This is Galumphing

It’s time to fit some totally unrelated people, objects, and actions together into a scene or story that makes perfect sense.  I’m stretching as far as I can to come up with the weirdest group of items, but I’m sure you can do this.

  • Raspberry jam stain
  • Weeds on the driveway
  • Walking as fast as you (he/she) can
  • Zero defects
  • Pharoah
  • Tony Bennett

Hey, this could be worse!  I left out the Nazis, the end of the universe, and purple nose cones.  Count yourself lucky.

20 responses to “This is Galumphing

  1. Autum Fall

    The first sign of her pending miscarriage was no larger than a raspberry jam stain. Her doctor had lied. Or simply been terribly wrong. She found it better to think he lied.

    “Your uterus has zero defects,” he told her. There was a tone to his voice, smooth as a Tony Bennett lyric. Why shouldn’t she have believed him. He was the pharaoh of OBGYN.

    He told her to exercise, something not too strenuous, such as walking as fast as she can. So she walked around the block. In the morning and after supper. A pointless excursion she thought. Waving to neighbors she didn’t know, a cheerful smile and a toodle-doo with her fingers.

    When she reached her driveway on the third lap she paused for a rest. She had been doing six laps each time, but this evening she felt winded much too early. Her heart drummed in her chest. Her temples.

    She started her controlled breathing exercise and knelt to pull a few weeds on the driveway. She thought of her husband. He had kept the cracks in the drive free of weeds. The yard immaculate. She wondered if grass was growing atop the four feet of dirt that covered him and his polished aluminum tomb. Were there any weeds growing there?

    As she rose on shaky legs, a dizziness overtook her. She reached for something to steady her stance but there was nothing. She collapsed in a darkness which could not cushion her fall. Or the infant within.

  2. I sure didn’t see that coming. Quite the combination! Great image of fainting at the end. Sad but very well done!

  3. oliviascarlett

    I love the dark stuff. You gave me goosebumps! GREAT job, Jeff, you are a pro.

  4. Ebenezer Snifflewart was rasping his favorite line to the music coming from his Victrola, “…little cable cars climb halfway to the stars…” when he heard a tap-tapping at his parlour door, as if someone gently rapping, rapping at his parlour door.

    Embarrassed at being caught singing something so sentimental, and Tony Bennett at that, he lifted the needle from the record and set it on its peg, then went to the double doors of his sanctuary.

    “What?” said Ebenezer to the closed doors.

    “It’s done, sir,” came a soft voice.

    “What’s done? Speak up. I can’t hear you.”

    “The yard, sir. The yard is all mowed and the flower beds watered.”

    “One moment.” Ebenezer walked to the window and drew back the heavy drapes. He checked the lawn, the flowerbeds, and …

    What’s that? Do I see something yellow in the driveway?

    This time he strode across the room as fast as he could, considering the piles of books in his way, and his COPD from all the cigars he had smoked in his 80 years.

    He grasped the handle on the heavy oak door and pulled for all he could. The door didn’t budge. Then he remembered the door opened out.

    “Nevermore!” he shouted at the lad. “Oh, uh, never mind. I was thinking of something else. Where was I? YOU AREN’T DONE, not by a long stretch, you wipplesnip….er, snapplewitch… I MEAN Whippersnatcher! Whippersnapper! Yes, whippersnapper. Oh, no, don’t you dare come scratching around here looking for your six-pence when I can see as plain as the wart on my nose.. I mean, your nose… those hideous yellow dandelions in the driveway! You can’t fool me, you little cretin. No, Ebenezer Snifflewart is no man’s fool, I’ll tell you. When I say “zero defects” I mean “zero gravity.” DO you understand?”

    Danny Moore clutched his hat in his sweating hands and turned as red as a raspberry jam stain. “Sir, yes, sir. I’ll tend to it right away, sir.” And he skedaddled down the stairs and out of the manor house.

