Weekly Challenge #47 – Glitch

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Welcome to the forty-seventh Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.
The topic this week was selected by Planet Z, and it’s Glitch.
Eleven stories were submitted this week.
No rookies joined in… boo!
And, once again, some disturbing madness from Planet Z.
Go ahead and listen to them by clicking on the grammophone thingy there in the left column and then vote for your favorites (multiple selections are allowed):

Who had the best story of Weekly Challenge #47?
Chris of Platypus Society
Tom from Footnote
Caleb from Black Tie Martini Club
Tabitha from Strangely Literal
Manata from Manata’s Podcast
Elisson from blog d’Elisson
Kelly from Come Let Me Whisper
Lisa from Lemons and Lollipops
To4m from Tom’s Podcast
Ted from Ted’s Podcast
Patti from Smittygal
The Deranged Bard From Planet Z
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com


WE GOTS PRIZES:
I will be sending the winner a prize… it’s a packet containing at least 1 refrigerator magnet and a CD with the archive of the entire 100 word stories podcast. (Well, minus promos and junk)
It is your voting that determines who wins. So listen, vote, and tune in next week to find out who won!


The full text of each story:
CHRIS

“Send Karen in.”
“Karen, you look smashing today. Have a seat we’ve got to talk.”
“Guess who just called me? Steven Jones! That’s right! He absolutely loved your reading and wants to cast you as the lead in his next film. Aren’t you excited?”
“Didn’t I tell you I’d make you a star? You’re on your way baby! Fame, fortune, limos, red carpets, you’re about to hit the big time!”
“And all you got to do to get there, is blow a goat!”
“So?”
“Steven! It’s Karl. Seems we’ve run into another glitch. Yeah, the goat again. Actresses these days.”

TOM

The metro driver charged up the aisle while flinging open the deFib pack catching both paddles in mid stride. The podcaster lay motionless spread eagle halfway down the exitwell clutching at a triple deep fried burrito. She laid paddles to his chest as the unit beeped fully charged. The shock rolled through his body, but it never released the full charge.
“Damn Glitches” scream the driver.
“Look! He’s smiling,” noted a fellow passenger
“Never saw him smile on this bus before.”
Everyone on the bus shook their heads in agreement.
“This is where I get off ,” thought the podcaster.

CALEB

Looks like there’s a goat in the machine
You mean a ghost in the machine?
Naw, I don’t believe in ghosts, that there’s a goat in the machine
Well, I don’t believe in goats. Not in machines anyway. How did a goat get in the machine?
Hopped the fence
We don’t keep the machine behind a fence
No, but we do keep the goat behind a fence. Tried to anyway.
So, what do we do now?
Entice him out, you got a carrot?
No. I thought that’s what this red cape is for
That’s when the machine’s full of bull.

TABITHA

“Your hair is stupid,” the Buffybot smiled.
“Thank you, you’ve said that.” The man sipped his coffee.
Willow and Spike both rushed into the coffee shop, breathless. “There you bloody are.’
“Spike!” Buffybot said smiling larger. She turned, “Willow. You’re my friend and you’re recently gay. This man is stupid.” The Buffybot said pointing. “He looks like Angel.”
“Bloody hell! Willow, didn’t you fix those damn glitches?”
“You said remove… uh… you know…. never said anything about Angel.”
“Spike’s better than Angel.” The Buffybot continued.
Spike paused. “Maybe you don’t have to remove everything.”

MANATA

Sirens blared through the space station. The astronauts could hardly hear their orders. The defense program on the mainframe was failing. This was a complex glitch and now the whole system was in flux.
There were protocols for this, of course. But who could recall them in a state of panic?
General Hutchins did his best, gesturing and shouting commands.
“You” he shouted, pointing at Sigler, “handle the flux.”
Sigler shrugged, not understanding.
“The flux. You.” Hutchins repeated.
“Flux you too!” replied Sigler.
“No, handle the glitch.”
Sigler blinked.
“You. Glitch.” said Hutchins.
“Me?” Sigler replied. “Well you’re a dick!”

ELISSON

Murphy’s Law states that “if anything can go wrong, it will.”
Murphy was right.
Our project, the Highly Localized Hypergraviton Generator, was way too risky to test on Earth. And so we built Moonbase Alpha.
Came time to start it up, everything worked like a charm. We succeeded in creating a submicroscopic black hole. Weighed as much as a mountain, but smaller than an atom.
Then we dropped it.
Fuckin’ thing zoomed straight to the core of the Moon. It’s there now, eating away. In twenty years, it’ll be “Goodnight, Moon.” Forever.
Son of a bitch: There’s always a glitch.

KELLY

Afterwards, Sandra breathed to calm down. No matter how much planning you do, something will always go wrong. The speech was rehearsed. Bad news is hard to give, but she knew it was harder to hear. She was a grown woman and expected a certain level of maturity from her coworkers. That was Sandra’s mistake, because someone actually threw a coffee mug at her as she delivered the news. This act took her by surprise, but only for a moment. She composed herself, drew a smile to her lips and stated, “Glitches and bitches, working here, you run into both.”

LISA

Every time Thad had a date with a new woman, everything seemed to go wrong.
Tonight he forgot his car keys, locked himself out, and even forgot the girl’s address on a slip of paper at work.
But he finally remembered it, hailed a cab, picked her up, and they managed to have a decent meal together. Could the curse be over?
As they began to get amorous a little later, though, his zipper managed to catch on a large chunk of skin.
Thad then made a painful decision: no more women. The bitches were NOT worth the glitches.

to4m

He down the street wondering if something in the he’d just
eaten. He funny.
Not but weeeeeiiirrd funny. Lights down street changing
colors. And occasionally he’d a buzzing in his ear. By the got to
the radio shack he felt better he thought but inside the store the
suddenly went out. When they came back on no one seemed to notice.
On the, ,, front of him he find any blank DVD’s which was his
reason for the trip to the store. They only floppy discs. Back
home he sat down in his chair normal. I should’ve the blue pill.

