I got back in the truck, my cheeks burning from embarrassment, and turned to my roommate, “I don’t see any damage.”

He angled his head so he could look into the rear-view mirror and see the car parked directly behind us.  He frowned and then a moment later his features set into the resolved expression I had grown to know so well over the previous five years.

“You should leave a note, anyway.”

I sighed.  I rolled my eyes.  I pretended to protest, but I knew he was right and I would leave my contact information under their windshield wipers.  I motioned for him to open the glove box and then reached over and pulled out a pad of paper and pen that I stored there.  I scrawled my details out, as legibly as I could, considering the rush of adrenaline that was still coursing through me from having backed into the vehicle.

I still couldn’t believe I had done something so stupid.

With another sigh, I got back out of the truck and walked across to car.  I didn’t want to, but I couldn’t help but steal another glance at the bumper to confirm that I still saw no evidence of damage from the slight impact.

My vision narrowed so all I saw was what was necessary for my current task.  I reached the front of the car, propped up the drive side wiper enough to slip my note under and then let the blade fall back into place.  I was so focused on my anger, at myself for having hit the car in the first place, at the unknowns of what would come of giving them my information, at the universe for fating me into that moment, that I almost missed the slight movement of a head ducking down in the back of the car.

There was someone in there!  A child, perhaps, left in the back seat while one of their parents was shopping inside?

Shaking my head, bewildered by the whole situation, I retraced my steps to the truck, stepped in, and turned the ignition.

“Happy now?” I sarcastically quipped.

“Not really.”

“Me either.”


This tale is a twist on a true story, and was written for this week’s Tale Weaver’s Prompt:

Remember an event that really happened to you, then take a fictional character and insert him in the story. Rewrite the event to include both you and the character, change the outcome of the situation, for better, for worse, however you desire.

Some ideas and guidelines:

– The fictional character can be anything, like: a superhero, a protagonist of a book, a part of your personality imagined and shocked alive as a character and a person that in reality does not exist, archetypes, a character from a dream you once had,  and so on.

– You can rewrite the event and create a real story branching off into a fictional one, or you can write a speculative story, as in “What do I think would happen that day, if instead of person N, Snoopy was with me?”

Word limit: 500


In the true version of this story, I was in the truck by myself, and didn’t have the guiding voice of a friend to help me do the right thing: I didn’t walk back over to leave a note.  Therefore, I missed that there was someone in the car.  They wrote down my license plate and when their mom finished shopping they called the cops: hit and run.


Live and learn.

Q and A Public Servant

And now for something … exactly the same and completely different all at the same time.  We’ve been here before, you and I.  And, yes, that was a Monty Python reference swiftly followed by a Matrix reference, how good of you to notice.  Neither of those have anything to do with this week’s theme.  See if you can spot it.

It shouldn’t be too hard, it’s right there in the post title…  Sometimes I just make these things too easy for you.

Get on with it?  Okay, here goes:

Over the years I’ve incorporated a whole lot, some might even say a plethora (of pinatas?), of movie dialogue into my day-to-day lingo.  The following is an example of that.

Q: What do you say when you want someone to know you will always, and I mean always, have their back?
A: “You go. We go.”
– Lt. Stephan McCaffrey (Kurt Russell) – Backdraft

Q: When you walk into an office building and have to look up on the directory where you are headed next, what should you say when you find your answer?
A: “Why does it always have to be the 12th floor? Why cant they be on the 4th?”
– Lenny Richter (Robert Patrick) – Ladder 49

Q: What do you answer when someone asks who you are?
A: “Just a fly in the ointment, Hans. The monkey in the wrench. The pain in the ass.”
– John McClane (Bruce Willis) – Die Hard

Q: What do you say when you are asked why you are acting more peculiar than normal?
A: “I’d always had nightmares, but now the ghosts didn’t wait for me to sleep.”
– Frank Pierce (Nicolas Cage) – Bringing Out the Dead

Q: What do you say after you’ve hit someone upside the back of their head (Jethro Gibbs style) or kicked them… well, you know where?
A: “Sorry, just had to jog your thinking!”
– Gus Mally (Sandra Locke) – The Gauntlet

Q: What do you say to someone who’s blocking your path?
A: “Get out of the way, Hammerhead.”
– Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) – Dirty Harry

Q: What do you say to someone who is about to move in with you?
A: “These are the simple rules. No barking, no growling, you will not lift your leg to anything in this house. This is not your room. No slobbering, no chewing, you will wear a flea collar. This is not your room. No begging for food, no sniffing of crotches, and you will not drink from my toilet. This is not your room.”
– Scott Turner (Tom Hanks) – Turner and Hooch

Q: What do you ask someone when…   Honestly, I’m not sure why you would ever ask someone this, but if you can think of a good reason, you should definitely do so.
A: “Do you know you have an animal growing out of your pants?”
– Tracy (Mel Harris) – K-9

Q: What do you say when a situation is getting out of hand?
A: “There’s something fishy going on here, and I don’t think it’s the chicken.”
– Pete Sandich (Richard Dreyfuss) – Always

Q: What do you say to someone who is bowing down to you?  (It’s a common problem for a king.)
A: “Farley! You’re drooling all over my Reeboks!”
– Savannah (Elaine Wilkes) – Paramedics


Another successful theme, I’d say, and who’d disagree with me?  No one.  Exactly.  Thanks for riding along on this public service adventure.  Never forget, here there be monsters, cops, firemen, and a few paramedics too.  I think more kids should be trying these at at home these days, playing outside, rather than sitting online, except to read everything going on in the kingdom, of course.