Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Spring Cleaning my Hard Drive

    Sometimes I get the urge to write some really bad fiction.  And I mean really bad.  I thought it would be funny - or at least mildly entertaining to post some of my stuttered starts.  Here is one I wrote about a gal who gets a good kick in the ol' sixth sense when she hits her sweet sixteen.   I never got very far in it but I knew there was going to be some ghosts who needed help. Kinda  Haley Joel meets Jennifer Love Hewitt meets something  funny.  Yeah - it was a stretch -  hence why it only made it to a few paragraphs:

     Becoming a psychic on my sixteenth birthday was horrible.  Trying to get my driver’s license while listening to the instructor’s thoughts about my ass, well, that was worse.  My grandmother, clad in head to toe Jones wear, sat me down on a stretch of white couch and broke the news about my heritage.

    “You’re a pshychic.  Or, you will be, in about three days,”  she said, sitting back and crossing her long legs.
    “Is this when you tell me I’m descended from a long line of witches and we have to dance around in the moonlight all naked and stuff?”  I was being flippant, but who could blame me?  My normally sane grandmother had just told me I was a psychic.  I steeled myself to learn more.  And to face the fact that Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny may be real. 
    “No, don’t be stupid,”  my grandmother Charlie said with a note of disdain for me which wasn’t all that unusual.  Grandma Charlie had always been harder on me than the other grandkids.  Now I knew why.
    “You were the second-born female born to the second born female of me, therefore, you are the ‘Chosen One,’ per se.”
    “Wait, wouldn’t a first-born make more sense?  As far as a heritage line goes?  Like with royalty?” I asked, popping off my clogs and tucking my pale legs under me on the couch. 
    “No, well, maybe.”  My grandmother sighed and then cast me a disapproving look for putting my feet on the couch.  I had bigger things to worry about than dirt on her stupid furniture.
    “Like I was saying,” she continued.  “On your sixteenth birthday you will be given the power of psychic thought. You will be able to hear what people are thinking, see what will happen and feel the presence of those wrongly forced from this earth.”  Grandma Charlie stared intently down her straight nose and I felt her pale blue eyes bore into my matching ones.  She seemed to be trying to impart on me the importance of this great revelation.
    “So,” I said, squinting my eyes at her and tilting my head to the left, letting my unruly and thick brown hair slide over my shoulder, “no car, then?” 

    I sat awake on my bed at 11:59 PM and steeled myself for the coming change.   I didn’t question my grandmother too much when she announced my impending change.  I had always known I was different. 

Not exactly my best work but I still think it was pretty funny.  
My next tragic installment of "The Fiction that Never Was" was inspired by a conversation told to me by a friend.  Apparently her boyfriend's friend was convinced he was being stalked by the Irish Mafia.   I found it a hilarious opening and had to relate it to online dating to try to appeal to the world of "smut' as Harry calls it:

