OldDogNewTits












I would be remiss if I didn’t take a minute today to say goodbye to a friend. An entity really. If you’ve been reading ODNT for a while, you might remember the Trifecta writing challenges I used to participate in pretty regularly. Long story short, Trifecta is an obsessed-with-all-things-in-threes website run by a handful of literary aficionados in the hopes of inspiring ambitious, fledgling writers.

And inspire it did.

I’ve never seen a writing link-up with a larger, more constant and fiercely loyal following. There, I was introduced to scores of great people including (yep, you guessed it) my friend and frequent writing partner, Mel at AccordingToMags.com. Additionally, Trifecta also prompted me to write several slices of flash fiction of which I’m especially proud. Among them …

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Oh, and if you’re looking for a new link-up…

Check out KetchupWithUs!

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Hosted by fellow Trifectan Mel and myself on the 1st and 15th of every month, KetchupWithUs is always flexible and always fun. Stop by when you can. One of our link-ups might just be live right now.

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So thanks for the inspiration and the great company, Trifecta. I wish you guys good luck in whatever your future endeavors may be. And now, while you ride off into the sunset, I’m going to play you out with one of the biggest closing themes of all time. In the (36, so close to your beloved 33) words of Carol Burnett …

I’m so glad we had this time together
Just to have a laugh, or sing a song
Seems we just get started and before you know it
Comes the time we have to say “So long”

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Our writing prompt for today is from Trifecta. In 33, one-syllable words, complete the story that begins with “The first time I saw …” After considering a few different ideas, I went with non-fiction.

The first time I saw …

… it, I threw it in the trash. I knew it would say no.

They all said no.

Hours passed. He looked at it.

“I don’t think it’s a no” was all he said.

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Friday, February 12, 1999. The Day My Infertility Died.

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What about YOU?

Can you finish the story in 33 one-syllable words? Here. I’ll start you off. The first time I saw …

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That Suburban Momma



Two Tweenagers, One iPad and a Dream

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ODNT, Jr. and her BFF made it for me yesterday. They could have created it about absolutely anything … but they chose this subject.

It’s meaningful, it’s imaginative and it’s completely covered in Ketchup.

I can think of no better way to spread the word … or the ketchup …. about the offbeat writing link-up I co-host with Mel on the 1st and 15th of every month. Thanks to Viv and Alex for creating this great little video for us. And thanks to Trifecta for serving as a great mentor for fledgling link-ups like Ketchup With Us. Truly, we relish the fact that we mustered the courage to launch this saucy little experiment at all.

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Ketchup #21 is live right now.

The link-up closes late on Monday, July 8. Come play.

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Trifecta Writing Assignment: “This weekend, we  are asking for a thirty-three word free-write.

Any topic, any style — just give us your best thirty-three.”

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That Suburban Momma


{January 20, 2013}   Birds of Prey (TrifectaWriting)

Trifecta weekend writing assignment – “Choose one of the pictures below and give us a 33-word response to it.” Of the three they provided, I chose this one.

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(Photo courtesy of ZeroOne / Foter.com / CC BY-SA)

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Birds of Prey

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(scanning area) “Mercedez windshield? Boooorrrring. Bronze Memorial? Soooo predictable. Black Armani? Mmmmaybe.” (sigh) “Come on, Sheldon. You can do this. Think bigger.” (jumps to feet) “Wait. Is that ….?”(sound of airplane spiraling downward)

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Anyone remember the mysterious shoes that showed up on my doorstep last monthAnd, more importantly, anyone remember when I learned they were purchased by my dumbass credit card thief and decided to give them away here at ODNT?

Well, ladies and gentlemen …. THE SHOES HAVE SPOKEN!!

So now, in a spectacular display of womanly multitasking, I will reveal the winner of the contest while also answering Trifecta’s current writing prompt: “This weekend we’re asking for 33 words about a new beginning.”

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Putting the Shoe on the Other Foot

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In an effort to cleanse the souls (or should that be soles?) of these ill-begotten shoes and give them new purpose, I have elected to award them to my daughter’s fifth grade teacher.

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Here she is now. Enjoying them in all of their newly-emerged-butterfly purity.

Screw you, thief.

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{December 29, 2012}   Flu … for @TrifectaWriting

The Trifecta writing assignment this weekend asks for “33 of your own words that exorcise a demon. One of your own, or one from your imagination.” My response is either perfect for this prompt or I’ve descended into hallucinatory, oatmeal-for-brains madness.

I can never be sure.

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Flu

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Her body stiffens. She is simultaneously hot and cold. The blanket antagonizes her skin. Breathing is labored. Involuntary attempts at expelling the impurity only heighten the pain.

And so she reaches for it.

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The Trifecta writing prompt for the weekend was pretty straightforward. Write exactly 33 words about rebellion and/or revolt.  Interpret it as you will.

I found an old picture and I just had to act on it. Thanks for the inspiration, my boy.

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His Stand Against Brussels

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Once upon a time, there was a little boy. He was an excellent eater. Until the day his mother tried Brussels sprouts. “NOOO!” he slammed his tiny fist. “I NOT eat that, Mommy.”

