Thinking about the old neighborhood

Back in the old neighborhood, Aaron’s house was on the corner.
It was bigger than other houses, and had a kind of Addamms Family kinda feel to it.
He had a tuxedo cat named Cleo, and there was a spideweb by the front door with a black widow spider.
The way Cleo was, it was safer to try to pet the spider.
There were other kids on the block, and I remember going to their houses to play, and them coming to ours.
A few moved away, then we moved away, and it all looks so small on Google Maps.

Just because

Just because I am smart, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are dumb.
Just because I am tall, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are short.
Just because I am beautiful, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are ugly.
Just because I am rich, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are poor.
Just because I am thin, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are fat.
Just because I am fast, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are slow.
Just because I am alive…
Well… okay. You are, in fact, dead.
You dumb, short, ugly, poor, fat, slow fuck.
Good riddance.

Taco Tuesday Thursday

Raoul and Esmerelda made such a nice couple.
But they could never be together.
Raoul says Taco Tuesday.
“My family has tacos every Tuesday! It’s tradition!”
Esmerelda says Taco Thursday.
“My family had tacos every Thursday! It’s tradition!”
They nearly broke up over it.
“Why not have tacos on Tuesday and Thursday?” said the town’s priest.
The crisis was over! The whole town celebrated as they planned their wedding.
On Sunday, of course.
Then, while on their honeymoon, they ordered tacos.
“Soft tortilla or hard shell?” asked the waitress.
They came home, and the town priest worked up the anulment.

Happy harry

Harry was a happy guy.
He kept a little black book with everybody’s name and what made them happy.
Some people knew what made them happy, and they told Harry.
Others kept it a secret because they were ashamed of what made them happy.
Harry didn’t judge. but he was persistent.
Eventually, everyone told Harry what made them happy.
Then, Harry would leave a letter on their doorstep.
No, it wasn’t what made the person happy.
It contained instructions on how to keep from being exposed.
Blackmail is such a dirty word, but it makes Harry happy.
And very rich.

Weekly Challenge #773 – Smalltalk



The Date

Don’t you just hate this bit? The whole ‘getting to know you’ nonsense?

Yet, social convention dictates that we go through the wearisome business of awkward smalltalk, embarrassed half-smiles and long silences. A weird mixture of nervous excitement and barely-disguised reluctance.

We play with our food and wonder why we’re here, then smile sheepishly and plough on, negotiating the minefield of our fledgling relationship.

If only it could be easier…

Skip the smalltalk and get straight to the point.

After all, that’s really why we’re both here, isn’t it?

Can’t we just fast-forward straight to the sex?


Small talk is such an effective way of getting to know people, he thought. The event was promoted as an informal get-together to meet your soulmate. He needed a soulmate, desperately. After the usual introductions and polite smiles, the whole conversation took an unexpected turn when one of the ladies said she enjoyed being tossed in the river. At first, he didn’t understand what she meant. He laughed nervously and he noticed she did have a strange color. “It’s the river,” she said. “Too much pollution.” He nodded. Let’s just say he didn’t find his soulmate. He wasn’t that desperate.


Smalltalk: Because what else is there to do while you wait?

At first, it was the embarrassing silence, feet shuffling, staring into the middle distance; then as seconds turned into minutes, and minutes into hours, the need to talk became overwhelming.

We talked about the weather, our jobs and families, the state of the economy – anything really – just to fill the time.

And, eventually, the allotted hour came… And went.

I gave it a little longer: More smalltalk. And honestly, I’ve enjoyed getting to know you.

But really, we were only killing time.

And now, it’s time to kill you.


Pathologically Auditorial

I would like to say I don’t do small talk, but the truth is I will talk to anyone about anything. The least important the better. God knows the weight of the world’s problems are heavy enough to pitch one into a blackhole death-sprial of ennui. The key to quatlity small talks is raising or lowering the scope of ones replies. Best when in counter point to the direction of the conversation. Just enough to cause a gap, but not so much to cause a gasp. And remember to be galactically unforgettable, with a comely smile. Have a nice day.