Ted

A few days ago, I decided to visit an odd friend. I didn’t want to go alone, so I took my sister.
People who know me know NEVER to leave me alone in their houses. Especially when there is food around.
I recently found I had the ability to change my shape, form and overall appearance. So when my host disappeared, I was playing with my newly found powers, “Oh, this looks good”, I would say, and change again.
Unknowingly, I erected a crappy Temple in his backyard. Boy was my friend pissed!
What can I say? Glitches, glitches, glitches…

PATTI

It’s the writer’s oldest trick in the book: when you can’t write, you write about writer’s block. The glitch this week is the topic. What seething spawn of Satan chose that?
I started with a story about a woman who goes to a PETA convention and is losing an awful battle with her impulses, trying not to yell out things like:
Mink keeps you warmer than wool.
A deer in the headlights is good target practice.
Raw goldfish are good in a salad.
But 100 words to explain what she was doing there in the first place?
I give up.

PLANET Z

Our motto is “Accidents Can Be Caused.”
Sure, anybody can bomb a Uranium processing plant, but where’s the fun in that?
We specialize in lethal subtlety.
To you, it looks like someone slipped and broke their neck in the bathroom, but to us, it’s a year’s planning.
My favorite technique is mistranslation. Just a few words changed every-so-slightly, and Tab A goes into Slot C instead of B.
For you, it would mean Junior’s bicycle falls apart in the driveway Christmas Day.
For Tehran, it means a 1 million degree forecast.
How do you say “Oops!” in Farsi?


Thanks to everyone for sending in their stories, and I look forward to what you’ve got to write (and say) next week.
The theme for next week’s Weekly Challenge will be posted shortly.
(In case you’re interested, the new theme music is by Guy David)

Weekly Challenge #46 – The Pit

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Welcome to the forty-sixth Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.
The topic this week was selected by Tom from Footnote, and it’s The Pit.
Twelve stories were submitted this week.
One rookie joined in… yay!
And, once again, some disturbing madness from Planet Z.
Go ahead and listen to them by clicking on the grammophone thingy there in the left column and then vote for your favorites (multiple selections are allowed):

Who had the best story for the Weekly Challenge #46?
The Deranged Bard From Planet Z
Chris of Platypus Society
K-Nine of Dead Dog Walking
Patti from Smittygal
Tom from Footnote
to4m from Stuffcast
Andrew from Dodgeblogium
Laieanna from HodgePodge Point
Ted from Ted’s Podcast
Lisa from Lemons and Lollipops
Elisson from blog d’Elisson
Tabitha from Strangely Literal
Terrence from Never Was
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com


WE GOTS PRIZES:
I will be sending the winner a prize… it’s a packet containing at least 1 refrigerator magnet and a CD with the archive of the entire 100 word stories podcast. (Well, minus promos and junk)
It is your voting that determines who wins. So listen, vote, and tune in next week to find out who won!


The full text of each story:
Z

My name’s Drake.
Welcome to the Iron Fortress.
Behave yourself.
Because, if you’re bad, they throw you in Solitary.
If you’ve been really bad, they throw you into The Pit.
This prison was built over… something.
A gateway to Hell? We’re not sure.
All I know is that guys come back from Solitary, but they don’t come back from The Pit.
Well, not in one piece.
Sometimes, you find a bone or a few fillings around the hole.
The warden doesn’t like it when that happens, because that means despite all the spells and seals, things can still get out.

CHRIS

Gerald ran frantically into Starbucks, right back to the corner booth he had just vacated. There, tucked in between the creases of the vinyl seat, was his journal.
“Whew!” he said.
Gerald often worried someone would read what he wrote in his journal and think he was some sort of psycho. People tend to think that only teenage girls and serial killers write in journals. Luckily, Gerald was neither.
He did keep a woman in a pit in his basement, but he had no plans to kill her. Just as long as she kept telling him that he was pretty.

K-NINE

Darkness was always descending. His soul screamed out
in abysmal loneliness. Hate, fear, loathing and
despair plucked at his very being.
The war had been terrible, brutal and metamorphic.
The destruction had been beyond belief on both sides.
The rebellion had failed and failed miserably.
He gripped his chest and hyperventilated, trying to
regain control of his sanity. Heaven was but a memory
lost. Hell was an eternal constant.
He had been beautiful once. He had been the fairest
among all the multitudes. Beauty, however, is only
skin deep. Evil is unfathomable and eternal. Lucifer
was alone in the pit.

PATTI

“Mama, you know how in the Bible, God tells Abraham to sacrifice his son?”
“Yes, Rachel.”
“What if God told you to kill me. Would you?”
“Rachel, you know we must all do as God commands.”
The little girl’s eyes filled with tears. “But -”
“We are Christians, Rachel, and there are no ‘buts’ when it comes to God. If we don’t obey Him, we will end up in eternal Hell, a pit of fire with the devil and the rest of the sinners.”
Mother tucked Rachel’s covers in, kissed her daughter and turned off the light. “Sleep tight, dear.”

TOM

Danny was lost.
The only landmark was the sideways head and those broken legs.
When Dan got close to the stone king’s head he started laughing.
“That’s not despair,” boomed a disembodied voice.
“Why should I despair?” replied Danny to the talking head.
“Well, you got a choice.
“It could be ironic or literal, depends on your point of view.”
“From my point of view you just look like a joke.”
“A joke, how’s bout the one about the guy standing over a pit?”
“How does it go?”
“In about 3 seconds.”
“wwwwwwwwwwhhhaaaaaaaaat?”
[snnniif]
“Smells like teen spirit to me”

to4m

It was the Pits. This grease pit was a pit of hell. I was up to my
pits in work. My boss with his forehead pitted with chicken pox scars
was always trying to pit us against each other to get as much out of
us as he could; like a pit viper without the venom. The place felt
like a mosh pit. I’d rather be picking peach pits or even cherry pits
for a pie. Or work in the orchestra pit. Or sweaty pitted, a hot day
in the Indy 500 pits chasing pit bulls. … hate these pits.

ANDREW

I felt something in the pit of my stomach as I stood. This site would
be Dante-esque to those who pondered that sort of thing. The humming
of all the computers filled the air in a sort of high-tech cacophony.
A short man accompanied me, “welcome to the guts. We have over 500
firms already: from data farmers to game designers to
cyber-entrepeneurs. Some stay for a few days at a time, others have
never left.”
The entire island, baring the heliport and boat ramp, was covered by
this great building.
I’d reached heaven. “I’ll take one.” I said.

