Bricolage Time—Please Make Something out of this Nothing!

I’m so encouraged by what everyone has done with a sink full of dishes, that I have to try one more vague, but everyday prompt. Let’s see what you can make out of this:

In my glove compartment….

65 responses to “Bricolage Time—Please Make Something out of this Nothing!

  1. The officer ask to see my registration so I reached into my glove compartment to retrieve it but all that was in there were a couple of broken Ice scrapers and an old photo taken on “Black Friday” in 975.
    The busiest shopping day of the year, Friday after Thanksgiving was finally here and Tish Lippert was completely prepared for the season to begin. Tish, managed The Concord Mall, a medium sized, regional mall with 130 stores. Each year there was an unspoken competition amongst the area malls to have the most spectacular “Santa Arrival.” This year, Concord would reign supreme, Tish was confident of the win.
    She had started working toward this day back in July. She carefully inventoried and checked the condition of all the seventy Christmas trees, decorations, and lights, and mechanical workings of the animated characters that populated several winter scenes throughout the mall. There were always numerous causalities among the Elves, Snowmen, and Polar Bears that needed to be repaired or replaced. The previous year there had been a horrible incident involving an elf hammering in Santa’s Workshop and a three year old that breached the protective fencing and went to hug the elf. Unfortunately, the elf’s hammer came down on the little tike’s hand and the kid ripped off elf’s head. It made all the papers, “Child is hammered and beheads Elf.”
    This year, Tish had arranged to have Santa arrive via parachute. It promised be magnificent. Santa was to land on the roof of Sears and proceed to an access ladder which was concealed inside a column in the center of the mall. The column had been decorated to look like a fireplace and chimney. Santa would emerge out of the fireplace into a sea of screaming, gleaming children and move to his throne to begin his six weeks of Ho-Ho-Hoing. Brilliant!
    As the moment approached for the drop of St. Nick, the parking lot was packed with kids and parents looking skyward in anticipation. Finally, the plane came into view and Santa, in all his finery, jumped and landed on the roof as planned.
    The mass of Christmas revelers marched into the mall behind the Municipal Band playing carols. The excitement was tangible as all eyes turned to focus on the fireplace, eagerly awaiting Santa.
    Several minutes passed and Santa had not come down the chimney. It was starting to become awkward, but Tish wasn’t completely stressed, yet. Five more minutes clicked by and still no Santa. The crowd was getting anxious and fidgety.
    Tish instructed her dimwitted but congenial maintenance man, Doyle Wilhoit and his even dimmer son, Boy Wilhoit to, “Get up on that roof and get Santa down that chimney, NOW!”
    Unbeknownst to Tish, Santa had made an especially hard landing on an especially soft spot of Sear’s roof. His leg had penetrated the structure and he was completely jammed, one leg on the roof and one, broken leg, dangling from Sear’s ceiling.
    More agonizing minutes passed. The crowd grew even more impatient and the band was running out of music to play. Tish began to panic.
    “Why today? Why me? Why do I hate Christmas?” she grumbled under her breath.
    Just as Tish started toward the chimney so that she could make some kind of calming statement to the disappointed children and angry parents, the crowd began to cheer and squeal with excitement.
    “Santa….it’s Santa….We love you Santa!”
    What to Tish’s wondering and relieved eyes should appear but Santa…. who looked strangely familiar.
    “Well butter my butt and call me a biscuit…… Boy Wilhoit is Santa!”
    It was indeed a Christmas Miracle, the Wilhoits had a modicum of problem solving skills, and Tish had a wounded skydiver in his skivvies on the roof.
    “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.”

  2. You’re in fine form, as usual, PB. I was wondering where you were. Gotta love the holidays!

  3. In my glove compartment, I store my disguises. When I don’t want to be recognized, I flip it open and fumble through the contents. Most often, I pull out my wig. It changes me immediately from a dishwater blonde to a reckless red head. A baseball hat, a stocking cap and a pair of wrap around reflective sunglasses are all crammed with the wig in the cramped quarters.

    I’m in Walmart’s parking lot. I didn’t take the time this morning to put on makeup. I look like hell. I’ll be damned if I’m going to be caught looking like this by someone I know. I pull my ragged stocking cap on and yank it down to my eyebrows. The sunglasses finish the job.

    I smirk to myself, button my coat and turn my collar up as I head for the entrance. I’m walking through the automatic door when I hear, “Hey, Connie. Slow down. What’s the big hurry? I parked right next to you. I’d know that beater anywhere.”

    I stop smirking and snarl.

