Weekly Challenge #620 – Braided

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

This is the Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.

We’ve got stories by:

Worn out cat


I’ve always said that if you work in any sort of capacity that involves dealing with customers, good communication skills are paramount.

I don’t just mean a decent command of the English language, either – if you’re going to be interacting with paying customers, you need to ensure that you have a clear grasp of what the customer is asking for.

Take my fishmonger – he’s deaf as a post. Only this week I popped in for some breaded plaice.

Back home, my wife complained: “I wish you’d buy the fish elsewhere… He’s only gone and braided the fillets again!”


The horse I ride at Monte’s ranch is three, with a braided mane, and is very elastic along her top line. She is doing very nicely at all three paces (walk, trot, lope) and also has a really good whoa and back up on her.

She was ridden mainly in a bosal as a two year old and we have recently moved her into a snaffle. She turns around well, is light to leg and takes hand cues.

She would be suited for many events from team penning to ranch versatility or just a trail companion, just like my wife.


I spent a lot of time crimping jacks to the ends of cables.
Even though I memorized the color scheme, which pair went into which slot, I kept a color chart on my desk for the cable standards.
It was all too easy to space out and start making 586-A cables, only to finish a 568-B cable and wonder how many I’d have to go back and recrimp.
It was also all too easy to space out and wonder how I’d made a Flying Spaghetti Monster statue.
I shrugged, put a colander on my head, and prayed for noodly guidance.


I’ve just started up a new jewellery business, and I’m pleased to say, it’s doing a roaring trade.

My current best sellers are necklaces made from braided human hair. Of course, people think it’s supplied by the local hairdressers, but I prefer to know exactly where my materials have been sourced from.

I keep a supply of fresh corpses in the basement, which provides me with plenty of raw material to work with.

And, if you like my braided necklaces, I’m sure that you’ll love my latest line of ear rings…

Each one, lovingly crafted from a real human ear.


Rapunzel’s Escape
by Jeffrey Fischer

Rapunzel sat in her castle tower, imprisoned as securely as the lowest thief. “You know how boys are,” said her mother, though of course Rapunzel had no knowledge of boys.

As her hair grew, she devised an escape plan. She braided her hair, making it as strong as any rope. Time passed. When her hair reached the height of the tower, she hacked it off, tied one end to a sturdy fixture, and threw the other out the window. She climbed to the ground.

All around her were ruins: the castle was crumbling, the land choked with weeds. She stumbled into the castle, calling out for her parents, receiving no answer. She stared into a mirror: a haggard, wrinkled, and bald reflection stared back.


She sat out in the garden, holding her long braid defiantly. She had chopped it off.
The people in the tavern looked at the strange woman.
The fact that she was sitting there intrigued everyone. Everyone except the owner of the tavern. He knew. He had almost strangled her with that braid when…
He walked outside and everyone witnessed in horror how, in a split second, she wrapped the braid around his neck and knocked him to the floor, snapping his neck before anyone could do anything.
She braided the rope they placed around her neck a few days later.


The bell rang and Billbert waited on the administration building roof.
The tardy bell rang and Billbert didn’t move.
Once he was sure no one was on the school grounds, he shot down to grab his clothes by the tree. Staying low to the ground, he shot across to the locker room.
Billbert crawled across the empty locker room floor past the coach’s office. Coach Slaughterball’s whistle hung from a hook on it’s braided lanyard.
“Why didn’t he have it with him in the gym?” Billbert wondered.
Then he heard from behind, “What are you doing on the floor, Maggot?”


“Wagging Away”

Little Bo Peep lost her sheep
While napping under the apple tree.

The field was empty and also the brook,
So after them she ran carrying her crook.

Eventually the search took her into the city
Where all she could find were dogs and a kitty.

Time was leaving with the loss of sun.
If she didn’t find the sheep, punishment would be no fun.

But a salon at the end of the street
Caught her attention because of the sheep.

They lined the sidewalk, and the salon was full,
Each one getting trims, blowouts, and braids in their wool


Was Wisdom Waiting

He ran the braid pairs down the stairs into the basement. Connected the ends to the plate on the door jam, gently close it, move down the steps. A van parked far distance down the street allowed him to verify that the mark had been successfully terminated. As he sat in the front seat a young girl about 12, hair in long braids moved up to the passenger side window. Before he could shoes her away the window exploded and three shots hit his forehead. She tapped the com on her wrist “Security breach dispatched with extreme prejudice. Residence neutralize.”

Weekly Challenge #619 – Generally

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

This is the Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.

We’ve got stories by:

Fence Tinny



So, here I am, Sat in the pub, enjoying my pint, phone in hand, pondering what to write for this week’s story.