LAIEANNA

“There! This one’s perfect. No one knows his business like I do. I
should venture out to new locations for selling my service. In this
day and age, I am invaluable. Bloody hell! Do you mind? I’m not
done working down here. Can’t that all wait? Maybe I’ll head east
after this job. Surely there are kingdoms there that could benefit
from my abilities. Just need proof of my expertise. Oh! Excuse me
sir, could you sign this testimonial about the quality and pain
inflicted from my skillfully crafted stakes? It’ll really help put
Pits and Sticks on the map.”

TED

In all my years on the job, I never thought I’d come up against something so awful. So disgusting. This thing.. “The Pit” as it would become known in the journals, held many horrible secrets. I had already retrieved two hubcaps, and a boat anchor. God knows what I would find next.
Elbow deep, I felt something familiar. Yes. A human hand. The cold dead flesh was unmistakable. What happened? How could such an awful thing come to pass? As I gently pulled it toward daylight, I kept asking myself one question. “Why did I have to become a proctologist?”

LISA

War-painted faces and blood-curling howls were seen and heard by the prisoners in “the pit”. Bodies were flying everywhere. Filthy and covered in sweat, she tried to ignore the screeching and the stench.
Some of the “pit-prisoners” were there because of devotion, others out of some misguided sense of duty. She was one who had regretted enlisting herself for this “tour”.
She didn’t belong here, she longed to be safe back at home.
Why had she let herself be talked into this?
A date with Kevin O’Connor was NOT worth the experience of the mosh pit at a Korn concert.

ELISSON

Harry knew Monday was going to be rough; he felt it in the pit of his stomach when he woke up.
At the bus stop, a pit bull grabbed his ankle: man pitted against beast. Fortunately, Harry won, albeit with a torn trouser leg.
On the bus, he remembered that he had neglected his deodorant. A quick armpit-whiff confirmed it. He scowled.
Working an open-pit coal mine was no picnic. After a brutal morning, Harry broke for lunch. Hummus on pita bread. A pit in his cherry pie cracked a molar.
Crap, he thought. Some days are just the pits.

TABITHA

The pit was massive. Zoe and Jayne watched as Mal descended into it using a system of ropes Kaylee, engineer extraordinary, put together.
“Cap’n?”
“Shiny Zoe, nothing to fret.” Mal, sounded more hopeful then he felt.
At the bottom of it was his trusty pistol. He couldn’t expect to leave this moon without it.
“The gun can be replaced.” Zoe called down. Jayne snarled. “No it can’t!”
Zoe’s withering stare didn’t stop Jayne from asserting, “Guns over people.”
“Some got a shovel?” Mal called up. “Think that steaming heap from last week is down here.”

TERRENCE

The flames burned and the screams echoed. After talking with his
brother he thought that he might have been a bit harsh on the
podcaster. He walked up to a man with black burnt skin flaking off of
him. Raoul didn’t know if it was good or bad that the man couldn’t
die again.
“Damn people can’t record their own stories,” the man muttered, “and
where is that damn midget.”
“He’ll be joining you soon enough,” Raoul said to him, “and apology
accepted.” Raoul paused. “You did know that you would end up in the
pits of hell eventually, right?”


Thanks to everyone for sending in their stories, and I look forward to what you’ve got to write (and say) next week.
The theme for next week’s Weekly Challenge will be posted shortly.
(In case you’re interested, I’ve settled on “Clair de Lune” as the opening music and “Moonshine” by Michael Oldfield from the Tubular Bells II album… but new theme music is coming from Guy David)

Weekly Challenge #45 – The Steaming Heap

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Welcome to the forty-fifth Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.
The topic this week was selected by Elisson from Blog d’Elisson, and it’s The Steaming Heap.
Twelve stories were submitted this week.
Two rookies joined in… yay!
And, once again, some disturbing madness from Planet Z.
Go ahead and listen to them by clicking on the grammophone thingy there in the left column and then vote for your favorites (multiple selections are allowed):

Who had the best story in the Weekly Challenge #45?
Tom from Footnote
Mike from Mike Thinks
Tabitha from Strangely Literal
Lisa from Lemons and Lollipiops
Elisson of Blog d’Elisson
Terry from Never Was
Patti from Smitty Gal
Laieanna from HodgePodge Point
Ted from Ted’s Podcast
Andrew of Dodgeblogium
K-Nine of Dead Dog Walkin’
to4m
The Deranged Bard Of Planet Z
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com


WE GOTS PRIZES:
I will be sending the winner a prize… it’s a packet containing a pair of refrigerators magnet and a CD with the archive of the entire 100 word stories podcast. (Well, minus promos and junk)
It is your voting that determines who wins. So listen, vote, and tune in next week to find out who won!


The full text of each story:
TOM

There are jobs destine to go to the young.
They are physical and as a class tend
to be offensive to the orafactorial sensibilities.
Mr. Russell directed John to the shingled shed,
handed him a shovel.
“To the floor,” he said
It was dead winter but the vapors
of the steaming heap danced in the air.
Fifty years of newspapers.
Rain on peed on and pooped on.
Chemical reactions from fermentation to
fractional distillations possibly even
nuclear fission gave the heap a core temperature.
John laid shovel to its skin.
Beneath was a blacker steamer goop.
John lost his lunch

MIKE JAMES

Tom stood still, just staring. Maybe it wasn’t as bad as it seemed,
but no, he knew it would be. The chilly air made it seem even less
agreeable than usual. It was early, it was quiet, perhaps no one had
even noticed. Salvation seemed so close. Just then, Agnes’s door
opened. As she walked past Tom to her mailbox the look in her
eyes was more than enough to signal that it was too late.
Tom bent over, baggie in hand, and picked up the warm steaming heap.
He waived to Agnes, as he and His dog walked on.