    • I love the idea of disguises in the glove compartment. I may just have to borrow that. Shall we get those horn rim glasses, with artificial nose and mustache (a la Groucho)? Of course, you found the Achilles heel in this strategy. Dang–the car! Too bad it doesn’t fold up into a nice packet that will fit in its own glove compartment–or your back pocket. You’re in good form!

    • Disguises would definitely be right up your alley, Shaddy. In fact, I’d believe you really do carry some in your glove box!

    • So that was YOU who was wearing Santa’s beard and ran me off the road. Now I know…..

    • Your posts always leave me feeling like I’ve been taken for a ride — always unexpected endings and original ideas. I loved this one. Thanks for your positive comments on my post. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

  4. Ann

    I left a message for you under “Share A Book”.

  5. I was zooming down the highway today when a crow made his last flight into my car bumper. I blame it on the Cheshire cat who was hiding in my glove compartment. I call him nemesis. He travels everywhere I go causing me such grief. Such a mean cat. Poor little crow.

    • One of my favorite moments is when someone can surprise me with an idea I wouldn’t have thought of in a million years. Cheshire cat named Nemesis in the glove compartment? I think he needs to visit the closest black hole! Perhaps that cat has it in for crows–her natural prey. And perhaps this is a story waiting to happen!

    • Wow nemesis must have a magnetic personality, to crows that is.

  6. Shaddy, Thank you for your kind remarks and I would like to send the same right back to you. I have been in awe at your writing talents and imagination. You are top drawer in my book.

  7. There’s two hundred grand locked in my glove box.
    The special glove box key is hidden in my car’s trunk.
    Trouble is, my car was in an accident.
    Coz I was in a hurry getting away from the cops.
    And I wound up in a coma for a month.
    While my car wound up in a wrecking yard.
    So now the two hundred grand in my glove box in my car is in a cube of compressed scrap metal in a cargo ship somewhere in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

    As for me, I’m simply in. Coz I haven’t got the two hundred grand bail to get out.

    • Your post, FM, is sad and superb, simultaneously!

      For Ann: Oops, I shouldn’t use an exclamation point up there, right? I have no control. I use tons of them in FB and blog comments, when I text and even right here in your presence. Eeeeeek. I know I’ve been naughty so I stuck myself in the corner for a time out. Is an hour long enough?

    • Man, if that’s not Murphy’s Law nuttin’ is!
      (I used an ! just for you Shaddy)

    • This guy is definitely out of luck. But it was funny.

    • I love your sense of irony. And you accomplish it in so few words. I have to write a book to accomplish half what you do in a paragraph. This was great.

  8. Everyone has such great stuff here. So clever and imaginative. Disguises, cheshire cat, skivvies, botched getaway, lots of humor and irony. I love all of it. I need Ann’s brain stimulator helmet right about now.

  9. Descriptive writing for you writers:

    From the opening paragraphs of “Red Mist,” the newest Scarpeta novel by Patricia Cornwell.

    “Iron rails the rusty brown of old blood…”

    “…giant cypress trees with thick gnarled knees rise out of swaps like prehistoric creatures wading and prowling.”

  10. Thanks for sharing these gems.

  11. I pulled into the driveway next to an unfamiliar blue two door Honda Accord. I guess Henry likes them practical but sporty. I’m tired of being practical and I’m far from a good sport when it comes to sharing my husband. I grabbed the pink lacy panties and the gun from my glove compartment and headed toward the house.

    I slowly pushed open the front door. The familiar smells of lavender glade air freshener hung in the air barely disguising the mildewy carpet and musky dog odors of our home. I walked into the dimly lit den. Yellowish light spilled over the gun as I turned into the hallway. I heard muffled voices in the guest bedroom and saw the open door. I crept along the wall. My brows crinkled as I heard a raspy unfamiliar voice. I reached the doorway to the guest bedroom and peered inside. My husband was wearing a short kimono and stood in front of the mirror facing away from me. A short, stocky, middle aged woman wearing a suit was appraising him. His hands flew to his face when he saw me in the mirror, “Oh my God, Fanny, You’re home early.”

    I held up the gun. The panties hung from its muzzle.

    The woman’s eyes widened and she crumpled into a ball behind a rocking chair that did nothing to conceal her bulky frame. I snickered at the sight. I heard her whimper.

    “W-w-w-ait. P-p-please don’t, Fanny,” he took a step back, turned and tripped over the suitcase lying open on the floor. Panties and bras sprung into the air around him along with a flurry of business cards. Henry fell flat on his belly with the kimono bunching up around his waist.

    Red and pink hearts in a sea of white ruffles greeted me from his backside. I bent and picked up a business card –

    Lillian Middlebrook
    Victor’s Secrets
    Discreet and professional lingerie sales for men

    I started tittering. Then I began to chuckle. Before long I was howling with tears streaming down my face. I lifted my skirt to swipe at the tears and revealed Henry’s favorite light blue boxers with the golf clubs on them.

