Weekly Challenge #457 – If you’re happy and you know it…

Welcome to the 100 Word Stories podcast at oneadayuntilthedayidie.com.

This is Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic: If you’re happy and you know it…

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The next 100 word stories weekly challenge is on the topic of Sargon, Hammurabi, Ashurbanipal, and Gilgamesh (The Mesopotamians!). Scroll up and click on Weekly Challenge to learn how to join us!

Myst and Tinny

MUNSI

Happiness

By Christopher Munroe

If you’re happy and you know it, weep some tears.

If you’re happy and you know it, shriek with fear.

If you’re happy and you know it, and you really want to show it, if you’re happy and you know it, it ultimately doesn’t matter, nobody will hear your screams, will ever find you down here, not ever. Not until my work is finished.

Why are you crying? Are you not happy? Do you not know it?

My attempt at a children’s television program, I’ll be first to admit, was ill-conceived, and it ultimately probably did deserve to be cancelled.

ANIMA

Morning Ritual

What is this crap! Why can’t anyone pick up after themselves around here? And must EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU SNORE?

A pillow hurtles towards his head, and his companions all had something to say: “shaddup H”, “Someone woke on the wrong side of the bed”, and “Jeez, ya know what time it is?”. They’d heard it all before, several times over.

Doc piped up – “Take your pills, old man – they are the pink ones… Not the blue ones, those are Grumpy’s. Those ones there.

Twenty minutes later, after the Paxil had kicked in, Happy was happy once again.

JEFFREY

“The Accident”
by Jeffrey Fischer

The paramedic pulled the unconscious body from the car wreck and immobilized the man’s head. The passenger was dead, but the driver seemed largely unhurt. But when the man regained consciousness, he was unable to speak. Worse, he seemed to be suffering from amnesia: the paramedic asked him questions and he simply stared, as though he couldn’t remember any of the answers. A police officer brought over the car registration, which identified the car’s owner as Happy McCoy. “All right, sir,” the paramedic said, “let’s start again. I know you can’t speak or move your head, but your hands and arms seem fine, so maybe you can answer some simple questions with hand movements. Do you know your name? Are you Happy McCoy? If you’re Happy and you know it, clap your hands.”

“Standing Ovation”
by Jeffrey Fischer

Customs change with the times. People know that applauding is a way of signaling to a performer that one has enjoyed the performance. This was not always the case, however. Prior to Elizabethan times, audiences would sit very still, making no sound whatsoever, if they approved of the performance. A rave review involved holding up a single hand and waving it from side to side, again making no noise. This is the sound of one hand clapping. Only if the performance displeased the audience did they clap, with the goal that the noise would drown out the (unwanted) sound of the performer. A notably horrific performance required the audience to stand and applaud. Standing allowed one to pass gas from meals that were heavy on beer and cabbage, thus signifying displeasure both through sound and odor.

JOHN MUSICO

If You’re Happy and You Know It
by John Musico

At the clinic I work at, the nurse and the housekeeper are always miserable.
It’s like they’re having a competition. The labored gait, shoulders hunched from bearing the weight of the world.
La bella miseria; they are in love with misery. You know the kind. Begging sympathy on occasion is one thing, but when it’s every day; it feels like an imposition.
My resentment built. A “Miserable” passed by, dragging as usual. I could stand it no longer.
I broke into a joyous chorus of; “If you’re happy and you know it.”
Now I’m the one who is intensely resented.

RICHARD

#1 – George’s Story – Part 90: Rude awakening

George was jerked back into wakefulness by an excited “Helllloooo!”, opening his eyes to find a blonde, frizzy-haired woman beaming down at him.

Lorretta was one of those women generally described as ‘bubbly’, otherwise translated as ‘incredibly irritating’. Within the first fifteen minutes George’s nerves were jangling and after umpteen repetitions of ‘If you’re happy and you know it’, during which both George and the bored chap were enthusiastically encouraged to join in, he found himself wondering at which point homicide becomes justifiable.

Thankfully, a door suddenly opened revealing a woman in a suit. She sternly called George’s name.

#2 – If you’re happy and you know it…

Long car journeys… I’ve always hated them.

As a youngster, stuck in the back seat with my sister and subjected to endless rounds of ‘I spy’ and pointless repetitive rounds of songs, all supposedly to ‘make the journey go quicker’.

And now, as the driver, forced to put up with endless squabbles, complaining and that mind-numbingly awful song: ‘If you’re happy and you know it’, just going on, and on, and on. It’s enough to drive you completely insane.

These days, I just sedate the kids.

Peace, quiet and no more singing.

Now I’m happy, and I know it!