TABITHA

“What is it?” Willow said, looking up at Giles.
“Dunno,” Giles adjusted his glasses, leaning in closer he made a horrible face.
“It ain’t no blooming rose garden.” Spike grumbled.
Buffy watched it cautiously. “How can I slay something like that?”
All of them stood dumbfounded while Clem chortled with glee. Finally Anya stepped in from her weekly counting of money. “Why aren’t you all buying something?”
Xander pointed at the spectacle lying on the floor of the Magic Box store.
Anya looked at it, then shrugged. “You humans always impressed by a steaming pile of demon excrement.”

LISA

Marcel had aspirations to play on the varsity hockey team, but the only position he made the cut for was waterboy. Disappointed, but wanting desperately to be part of the team, he took his duties seriously. He always arrived early for each game and was last to leave, cleaning up after everyone.
When Marcel didn’t come home by 10:30, his family became concerned. By midnight, they called the police. A school-wide search began and the dogs were brought in. They were able to sniff out poor Marcel, who was found knocked unconscious under the still-steaming heap of putrid hockey gear.

ELISSON

“It’s been years now, but I’ll never forget when we tried to rescue Ann from that giant ape.
“A bunch of us came along with Driscoll. He had seen Kong grab Ann and knew we had no time to lose.
“Skull Island? Horrible. Dinosaurs, swamps, and a ravine fulla giant bugs! I still get the sweats thinking about it.
“Anyhow, it was pretty easy to track that monkey. Every couple hundred yards, there’d be a steaming heap of Ape-Shit.
“But when we saw the blond hair in that last heap – why, that’s when we turned around and went home.”

TERRENCE

“What is that?” The cloaked figure said.
“What?” Raoul looked up at his brother on the ashen horse.
“The steaming heap,” The figure raised a thin arm and pointed behind Raoul.
Innocently Raoul looked over his shoulder at the unidentifiable mass a
short distance behind him. He turned back to his brother and
shrugged.
“I do not have the time for this.” He checked the list in his hand.
“So what did this Simon do?”
“Not returning emails, misspelling names.”
“And what is that thing?” Raoul turned again.
“That?” Raoul smiled. “Is a former sex slave midget, dancing with joy.”

PATTI

Joel knew his arm was broken, badly; shock was setting in.
“Broken … arm,” he mumbled to the Emergency Room clerk.
“Have a seat; we’ll call you,” she said.
Pulling up his sleeve, he shoved his mangled arm inches from the clerk’s face. The fractured bones overlapped each other beneath the skin, shortening his arm by at least four inches and giving it a “Z” shape.
“Look at this shit,” he yelled, “I’ll be seen RIGHT FUCKING NOW!” And he collapsed.
They found him covered in a steaming heap of the clerk’s vomit; it was her first and last day in the ER.

LAIEANNA

It worked! When a steaming heap of…well, no need to be graphic,
poured out of his mouth, I wanted to puke. He was so freaked out. He
wouldn’t stop babbling and more stuff plopped onto his clothes. I
laughed, but a small part of me felt guilty. I left for awhile and
when I returned he was still talking to himself. The smell was
overwhelming. I handed him a sign language book. Now that the curse
had taken place, I figured he needed to find a new way to spew his
shit when he’s hitting on women in the bar.

TED

The medical examiner was silent. I still say he was a loss for words. There is absolutely NO excuse for any human being to morph into what he saw here before him.
She lay before him, bloated and stinky. What was once the American dream, the desire of most red blooded American males, now was nothing more than worm food. Let the worms have their way with her.
Drugs, alcohol, old men, internet porn.. It was obvious that she had indulged in them all,. Here she was, cold and dead, a steaming heap of goo..
We’ll miss you, Anna Nicole.

DODGE

The steaming pile filled the air that not only smelled of excrement,
rubbish and braken but left a taste in one’s mouth that was foul just
by standing near it.
The policeman who stood next to me could barely keep is dour face
straight. To open his mouth to speak to me was to gag.
I was here to see the bloated shape that lay below us the body look
humanoid, the large head and obviously webbed hands & feet saw to
that.
A creature of fiction lay there…in reality. The proximity to my flat
worried me intensely…they knew me…

K-NINE

Colonel Stratton was a cavalry officer first and
foremost. He rode a gallant steed all across France
in the First World War. The Army was his life, but
here in Europe during the latest global conflict, he
was starting to hate the changes of the last twenty
five years.
Once, he had ridden his horse through thick woods,
through muddy fields of bogged down artillery.
He stared at the broken broom handle that pierced the
radiator of his Jeep, the engine sputtered, and he did
the only thing an old horse soldier knew to do. He
shot the steaming heap.

to4m

Superbowl Sunday. The Guys would be there soon . I had to get the
yard work finished although it was freezing cold outside. I quietly
resented my teenage boy staying late getting high. He should’ve been
the one out there in the cold.. When brought it up to the wife she’d
say I was being too harsh on the boy. I found myself working my anger
out in the yard work. Especially with the wood chipper that is until
I slipped and as I had my first and last out of body experience I
saw a steaming heap of me.

Z

Linda looked at the menu and pointed at “The Steaming Heap.”
“It sounds like it’s describing… well, a pile of fresh horse crap,” she said to the waiter.
“It’s dumplings,” said the waiter.
“Oh, okay,” she said. “I guess I’ll have those.”
Fifteen minutes later, the waiter brought out a platter with a steaming heap of fresh dumplings.
“Enjoy,” he told her.
Linda speared one with a fork, tipped it into the bowl of ginger-and-soy dip, and took a bite.
She swallowed it before she realized the flavor in her mouth was, indeed, steamed horse crap. (With ginger and soy.)


Thanks to everyone for sending in their stories, and I look forward to what you’ve got to write (and say) next week.
The theme for next week’s Weekly Challenge will be posted shortly.
(In case you’re interested, I’ve settled on “Clair de Lune” as the opening music and “Moonshine” by Michael Oldfield from the Tubular Bells II album.)