Sitting with his parents in the diner, Billbert thought about making small talk. After the catastrophe of their house burning down random talking seemed, trite.
“Mom. Dad,” Billbert began. When they stopped eating and looked at him, he continued. “Are you two in shock? Our house just burned down, and you don’t seem that upset.”
His mother nodded. “I’d forgotten how young you were the last time something like this happened. Don’t worry. Everything important, pictures, documents, and that, were all just copies. The originals are stored in a secure location. It takes a little time, but, we’ll start over.”


Ears Wide Open

Jimmy Alvarez had a gift, early on everyone thought it was ADD, and they weren’t entirely wrong, but, what it was … was a gift … More like a superpower.

Jimmy had an amazing sense of hearing!

He could hear whispers at incredible distances.
He could listen to conversations through walls, doors, and glass …
And he could focus in on one conversation out of 20 he could hear at will.

None of that mattered much until he started keeping a notebook.

Combinations to locks
Hidden keys
Criminal confessions
Shameful secrets

There was power … and opportunity in such things.

Jimmy’s future looked promising!


Chit Chat
“Hi. I’m James.”
“Hello, James. I’m Natalie.”
“Nice to meet you, Natalie. How do you know The Taylors?”
“I work with Michael. You?”
“I used to be their brother-in-law.”
“…Used to be… How does that work?”
“I used to be married to Lonni’s sister Lisa.”
“Why don’t you say you’re her sister’s ex-husband?”
Two reasons: I like Mike & Lonni. Saying it my way keeps the relationship focused on them.”
“OK. And the second?”
“If I had said ‘I’m Lonni’s sister’s ex-husband’, odds are you wouldn’t have been interested in much conversation beyond that. I wanted to increase my odds.”


When midgets talk to each other, is it all smalltalk?
Not in the Department of Midget Science at MIT, the Midget Institute of Technology.
It’s all big talk. Cosmic-level stuff.
Even the talk about sub-atomic particles is big talk.
They get a lot of stuff done, and they do it so efficiently.
Not needing big offices and big blackboards and big laboratories.
Even their supercolliding supercollider takes up just a parking lot’s space.
They smash particles and discover the secrets of the universe.
Then they all get ice cream at the commissary and publish their papers and cheer big cheers.

The topic of the next weekly challenge is Pizza

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

Every week, I post a topic for the Weekly Challenge, where you come up with the stories and I collect them up and share them.

Want to give it a try? The topic of the next 100 Word Stories Weekly Challenge is Pizza

Write a 100 word story on that topic. Then, send it in an email to isfullofcrap (at) with the subject line of WEEKLY CHALLENGE.

Include the following:

  • The text of your story.
  • A topic or topics for future Weekly Challenges.
  • A website where people can learn more about you and your writing, include the URL to that website.
  • A recording of your story. Be sure to introduce yourself to the audience.

I put the episode together on Sunday morning. But, if you need more time, I can put your story up on the feed in a separate post.

Good luck, and as always… keep it brief.

JAN 3 Fire
JAN 10 Why is mother crying?
JAN 17 Get a life!
JAN 24 How does that grab you?
JAN 31 Prowling, Canon, Everything, To/Too/Two, Risk, Delinquent, Spray Tan

FEB 7 Smalltalk
FEB 14 Pizza
FEB 21 Wine
FAN 28 Ruins, Cone, A toast!, Rebel, Dive, Name change, Glow

MAR 7 Tilting
MAR 14 Behind a bush
MAR 21 Unlimited
MAR 28 Remember only this…, Scope, Church, Melt, Fade, Bare

APR 4 River crossing
APR 11 Advanced
APR 18 Saint
APR 25 Fuming, Bean, When will it stop raining, Vaccine, Quarantine, Helmet, Tin

MAY 2 List
MAY 9 Stay safe
MAY 16 Don’t press the button!
MAY 23 Hand
MAY 30 Address, Blundering buffoon, Bunny, View, Wizard, What’s that on the horizon?, Bark