And, literally at the moment I tap out the heading, ‘Generally’, the chap across the bar loudly says the exact same word to his companion.

I’m a little freaked out…

Am I being watched? Under covert surveillance by who knows what shady organisation? Is some bizarre experiment in thought control taking place here?

I take another draught from my glass.

Maybe it was just a freaky coincidence… But, if nothing else, I’ve got a story out of it!


I find that generalisations are, generally pretty useful.

They can cover a multitude of sins and can allow you – quite literally sometimes – to get away with murder.

They’re handy for providing alibis, without actually being deceptive…

“Where were you on the night in question?”

“Well generally, I’m at church on a Sunday at that time of the evening, so I suppose that must have been the case.”

“And, as a rule, I generally go straight home afterwards, to a mug of cocoa, and a good night’s sleep.”

And the best of it is that I, generally, get away with it!


“Generally speaking…”
When the boss started off with those words, you knew you were in for an hour of boredom.
Not that you could show it, mind you.
If you closed your eyes or crossed your arms, he was right there in your face, asking if there was a problem.
And then he’d start back over again with those words:
“Generally speaking…”
There were only two ways to get out of that.
Lunch and quitting time.
You get home, you have your dinner, you put your feet up, and…
When you go to sleep, and dream of those words again.


The bronckle is an old folk instrument traditionally made, and played, by shepherds. It consists of a long, stout, hollow staff with a mouthpiece and finger holes. The opposite end is terminated by a large hollow wooden ball that provides percussion accompaniment when swung against a tree. Thus did shepherds amuse themselves in former times.

The bronckle has never found favour in the salon, but the composer Marin Marais once accepted a challenge to create a piece for bronckle consort, performed by shepherds on the King’s estates. It was generally agreed that the effect resembled a stampede of confused cows.


The river rose all day–The river rose all night

Generally speaking Dean was the last person I’d have thought would be capable of such a selfless act of kindness. It not that he is some kind of self-center asshole, it more he has the heart and soul of an accountant. One to weight the cost benefits of any given interaction. But there he was knee deep in the river with the tiny girl riding on his shoulders. And he didn’t stop there. Dean return to the river a dozen time. The water rising to hip, then chest. He didn’t make it back from the last trip. Well done Dean.


Why I Am Not As Good As Lovecraft


Jon DeCles

Generally speaking, I always try to be specific. Generalities are sometimes useful, like statistics, but they usually present a false, or at least inadequate, image of something that would be better served with a precise and specific representation. Specificity allows for the possible communication of precise information. Generality, at best, allows for the communication of a warm fuzzy feeling or a cold chill of horror.

Lovecraft used non-specific information more effectively than anyone in achieving a precise reaction of horror in his readers. Through non-specificity he became, generally, one of the greatest writers of horror stories in all of literature.


Generally, I do not fly Airlingis. The last time I called them, I misdialed. A woman answered, and when I asked for comfortable, Airlingis accommodations, she gasped and slammed the phone down. I do this sort of thing often.

As I get older, I make more mistakes, and make them more often.

As I near my final days, I plan to get my head removed and stored at an Alcor, cryogenic facility. My executors will handle everything, including reanimation.

Some day, my ancestors will fetch me from the walk-in, and we can sit down to catch up on the news.


The lighthouse keeper stared at the horizon. Five lines. The sea was unusually calm and it was bitter cold. His mind wandered back to that day. The sea wasn’t calm then and it wasn’t cold but he felt it at the back of his neck like a knife. The body was out there. He knew exactly where. Five years ago. Each year, on that day, he would stand up there. He didn’t know how. He never noticed when. But he knew she came from the sea to carve another line on his arm, a reminder of what he had done.


Common Sense
by Jeffrey Fischer

Generally, the sound of a police siren and the sight of flashing lights invokes the following reactions: pulling over, handing license and registration to the officer, and responding politely to questions and instructions from the officer. He’s armed and the driver is usually not. Confrontations generally work out poorly for the driver. This is common sense.

It’s annoying to read the self-righteous accounts of black parents lecturing their male children of driving age to take the above steps in a respectful manner. The implication is that young black males have trouble with these simple concepts. Be a man, kid, and respect the law. You’ll live longer that way.



I shaded more red into my canvas, working while the crowds shuffled
around. My subject squirmed and whined before settling on command. I
hastened to finish my latest masterpiece, turning it for parental

They squawked and shouted offending words I dare not repeat, insisting
I did not capture their child, but in reviewing my sketch, taking note
of horns, gnashing teeth, and evil glint, I assured them my
interpretation was accurate. It was how I generally saw all of them
in the park.