LIZZIE

What an awful place to die, he thought, staring down from the overpass. Make a wish and be happy, but his mind… Don’t jump. Jump. Don’t jump. Make a wish. Quick, make a wish. But secrets are meant to be kept, aren’t they? At least some of them are. His mind raced as fast as the cars underneath. I hate you so much, I can barely breathe, he thought. Make a wish. Yes, make a wish, just any wish… When he plunged towards that perfect white line, there was no clapping; there was no sound, there was nothing at all.

JESSICA

Tired
By: Jessica Quin

She was sick and tired of Dusty beating her for years now!
She sobbed until she couldn’t anymore.
Then,.. the anger boiled inside her, engulfing her clarity.
Dusty remained passed out on the couch.
She tied him up tight and waited, gun in hand.
He awoke, taking a while to focus.
“Are you happy?”
He managed to mutter a, “Wha-?”
“What-er you talkin’ ‘bout ya stupid wench?”
“I asked you if you’re happy” she responded remaining strangely calm.
“I’ll let you live if you do one thing”
His eyes widened.
“If you’re happy and you know it…
clap your hands.”

TOM

A Well Defined Relationship Part 86

“ I got to go,” said Tim. “Tried,” said the Cid “Tried a lot.” “What you saying?” “I’m saying in a 100 years you can exhaust both possibilities and hope. How long do you think you’ve been here?” Timmy thought. At first he wanted to say a couple of minutes. Then he started to watch the dealer hand. It seems to be frozen in mid stoke. Across the cube in a corner El Cid was huddled singing softly to himself. “If your happy and know it sit right here.” Around him 1000s of crumpled paper ball turning yellow with age

The means to your destruction has been

set in motion by the work of your own hands

If your happy and you know it curse the rich.

If your happy and you know it curse the rich.

If your happy and you know then your guns

Will properly show it.

If your happy and you know it curse the rich.

In the slums of New Detroit you won’t find a street corner that didn’t echo with this ditty. The New People as they called themselves had made singing that tune a capital offense. When they found their children humming the tune clueless of the words behind it was when the Carts Squad to the square was formed.

SERENDIPITY

Chico, the terrorist clown, had a theory that the younger you could recruit supporters, the more loyal to your cause they would be.

Kids’ parties were ideal recruiting grounds – he’d show the youngsters how bombs were made, demonstrating with balloons. He’d employ magic tricks to teach the art of concealment and subterfuge, and through the medium of party songs, he taught the kids the terrorist way…

‘If you’re happy and you know it, strap grenades to your body and become a martyr to the cause’

It didn’t scan too well, but it certainly got the message across to the youngsters.

SPATE

Mostly True Tales from the Navy 6
Shipmate Personality Number 3

Hard Luck Harwich had a cloud of doom that followed him everywhere. And he
liked to tell people about it; whether it was his latest ache or something
bad he ate or the fate of his late Aunty June. You’d get an earful. In fact,
he’d try to talk you to death.

Then one day he heard that annoying song playing in the background of his
life and he thought:
“What if I’m really happy and I just don’t know it?”

That thought instantly cheered him up. And he clapped and the cloud went
away.

But everyone still avoided him.

NORVAL JOE

People who are always happy piss me off because they can’t just leave it alone. And they won’t leave me alone.
I’m happy and I know it. My face just doesn’t show it. I have what some people call a “Resting Grumpy Face”. It runs in my family, on my mother’s side.
If you want me to be grumpy, just tell me, “Smile, it can’t be that bad,” or, “It takes fewer muscles to smile than to frown”.
You’ll really know I’m happy if you say one of those things to me and I don’t tell you to bite my…

TURA

If you’re happy and you know it
——–
If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands, they sang.

Which is a rather disturbing concept. Could I be happy and not know it? Or think I was happy, but be siocidal?

If we built a superintelligent machine to make everyone happy, how would it know? The song suggests you could tell it by clapping your hands. But then the machine might just grab everyone’s hands and bang them together, and it’s like Skynet, game over!

You have to think about these things if you don’t want an AI to go mad and tattoo smiley faces onto everyone.

RICK

It was sweet irony.

Daughter playing with her dolls on the floor as his wife bitched …
“you’ve spent thousands on those guns…
even more on the ammo!”

“All that time spent at the gun range, and the worry of having the damn things hidden in every room of the house!”

Their heads turned as they heard the front door kicked in …
three men, with bats and knives rushed into the living room.

Three shots, it was over!

Three lost lives …
An incredible mess to clean …

He’d never again hear her bitch about guns!
He smiled!
Happiness IS … a warm gun!

