4 April 2014

Published April 2, 2014 by rochellewisoff


Seize the opportunity to free your muse and allow her take you on a magic carpet ride. 

Henry David Thoreau said it best.

“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”


Write a one hundred word story that has a beginning, middle and end. (No one will be ostracized for going a few words over the count.)




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TO THOSE WRITING HISTORICAL FICTION (MYSELF INCLUDED): While WIKIPEDIA is usually a decent source of information, it’s not always reliable one. As a rule, I use it as a jumping off point to other research threads. It’s a good rule of thumb to use more than one source. I speak from experience when I say that a simple 100 word story can bring serious repercussions. 


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Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 99


            “I wish my folks were like the Williamses’,” said Cathy. She poked at her ice cream soda with her straw and breathed in the scent of Woolworths’ French fries.

            “Aw, they’re just TV phonies.” Doug snickered.

            “Look. It’s her!”

            At the other end of the counter the perfect mother in starched cotton, pearls and pillbox hat ordered a Coke. With heart-pounding awe, Cathy grabbed her napkin and slipped off her stool.

            “Mrs. Williams, I think you’re swell. Could I please have your autograph?”

            The actress puffed her cigarette, flashed a red-lipsticked smile and said, “Get lost, ya little brat.” 

132 comments on “4 April 2014

  • “Get Lost ya little brat.” is not a good answer to a fan! She obviously hasn’t heard of the rating wars. People will hear of her rudeness to a young girl and before you know it, she’ll be fired and then be living on the streets drinking someone’s leftover Coke out of the trash, and picking up cigarette butts off the ground. Very good Rochelle! You are so clever with your stories! Thank you for the entertainment! Nan 🙂


  • Good story, Rochelle. Also, very humorous. I wonder if that actor also drinks too much. Otherwise, she made a huge mistake in insulting a big fan. I totally agree with Nan on that. Although in those days there wasn’t as much competition, the stars were given a squeaky-clean reputation they didn’t dare ruin. Well done as usual.


    • Dear Patricia,

      It’s funny that at the time stars had to maintain a clean reputation. I remember reading that Robert Young of Father Knows Best fame was an alcoholic. That was sadly true for a number of stars back then.

      In an earlier draft I had alcohol on the actor’s breath but ran out of words. 😉 So you’re spot on. Glad you liked it. Thank you.




  • Rochelle, what a great look at the real person behind the TV character veneer. I often wonder what my favorite stars are like in real life. You’d like to imagine them as charming and kind, but it’s probably not the case for all of them. They are good actors for a reason. 🙂


    • Dear David,

      I’ve read about some of those stars from the old TV family sitcoms. As you might guess, many of them weren’t what they portrayed. The operative word there is “actor”. Thank you for your comments. They mean a lot to me.




      • Congratulations on Friday Fictioneers really taking off these days. It’s quite overwhelming, in terms of reading, and I usually only get to about 30 a week, but still I’m glad you mentioned the nudge that it’s supposed to be interactive. I do know people who post and never read any others.


    • Dear Joyful,

      Unfortunately little Cathy didn’t see the last line coming either. I’m sure it was disillusioning to find that her hero didn’t match her TV persona.

      Thank you for commenting.




  • Nice story. I’m reading this on the phone, so not seen the picture yet. I’m guessing the photo prompt is maybe a shop interior, or people queuing at a till. Probably 1950s style. Or two young people sat on stools in an ice cream parlour what’s the world go by. Curious to see to photo now!


  • I worked in a hotel for ten years that was frequented by “stars”. There is nothing special about them..just our perception of who/what they are. They eat, sleep and poo just like the rest of us. Your story is probably close to the truth..poor Cathy.


    • Dear Patricia,

      Those 60’s sitcoms painted such an idyllic picture of family life. It was a hard to find out that most of those “parents” were nothing like the characters they portrayed.

      Thank you for commenting.




  • This story is such a realistic one and a good lesson for Cathy to learn. Poor thing! Now she knows the truth. I remember wishing my family was like the Leave it to Beaver family. They seemed so perfect and normal, but then I grew up. Great little story, Rochelle!