I don’t remember much more after the mouse came up and punched me in the head.


Being a boy in middle school is generally a negative thing.

For the few boys with confidence and maturity beyond their years it’s an opportunity to control hundreds of others. Like fish in a barrel, the less mature and more insecure rise to the surface with hopes for acceptance and inclusion, only to get a bullet through the head.

So it was that Billbert fell victim to Roderick’s prank. Though, now, he had something none of the other boys had: a super power.

True. He wore a plastic bag for a loin cloth, which, generally was not a positive thing.



Hollywood is remaking The Dukes of Hazard. The story is generally the same. Uncle Jesse is the same old curmudgeon, but running a recycling center. Daisy runs a tech firm. “Mayor” Hogg is a philanthropist who loves helping others and playing Santa at Christmas.

And don’t forget that iconic car. It’s now a bright green Prius, with a yellow peace sign on the roof. They use it to deliver meals on wheels or sometimes as a Lyft service and hilarity ensues. They call it “The Generally.” So how much trouble will those Duke boys be in this week? Not much…

Weekly Challenge #618 – PICK TWO

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

This is the Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.

We’ve got stories by:

Stripey spoiled rotten


Big Brother

I’ve had a dicky ticker for some time. Weirdly, it’s a good thing in some ways – I grant you it will, literally, be the death of me, but on the bright side, it’s brought Harold and me back together.

As brothers go, we never had that close relationship we should have, but since the bad news, he’d do anything he can to help his little brother.

More fool him! I still can’t stand him.

It’s handy having him around though, especially since I’ve been steadily poisoning him for the last few months!

And, when he dies… I’m having his heart!


My Brother, The Idiot
by Jeffrey Fischer

My brother was so dumb he rounded pi to three. “Easier to remember,” he said. Somehow he passed engineering school, and somehow he ended up with a job designing a building – a round tower in the center of the city. He got fed up with my riling him about his math skills, so, to prove me wrong, he said he would use no computers on the job.

As the mayor used the ceremonial scissors for the ribbon-cutting, the rumbling began. The building started to break into pieces. I ran for my life, but couldn’t help but notice that every chunk that fell resembled a slice of pizza.


Another slice of pie?

No, really, there’s no need to be polite – if you’re hungry, please tuck in, and if you’re enjoying it, then please help yourself to another slice.

There’s no need to apologise for your brother. I’m sure he’d have joined us if he could. I know that we haven’t exactly seen eye to eye in the past, but I’m the first person to admit that I’m by no means perfect, so in a way, I suppose you could call this a slice of humble pie on my part.

Although, your brother is rather tasty, don’t you think?


The Brothers, the Tower and No Elephant

The brothers had a reputation that preceded them wherever they went. The day they decided to steal the gold statue of an elephant, they came up with a plan and managed to sneak inside the king’s tower. The problem was, they couldn’t find the damn elephant anywhere. They climbed all the way to the top in pitch black darkness. Exhausted, they sat down for a few seconds. No elephant, but the view was magnificent. They decided to watch the sunrise before resuming the search. Suddenly, evil laughter interrupted the dreamy moment. Watching the sunrise was lovely. Free flying was not.


Wearing his grocery bag loincloth, Billbert crept to the edge of the roof, looking like an insane albino native American. He spied his clothes at the base of the tree, towering above the school grounds.

Inconspicuous on the roof, he would stand out like an elephant at a tea party if he flew down there to grab them, now. Too bad his new super power wasn’t like spider man.
Spidey could just shoot a web down to his clothes and snag them.

Once class started Billbert could fly down, snag clothes, and shoot into the locker room to get dressed.


Out of the Dark

The Brotherhood of Pi came to my village one day. Dressed in the pi-ionic red took their place under a tree said to be the exact spot that Dar Laktor had drawn his proof. The brothers were here to find inquiring souls who were capable of serious mathematic heavy lifting. Boy Who Runs With Elephant and his brother Zin Bok sat at the edge of first ring each morning the good brothers spoke. On the day of departing Boy handed the Brothers a leaf showing his work on a new irrational called Q.

So he left with the brothers.


The Brothers Oyinlola
Jon DeCles

The Brothers Oyinlola had a drumroll announce the appearance of any native wildlife, so the tourists atop the tower they owned would not miss anything. They would serve you a slice of iyeye pie while you were waiting, and just in case nothing showed all day, you could have more than once slice. They also had a medical kit, and occasionally a doctor on call, in case some elderly visitor’s ticker conked out when an elephant got upset and charged and shook the tall wooden tower. Lack of funds meant they only advertised their safari on the world wide web.