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Trifecta gave a great writing prompt for this time of year. Well, in my opinion anyway.

  • “In 1959, Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote the music for the Broadway production, The Sound of Music. One of the most famous songs from the musical is “My Favorite Things.” Since its inception, the song has been covered by countless artists, and we’re asking you to follow suit. Give us a few of your favorite things, in whichever form you want, in 33 words exactly.”

Easy. Feel free to sing along with me …

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My Favorite Things

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Christmas, theater, cheese, spa days and warm cookies

Family, friends, travel and writing a bookie

The love of my children and when my girl sings

These are a few of my favorite things

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A grainy albeit very special blast from my family’s Christmas Past.

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Remember my friend, Trifecta? Well, he (or she … I’ve never been sure) is turning one this month and celebrating with a special writing prompt that can only be completed with a partner. Not surprisingly, I’m working with Mel at AccordingToMags.comShe wooed me actually. I was so flattered. She is the yin to my yang. The Ernie to my Bert. The Peaches to my Herb. The … whatever. She. Completes. Me.

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So … here’s the prompt Trifecta put up this week.

  • Charts and optimal dates and preferential temperatures. One line or two. As if she could summon whatever it is that makes up the human soul as easily as she could a cab on a busy New York avenue.

And … here’s Mel’s additional 33-100 words.

  • And just like the cabs that passed her by, ignoring the urgency in her body language, she felt herself losing hope that she would never get to where she desperately wanted to go. Maybe those missed moments were meant to steer her in another direction? She feared waiting too long and with each step forward, she began to lose sight of her original plan. Luckily, she had left a trail of tears along the way to help guide her back.

Now … enter me. I’m supposed to write 33-100 more words to link here. And we’re in SUCH a deep and earnest place. *PANIC*

Sadly though, she was completely unaware of the heat wave that would soon befall her fair city. And the same tears that COULD have carried her home now sizzled on the steaming pavement beneath her feet, disappearing into the air and creating a fog that would serve to blind her and lead her forever astray.

OFFICIALLY, my entry ends here. That’s what Mel and I agreed upon. There were originally three more sentences Mel and I elected to leave out. And I understand why Mel gently suggested they hit the cutting room floor. Still, I think anytime you can work German pork products into a story, you totally should. UNOFFICIALLY, of course. So close your eyes, Trifecta. Here’s the coda.

  • Plus, now she was craving something that sizzled. Like a good knockwurst. Which, ironically, probably meant that she was, in fact, finally pregnant.

Good Lord. Sometimes I exhaust myself.

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For this week’s Trifecta challenge, I’m teaming up with two of my favorite writers to bring you a spooktacular (yes, I said spooktacular) Halloween trilogy. Our  instructions are simple.  Create a story between 33 and 333 words using the 3rd definition of the following word:

DEATH
1a : a permanent cessation of all vital functions : the end of life
b : an instance of dying <a disease causing many deaths>
2a : the cause or occasion of loss of life <drinking was the death of him>
b : a cause of ruin <the slander that was death to my character — Wilkie Collins>
3 capitalized : the destroyer of life represented usually as a skeleton with a scythe

And, before you read any further, I will explain that my entry represents the third and final installment of this story. Thus, I strongly encourage you to read Part 1 (penned by my friend, Mel at AccordingToMags) and Part 2 (penned by the incomparable El Guapo) before mine. Only then can my entry be best appreciated. Enjoy!

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Death Takes A Holiday – Part 3

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Death and George crowded into the restaurant while Nausea headed over to the bar. “I can do some real damage in there. They’re running a tequila special,” he called out, running ahead of the other two.

“Dimwitted dilettante,” Death condescended under his noxious breath. George laughed, remembering a time when his old friend had that same insatiable glimmer in his apocalyptic eye. “Why are you smiling, George?” Death asked, as the hostess escorted them to their usual booth. “Are you amused by his enthusiasm … or have I unintentionally entertained you in some way?”

“Don’t you remember?” George began. “There were none more eager than you. But now … CPR, defibrillators, the Heimlich Maneuver. Why have you allowed these measures to interrupt your delicate work?” George was just getting started when the waitress interrupted him. “Good evening, gentlemen. Will anyone else be joining you?” Nausea was now bellying up to his third victim since they’d arrived. “No. Just the two of us,” answered Death, matter of-factly. “And we’d like to start with a couple of glasses of Richebourg Grand Cru.”

“Yes, of course, sir. Are we celebrating anything special?” she asked. “Yes,” answered Death. “My friend and I are celebrating my first holiday. A day off for Death. Do you know there’s no way you can die right now, young lady?”

“I beg your pardon?” she stammered.

“I said that you cannot die today.” Death explained. “There is nothing you or anyone else can do to make that happen. Do you understand?”

Mouth agape, she managed, “I’ll be right back with your drinks,” then turned too quickly directly into a busboy and the business end of the steak knife he was carrying.

Death rolled his eyes. He placed his hand on her bleeding abdomen. “I said nothing,” he reiterated, clearly vexed at the need to prove himself. He removed his hand from her now unscathed stomach and returned to his seat.

“Wow,” said George. “I’m impressed. I didn’t think you had it in you.”

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et cetera
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