    “Do you really think that the Irish Mafia is after you?”
    “Yes.  I’m sure of it.”
    “Wait.  Is there even an Irish Mafia?”
    “Yes.   There are all sorts of Mafias.”
    “Mafias?  Mafis? Huh.  I thought there was just one.”
    “No.  There are many Mafias. Irish, Asian, Italian-”
    “So there are just as many Mafias as there are communities?  One for each one?”
    “Yes.  I’m sure West Virginia even has a Mafia.”
    “You think?”
    “What about the Amish?”
    “Are you kidding me?  They have everything to be disgruntled about.  No ‘Wii’, man!  They don’t even have ‘Wiis’!”
    “Yeah.  So the Irish mafia, huh?” 
    “That sucks.”
    “That’s what you say to a guy being stalked by the Irish Mafia?  ‘That sucks’?” 
    “What should I say?  ‘Sorry little green men wielding pots of fake gold are after you?  Better watch out or they’ll shoot their lucky charms into your bloody chest!’”
    And that’s how my last boyfriend broke up with me.  Gathered up his Wii remotes, stopped in the peeling paint doorway to shoot me a look of pure disbelief and then walked out, leaving me sitting in the floor wondering two things.  The first of which was “What just happened?” and the second being “Is Walmart open?  Can I get a new Wii there?”
    Thus ended my dating career in what many would call its premature stages.  I was twenty-four, a Senior at University and awaiting graduation in a highly rewarding field:  Communications.  Of which I, apparently, lacked.   Rusty never called me again.  I never saw him again.  For all I know he was killed in an alley the next night.  A victim of the Irish Mafia and their Kiss of the Irish of Death. 
    I went on a few dates in the year that followed the mafia conversation.  But after the third guy showed up with his walker in tow I stuck to the internet and meeting men who were hopefully not married.  It took me awhile to get the hang of dating on the internet.  I had to weed out quite a few individuals who were interested only in my cup size and could care less if I watched CNN.  
    Until I met WV4VW.
    We were both part of an online book club that met online once a month to discuss the latest best-seller.   He liked Christopher Moore.  I liked Christopher Moore.  He liked tomatoes.  I liked tomatoes.  He loved winter, my name is Noel.  Perfect.  At least that’s what I’m telling myself as I raise my hand to knock on his door. 
    And that’s why you’re ready to have crazy wild monkey sex with a perfect stranger who is probably not a crazy psychopath unless he is and then, well, at least your death will be featured on America’s Most Wanted or a Lifetime Movie of the Week entitled:
    The door swung open.
    I really should’ve asked for a picture. 
    Or a background check.
    Or both.
    “Come on in!  You must be Noel!”  the short man said from my kneecaps.  No, really, he was probably perfectly average but me, the freakazoid, was a good 5’10”  in flats.  Which I wasn’t wearing.  He was adorable, though.  He held out an arm and directed me to a leather couch (groan!  Why do all men have leather couches?  Grrr!) and took my sensible light weight coat and put it on the back of a ratty recliner. 
    Brad looked at me.  I stared at him and tried to manage a convincing smile.   More for him, than for me, I thought as I studied his perfect teeth, perfect blonde spiky hair and perfected fitted tee that showed off his perfect tiny swimmer’s physique.
    “Brad!” Brad bellowed.  “Noel’s here!”  Brad shrugged at me as he plastered a “whattaya gonna do?” grin on his face.
    I was gonna run, that’s what I was gonna do.
    I stood up and started to rush the door but instead collided with a very large, very masculine chest. 
    “I’m Brad,” said the chest. 

And finally, here is my third installment of Fiction Crap du Jour by - me.  
Most chick lits and romance novels I read today start out with a woman who has issues and quirks and imperfections looking for love and finding jerk after jerk to look for self-meaning until Mr. Right falls in her lap from right under her nose.  So - I thought it would be funny to start off with someone "perfect" and destroy her self image, confidence and life and then make her find her actual self. We've all met people who were so fake they were shiny- I wondered what would happen if they suddenly had to be "real" like the rest of us...

I have the perfect life.
No, really, I do.
Let’s take my boyfriend, for example.  When I first found him, perched on the edge of the school memorial fountain, faded levis and a crumbled Wrangler hat in his hand, I knew I wanted him.  He was what you might call – a fixer upper.  He had potential.  I just had to find it.  So, I fixed him right up and made him into the quintessential man (think Patrick Dempsy, post-nerd transition in “Can’t Buy Me Love”  - they could be twins!).   Ryan went from being addicted to smokeless tobacco to addicted to the works of Rob Thomas.  The change was complete and he was mine.  Is mine.  

    I go to the local university studying Mathematics, which, I know, is instantly thought to be an uncool thing, like being a Trekkie or a Harry Potter fan, but numbers are really fascinating to me, and, I make it work.  My classes are going well this semester, my teachers all seem to connect with me and realize that I am here to just get a degree until Ryan and I get married and get done to raising our 1.5 kids.   It’s the week before finals and I am lounging by the pool in an adorable green polka dot one piece while the rest of my chums are at the library, studying and pouring over books that haven’t seen the light of day – ever.  I repeat, I love my life.