Grab Bag
Jon DeCles
The sign said I could grab a bag and fill it with whatever I wanted for only five dollars, but I only had five minutes. I could see what a bargain that would be. I grabbed the bag and started to stuff things in, running up and down the aisles, and I finished on time.
Now I have a pound of walnuts, a pair of red-sequined slippers, a new jock strap, a Thing “As Advertised on TV” (I don’t know what it does), bicycle goggles, ten daffodil bulbs, a really bad hardback novel: but Wait! There’s More! A VCR tape…


Pick Two – Tower & Drumroll

I was raised on fairy tales about the brave knight saving the beautiful princess from the tower. There was always an evil stepmother or fearful king keeping the princess hidden away. At eighteen I ventured off to find my fair princess. I heard her one day, singing like an angel from her castle tower. I scaled the wall that night and climbed onto the ledge. The beautiful maiden turned from the across the room and our eyes met… the silence soon broken as she screamed and screamed. The last sounds I heard were the drumroll and the falling of the guillotine.


Simple Simon was a pieman.
So was his younger brother Saul.
Father left the bakery to Simon.
Even though Saul was the better pieman.
Simon renamed the shop Simon’s Pies.
Saul became very angry.
He started his own bakery, right across the street. Saul’s Pies.
And he tried to drive his brother out of business.
He nearly succeeded.
Instead of going bankrupt, Simon made a deal with some people.
And Saul’s Pies burned to the ground.
Saul was ruined.
Then, Simon’s Pies burned to the ground, too.
Simon’s new partners collected the insurance money.
The brothers manage a McDonalds now.

Weekly Challenge #617 – Grab a bag!

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

This is the Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.

We’ve got stories by:



Grab a bag and fill it with stars, one by one. One star for each day you’ve made it. One star for each doubt you’ve overcome. One star for each moment of loneliness, for each step you’ve taken. Grab a bag and fill it with dreams, one by one. One dream for each tomorrow, for each smile, for each doubt you’ve left behind. And when you open that bag, you won’t know which are the stars and which the dreams. While you carried them around, they talked and they smiled. They knew they would be free, as free as fireflies.


Baggage Retrieval

I hate waiting around at airports. It’s bad enough spending hours in the departure lounge, but being expected to do the same at the other end at baggage retrieval is maddening!

So these days I travel light; but hand luggage doesn’t really suffice for longer trips, so I’ve taken to wandering down to reclaim where I just grab a bag – any bag – off the nearest carousel.

It doesn’t always work: I once spent a week wearing women’s underwear, but usually I get by with other people’s luggage.

And the drugs I discover more than cover the cost of future trips!

Self Defence

My ex-wife, amongst her many other dubious talents, taught women’s self-defence classes at the local community centre.

Completely unqualified, she nevertheless devised a foolproof means of dealing with male attackers which she claimed would work every time.

Her method was simple: Reach between the legs, grab, and twist as violently as possible.

She was absolutely right too… It did work, every single time; I can personally attest to that, after the many practice runs she insisted on conducting at home.

People ask me why it took me so long to leave her…

Simple: I just didn’t have the balls!


A Little Help From a Friend

“Hey kid Grab a bag,” said the head suit. There was piles of them in the room. Heavy sucker. Who would of thought a bag of paper could weigh that much. The drive to the hanger at O’Hare was uneventful, when my counter parts at National did the unloading they noted they were a bag shy. This is how I ended up on the redeye to DC. I and the last bag took a taxi to Fener Building on Q Street. On the fifth floor a bunch on mid aged women where redistributing the last of Clement Stone’s contribution.


Grabby Hands
by Jeffrey Fischer

The cashier scanned my handful of groceries: a half-dozen apples, some yogurts, and a box of cookies for balance. I wanted to speed things along, as the line behind me was substantial, so I grabbed a plastic bag and loaded the scanned items. “That’ll be 5 cents for the bag.”

“Say what?”

“The county charges a nickel for each plastic bag used to reduce waste.”

“I’m new here. I used to live somewhere civilized. But have it your way.” I took one apple in each hand and walked them to the car. On my third trip, the other customers looked ready for murder. The cashier grabbed a bag, loaded the remaining items, and shoved the bag at me. Me: 1, government 0.


We had been hiking all day. It was already dark, so we settled down in the middle of a grove of small trees. We covered our packs with garbage bags to keep the dew off them, unrolled our sleeping bags and went to sleep. We awoke the next morning in the middle of a tall patch or marijuana.

“Oh shit! Oh shit! We have to get out here. Should we call the cops?”