Weekly Challenge #44 – Whiffle Balls

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Welcome to the forty-fourth Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.
The topic this week was selected by Ted from Ted’s Podcast, and it’s Whiffle Balls.
Eleven stories were submitted this week.
More of the Smith Family joined in as rookies!… yay!
An interview with Tom of Footnote about his story!
And, once again, some disturbing madness from Planet Z.
Go ahead and listen to them by clicking on the grammophone thingy there in the left column and then vote for your favorites (multiple selections are allowed):

Who had the best story in the 44th Weekly Challenge?
Elisson of blog d’Elisson
to4m
Clayton
Tom from Footnote
Patti the SmittyGal
Caleb from The Black Tie Martini Club
Andrew from Dodgeblogium
Laieanna from HodgePodge Point
Houston Keys from Tater Tots For The Masses
Ted from Ted’s Podcast
Terrence from Never Was
The Mad Bard Known As Planet Z
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com


The winner will determine the next topic in the series.
WE GOTS PRIZES:
I will be sending the winner a prize… it’s a packet containing a round refrigerator magnet, a rectangular refrigerator magnet and a CD with the archive of the entire 100 word stories podcast. (Well, minus promos and junk)
Normally, it is your voting that determines who wins. But this week, I’m going ahead and giving them out to all participants, past and present. Send me your address via email and I’ll mail it out the packet to you.
But the offer is open to people who respond this week and this week only.


The full text of each story:
ELISSON

Dr. Cox never missed an opportunity to harass the new first-year residents.
As he led the group of newbies on rounds, he made a point of seeking out patients with the most revolting, horrific conditions. Mrs. Finster, a 300-pound woman with a prolapsed rectum. Mr. Jones, who suffered from the increasingly rare Hansen’s disease. Leprosy had eaten away half his face. Nonetheless, the residents were unfazed.
But when they saw the guy in 303B, half of them retched on the spot. His scrotum was perforated, a mass of weeping sores.
Cox laughed inwardly. Wiffle balls – gets ’em every time.
[Please note that the WIFFLE® Ball is a registered trademark of The Wiffle Ball Inc., Shelton, Connecticut.]

to4m

Having left home in her parallel universe, every day was a challenge.
After her physics class project went awry she found herself trying to make sense of her exceedingly similar new world. She was able to speak and understand the language but it was the subtle differences that were so difficult. She was used to celebrating the mid winter not with
trees and material gifts but with loving gestures. There were the elbow rubs, which the people of the new world didn’t mind but it was the ball whiffing that confused the men and got her arrested

CLAYTON

The warm Sun shone down on Cedar Park, Texas, the small field, the thousands of spectators, and little Timmy. Timmy stood in the batter’s box, plastic yellow bat in hand. This was the national whiffle ball championship, and he was going to win the distance competition. The warnings from family and friends that he was too small and too weak, that he would embarrass himself, did not discourage him. He had mowed endless lawns for 2 summers, saving every penny for the entry fee.
This was his one chance, his dream, and he believed in himself. A full two weeks after his body was found hanging from the ceiling fan, Timmy’s mother was still locked in her room mumbling to herself “Four feet, four inches, the shortest hit in history. Why didn’t he listen? Why?”

TOM

Brother Liberwitz moved away from the edge of the excavation. A 1000 years ago this had been Connecticut. At the bequest of the Duke of Montreal the good brother had begun the great work of locating the reliquary.
Liberwitz had never actually held any of the relics. From the manuscripts he had pieced together a ruff description and a crude test of authenticity. It glowed in his hand. The holy markings matched the Illuminations. To the horror of the monks he through the relic across the field. It curved and whistled. The monks chanted “Wiffle ball wiffle ball whiffle ballallallallall”

ANDREW

“Wiffle ball?” He paused, ” Does it have anything to do with a crushed
testicle? Or something gay men do…”
“What?” I replied, “What the hell are you on about mate? How did
testicles show up in this conversation?”
“What pray tell is a wiffle ball then?” He asked flustered.
“Well beside a rubbish topic to write about it’s a plastic ball that
children learn to baseball with so they don’t brain each other.” I
replied.
“Ah yes, your equivalent of health & safety have banned real baseballs
for under 10s I guess?”
“Probably, they tend to meddle in everything.”

PATTI

Mother thought it unladylike for me to play ball with the boys. Basketball, football, whiffle ball … it didn’t matter; it was too dirty, too rough, and having a tomboy for a daughter was not in Mother’s plan.
“You’ll get your good shoes dirty.”
“But I’m wearing my Keds.”
“You’ll p-p-perspire.” She looked faint.
“I’ll take a shower before bed,” I yelled, slamming the front door and running down the street to where the boys gathered.
A few minutes later Mother appeared, looking very disappointed.
“Mom,” I said, stomping my foot, “I’m 46 years old, let me play!”

CALEB

You see that faded antebellum mansion there? It’s long abandoned but that used to be the whiffle estate. One time, they was the most celebrated family around. You see, the lord blessed them with many children but nary an heir. So they used to have coming out parties year after year. Now they was charming girls, bright and well mannered but they never did marry somehow. They just kept throwing coming out parties.
The last one died a couple years ago left the whole estate for anyone who would bring back those magnificent whiffle balls she missed from her youth.

LAIEANNA

I’m going to vent. If you suffered with my shit on the Valentine’s Special, here’s why.
I was stupidly under the impression it was going to be full of 100 stories. So I asked how many to send, response was “I’ll take as much as you got.” I asked if I should take out the intros or send text copies (Still thinking 100 stories) Response? Nothing! Who’s to blame? None other than Laurence whatever middle initial Simon. Now, I’m not typically mean so if I ever meet Laurence in person, I will throw a whiffle ball right at his head.

HOUSTON KEYS

Marge – Mr. Burns, I need to talk to you.
Burns – Smithers! Who is this saucy blue haired lass?
Smithers – Simpson sir, wife of Homer Simpson in sector Seven G.
Burns – Simpson eh? Fetch the hounds Smithers!
Marge – I can hear you!
Burns – Oh, very well. What is it?
Marge – Well Mr. Burns, my Homie has been having a problem lately. He can’t… You know.
Burns – No, I don’t.
Marge – Well, uh.
Burns – Spit it out woman! These genetically engineered organs of mine aren’t getting any younger!
Marge – He can’t, you know, perform.
Burns – Ah, Excellent. He has “Whiffle Balls.” Fetch me my blue pills Waylon.
Smithers – With pleasure Sir!
Burns – Not for me Smithers! For Simpson!