    • Lisa, I love this tawdry tale of Henry and his special panites. One of us is NOT WELL….I think it just might be you, but I’m not far behind. Thank you for this happy endorphine charge to my brain. When I tell my therapist about this story, I will change your name to protect you from the authorities.

    • Lisa: Talk about great stuff…your imagination took a wild ride with this scenario. What fun we have here!

    • Where can I get one of those Victor’s Secrets catalogs? Funny, a Fanny in light blue boxers, excellent.

    • I admire your courage…I prefer first person POV but always wonder if readers will think I am writing about myself. I always feel the need to explain “this isn’t about me.” Then, I feel the need to explain how the story came about…” So, often, I just forget about the entire project.

      • Pamela, I hope I don’t need to explain this is not about me. Was this reply for Rich maybe? I do know how you feel about first person POV. I feel the same way.

    • Lisa, this is sooo funny. I love stories with a twist and you had two! It was perfect with the husband in lingerie but you topped it with the wife wearing boxer shorts. This is so good you should find a humor publication or competition to submit it to. Check out Writer’s Market.

    • Lisa, I thought of another yeast tip and added it to the comments after your dish washing story.

  12. Victor’s Secrets! That was good, but the light blue boxers with the golf clubs on them was the perfect last line. Bingo! To remain completely liberated so we can write whatever we want, it’s good to remember that the “I” in a narrator is a character, not the author. I’m feeling inspired!

    • Ann,
      I feel like a student among the many masters here on your blog. It’s been quite fun. I love that I’m still learning and writing. I don’t think I’ve had an instructor that has inspired me the way you have. And now I have many more instructors. Many, many thanks for your positive feedback.

  13. In my glove compartment,
    Hide artifacts from our apartment,
    Suppressed by shame.
    Keys that once unlocked the door,
    A broken lease,
    Paystubs that once ensured family peace,
    All pointers to a life once well-lived,
    And now out of reach.

  14. Question for Ann and FigMince: I have long noticed that Fig uses “coz” as the abbreviated form of “because” but then, he speaks Australian English. Is that appropriate in American English also? Or is something it something like “cuz”” or ” ’cause?”

    I’ll join in this prompt someday. Right now my right brain is in the glove box.

    • It’s a personal style thing, Gully. Here in Australia, one hears ‘coz’, ‘corz’, ‘cerz’, ‘cuz’, and possibly most often, simply ”cz’. But of course, there’s no definitive authority on how one spells dialectic/phonetic abbreviations. While I might use ‘cuz’ if I were writing a ‘hayseed’ character’s dialogue, I generally use ‘coz’ because I believe it offers the least noticeable speed bump for the reader (although obviously your shock absorbers banged a little over it). As for ‘’cause’, you can see the problem in how I’ve just presented it – if one uses the apostrophe and it’s the first word in a dialogue passage, there’s a double-up that’s messy (even when it’s used without opening quotes, I feel the apostrophe jars just enough to make the reader aware that he/she is reading rather than simply ‘being there’. And without the apostrophe it looks like the noun and also causes pause.

      Or I could simply answer you by saying: coz it’s Oz.

  15. SIgh.. Never write a post on a netbook when you’re lying flat on your back in bed.

    • Get out of bed and get your right brain out of the glove box. That really needs an exclamation point, but I’m suppressing all of them here. Dang, it’s cramping my emotions.

  16. My favorite view, high on a hill overlooking the city as the sun sets bathing everything in shades of reds and blues. I came here often with her, she loved watching the sunset, then as darkness enveloped us, we would kiss and caress before we made the made dash home to our comfortable bed. This is the only place I smile anymore, the only place that I still feel her by me. They say the good die young, and that was the case with her.

    The time has come, I can’t wait around for nature to run it’s course. I open my glove compartment and pull out the note. I tape it to the rear view mirror, I reach back into the compartment and take out my father’s service revolver, pull the hammer back and………..

    • I give up. Just when I thought I knew something, I don’t. I read the first line of your post and then had to take care of something so I was away for a few minutes. I thought to myself, Walk’s being romantic again. He must really like writing about love, love lost, etc. I thought of how you don’t write of dark, tragic, grossly ugly things. I thought, that Walk, he knows how to think in ways that don’t bring him down.

      Then I come back to my laptop and read this in its entirety. Bah humbug, I’m mistaken again. Or should I ask if it was a buck or a doe?

    • You lead us into a romantic moment, and I, like Shaddy, was thinking–there goes Walk, being his romantic self. But perhaps the approaching holidays are stressing you out and you opted for a bit of self destruction. New territory?

