OldDogNewTits












For this weekend’s Trifextra assignment, entrants must write a story in only 33 words using the phrase ‘It wasn’t the first time.’

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Hiding in Plain Sight

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It wasn’t the first time he used another name. But it was the first time that name was Alexis. He adjusted his wig, slipped on his slingbacks and glanced at the mirror one more time. “Perfect,” he sneered.

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It’s Trifextra Weekend Challenge time. And I’ve admittedly fallen off the radar a bit, for a variety of reasons. So, when this idea came to me late tonight (or is it now early tomorrow?), I wanted to put pen to paper before I forgot it. The rules are simple. Entrants are challenged to write a poem in either 33 words, 3 lines or 3 stanzas.

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Three in All

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He was my first, and so like me say all who knew me when

The complications, sleepless nights – I’d gladly do again

His cautious nature and word play, they made him who he is

He’ll always hold my heart as I hope always to hold his

*

And then she entered like a shot, been blazing ever since

Filling life with light and color, ever so intense

She balanced things just perfectly, making them complete

This sense of satisfaction all from one so small and sweet

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Then after all the obstacles, acceptance of the end

Came one more tiny miracle – my plans I would amend

But fate would not allow it, just four Christmas Eves ago

I love the one, I love the two, but three I’ll never know

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{May 5, 2012}   Stargazing (for Trifextra)

It’s Trifextra Weekend Challenge time. The assignment? Three truths and a lie, in 33 to 333 words.

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Stargazing

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I’ve met Siskel & Ebert. Two thumbs up.

I’ve met Donny & Marie. Bucket list.

I’ve met Kelsey Grammar. He looked tired.

I’ve met Tom Cruise. He was riding a piñata. No lie.

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1998, NATPE Convention, New Orleans

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1998, NATPE Convention, New Orleans

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2011 La Cage Aux Folles, Longacre Theatre, New York City

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The handiwork of a photoshopping genius I found online

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

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{April 28, 2012}   Inside Joke (for Trifextra)

It’s the weekend … which means it’s my “Trifextra ME time.” (Oh, that’s just so sad.) Anyway, if you didn’t see my last post, I’ll explain that the assignment this time is to create a scene involving three people and write it from the point of view of each of these characters, using 33 words for each of them.

This post is aptly-named as it’s available to everyone but directed to my Trifecta circle. The three vignettes that follow are intended to illustrate the individual reactions of three specific Trifecta writers when they read this weekend’s assignment.

Trifecta friends, can you guess who I’m channeling here? Rest-of-world, sorry. Feel free to eavesdrop.

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Inside Joke

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What??? I barely have time to write 33 words on the weekend, let alone 99. Sorry, kids. Mommy can’t take you to the park today. Chris, can you? I’m going to DM ODNT.

Wow. Three stories. There’s got to be a song in that. Wait … I know. I mean … it’s a goofy 80s song but it’s perfect. Better look up the lyrics. ODNT probably knows them.

The same story from three viewpoints? Three people? I guess I could do Three Amigos since it’s my namesake. Sort of. Gah! My BRAAAAAIN hurts. I’m going to go tease ODNT about cheese.

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It’s Trifextra time. What’s the assignment, you ask? Participants were asked to create a scene involving three people and write it from the point of view of each of these characters, using 33 words for each of them.

I opted to go with non-fiction for this entry. My scene could represent any night in our household when my son has a basketball game. I’ll let you figure out whose perspective is represented in each vignette.

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The Pre-Game Show

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Put more arc on the ball. Use the backboard. Hold the ball up here so no one can steal it. Keep it high so you can put it back up for your rebound.

I washed your shirt. It’s in the dryer. Get your shoes and tell your sister we’re about to leave. Whoever has to pee should go now. Do you want red Gatorade or purple?

I know! Daaaad! Okay. You say that every time. Thanks. I’ll get it. They’re already on. MOM WANTS YOU! I already went. SHE SAID TO PEE! Do we have yellow? That’s my favorite.

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Nope. That’s NOT my boy. But he looks appropriately irritated, doesn’t he?

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It’s Trifextra time … and a what a distinctively different assignment we were given this weekend.  Participants were challenged to write a new version of the classic Goldilocks and the Three Bears story.  To quote the madcap rules for this round … “You can change the setting, the characters, and whatever details you wish, but the story should still be recognizable to us.  Keep the spirit of the original work, but make it your own.  And for once?  You have no word limit.”

My brain immediately got to work thinking about other famous trios who could replace the bears.

My brain: What about the Musketeers?

Me: Nah. That would involve too much period research.

My brain: The Stooges?

Me: God … No! I can’t stand those (shaking head) stooges.

My brain: Charlie’s Angels?

Me: Okay. Okay, brain. You’re getting warmer. Let’s keep thinking.