    Balmy old fool, he thought as he entered the gardener’s shed and searched the shelves. Reaching to uppermost one, he grabbed what he needed and walked to the long driveway. He pinched the lid off the can, put his finger on the nozzle, and proceeded to spray black paint on all the yellow dashes he’d painted down the center of the driveway last week at the bequest of the one and only (thank goodness) Ebenezer Snifflewart.

  5. hi Gulllie – thatwas a fun romp! Great to hear from you again.

    • They say writers are natural mimics. One very well known writer said he never reads anything in his genre because of that. Can you tell I”m reading my first novel by PD James?

      • annlinquist

        Hey, Gullie! Sorry I took so long to reply since I read this the day you wrote it. Loved the yellow dashes. You’re definitely on your game!

  6. The MRI technologist suggested that Sadie wear headphones to help calm her, since the test could take as long as 2-hours. Music would help pass the time more quickly and reduce the volume of the tapping-snapping noises made by the machine. He readied her for the exam and left the room.

    Just as the table began to slide into place, Tony Bennett started to weave some of his Old Black Magic.

    That old black magic has me in its spell
    That old black magic that you weave so well
    Those icy fingers up and down my spine
    The same old witchcraft when your eyes meet mine

    When the scan was complete, the technologist explained that there would be some time before the radiologist would meet with her to go over the results. He gave her a pager and told her to try to relax. She bought a cup of coffee and found a seat in the outpatient waiting area. She rested her head on the back of her chair and closed her eyes.

    The voice was muffled, but not so quiet that Sadie could not hear what it was saying. She opened her eyes, sat up and looked around. There were several people in the waiting area, some reading, some playing games on various electronic devices, some chatting quietly and some sleeping. No one seemed to have heard the voice except her.

    It’s like walking as fast as you can and then finding weeds on the driveway.

    What the hell was that supposed to mean? Before she had time to contemplate further, her pager lit up, alerting her that it was her turn to meet with the radiologist. Once inside the tiny meeting area, they sat looking at one another for several minutes before he finally spoke.

    He started by telling her that the prognosis did not look good. He pointed out an area on the left side of the scan that showed an abnormality. Sadie stared at the spot that reminded her of the raspberry jam stain she had found on the kitchen counter last week. She would not be able to clean this mess up so easily, no one would.

    After wandering around the city, Sadie found herself standing in front of her apartment building. She took a deep breath and climbed the stairs to the third floor. She unlocked her door, turned on the lights and fed her cat, Pharoah. She grabbed a glass of wine and sat down on the sofa.

    She reflected on the way she had lived her life, preparing for a tomorrow that would never come. She went to great lengths to plan for a future with zero defects, but never took the time to live in the moment; enjoy the little things; the messy things that let you know you were alive. This thing in her head was the weed, the unexpected, unwelcome thing that would stop her in her tracks. No amount of preparation or focus was going fix this and it was going to ruin everything she had planned.

    That was the last thought Sadie MacGregor would ever have.

  7. Good weaving of the word prompts in your story.

  8. Shameless Self-promotion Depatment: here’s a link to a story of mine published today at the 101-word story place:

  9. This is always a good spot to share your successes. I’ll have to go take a look. I am very fond of short.

  10. calamityjayne–Super job! It’s touching and original. Thanks for sharing it!

  11. Harriet looked down at the raspberry jam stain. The weeds on the driveway were covering it up but she remembered walking as fast as she could and stumbling in the dark. Blame it on her ‘zero defects’ sister in law who had insisted she take a jar home with her last Thanksgiving. She had been a bit tipsy.
    Leah could do anything and do it well. She had made the jam from her own raspberries. She sewed her own clothes too. Last night at the party, she had worn a striped headdress out of gold and blue cloth that draped over her bare shoulders. It was stunning. Didn’t King Tut, the boy pharaoh, wear such a headdress? That’s right! Now Harriet remembered seeing his death mask on TV while listening to her Tony Bennett CD. God, she loved that CD. She would put it on tonight when Joe came around. Yes.

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