    • It’s always so refreshing to get an unexpected ending. You wrote this one with such finesse. I really thought I knew what to expect but once again I’ve been fooled. Loved it.
      Thanks for the positive feedback on my post. I’ll ask my husband where he got his Victor’s catalog from?

      P.S. My subconscious brain took over when I picked the name Fanny. Didn’t dawn on me til you spelled it out for me. Kind of embarrassing.

  17. In my glove
    Compartments exist
    Four fingers and a thumb
    Curled together in a fist.

    Teeth clenched
    And totally pissed.
    How dare he, DARE HE
    Leave me like this.

    From the moment
    We first kissed
    Our lives merge
    Now apparently dismissed

    By a stupid note
    Left, and almost missed
    In my glove compartment.
    What a twist.

    I’ll keep moving forward
    A true optimist
    But will never forget
    That sweet talkin’ novelist.

  18. I opened up my glove box and what would appear?
    No, it wasn’t Santie and his many reindeer.
    It suddenly popped out at me
    And almost made me pee.
    Holding a Christmas card from Gomez and Cousin Itt,
    Of course it’s Thing T. Thing in his newly knitted mitt.

  19. I rummaged around in my glove compartment, looking for the spare power cord for the GPS. My hand closed on something soft and pliable. Frowning, I pulled out a small plastic sandwich bag. Inside was a white crystalline powder. My stomach clenched and my cheeks grew warm. Oh, no. No, no, no, no, no. My son, Ben, had borrowed the car last night to go to a high school football game with some friends. How could he be so stupid? Ben knew all about the dangers of drugs. Or had one of his friends put it there? I grabbed the bag and marched back into the house where Ben was playing on the Wii.
    I held up the bag. “Ben, I found this in the glove compartment.”
    He glanced up from where he was busily slaying zombies. “Oh, yeah, sorry. I forgot about that.”
    I stared at him. “What!?”
    He waved the Wii remote. “Is it stale or still good?”
    “What do you mean?”
    “Mrs. Jacobs gave me what she didn’t need. Is it still okay or does it have to be thrown out?”
    This was even worse than I imagined. His friends’s mother – MY friend – was handing out drugs to kids?
    “Would you put down that remote and tell me why on earth Mrs. Jacobs would give this to you?”
    Heaving a sigh, he paused the Wii and turned towards me. “Mom, she was just giving back what she didn’t use. She said to say thanks.”
    “What do you mean, giving back? I’ve never seen this before in my life!”
    “Well, no, that’s because I was the one who took it over to their house like you told me to.”
    “I told you to take this over to their… What are you… I never said any such thing!”
    I sat down on a beanbag chair and tried to control my breathing.
    “Why are you getting so upset – is icing sugar THAT expensive?”
    “This is icing sugar?”
    “Mom! Don’t you remember last month Mrs. Jacobs needed icing sugar for Mark’s birthday cake? You told me to just put some in a ziplock bag and take it over. She gave me back what she didn’t need, I put it in the glove compartment and forgot about it. I’m sorry! I didn’t know it was so important.”
    I breathed in and out a few times.
    “Uh, it’s not, it’s okay. I just… You can go back to playing your game.”
    Ben aimed the Wii remote at the TV and resumed hunting zombies. “Okay. Are you sure?”
    “Yes… Really, it’s fine.”
    He looked over at me and smiled. “Good. So, what are we having for dinner?”
    Looking at my trembling fingers, with the sound of my heart still hammering in my ears, I answered, “I think we’ll order pizza tonight.”

    • Diane, This is such a true to life scene and you wirte it with such conviction, I am convinced that this must be a true occurance. It really doesn’t matter, it is a terrific glimpse into our times. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this, Thank you.

      • Thanks Peanut!
        It’s pure fiction, but I would say the idea for the icing sugar was surely prompted by my making and icing two dozen cupcakes last weekend – all from scratch. My son has multiple food allergies and cannot eat any store or bakery bought cupcakes nor any of the pre-made icings.

    • Diane,
      I have a teenager and this is all too real for me. I found something in her room that looked like a homemade pipe. Of course, I thought the worst. I showed it to my husband and he turned it over to reveal a “J”, my daughter’s first initial. Now I just have to deal with her pyromania.
      I thought your post was great and much prefer the happy ending to the torture of not knowing in the beginning. It was all too real for me, though.
      Thanks so much for your kind words on my post. I didn’t expect such positive feedback. I will also take your advice on the yeast. You sound like an expert. I’ll be sure to post my cooking/baking questions here on Ann’s blog. Thanks, again.

  20. Great story, kept me in suspense and then laughing!

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