My brain: (jumping to its feet pointing one finger in the air) I’ve got it!!!

Me: Yes! You make the coffee and I’ll go get my laptop. (running off, tripping over shoe on way out of room)

My brain and I worked tirelessly for several hours in the middle of the night to come up with this entry. We bumped heads a few times (which honestly is hard for person to do with his or her own brain) but, for the most part, we got along swimmingly.  We’re a pretty good team when we actually stop talking and start listening to each other once in a while.

For the record, I find the story really sounds best when you read it aloud in a very overly-exaggerated, early Shirley Temple voice. Enjoy …

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Goldilocks Takes on a New Trio

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Once upon a time, there was a girl named Goldilocks.  One day, Goldilocks  was walking along the Santa Monica Pier when she came upon a rickety old apartment building.  There were so many doors, she didn’t know what to do. So, she walked up to one of them and was just about to knock when she heard the sounds of bickering and squabbling coming from the other side.

“Oh, no!” she thought. “This just won’t do.”

Stepping away from the troubling noises, she looked up and saw another door, marked Two-O-One, just at the top of a tall stair. It looked perfect and there were no bothersome sounds coming from behind it. So, she climbed the great staircase all the way to the top and carefully approached the door.

She knocked and, when no one answered, she decided to try the knob. To her delight, it was unlocked! She wasn’t surprised when she entered, quickly realizing that nothing inside was of any value at all.

Her stomach grumbled. She was so hungry. It had been hours since she’d eaten that Hot Dog on a Stick along the pier. So, she pushed open the swinging door to the tiny kitchen and went inside. On the table, there were three bowls.

Goldilocks was starved so she tasted the food in the first bowl. It was Cold Asparagus Soup with Poached Quail Eggs and American White Sturgeon Caviar. “This one is tooooo fancy!” she exclaimed. So, she tasted the food in the second bowl. It was Fruity Pebbles cereal with orange juice instead of milk. “This one is tooooo weird!” she recoiled. Then, she tasted the last bowl. It was chicken noodle soup.  “This one is juuuuust right,” she said happily. And she ate it all up.

After she filled her stomach and could eat no more, she decided she was feeling a little cold and she needed some warmer clothes.  So, she opened the closet door where she saw three coats hanging on the rod.

Goldilocks tried on the first coat. It was a cheesy powder blue corduroy with lapels as wide as the big, blue ocean. “This one is tooooo big!” she exclaimed. So, she tried on the second coat. It was a yellow and orange-striped wrap with long gold tassels and leather fringe hanging around the bottom. “This one is tooooo groovy!”  she said.  Then, she tried on the last coat. It was a boring but timeless black pea coat. “This one is juuuuust right,” she sighed.  But just as she tried to fasten it up, three of the cheap buttons fell off and rolled under the hideous wicker coffee table.

By this time, Goldilocks was getting very tired. She decided she wanted to take a nap so she went off to search for the perfect sleeping spot.

She lay on the first bed in the room by itself. “This  one smells like tooooo much cheap aftershave!” she wheezed.  So, she went to the next room and lay on the second bed, but it was just as bad.  “This one smells like tooooo much bleach … and peroxide!” she groaned. Then, she lay on the third bed. “This one smells like a flower shop! It’s juuuuust right.”

And Goldilocks fell fast asleep, where she remained until the three roommates came home from the Regal Beagle and walked into the kitchen.

“Someone’s been eating my Cold Asparagus Soup with Poached Quail Eggs and American White Sturgeon Caviar!” exclaimed Jack, making a pass at one of his roommates by pretending to need comforting over the lost soup. “Someone’s been eating my Fruity Pebbles and orange juice!” giggled Chrissy, who was laughing so hard that she began snorting. “Someone’s been eating my chicken noodle soup and they ate it all up!” cried Janet.

Then, they saw their coats strewn all over the cheap, Salvation Army-reject sofa with the God-awful rusty orange design.

“Someone’s been wearing my leisure jacket!” yelled Jack. “Someone’s been wearing my shawl!” whined Chrissy. “Someone’s been wearing my coat … and they’ve lost all the buttons!” cried Janet, whose mousy black curls shook with anger.

Just as they were about to call the surly landlord downstairs to complain of a break-in, they heard a strange noise coming from the back of the apartment. The three roommates ran to their bedrooms.

“Someone’s been sleeping in my bed!” shouted Jack. “Someone’s been sleeping in my bed!” yammered Chrissy. “Someone’s been sleeping in my bed … and she’s still here!” exclaimed Janet.

Just then, Goldilocks woke up and saw the three roommates and screamed “Help!” Jack smiled lasciviously and said, “Well, hello there, foxy mama. What’s your hurry?” Trying to appear casual, he leaned one elbow onto the dresser but somehow accidentally knocked the whole thing over and took an impressive pratfall behind the bed.

