FFfAW — Hot Pink

99EE5B84-EB08-443F-951D-EF4A772CC418“Why would anyone paint a wall on campus hot pink?” Harvey asked.

“That’s the classroom where they teach women’s studies,” William noted.

“Don’t you find that sexist?”

“Why would you say that?” William asked.

“You know,” Harvey answered, “Pink for girls, blue for boys. It’s so stereotypical to paint the wall outside of a women’s studies classroom pink. It’s offensive and demeaning.”

William saw a coed walking toward them and motioned to her. “Excuse me, may I ask you a question?”

The girl shrugged. “Sure.”

“This wall,” he said, pointing to the hot pink wall, “is outside of a women’s studies classroom. Does that offend you?”

“Why would that wall offend me?”

“My friend thinks that a pink wall outside of a women’s studies classroom is stereotypical and is degrading to women. Do you agree?”

The girl thought for a few seconds and then reached into her fanny pack, pulled out a piece of chalk, and drew a smiley face on the wall.

“That should answer your question.” And then she turned and walked away.

(175 words)


Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers from Priceless Joy. Image by Grant-Sud.

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FFfAW — Blowin In The Wind

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I’m still reeling after a day of reading about and watching the news coverage on TV regarding Sunday night’s horrific mass shooting in Las Vegas.

As I think back to other recent mass shootings, such as the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT., the holiday party in San Bernardino, CA., the movie theater in Aurora, CO., the church in Charleston, SC., and so many others over the past decade, I’m reminded that we, as a nation, have done nothing to stem the tide of such senseless gun violence other than to offer our thoughts and prayers. And offering thoughts and prayers accomplishes nothing.

I’m also reminded of Bob Dylan’s song, “Blowin in the Wind,” especially the verse that goes, “Yes, ‘n’ how many times can a man turn his head and pretend that he just doesn’t see.”

How many times can we experience these mass shootings in our country and pretend that there is nothing we can do to address them? How long are we going to stick our collective heads in the sand like we are a nation of ostriches?

How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man
How many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand
Yes, ‘n’ how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they’re forever banned
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind

Yes, ‘n’ how many years can a mountain exist
Before it’s washed to the sea
Yes, ‘n’ how many years can some people exist
Before they’re allowed to be free
Yes, ‘n’ how many times can a man turn his head
And pretend that he just doesn’t see
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind

Yes, ‘n’ how many times must a man look up
Before he can see the sky
Yes, ‘n’ how many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry
Yes, ‘n’ how many deaths will it take till he knows
That too many people have died
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind


I apologize. I know that this post is not flash fiction. I also know that it’s well over the recommended 100-150 words for the Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers prompt. But when I saw the photograph by Elaine Farmington Johnson, which may or may not have been taken after the Pulse nightclub shooting, I had to use it to express my thoughts about what just happened in Las Vegas and our lack of resolve in dealing with gun violence in this country. I hope Priceless Joy, whose prompt this is, and all who read this post, will forgive me for breaking the rules.

FFfAW — At My Age

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Diane looked at her grandfather as he sat reading the newspaper across the breakfast table from her. “Pop-Pop,” she asked, “why do you always do that?”

“Do what?” She pointed to the coffee mug. “Oh, you mean balance my spectacles on the mug’s rim?”

“Yes.”

“If it annoys you that I do that, honey, I’ll stop.”

“No. I just think it’s a strange.”

He shrugged. “It’s not like anyone drinks from that mug,” he said. “It’s where we keep the sugar packets.”

“But why don’t you wear them over your eyes? Isn’t that what they’re for?”

“Three reasons,” he patiently replied. “First, my vision is such that it’s easier for me to read the paper without my glasses. Second, they have a slight tint, so the print is more crisp in the early morning light without them.”

“And third?”

“So when I’m done reading the paper, I’ll remember exactly where I put them. When you get to be my age, honey, you’ll understand.”

(163 words)


Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers from Priceless Joy. Photo prompt from Shivamt25.

FFfAW — The Deed

IMG_2644The new moon was in the sky, making it a particularly dark night. That was a good thing. In Ivan’s line of work, the cover of darkness was a blessing.

He sat patiently, nursing a latte at a table in the back corner of the outdoor cafe across the street from the hotel. Sitting patiently and waiting was a large part of his job, so he was used to it.

He peered through a small pair of binoculars, alert to all movements outside the hotel’s lobby. He had already affixed the silencer to the barrel of his weapon, which he held on his lap. Ivan was totally ready to do the deed when the time arrived.

When he saw his target exiting from the hotel, Ivan stood up, stealthily ran across the street, and shot the man in the face before darting into an alleyway next to the hotel.

The president will be pleased, Ivan thought. One less hypercritical investigative journalist publishing fake news.

(164 words)


Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers prompt from Priceless Joy. Photo credit: Pamela S. Canepa.

FFfAW — A Fine Day

Flower Competition

Ramesh had spent months perfecting his flowering plants, using just the right kind of soil and adding the best nutrients and fertilizers. Best of all, he had timed it just perfectly. His plants were magnificent and he was sure everyone would marvel at his skills.

Unfortunately, on the day of the grand bazaar, Ramesh was running significantly late. He had hoped to arrive early enough to get a prime spot to display his plants. But by the time he got there, the only place left was next to a wall far from the center.

And if that wasn’t bad enough, the only chair he could find was one that looked as if it belonged in a kindergarten classroom.

A patient man, Ramesh sat in the tiny chair, smiling as if it was perfectly normal and acceptable.

In the end, though, he got his reward, earning the coveted blue ribbon prize for his plants and selling each and every one.

Overall, it was a fine day for Ramesh.

(167 words)


Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers from Princess Joy.