    Ryan’s late.
    That’s odd.  I’ve stressed to him, repeatedly, the importance of being punctual even if it’s just to a casual meeting.  Not that this is something of utmost urgency – but I do want to see if he likes my new suit before it gets shipped off to senior week with me and the gals in Cancun, I think to myself and giggle.   He has nothing to worry about though.  My heart belongs to him and him alone.  

    I smooth some coconut scented lotion on to my long bronze legs. I have to admit that, besides my eyes, which are the color of new moss, they are my best feature.  I don’t work out seven days a week for my health!   I do it for Mr. Ryan P. Freeman the second – if he’s going to be a well known dermatologist by the time he’s twenty-five, he must have the appropriate trophy wife to match!   Plus, he detests chubby girls.  He’s told me so many times.  I nodded to myself, readjusted my white Coach hat and glanced again at my watch lying on the table.   Fifteen minutes past noon.  Five more and I will have to call him on his cell.  I hate cell phones – so impersonal, you know.  

    “Kiki?”  I heard a smooth male voice come from behind me.  Whirling around, I saw Ryan, standing with a rather short girl with mouse brown hair down to her thick waist.  I looked her over, decided she must be a sister of a friend from med school and got up to greet them.
    “Hi!”  I beamed my best pageant smile at her and strode purposefully towards them.   Shaking her hand I wondered how she saw over the steering wheel to drive.  She couldn’t be more than five feet tall.  In heels.   Which she wasn’t wearing.  Good lord!  Were those Birkenstocks??? EW.   “I’m Kiki, and you are?”  She squeaked at me, dropped my hand and ducked behind Ryan.  Sometimes, I have that effect on people.  I don’t find it to be a bad thing. 
    “Kiki, this is Linda, from school, remember?  I told you about her.  She was my lab partner in Organic?”  Not a clue.  He probably mentioned her, but I wouldn’t recall it mainly because I tend to blank out when he discussed his school.  The stuff he does there!  I find it better to nod, smile, and practice my long division – something I shamefully do when I am in a situation I detest.
    “What?”  I had just missed half of what he said – but I am sure that what I did hear – I heard wrong.  Something about he and Linda getting an apartment together?  No – that can’t be right.
    “We’re moving in together.  We fell in love and thought we should tell you in person. I’m sorry, Kiki.”  He moved to pat me on the shoulder.  I began computing.  5 ( her height) minus 5.75 (my height) plus 6.3 (his height)…   I knew my smile was straining.  I could feel my cheeks hurting.  I said nothing to the happy couple.  Linda squeaked at me again.  Her eyes bulged at me from behind enormous Walmart frames.  I nodded…  1 divided by the sum of the former is equal to or less than… 
    They walked away then.  Ryan looked back at me and tossed me a small wave.  I smiled at him lamely.  Two minus one equals one.  That one was easy. 

    I hate my life.

    Three weeks later I was still in bed.  My pink comforter was littered with chocolate stains from the Snickers ice cream bars that I had devoured with reckless abandon.   Cancun had come and went.  Janice came to borrow my polka dot swimsuit since she said it would at least do some good for some of my wardrobe to see the light of day again.  Luckily for me, my parents were still in the south of France, taking too many artsy pictures to worry about their only daughter and her pathetic existence.  
    “I was his life.  I made him who he is.  He was supposed to be my husband.”  It had become my mantra.   A not so healthy mantra, but mine, at least.  I drug myself out of bed and crawled to the shower.  I turned on the faucet and let the water spray me and my blue silk pajamas.  I knew that insanity was closing in on me.  The housekeeper had told me as much – although most of it was in Spanish – strangely I got the drift.  She had taken one look at me in my chocolate cocoon and taken the week off.  I threw an empty carton of ice cream at her as she left.  

Oh well - I guess you have to start off writing crap and then work up to the good stuff, right?
If not - that's okay too.  I got called the "nice" HR chick today. 
That'll do.


beckiepainton said...

and i would of read all those books, if they ever made it to book, keep on!!Beckie x

oddb0dkins said...

I like your writing style. It's not easy to write humorous fiction. Real life tends to be much funnier in any case.
When I read through some of my earlier scribblings some of it can make me cringe but there are one or two pieces that aren't too embarrassing.
It's all a learning curve I guess.

B. x