TED

I got the call at 5am. It’s never a good sign when Don Giovanni sends for you. My heart pounding in my chest, I flagged down a cab and gave my destination.
As I arrived, I wasn’t greeted by the usual niceties I had been used to since I became a made guy.
My last job was easy. All I had to do was grab some whiffle balls and mail them to the Charmin Toilet paper Company.
“I trust you did that which I asked of you?” said Giovanni. “You mailed those guys both of Mr. Whipple’s balls?

TERRANCE

The dogged bounced around my legs with joy. His tail wagged so fast it was a blur. I looked around for the owner but the park was empty.
“Get out of here.” I yelled.
The dog stopped and looked up at me with large brown eyes. It dropped a ball at my feet and barked. I reached down and picked the ball out. I looked at ball and then threw it as hard as I could; the ball few about ten feet before hitting the ground.
“If I find the man that invented whiffle balls, He will eat that ball.”

Z

Susan dropped the dodgeball in the back yard.
“You will be the sun,” she said to it, smiling proudly.
She was going to be an astronomer. Or an astronaut.
Many seven year-olds have those dreams.
Few went to such lengths, though.
Susan looked at her notebook, and placed other balls around the dodgeball to represent planets.
She had to sneak outside of the fence for the whiffle ball Juipter.
A tennis ball marked Saturn sat in the Nelson’s lawn.
The next day, the police found Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto in the street.
They never found Susan. Or her dreams.


Thanks to everyone for sending in their stories, and I look forward to what you’ve got to write (and say) next week.
The theme for next week’s Weekly Challenge will be posted shortly.
(In case you’re interested, I’ve settled on “Clair de Lune” as the opening music and “Moonshine” by Michael Oldfield from the Tubular Bells II album.)

Valentines Day Special

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I shot my promo into the air.
Where it would play, I knew not where.
But fourteen arrows came flying back.
I swear, y’all gave me a heart attack

This is the Valentine’s Day Special at 100 Word Stories Podcast, brought to you by… you!
Thanks to everyone who sent in a story.

(and the Deranged Bard From Planet Z!)
If you’d like, we can do these special holiday editions every so often in addition to weekly challenges if y’all want.
Or not.
Anyway, here’s the stories, and I think you’re going to enjoy the hell out of them:


ELISSON

I was not quite ten when I fell in love for the first time.
We were visiting my grandparents in Miami, where they kept a mountain of old Reader’s Digests. It was in their yellowed pages that I met her.
She was a twelve-year-old Catholic girl from a small Quebec town. My heart melted when I saw her. She had sandy hair and wore glasses. She was adorable, and I fell hopelessly in love.
Hopelessly.
My love would never be, could never be, reciprocated. She had died of leukemia.
Forty-five years later, the thought of her still breaks my heart.

TABITHA

I am happy. After months of searching, fruitless dating and throwing money away at eharmony I have found the love of my life. My boyfriend. He is warm, snuggly, handsome, brave. He likes stirring up trouble and doesn’t mind when I don’t always look my best. He is the best boyfriend a girl could ask for. He can be a bit lazy, but it’s in these times he shows himself truly romantic.
So this valentine’s day I won’t be alone like countless ones before now. I have my cat. Wait, did I forget to mention my cat’s name is Myboyfriend?

TOM

Louie handed Sister Mary Henry a red construction paper heart.
“Will you be my Valentine?”
“I’m your teacher.” Said the Nun.
Louie looked confused.
“I’m a Nun.” She replied.
Louie’s expression remained.
“Louis I am so much old then you sweet boy.”
He was unshaken by all arguments
so the sister took a different tacked.
“I will be your Valentine if you make the same beautiful heart for
all the other children.”
30 years later Cardinal Louise LaCore receive his noble for his work in Africa Sister Henry stood by his side in hand
a frail construction paper heart.

KELLY BURT

Love can be questionable for some and absolute for others. It can be shortly defined or if you are lucky–often demonstrated.
For me, love is not an item to be wrapped with bow and displayed for all to judge its worth. It’s the unexpected kiss, a wink from across a crowded room. It’s really having the valentine feeling on any day of the year. It’s the way my “valentine” makes me feel. So, here we find ourselves at yet another commercial holiday. Thankfully, I find myself loved and not at the return counter of lost love. Thank you, Russell.

PATTI

Valentine’s Day was different on Earth; she was still trying to get used to it. Red hearts, candies, flowers. It made no sense. What did this all have to do with The Valentine Day?
She grew wistful remembering home. How the single men would prepare for weeks with a diet of raw vegetables and fresh corn. On the special day, a man would produce the most beautiful dung mound, wrap it in brown paper, and leave the package aflame on his intended’s doorstep. It was all in good fun, but plenty of matches made in heaven started that way.

TED

She told me she wanted it to be a “special” Valentines Day. She said she was ready to give me her heart. Honestly, nobody had ever really done that before.
How would I handle that? I mean, I believe that for someone to truly give their heart to another person, well.. It MUST be love. Real love.
How could I say no? Hadn’t I been waiting for this my whole life? I gladly accepted her gift to me. The time had come. She was ready, I was ready. With eager anticipation, I took her heart.. With a fucking chainsaw…

JUSTIN and AMANDA

So, what you want for valentines day, hon?
I dunno
How about chocolate?
No. I look like a cow as it is!
If so then you’re the sexiest cow I’ve ever seen.
Whatever.
Hey, I think that’s our song! Care to dance?
Why not.
Steve?
Yes, Tina.
You don’t have to get me anything. These last seven months have been amazing, Having you is all I could ever want.
You sure?
As sure as I can be. Just come over to my place and DON’T bring the video camera this time.
As long as you promise you won’t moo.
Deal.

HOUSTON KEYS

I’m the banjo playing midget Laurence keeps in his basement. I have a confession to make.
Everyone thinks I hang around here to read the literary masterpieces submitted every weekend. Does anyone think I want to read any more of that crap Houston writes?
What kind of name is that anyway? It sounds like a string of islands from downtown. The goofball lives in Dallas. How stinking confusing.
I’m here for my one true love, Laurence Simon.
“I love you midget.”