“Hey!” I whispered loudly. “Right now you are going to do two things. One, you are going to shut the hell up!”

“And two?”

“Grab a bag.”


I sifted through the mystery grab bags of candy Mr. Johnson sold,
looking for the one filled with only the best. Testing the contents,
I manhandled bags and tried to see inside, holding the brown paper
bags to the light. They were stapled shut and refused to yield their
secret. Taking my best guess, I took one up to the counter. Mr.
Johnson shook my bag, then his head, and took it back to the box to
replace with another, adding a wink and smile. Sometimes my sweet
tooth benefited that Mr. Johnson was a little sweet on my mom.


There’s always some kind of fundraiser drive going at the grocery store.
The Girl Scouts camp out at the entrance, selling cookies.
Is that the only camping they actually do?
Then there’s food drives.
For the holidays, they have a shelf of grocery bags.
You can buy one for a family in need, but who knows what crap is in there.
Certainly not meat or healthy things that require refrigeration.
Or you can tack on a few bucks at the register.
The nerve of them! Don’t they already donate the expired and overstocked food to homeless shelters and food pantries?

Weekly Challenge #616 – If only I had…

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

This is the Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.

We’ve got stories by:

Tinny on a Friday


If only I had…

If only I had more words than the measly hundred I’ve been allocated, I could do so much more…

Short stories, monologues and pulp fiction would flow from my keyboard like there was no tomorrow. Novels, trilogies even whole serialisations – great tomes of storytelling grandeur would spill from the creative forge of my mind, finding form in the written word.

Whole bookshops and libraries would be filled by the outpourings of my creativity.

But I’m stuck with these lousy one hundred words… And what the hell can you do with that?

You can’t even write a half decent dabble with just a


If only I had a moment, one single moment…
I would close my eyes and listen to the languid swooshing of the old windmill.
I would be a seagull for a moment, one single moment, and feel the wind under my wings.
I would sway softly in a soothing flight of sheer weightlessness. I would be suspended in mid-air.
And I would forget everything. I would forget time. I would forget pain. I would forget the struggle.
I would just fly in a motionless sense of abandonment.
I would close my eyes and listen to that one single effortless moment.


It’s not the first time that you’ll have found me, surrounded by the aftermath of my handy work, and yet looking strangely discontent.

You’d imagine that I’d be more than happy with my achievements – based on the sheer quantities of blood, guts and gore alone… But, if I’m honest, it’s really not enough.

You see, it’s just a little too transitory. I simply don’t have the luxury of lingering a while to enjoy the macabre show: That would be foolish and irresponsible.

And always, that same irritating voice in my head. “If only I had thought to bring a camera!”


No Regrets, Maybe One or Two

If I had to catalog all my galactic bad choices the mere index would take up a book shelf. But I guess the supreme “If only I had …” would have to have been following the siren’s call of Donald Henry Segretti. Though I didn’t end up in jail, so many had, I did become persona non grata in Republican circles. If only I had joined the merry band of Carl Rove I would have walked the hall of power like a god. And most likely become a major ass hole. Still it would have been one hell of a ride.


If I Only had a Tank
by Jeffrey Fischer

Commuting in the DC metro area is a game with no good moves. Public transportation is a joke and driving any distance is both scary and an exercise in frustration. Oh, and parking in DC itself is eye-wateringly expensive.

If I only had a tank, the commute would improve. I’m sure of it. No one would cut me off on the highway – well, not more than once as the .50 caliber machine gun would remove the offender from the road. Once on the surface streets, I wouldn’t be the one worried about scrapes and dings. And you know where you park a tank? That’s right, anywhere you want to. Who cares if it burns 50 gallons of fuel each way and costs more than $8 million? We’ll be traveling in style!


If Only…


Jon DeCles

If only I had jumped in the car and taken off when I saw her coming across the parking lot: but she looked so different; and Sociopaths are always charming. If I had let my brain uncover the horrible memories of damage to other couples… But Social Predators are graceful in their lies. In retrospect, I fell a second time into her web of surgical razors, this time the central victim rather than a secondary fool. She enticed me to dependency, then despondency, and then I found myself powerless, observing.

If only I had killed her then and there.


Billbert clung to a tree branch forty feet above the school yard, hoping no one would look up and see him.
Naked, except for a loincloth made from a plastic grocery bag he wondered how he had allowed himself to be tricked into this situation.
No one did this at his last middle school. Why did he believe Roderick that everyone did it on their first day at this school?
“If only I had superpowers, I could fly away,” Billbert said, though he knew it was an empty wish. “Maybe I should jump. I can’t be embarrassed if I’m dead.”