  • These days, we should probably wish the most stars AREN’T like the people they portray. And as for Cathy not watching TV again, that isn’t all bad, either. 🙂 I like the title, since “reality TV” is one of the most annoying and misleading sets of words around these days. Good one.



  • I greatly enjoyed this story, Rochelle. I think we’ve all met a few people like Mrs. Williams, so it’s highly relatable. In fact, I think her husband might be a coworker of mine because he’s awfully crabby most of the time! I do hope Cathy doesn’t take it personally, and it makes me wonder if Mrs. Williams will ever look back and have the self-awareness to regret her behavior. Highly entertaining!


    • Dear Adelie,

      It seems to me that “Mrs. Williams” is shooting her acting career in the foot. 😉 I think we’ve all encountered people like her.

      Glad you liked my story. Thank you.




  • To be fair even the stars need their personal space tho being rude to fans can be the kiss of death for ratings. That’s one less TV serial to watch for Cathy now. Maybe she will switch to Big Brother instead 😉

    P.S Can I get your autograph for my entry for last week 🙂


    • Dear Subroto,

      I agree that stars need their space…however I’ll have to side with Cathy on this one. 😉

      I’ve left my autograph on your entry for last week…although I still can’t find your link. Also I’m glad you mentioned it since I seem to have missed more than just yours. Oops.




    • Dear Ruth,

      You’re right, too. It was easier back in those days for a star to guard his or her privacy. It’s interesting to read their bios in retrospect and say, “Who knew?” Now, for the most part, everything is known. The stars I respect the most are the ones who stay out of the media spotlight other than their roles.
      But oh, how I longed to be in a family where Father Knows Best. 😉

      Thank you.




  • Ah, the realities of reality tv! I like how you went behind the scenes with this one. I suspect this is true of many actors – we are so easily roped into thinking we know them, when really we only know the characters they portray.
    There’s been a recent spate of cases in the UK where tv soap stars have been accused of child-molesting and other crimes. I have no idea how these people get a fair trial, because so many jurors must come with preconceived ideas of how the character would or wouldn’t behave.


    • Dear Jennifer,

      In the 50’s and 60’s American TV portrayed families in such an idealistic way. I remember thinking my parents had to be abnormal. I couldn’t imagine Ward Cleaver or Dr. Stone sitting around in their underwear yelling epithets at their perfectly pressed wives. June Cleaver with curlers in her hair? Unthinkable.
      It’s kind of sad to look back on these actors to find that their lives were nothing like those of the characters they portrayed.
      I hate to hear of the shake up going on in the UK. It’s the same here.
      At any rate, I’m glad you liked my story. 😉




  • Ah haha! So funny. Looking back on the old TV sitcoms, some of those folks seemed too good to be true. It would be funny to see one of them act like that in real life. Poor girl, though. Her hopes and dreams were dashed. Another excellent story, Rochelle!


  • So strange reading this today after the dream I had last night, where I met one of my favourite writers and they turned out to be a complete jerk. (Don’t know if it’s true, or just my subconscious telling me that it’s never a good thing to meet your heroes).

    People should never be put up on pedestals.


    • I beg to differ, Helena. My hero was also a hero to our nation! A symbol of what we could all achieve if we set our hearts and souls to believe in what “could be”. He was an astronaut in a time when spaceflight was new. I met my hero, fell for him, in fact. I was at an air show running on crutches to get somewhere, and he came out of nowhere and the edge of his shoe caught my crutch sending me head over full-leg cast. Looking back, I can laugh, it must have been a funny scene. Anyway, he picked me up (45pd cast and all) and carried me back to my Mom. After that, he sent me an autographed picture and for many many years, we corresponded back and forth, nothing fancy, just a friendly chat. He has since passed on to heaven’s shores, but he will always be my hero.


      • What a great story, and the exception to the rule, perhaps — or perhaps we often make heroes of people who don’t truly fit the bill, and are disappointed when we learn they don’t measure up.


        • Dear Helena and Faith,

          There are heroes and then there are heroes. The thing to remember is that we all heft clay feet. 😉 People are often not what they seem. Therefore I’m inclined to agree about pedestals.

          That is a great story, Faith and a cherished memory. Thank you for sharing it.