PLANET Z

We plugged in the robot and programmed it to be happy.
The robot reached for its power cord and pulled it out of the socket.
So, we plugged it back in.
The robot unplugged itself again.
We removed the robot’s arms, but it rolled away from the wall, which yanked out the cord.
So, we took off the robot’s wheels.
At that point, it let out a continuous scream.
Until we removed the speaker.
Then, we reviewed the code.
“Happy equals one,” I said. “That’s a Boolean TRUE, right?”
“No, it’s an integer value from one to a hundred.”
Oops.

The topic of the next weekly challenge is Sargon, Hammurabi, Ashurbanipal, and Gilgamesh (The Mesopotamians!)

Hi there. This is Laurence Simon of the 100 Word Stories Podcast at oneadayuntilthedayidie.com.

The topic of the next 100 Word Stories Weekly Challenge is Sargon, Hammurabi, Ashurbanipal, and Gilgamesh (The Mesopotamians!).

Want to give it a shot? Write an email to isfullofcrap (at) gmail.com with the subject line of WEEKLY CHALLENGE.

Include the following in your email:

– The text of your 100 word story on the topic.
– Your site’s URL, if you have a site and aren’t ashamed to share it.
– A topic for the next Weekly Challenge.
– And a recording of your story. (Be sure to introduce yourself to the audience.)

If you hate the sound of your voice or can’t record your story for some reason or another, that’s your problem. Deal with it.

Everything’s due by Sunday morning when I put the episode together. However, if you’re running late, I can put your story up on the feed in a separate post.

Good luck, and as always… keep it brief.

COMING SOON: (I may slip in a topic or two for a major holiday or important event)

2/8 Eat
2/15 I’ve got nothing
2/22 Strike
3/1 After
3/8 Trench
3/15 South
3/22 Paint
3/29 Correct
4/5 Pen
4/12 Pan
4/19 Let’s create a pantheon. The God(dess) of _________________.
4/26 Anchor
5/3 Fit
5/10 Troll
5/17 A word that doesn’t exist
5/24 Cheese
5/31 TENTH ANNIVERSARY <- open season, no specified topic
6/7 Try
6/14 Ounce
6/21 Wave
6/28 Tramps
7/5 Sing
7/12 Hopeless
7/19 Guest
7/26 Spike
8/2 Kid
8/9 When
8/16 Saw
8/23 Your favorite quote
8/30 Mug
9/6 Building

Ass God

A friend of mine recently underwent a colonoscopy.

They were all freaked out over it. The fasting, purgative, and the discussion about the anesthetic just made it all worse.

I told them how I just laughed through my own colonoscopy preparations and the procedure, and things turned out okay.

So, they went through it all, and they just told me “They found a precancerous polyp.”

That’s great news, I said, precancerous and not cancerous.

“Yes! Thank the gods!” they said.

Except the God Of Precancerous Polyps, of course.

Because he’s a total dick, giving those fucking polyps out to people.

Madness

I don’t give a crap about March Madness.

Professional sports are a waste of time, but college sports are a waste of academic institutions.

Instead of focusing on educating students and researching the frontiers of knowledge, these colleges and universities train and babysit these gargantuan kids to perform for the crowds.

Where there should be a series of lecture halls and labs, producing results around the clock and year, massive stadiums and arenas sit idle, waiting for a few home games a year.

Forget that slam dunk… give us a cure for cancer! A pollution-free engine!

The ignorant crowd cheers.

Border

After years of debate and finger-pointing, Congress finally got to the business of working out a fair and complete overhaul of immigration policy.

Citizenship would be extended to illegal aliens who had demonstrated all the qualities America was looking for, while the borders would be protected and secured.

The President smiled wide and signed the bill into law.

The next day, the country was overwhelmed with a flood of immigrants demanding amnesty.

“None of them actually stepped on the border, right?” asked the President.

Sure, the border itself was safe, but nobody thought to protect and secure the country, too.

A Fine Kettle

There’s no sound quite like the whistle of a teakettle.

I like to fill up the teakettle, put it on the stove, and then wait for the whistle.

Then, I take off the kettle, pour the water out, and start again.

I’ll do this a few dozen times in an evening when I’m in the mood.

Sure, you can boil water in the microwave, but there’s no whistle.

Just the beep of the timer when it’s done.

My new place has a boiling water spigot in addition to the hot and cold taps.

That’s nice.

Hand me the kettle, please.

Juicer

Rumors spread across the sporting world that the greatest athlete in the sport was using performance-enhancing drugs.

But then, everybody was doing it back then. The sport was rotten with cheaters and juicers. Everybody doped and juiced to keep up with him.

He just did it more effectively.

Finally, on his last race on the last tour in his career, he performed clean.

No drugs.
No blood doping.
No enhancements at all.

And he came in last place.

Until, of course, he ratted on everybody.

He was the only one to pass the tests, and was declared winner by default.