JUN 6 Trade
JUN 13 Riding shotgun
JUN 20 Prompt
JUN 27 Crystalline, Copper, Outbreak, Demure, Paper thin, Bonus, Bleach

JUL 4 So many questions
JUL 11 Needle
JUL 18 Letter
JUL 25 Can you help me?, Enough, Market, Trial, Bundle, The noise is driving me mad!, Inventory

AUG 1 Discard
AUG 8 Misnomer
AUG 15 If I had a nickel for every time
AUG 22 Where do I begin?
AUG 29 Full, Where did they go?, Barrel, Your call, Universally, Joint, Some might say…

SEP 5 Doubtful
SEP 12 Over to you…
SEP 19 The heat of the moment
SEP 26 Craft, Ceremoniously, Empty spaces, Clickbait, Disposal protocol, You saved my life, Level

OCT 3 Binge
OCT 10 After
OCT 17 Disintegration
OCT 24 …Since records began
OCT 31 Vase, Rub, Top, Spring fresh, Chime, The End, Crop

NOV 7 Unsure
NOV 14 Arson
NOV 21 What’s that on your face?
NOV 28 Square, Unexpected message, Formation, The door flew open, Fret, Prediction, Jelly fish

DEC 5 Bee
DEC 12 Store
DEC 19 Left
DEC 26 Don’t push me…, Animated, Compassion, Indifferent, Ally, Whale, A fork in the road


Pick one
Fight fire with fire
A thin veneer
I was very young
Brownie mix
Are we there yet?
I’ll be there
Slippery slope
Too much to bear
Preventative Maintenance
Mice cream
The sweet smell of success
Every good intention
Thousands of years
Virtual reality
Extremely flexible
USB socket
Cross country
Where’s Ethel?
Screaming Kids
Water Torture
Cassette tape
Contact lens
Thumbs up
What happens next?
The way we were
Mouse trap
The wrong words
Bottomless pit
A word from an unknown language.
Put that thing down
Horror on the subway!
Your honor

Ten years

Way back when, I was her babysitter.
I was eighteen, she was eight.
I kept her safe.
Ten years later, she comes to me,
Says she loves me. Always loved me.
I tell her no, and I leave her crying.
Every ten years, the same thing.
She comes to me, she loves me, has always loved me.
Well, then another ten years won’t hurt anything.
Decade after decade, she manages to find me.
You only get so much time.
And mine ran out.
I woke up to the smell of brimstone.
Will she follow me here, too?
I hope not.

The lion

In the Bible, it says that Daniel found himself in a cave with a lion.
And because he showed compassion to the lion by removing a thorn from its paw, the lion did not eat Daniel when the man faced that same lion in the Coliseum.
Or was it a mouse that removed the thorn?
It certainly wasn’t a thorn in a mouse’s paw. That’s silly.
Nobody throws people to the mice in the Coliseum.
Was it the Nemean Lion? I think that was Hercules.
Whatever. I’m going to lay down with this lamb and go to sleep.
Good night.


I went out for a walk.
I’m not taking a stroll.
How many calories is a stroll?
I asked my trainer.
Is it different than a walk?
Are you sure that’s a stroll?
My trainer asked.
I’ve got a chart if you need to check.
Walk, stroll, ramble, hike.
We went down the chart until we came across mosey.
Mosey doesn’t burn much calories, he said.
But I’ll give you points for style.
I updated my fitness tracker, had two fingers of sarsaparilla, and put on my 10 gallon hat.
Happy trails, said my trainer.
And I moseyed on out.

Count Blessings

When they say to count your blessings, what units do you count them in?
Some blessings are bigger than others. And some last longer than others.
For example, Life is a blessing. A big blessing.
And the people that a blessing blesses, that can vary, too.
A cup of coffee is a blessing for the person that drinks it, but a coffee plantation is a blessing for all those who earn a living there.
Sometimes, a blessing for someone is a curse for another.
So pardon me if I say “fuck you” instead of “Bless you” for sneezing on me.