the mission bell
And I was thinking to myself
“This could be Heaven or this could be Hell”
Then she lit up a candle and she showed me the way
There were voices down the corridor
I thought I heard them say

Welcome to the Hotel California
Such a lovely place (Such a lovely place)
Such a lovely face
Plenty of room at the Hotel California
Any time of year (Any time of year)
You can find it here

Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends
She got a lot of pretty, pretty boys she calls friends
How they dance in the courtyard, sweet summer sweat
Some dance to remember, some dance to forget

So I called up the Captain
“Please bring me my wine.”
He said, “We haven’t had that spirit here since nineteen sixty nine.”
And still those voices are calling from far away
Wake you up in the middle of the night
Just to hear them say

Welcome to the Hotel California
Such a lovely place (Such a lovely place)
Such a lovely face
They livin’ it up at the Hotel California
What a nice surprise (what a nice surprise)
Bring your alibis

Mirrors on the ceiling
The pink champagne on ice
And she said “We are all just prisoners here, of our own device”
And in the master’s chambers
They gathered for the feast
They stab it with their steely knives
But they just can’t kill the beast

Last thing I remember
I was running for the door
I had to find the passage back to the place I was before

“Relax,” said the night man
“We are programmed to receive
You can check-out any time you like
But you can never leave!”

Thursday Photo Prompt — The Tour

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“That’s hard to believe,” Chuck said to the tour guide after looking at the half dozen photographs of the valley taken over four  decades.

“That whole area down there,” she said, waving her hand across the landscape toward the valley below, “was gouged out by a glacier centuries ago. But you can see from these pictures that, starting about 30 years ago, the glacier began to recede.”

“That’s surreal,” Chuck said.

“No,” said the tour guide. “It’s heartbreaking. By last year, the entire glacier was gone, leaving only these ridges where mosses, grasses, and other vegetation have started to grow. What nature took centuries to create, humanity destroyed in just decades.”

Chuck noticed the moistness forming in the tour guide’s eyes. “I don’t know,” Chuck said. “I understand what you’re saying, but just look at it now. It’s beautiful and it’s being filled in with new growth, new life.”

The guide looked at Chuck. “Well, that’s one way of seeing it. But if this is what we’ve done to this glacier in just three decades, how long do you think it will be before the entire planet has been transformed and will, potentially, become inhospitable to human life?”

“Oh come on,” Chuck said. Don’t you think you’re exaggerating? Even our president has said that climate change caused by humans is a hoax.”

“The biggest hoax is the one our president has pulled over the eyes of the American voters,” the tour guide said, and turned away to address others in the small group of tourists.


This post is another twofer. It was written for today’s one-word prompt, “surreal,” as well as for this week’s Thursday Photo Prompt from Sue Vincent.