“Jack!” screamed Janet and Chrissy in perfect unison, giving Goldilocks just enough time to jump up and run out of the room.  She  dashed out of the always inexplicably open front door and flew down the stairs bumping right into Mr. & Mrs. Roper at the bottom landing.

Seeing this attractive young blonde fleeing the apartment, he grumbled something to his wife about the three roommates trying to pull something over on him again about Jack being gay.  “Oh, Stanley!” was all he got in return from his scornful, housecoat-clad spouse, who was now rolling her eyes and laughing at him as she walked back into their downstairs apartment.

And Goldilocks never returned to the home of the three roommates ever again.

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The inspiration for today’s post …

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{April 14, 2012}   Dear Toby (for Trifextra)

It’s Trifextra Weekend Challenge time.

This weekend’s rules: Entrants must write a letter of apology in 33 words exactly. Addresses, salutations, closings, etc. do not count in the 33 words.

Wanna help pick the winners? Click here between Sunday 8pm EST and Monday 8am EST to vote for your top three.

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Dear Toby,

I never should’ve allowed them to convince me to leave the room, because I was pregnant, while you were being put down. I’m sorry I wasn’t there for you, boy. You deserved better.

Regretfully,

Michele

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RIP Toby (1987 – 2002)

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Trifextra Weekend Challenge + Easter = Today’s post

The rules this weekend are a little different. All entries must be between 33 and 333 words and need to include the following three words in the order provided:

  • cacophony
  • soap
  • insects
I based my entry this week on a single photograph. And I’m dedicating it to the child in that photograph.

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The Waiting is the Hardest Part

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The cacophony of children could be heard throughout the mall. Melissa approached the intimidating line. “Maybe it won’t take that long,” she thought. “And I’ll be glad to have this picture when he’s older.”

She parked her stroller in the designated area and stepped into the line. It snaked back and forth through a maze leading up to the Great Rabbit. “Please make it move fast,” she thought, content that her son was distracted by all the festivity. She trudged along mindlessly until she heard the first whimper.

“Alright, buddy. Let’s see what Mommy has in her bag,” she said, trying to sound upbeat. “Ooh, look!” She pulled out the brightly-colored soap set she’d just purchased at the department store. They looked like six-legged insects. She knew they were just the thing to make bath time fun for her little man and his bug obsession.

Excitedly, he took one and examined each of its legs, antennae and wings, passing it from one hand to the other. Moving through the line, Melissa reveled in her ingenuity … until he put it in his mouth. And his face went immediately sour.

She knew she had about ten seconds before the crying started. So she tossed him his sippy cup, mercifully filled with apple juice, and began searching frantically for another distraction in her bag of tricks.

Then, she struck gold.

His orange pan. His Bear in the Big Blue House pan. He took it everywhere. He’d given it to her at lunch and must have forgotten about it. “Ta-da!” Melissa announced triumphantly.

His face broke into a huge smile that ran from one adorable cheek to the other. “Pan!” he shouted.

She handed it to him, puffed with pride at her quick action, until he asked for its accompanying ‘patula,’ which she remembered seeing on the kitchen floor as they ran out the door that morning.

“Well, crap,” she thought, surrendering her now crying child to the stupid bunny.

Click! went the camera.

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Easter 2001

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The story is fiction, but the picture is real. Thanks for serving as my inspiration today, my boy. Happy Easter to you and to your sister! Oh, and props to Tom Petty for helping me out with my title.

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For my weekly stab at satire, I wrote this third and final entry for the Trifextra Weekend Challenge.  Here are the bloody rules – Entrants must write a horror story in 33 words exactly, without the words blood, scream, died, death, knife, gun or kill. But enough with the gory details.  This contest slays me.  I hope I don’t beat it to death. Waiting ’til Monday for the results will be murder.

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Trifextra Entry #3 – Curiosity Killed the Chat

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“What’s your plan?”

“Don’t know.”

“What about ‘bludgeon?'”

“Fine.”

“‘Axe?’ ‘Chainsaw?’ ‘Hook?'”

“All FINE!

“Dude, there’s lots of words left.”

“Not anymore.”(WHACK! … THUD!…) (spoken to camera) “I’m gonna need a bigger post.”

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The inspiration for that famous line.  It scared the daylights out of me.

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Here’s my second (hopefully blood … or at least milk … curdling) entry for the Trifextra Weekend Challenge. Rules: Entrants must write a horror story in 33 words exactly, without the words blood, scream, died, death, knife, gun or kill.

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Trifextra Entry #2 – Never Go to Bed Angry

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“Goodnight, sweetheart. I’m sorry, too,” she said, kissing his check. Finally releasing the hammer, she climbed into her side of the bed to spoon his still warm body. “Things will be better tomorrow.”

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et cetera
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