Weekly Challenge #43 – Staff Of Life

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Welcome to the forty-third Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.
The topic this week was selected by Elisson from blog d’Elisson, and it’s Staff Of Life.
Eight stories were submitted this week. We’re melting! Melting!
No rookies joined in, but a few recent rookies have been making up for absent veterans… yay!
And, once again, some disturbing madness from Planet Z.
Go ahead and listen to them by clicking on the grammophone thingy there in the left column and then vote for your favorites (multiple selections are allowed):

Who had the best story in Weekly Challenge #43?
Caleb from Black Tie Martini Club
Elisson of blog d’Elisson
Tom from Footnote
Terrence from Never Was
Laieanna from HodgePodge Point
Caroline from Quadra
Kelly Burt from Come Let Me Whisper
K Nine from Dead Dog Walkin
The Twisted Bard of Planet Z
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com


WE GOTS PRIZES:
I will be sending the winner a prize… it’s a packet containing at least 1 refrigerator magnet and a CD with the archive of the entire 100 word stories podcast. (Well, minus promos and junk)
It is your voting that determines who wins. So listen, vote, and tune in next week to find out who won!


The full text of each story:
ELISSON

For years, the magazine was Required Reading in almost every American home.
It became a national icon after adopting its new photojournalism format in 1936. Covering everything from the momentous to the mundane, its renowned photographers – Edward Steichen and Alfred Eisenstaedt among them – filled its pages with Pulitzer prize-winning pictures.
But now it was 1972, and the tastes of America had changed. Sales plummeted.
Henry Luce called his employees in to give them the bad news. He couldn’t afford to pay them.
How ironic, he thought. It simply took too much bread to maintain the staff of /Life/.

TOM

I pretty much lived at the Staff of Life for three years. The bakery was owned and run by surfers, thus an extremely loose work ethic. When Wayne and I took over the shipping operation our Chicago ways rattled the Santa Cruz sensibilities. We worked 14 hours shifts and once we craved out a work space we guarded it violently. It wasn’t uncommon to see signage saying “Touch this and die.” And “Put anything on this shelf we’ll break your fucking fingers.” We were bad asses in the land of pauchlee. Where we walked whispers, “There goes Mr. Bad Vibes.”

TERRENCE

I bet you don’t know this but I have been written out of the book.
That’s right me, Raoul have been written out. I bet you’re wondering
why?
Well, back in the day, I was the only one that had one and I knew how
to use it. I had that little lady hanging off my finger. One day,
after our encounter, I gave her a snack. Well that little tramp took
one bite and ran off to share it with him. This upset the guy
upstairs and after throwing them out, he gave every man the staff of
life.

LAIEANNA

“Here’s the primary part of our facility.”
“Quite an establishment you guys developed.”
“We had to change with the times. There are a lot more people in this
world than when we first started and we’re not getting any younger.
It just became to much for the three of us to handle. Our staff is
fully trained in each of the duties, and we offer a great benefit for
our employees.”
“You mean benefits.”
“No, benefit…immortality. What more do you need?”
“Oh! Do I qualify to work at Fates Incorporated? I always wanted to
put people’s lives into my hands.”

CARRIE

My name it aint nothing, said Moses when God asked him to lead the children of Israel out. Zipporah quickly zipped off Gershom’s foreskin to appease Him, and saved the day. Moses threw his staff onto the floor, it turned into a snake. Pharaoh’s magicians did the same- He took the staff of life and hit the Nile. Blood everywhere. The magician’s copied. Moses stretched out his staff over the waters, frogs covered the land. The magician’s copied. Then flies, boils, hail, dead sheep. “Why can’t we do that,” cried the magicians.
“See what you can do when God’s on your side.” Replied Moses.

K NINE

“Guardian Angel Number Three reporting… That was a
close one”
K-nine had almost stepped out in front of a speeding
cab, but then had to stop to scratch his ankle at the
curb. As he blissfully wandered down Austin’s 6th
Street, Angel Five made him crave a hamburger just
before he bought a ptomaine tainted hotdog from a
street vendor. Angel Two arranged for a huge biker to
walk back into a bar before K-nine winked at said
biker’s girlfriend. Angels One and Four rested before
their shift. It was a tough job being on this
particular Staff of Life.

CALEB

Once a year they square off in secret, The Staff of Life Magazine and the Staff of Life Cereal. The game they play is ancient and deadly, similar to soccer or rugby but played with a human head.
The prize? The winners win the Staff Of Life Staff Of life trophy. They also get to sacrifice and eat the flesh of the losers.
They used to just play for beers after the game but ever since Mikey grew up and became team captain it’s gotten increasingly gruesome. You know Mikey, he’ll eat anything. He likes it. He really likes it!

KELLY BURT

It’s never good when a child realizes that they are cooler than an older sibling, but for Katie, it was mortifying.
She never knew of this less-than-attractive life her older brother lived. She didn’t know that there were secrets that should have been kept.
She won’t ever forget the scene set before her. The dice, books, and was that a G.M.? Alas, what will be etched in her memory forever is her brother pretending to resurrect a dead elvish maiden, “Live damn you. I call upon the Staff of Life.”
“What a geek,” said Katie, shaking her head.

Z

“Give us now our daily bread,” chanted the room full of monks, heads bowed over the tables in the dining hall.
One stood up. “Johnson got a high score in DDR last night!” he shouted.
All the other monks stood up and cheered, and Johnson was raised to their shoulders in a victory lap around the dining hall.
The abbot thumped his cane on the floor and scowled at the raucous mealtime disruption.
The cheering stopped.
“Return to your seats!” growled the venerable leader.
He’d have to bust some seriously wicked moves to get the honor of high score back.


Thanks to everyone for sending in their stories, and I look forward to what you’ve got to write (and say) next week.
The theme for next week’s Weekly Challenge will be posted shortly.
(In case you’re interested, I’ve settled on “Clair de Lune” as the opening music and “Moonshine” by Michael Oldfield from the Tubular Bells II album.)