  • Such a sad reality.. a star with the wrong attitude can do so much damage.. Really love the take, and I will be back writing mine later on. I hope I fulfill my commenting obligation — but I can no longer do all the entries.. But the 5 before and 5 after sounds like easy enough… and I so agree, without reading and commenting the community is not there really…


  • Rochelle that was a super clever title! Reality indeed. It’s very true. And I don’t even watch TV anymore… Someday, when i have kids, I’ll introduce them to real life heroes and heroines. 🙂 excellent story as always.


  • Love it! The aroma of fries & shakes. The sound & busyness of the soda fountain & the warning of a friend. Those Red Lips fresh w/acrid smoke.fitting the acid actress. I was really there, for a moment. Well done!


  • Phony indeed! I never liked reality shows—they’re often even more fake than anything a scripted laugh-tracked sitcom could throw at you. I hope Cathy learned something from that experience! (And that karma bites Mrs. Williams right in the wallet!)


    • Dear Hala,

      Actually “Mrs. Williams” is the actress’ stage name from a laugh-tracked sitcom in the early 60’s. 😉 However Cathy is a child who sees the show as reality. But I agree. Karma should bite the woman in the wallet.

      Thank you for commenting. The fact that this evoked such a response is a high compliment.




  • Great little slice of life. I like Mrs Williams already and Kathy has just learnt a life-lesson.
    (Pedants corner: Shouldn’t it be ‘Williamses’? To make a word plural when it ends in a sibilant, we add es.)


    • Dear Patrick,

      interesting that some are siding with “Mrs. Williams.” No doubt Cathy has learned a lesson about hero worship, but in a cruel way.

      Thank you for the tip on Williamses. although it’s meant to be possessive. Does that make a difference? I wrestled with this one.

      Thank you.




  • A moment for reality before I delve into this fictional fun… 40 years ago today, I was found sitting amid the rubble of a building. The body of the woman I sitting next to was dead. They don’t know for sure, but they think that might have been my birth mom.

    … Not sure exactly what I’ll get accomplished today for writing’s sake, but the picture does stir my mind even more into the dystopian phase I’m in right now.


  • Although I have no idea whether she played in a sitcom, or whether she ever patronized a Woolworth’s lunch counter, Joan Crawford of “Mommie Dearest” fame has my vote as the role model for Mrs. Williams.


  • Dear Boysenberry,
    Real heroes rarely make the news, nor do they consider their acts to be heroic. It’s sad that we tend to idolize those who glitter in the spotlight and tend to overlook those who toil in the trenches.
    – DMV Supervisor


  • i enjoyed your story, Rochelle. unfortunate when role models forget their real purpose in life. but what they give out most likely will return unfavorably for them eventually.


  • Very enjoyable and I loved the ending. I reckon they all wear tracksuits and sit at home stuffing themselves with chocolate when the cameras are off (and probably watch reruns of their own shows!)


  • The sad reality of seeing your favourite actor/actress in the flesh. That’s one of the reasons I never want to meet any of my favourites – just in case they’re like that.


  • Dear Rochelle

    Somehow I can see this behaviour being the norm not the exception in lots of cases. Many so called celebrities forget who put them where they are; they are doing a job of work after all.
    Very enjoyable as usual.

    Take care



  • Wow, bratty and snotty all at once. I really enjoyed this piece Rochelle, actually more than most because it hits home with my generation’s idolization of celebrities who were once just ordinary people and still are- just with a twist.


  • Oh no. Poor Cathy! I think she’s changed forever. Great little details, describing her dress and her food really put me there and I can just feel Cathy swooning with disappointment. Great writing, Rochelle. As always!


  • Ouch. What a woman. Another of Cathy’s dreams dashed. Now please can Mrs Williams slip on a banana skin as she leaves? A wonderfully described scene – I could see it all happening.


  • Dear Rochelle, Your story was great but I’m writing about not being able to leave comments on Perry Block’s blog and other peoples too. What am I doing wrong. My muse isn’t here to help me. Sorry – if you don’t have time, don’t worry about it. It keeps saying “Illegal characters” or (personally my favorite) “This isn’t you!” I give up trying to post. Thanks Rochelle! Nan


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