Weekly Challenge for Feb 11th 2018 with the topic of “If only I had…”
by Dr. Alex

“I’m getting the band back together!” was my usual rally cry for the for the past month.

“Yes, yes, I know” was Seth’s usual reply.

Reviewing this week’s progress with Seth, “We have Alice set on maracas. Justin likes his high hat. Rachel on xylophone. Now, if only I had a kazoo player.”

“Seth! Really!? I didn’t know you knew how to play this whole time!”

Three weeks later, we were booked for a Thursday evening performance at the Tropicana.

Clearly, this had been some sort of a scheduling error, or a perhaps cruel joke by the departing events manager.


If only I had jumped when they all had. I would be soaring above in
the clouds with a pair of angel wings, the sound of my joyous laughter
ringing in the air. If only I had not been afraid. I didn’t have the
faith needed to follow the masses and blindly drop off the cliff. It
was insane. I tried to find someone who would side with me but I was
alone. Now, I’m alone, staring down at the pit of lava below as the
earth rumbles underneath me and I know I will be tossed into the


If only I had…

Disneyland doesn’t have employees, they have cast members. Everyone from Goofy to that guy selling mouse ears are actors. Even the girl taking your ticket for the teacup ride has a back story.

If only I had fit the Mickey costume. I could have stood around waving and taking pictures with vacationing families and drunk college girls.

Instead, my character is a janitor. A pirate janitor. A pirate janitor with an eye for the ladies and an eye patch on the other eye. That eye used to be my eye for the ladies, but that’s a story for another time.


If only I had…


There was a knight of Arthur’s band

Who did great deeds by strength of hand

But no wise would he be content

Till Guinevere lay in his tent.

Disloyalty was his downfall

Without which he had had else all

“If only I had Guinevere”

Quoth he, “there’s nought else I hold dear.”

But all men know how that turned out

In Caxton’s book of Arthur’s Morte.

If Lancelot had not been false

Then things had not come to this pass.

But even in the courts of kings

Man’s fatal defect evil brings

And that’s why we can’t have nice things.



Some people think that flu shots give you the flu.
For years, I’d get a flu shot, and feel bad afterwards.
So, this year, I didn’t get a flu shot.
And I got the flu. The real flu.
Not just feeling bad afterwards kind of feeling bad.
The real flu. The coughing, sneezing, vomiting, chills and fevers, shitting your guts out flu.
I crawl on the floor, covered in a blanket, leaving a trail of tissues and God knows what else.
Clutching the empty orange juice container to my aching chest, moaning “I’ll get one next year!” over and over.

Weekly Challenge #615 – Why Not?

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

This is the Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.

We’ve got stories by:



GOODBYE (Please Tiger)

Goodbyes are difficult. From getting dumped by text message, to just being ghosted. Excuses are all bullshit that become blurry after one realizes the truth of it all.
“Hello Mom, Pick up its me.”
“Hey Dude, its me again, Please pickup.”
“I’m sorry to bother you, but I need to talk to someone, anyone… even you.”
“Hi, Call me back bro, if you want.”
“Whoever listens to this, I don’t blame anyone, it’s what I needed to do. Please tell mom I love her and I’ll always be her little tiger cub.”


I was rubbish in the scouts. I hated camping, orienteering, gang shows and all that other nonsense.

As for earning badges: I was the least decorated boy in the troop.

How ironic, that it was thanks to me one of the most challenging badge tasks ever was created.

I was attempting my knotwork badge, and when I handed my efforts – a terminally tangled mess of rope, never to be untangled again, to the troop leader, he told me… “That’s not how you tie a knot?”

“Why?” I responded.

And that’s how the ultimate knotwork challenge – The Why Knot – was created.


“Why not the head first?” asked Paulie.
“That’s not the way we do it,” replied the boss.
“Why not?”
“Because. Go grab the leg for me and shut up.”
Paulie crossed the yard, grabbed the leg from a bucket, and dragged it back.
“Here.” And he dumped the leg on the kitchen table.
“Hey. Remember the arm.”
The acid would do wonders, but last time he had to deal with an arm, it flipped in such an odd way he didn’t sleep for a whole damn week.
“Why not the head…?”


In To The Words

I’m not inclined to take my clothing off in public, but when camping in the woods with a 100 or so pagans the line between public and semipublic sort of blurs out. And it wasn’t like I got buck naked. I was sort of half-naked. This allow me to keep a close watch on the fire circle without scorching Mr. Happy. Those around me were layering themselves with commercial grade clay. A particular earnest young woman approached with two fist full of clay. Why not, I thought. So I became a member of the Clay Tribe. Damn cold though.