Weekly Challenge #42 – Toothache

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Welcome to the forty-second Weekly Challenge, where I post a topic and then challenge you to come up with a 100 word story based on that topic.
The topic this week was selected by Elisson from blog d’Elisson, and it’s Toothache.
Nine stories were submitted this week. Aww…. single digits!
Two rookies joined in… yay!
And, once again, some disturbing madness from Planet Z.
Go ahead and listen to them by clicking on the grammophone thingy there in the left column and then vote for your favorites (multiple selections are allowed):

Who rocked the house in Weekly Challenge #42?
Elisson of blog d’Elisson
Mark from Blank as a goat
Brandon
Tom from Footnote
Andrew of Dodgeblogium
Terrence from Never Was
Rahel Jaskow of Elms in the Yard
Ted’s Podcast
Kelly Burt from Come Let Me Whisper
The Deranged Bard From Planet Z
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com

WE GOTS PRIZES:
I will be sending the winner a prize… it’s a packet containing at least 1 refrigerator magnet and a CD with the archive of the entire 100 word stories podcast. (Well, minus promos and junk)
It is your voting that determines who wins. So listen, vote, and tune in next week to find out who won!


The full text of each story:
ELISSON

Norman woke up, the side of his face feeling like a Mack truck had run into it.
Crap, he thought. I’m gonna have to see a dentist pronto.
It was his own damn fault. He had indulged his sweet tooth mightily last week.
It began with a cream tangerine. Then, the Montelimar.
He loved the ginger sling (with a pineapple heart), followed by a coffee dessert.
What was better, the cool cherry cream or the nice apple tart? Perhaps the coconut fudge.
But that Savoy truffle was the last straw. Shit. Now he’d have to have them all pulled out.

MARK FROM HOUSTON

“This is tough,” he said, scratching his head.
He’d already missed two topics since his debut. This was his grand re-entrance. It had to be good. It had to be better than good.
The others might have real stories this time, something serious, even. Not just an exasperated monologue railing against some goofball-topic.
“You can make a real story using this one. It isn’t ‘fecal matter’ or, egad, ‘horbrgorble…'” he shuddered.
“I can do this!” he declared.
He put the pen to paper, writing slowly, with purpose.
He had his title. It was a start: “Toothache of a Lame Tale”

BRANDON

He knew that eating the canolis from Vinny’s would give him a toothache. But he didn’t care.
And why should he? It’s a freaking canoli!
From Vinny’s!
Six hours later, he was in agonizing pain.
“Oh, why couldn’t I have stopped at the chocolate cake and cappuccino?” He screamed.
Fortunately, there was a dental office at the end of the shopping strip. With TV’s on the ceiling.
He could get his toothache tended to while killing time watching a movie. Like, say, a horror flick.
Imagine getting your teeth worked on while watching the Texas Chainsaw Massacre

TOM

Hannibal bit down hard on the census taker. Damn that hurts. He questioned his choice of entrees. Buffalo Bob Burgers might have been less taxing on his k9s.
“Benjamin be a dear and pass the Chianti,” alanulated the doctor The pain in his mouth caused him to slurp the wine. If it hadn’t been for Jamie’s fava beans the evening would have proven to tedious.
Raspail wore the chestnut Catherine Martin to which the doctor replied ” love your suite.” Later Lector’s toothache was trumped by Benny’s headache. Jamie’s consuming need to get a head could get under your skin.

ANDREW

“That fucking hurts don’t it?” His companion asked a bloody stupid question annoying the man obviously in pain.
“Well of course it bloody does I have just lost a tooth because I was smacked in the gob by someone trying to get away from the police.”
“Ah don’t worry you are a have-a-go hero…you face slowed ‘im down enough the coppers got ‘im.” His friend said jealously. “I can see the Sun headline: A tooth hero!”
The man with the toothache saw the press-pack bearing down on him. He didn’t know whether to run, pass out or just enjoy it.

TERRENCE

I blinked, my heart still pounding in my chest but, I was regaining my thoughts. The smell started off faint but quickly grew. You know the saying “having the crap scared out of you”? Well, I don’t know who he was or how he did it, but here I am lay in an alley with the crap scared out of me.
I stood and looked around; at least no one else was here to see this. I took a step and before I knew it my hand was on my check.
“Oh great, and now I have a toothache too.”

RAHEL

Theresa was frightened. Phrases like “oral surgery” can be pretty scary for a nine-year-old. But she faced the dentist bravely and told him, “Do what you need to do.”
When it was over, her parents took her home to bed. Theresa staggered up the front walk, holding onto her mother’s hand.
Suddenly a black-and-white cat darted in front of her. Pain and grogginess forgotten, Theresa sank to her knees and began to pet it. Then she looked up at her parents with a glance first of entreaty, then of pure astonishment.
“It doesn’t hurt anymore,” she said.
The cat purred.

TED

I’ve read everything I could get my hands on. Learned all I could about the art of self dentistry.
One little kernel of unpopped corn, along with the momentum of chewing, and Blammo! I don’t know what I did exactly, but it hurts like a bitch!
I can’t justify the cost of a dentist, so my trusty Black and Decker cordless job will have to do the job.
OK, #45 drill bit, and wood putty should be about all I need. There is a little rust on the equipment, but I don’t mind. Oh yeah, I can’t forget the Tequila.
Here goes….

KELLY

There she sat, smiling so sweetly, looking as if you could hand her crap, and she’d have acted as though you gave her the world. She was the picture of some storybook princess, walking through the forest, singing with the animals. Yuck! About that time, my last straw snapped. I could not take this hippy-dippy, make-love, give-love shit anymore. I could not take one more minute of it. If I’d been made to listen any longer, I would have committed an inhuman act. Instead, I took a deep breath and said, “Please shut up, you are giving me a toothache.”

Z

A bent gear and a warped comb were sitting in a dentist’s office, both nursing awful toothaches.
“I hurt all around,” said the gear. “I should go first.”
“No, I should go first,” the comb moaned. “I have many more teeth than you.”
They argued for a minute. Then, the door opened, and a horribly snarled zipper walked in.
The comb and gear winced at the sight of the mangled zipper and agreed that it should go first.
“Of course I should go first,” said the zipper. “My appointment was an hour ago, but I kinda got stuck in traffic.”


Thanks to everyone for sending in their stories, and I look forward to what you’ve got to write (and say) next week.
The theme for next week’s Weekly Challenge will be posted shortly.
(In case you’re interested, I’ve settled on “Clair de Lune” as the opening music and “Moonshine” by Michael Oldfield from the Tubular Bells II album.)