A 100 word story – “Why not?”
By Dr. Alex

Around the bend came the first set of headlights I’d seen since starting this late night hours journey.
The unknown Packard slowed beside me. Yelling out, he called: “Hey, Buddy, need a lift?”
My socks – no dryer than a used kitchen sponge and the blisters about to pop before completing my walk ahead. “Sure,” I said, “why not?”
Then did I notice poking my right hip a bulge in the map holder. “What’s this?” I asked.
“Oh, that pistol it’s just in case I run into trouble.”
I wonder what sort of trouble we were now looking to find.


You know how you sometimes get those feelings? You know… The ones where you toy with the idea of doing away with your partner, bumping off your boss, or wiping out the idiot who just cut you up in the street.

Everyone has them – those flights of fancy when we plan the perfect murder: Rat poison in the pudding; the severed brake pipe; the anonymous stabbing in a dark alleyway.

Don’t pretend that you haven’t.

We all have.

The only real difference between you and me, is that when you say “Why would I?”

I say, “Why not?”


Tell them they’re all special. Make sure there are quotas for those who would otherwise not make the grade. Ensure they can take humanities classes – never mind exposing them to science – and the eliminate the traditional Western history and literature courses because they foster the “patriarchy.” Add Black Studies, Feminist Studies, Queer Studies, insisting that life is nothing but identity politics. Emphasize fantasty concepts such as “queer math,” or 72 genders. Provide safe spaces so students never have to come into contact with a countervailing idea. Tell them that they can change the world, then let them loose into it. Watch society go up in flames.

Why not? What could possibly go wrong?


Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to climb Mount Everest, was asked why he climbed mountains.
His not so famous initial response was, “Why not?”
Vocal environmentalists and human rights activists responded on social media citing many reasons why people should not climb mountains. Such as: The irreversible damage caused to fragile alpine ecosystems, the accumulating detritus of climbing equipment, materials, and human waist, and the exploitation of local indigenous peoples.
Tenzing Norgay, Hillary’s Nepalese Sherpa guide was asked the same question.
His philosophical response, “Because it’s there”, was so much more succinct that Hillary claimed credit for the quote.


Unlike other children at the age of wonder, Dinah’s questions revolved
around why not each time I declined her demands, and what a range of
demands. If my reasoning was not satisfactory to her developing mind,
I felt her wrath. Not some standard child’s tantrum, but fire. Real
fire blazed from Dinah and I would receive the burn. After a year of
dealing with this demonic power, I realized I was ill equipped. I
took little Dinah to the fire station for a no questions asked
abandonment of my child. I mean, they have better tools for dealing
with her.


We selectively bred plants and animals to improve them.
Make them useful. Better.
We gathered bacteria and viruses, tested them, to make medicines.
Why not humans?
The law? Really?
You expect me to believe that?
Once, alterations cost a fortune.
And those who could afford them were above the law.
Now, anyone can afford them.
Which makes it impossible to police them all.
Pure is so rare.
You and me, unaltered.
But we’re not pure.
After all, I’m a copy of you.
Or are you a copy of me?
It doesn’t matter.
After I eliminate you, I’ll be perfect again.

Weekly Challenge #614 – Pick Two January

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

This is the Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.

We’ve got stories by:

Messing with Tinny


Look Away, Please

A crowd gathered near the collapsed bridge. The front part of the truck was stuck on one side of the bridge, the back on the other.
“Icy pavement?”
Heads shook.
“Where’s the driver?”
They checked security cams, interviewed witnesses, searched the truck. Nothing.
“So, no one was driving the truck?”

Elsewhere, monitors showed live images from the accident.
A man adjusted the noose around the woman’s neck.
“Let’s get this tighter.”
She didn’t last long.
The man smiled. Improving his obsolete technological skills opened up a whole new world of possibilities. They would never catch him.


#1 – The Tiger on the Corner

The tiger on the corner
I encountered yesterday
Told me to wear a tie
if I wished to pass that way
Ties are not my thing:
An obsolete, old fashioned style,
But a detour would require me
to walk another mile.
I asked if he’d reconsider his demand,
But his stare – cold as winter – underlined his command.
He smiled a webcam smile,
showing all his teeth
And a shiver passed right through me,
and led to my belief
That I’d be tiger food
if I pushed my luck that night.
So instead of turning left,
I turned that corner right!

#2 – Spank Me!

“Please tie me up”, she whispered, “and spank me with a fresh haddock”.

It wasn’t the most bizarre request she’s made of me, but it was up there with the best of them. What really made it something out of the ordinary was the setting.

Most previous escapades had taken place in the privacy of our own home, apart from one memorable experience at the local swingers’ club, but this was a first for both of us.

The middle of McDonald’s on a Wednesday afternoon!

And where the hell was I going to find a fresh haddock in these surroundings?


Let the Leaf Fall Slowly

Cornered Tiger lifted his hand towards most honorable Obsolete Winter. “Please,” said Tiger. Winter floated to the center of the mat. They locked arms and pressed in fits and starts. The match went back and forth over the hour. Tiger ahead, then Winter ahead both encountered the raging chi of the other’s particular form of deep power. The whole affair was produced on a shoe string budget. No high def cams. Just two webcams that streamed it to a public server in Seoul. In the end the match was a tie, but 50,000,000 viewers rated the match a monumental success.


From the moment you encountered me, your fate was sealed. You knew it as well as I – your death was inevitable, the only question: How you would eventually meet your end.

I thought you deserved special treatment… Not for you the quick, clean end, brought about by piano wire, rope or poison. Neither would you experience the sudden, sharpness of cold steel, or a bullet to the head.

I had something different in store for you – call it poetic justice.

Surrounded by your hunting trophies, shackled and bound… Now the hunter had become the hunted:

Time to release the tiger!


by Jeffrey Fischer

Aviv’s webcam was discretely located in a corner of his bedroom, hidden by stuffed animals. Those who spotted the camera assumed Aviv enjoyed recording his amorous encounters. Aviv was a minor celebrity, known mainly from advertisements. He would have no trouble inviting women to his place.

Susan, a former conquest, who had noticed the webcam too late, hired a burglar to steal the footage. She didn’t want her sighs and moans made public, and thought the opportunity for blackmail too good to pass up. When the thief turned over a thumb drive, Susan was surprised. Aviv did indeed have a fetish. Again and again the camera showed Aviv dressing in a suit and tie, arranging several stuffed animals around a child-sized table, enjoying tea with the animals. All except for the tiger, who didn’t care for tea and sat contemplating a glass of milk while Aviv chattered away.


The Dudelsack
The dudelsack is native to the Jura mountains. It is a protected species nowadays, but in times past it was hunted for its skin. Even then they were rarely encountered, for they are secretive creatures, quick to flee from any disturbance. In winter they hibernate in burrows they dig for the purpose. This was the season when dudelsack hunters would search the hills for their secret dens, and take advantage of their drowsiness to trap the prey without damaging its hide. It was chiefly prized for making Alpine bagpipes, and this is why the German word for bagpipe is Dudelsack.


Barry was a proctologist but not a very good proctologist.

He paid bottom dollar for a failing practice in a low income part of town.

He refused to pay for any newer technology. In fact he would typically use worn out or obsolete tools unless he was cornered and threatened with a law suit.

At one point the ancient proctoscope that came with the practice finally gave up the ghost.

Did Dr. Barry Pokenbottom shell out good money for a new one?


Finding materials in a storage room, he tied a webcam to a broomstick and used that instead.


Jeremy spent the last week preparing himself for battle – tweaking his blank stare after heading advice from his webcam chat room buddies.

He knew he was ready. Then he heard it: “Let’s play Family Feud!”

First to the podium and ready to face off against an exquisite brunette named Sally, little did Jeremy know that she had also prepared. Her with her leopard print slip under her pencil skirt.

Jeremy, however, was not to be undone, for he had chosen well: his tiger striped bow tie that showed proudly.

With a flick of his wrist. Buzzer! “Answer?”

“Banana split!” Ding!


Obsolete and Please

The new GF25 comes out tomorrow. Now nobody likes hearing that their girlfriend is obsolete, but you have to keep up with technology. The “25” is smarter, faster and has a pleasure rating of 89. I can’t even imagine what that’s like.

I’ll probably just take the trade in even though I could get more on Craigslist. I don’t like answering all the questions about scratches and dents and performance problems.

Teaching a new girlfriend is the only drawback. I wish you could download your likes and dislikes from the old one, but the GF25 isn’t compatible with old girlfriends.


Diana liked to point her webcam out the window and stream the scene in her backyard.
The snow, falling through the old willow tree, blanketing the ground in white.
Every now and then, a bright red cardinal at the bird feeder.
It was beautiful. People from around the world watched her webcam’s feed.
So, when the feed vanished, the discussion boards exploded in worry.
What happened to Diana?
And then, eventually, a final screen capture appeared: a girl in a night shirt, hanging from a rope by her neck from the willow tree.
And a knocked-over chair, half-covered with snow.