Memoirs

All posts in the Memoirs category

5 October 2018

Published October 3, 2018 by rochellewisoff

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As always, please be considerate of your fellow Fictioneers and keep your stories to 100 words. (Title is not included in the word count.)  Many thanks. 

The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

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Genre: Memoir

Word Count: 100

SHELL GAME

We flocked to the record racks to buy his LP’s. I did my best to memorize those monologues. Remember the slush ball?

            “Junior Barns, you gunky.” That one made me laugh until tears rolled.

            I spied Scotty, partner of undercover tennis bum Kelly. With humor, they solved crime after crime.

            Every time I drove my Beetle, I heard him say to a raucous audience, “When the fan belt breaks we use a rubber band.”

            The accusations rocked my world as Bill Cosby plummeted from his pedestal. A deep sense of loss floods me.

            The jokes aren’t funny anymore, are they?  

 

17 August 2018

Published August 15, 2018 by rochellewisoff

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As always, please be considerate of your fellow Fictioneers and keep your stories to 100 words. (Title is not included in the word count.)  Many thanks. 

The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

PHOTO PROMPT © Yvette Prior

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Genre: Histrionic Faction

Word Count: 100

UNLUCKY STRIKE

            Remember how commercials bombarded us with catchy slogans?   

            “I’d rather fight than switch.”

            “Winston tastes good, like a cigarette should.”

            Serling delivered his famous Twilight Zone intros while wisps of smoke framed his face.

            During his renowned interviews in the 1950’s, Mike Wallace brandished his ubiquitous coffin nail.

            I coughed. “I wish you’d quit smoking those nasty things, Mommy.”

            Taking a long drag, she covered a burn hole in her skirt with a daisy applique. “I need them to calm my nerves.”

            She finally quit in 1980—just a year before lung cancer claimed her.

            “Were they worth it, Mom?”  

 

These little goodies came on the back Raleigh cigarettes. You could save them and buy all kinds of things, from jewelry to appliances. We used to joke that Mom would use hers for an iron lung. Somehow that’s not as funny as it used to be.

TURKISH DELIGHT

Published June 17, 2018 by rochellewisoff

This week Pegman takes us to Taşlıçay, Ağrı, Turkey. You’re welcome to mine street view and photo spheres anywhere within its borders to write your story. The Pegman challenge is to write 150 words or less inspired by the prompt.

As always, a hearty thank you to Karen and Josh for facilitating the fun.

I didn’t exactly go to Turkey with my story but there is a link to it in my story. 😉 

Genre: Anecdote

Word Count: 150

TURKISH DELIGHT

            At first glance, Mediterranean Market, with its dusty shelves, cheap souvenirs and a calendar on the wall above the cash register didn’t look like much.

            The smoky baba ghanoush and succulent kabobs more than compensated for the lack of atmosphere. And who could resist flaky crusted Spanakopita stuffed with spinach?

            As much as the cuisine, I enjoyed co-owners Jihan and Sinan who loved to reminisce about the homeland they had left several years before.

            With a faraway look, Jihan would smile. “I miss the mountains and my mother.”  

            Sinan, the more outgoing of the two brothers, would serve friendly chatter along with strong Turkish tea. His slicked black hair curled just below his ears and his huge eyes never quite went the same direction.

            “Best meal ever,” I told him every time.                     

             With a wave of his hands, he’d prance around and reply, “When the womens is heppy, everybody’s heppy.”           

*

*

*

I wish I’d thought to take pictures of Jihan and Sinan in all of the many times Cuz Kent and I spent three hour lunches plotting plays and laughing until we cried. The guys are still around but have closed the shop. My taste buds ache with longing.  

11 May 2018

Published May 9, 2018 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

PHOTO PROMPT ©Jill Wisoff

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Genre: Memoir

Word Count: 100

The story you are about to read is true. No names have been changed to protect the guilty. 

 

FAMILY TIES

            “Wise-off?”

            “No. ‘Wiss-off.’ It’s a short ‘i’.”

            Very few can pronounce it correctly on the first try. We were the only Wisoffs in Kansas City—probably the world. Talk about feeling like the odd one out.          

            “Your great-grandparents who came over from Lithuania with 7 children shortened Wissosky,” said Dad. “There are plenty more little Wisoffs running around back east.”   

            In 1999 thanks to AOL, I met Jill Wisoff who lives in New York City.

            Say what you will about the evils of social media, but thanks to my unique surname, I don’t need DNA to find relatives on Facebook.

 

Click to hear and see a recent reading I did. Sight, sound and four flash fictions. 

Cloudburst 2018

30 March 2018

Published March 28, 2018 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

PHOTO PROMPT © Fatima Fakier Deria

My weekly admonition to over 70 participants. Please keep your stories to 100 words or less. Thank you for your consideration. 

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Genre: Memoir

Word Count: 100

SUITABLE FOR FRAMING

            I spent my twelfth summer with my aunt and uncle in Monticello, NY.

            Uncle Harold won my heart, not just because he showered me with attention and frozen custard, but because he was an artist. While he never achieved national acclaim, he did win a few awards in local shows for his impressionistic works.

            I cherish memories of painting with him on the patio.

            “A masterpiece,” he proclaimed my robin watercolor.

            Today, as I put the finishing touches on my latest opus, I almost hear Uncle Harold say, “Good job! Let’s go for a frozen custard. Don’t tell Aunt Lu.” 

***

Nothing fictitious about this story. 😉

This painting holds a special place in my office/studio.

Never heard of frozen custard? CLICK HERE

frozen-custard-buffalo--niagara-falls

I personally favored chocolate.

WOODSMOKE AT TWILIGHT

Published March 4, 2018 by rochellewisoff

There is a road some fifty-three miles NNE of New York City with a strange reputation. This week, Pegman has stranded you there.Volumes have been written about Clinton Road in West Milford, NJ, but you only need to write 150 words. The only limit is your imagination.Feel free to capture your own streetview. If you’re not up to a weird tale, feel free to wander anywhere within the state of New Jersey for your story.Once your 150 words are polished, you can share with other contributors using the Linkup below. Reading and commenting on others’ work is part of the fun!

Many thanks to Karen and Josh for hosting this challenge that gives me 50 more words to play with. 😉

While the photo below is taken from the Pegman Buffet, I must confess, despite the directives, I didn’t stay in New Jersey. I went to Rickey Road in Raytown, Missouri, where, as with Clinton Road, the stories abound. 

Genre: Fictionalized Memoir

Word Count: 150

WOODSMOKE AT TWILIGHT

            I looked forward to my troop’s wilderness excursions. Had it not been for scouting, I might never have seen the great outdoors beyond my backyard. My parents, while not religiously observant, adhered to the eleventh commandment—“Jews don’t camp.”

            Overnights were the best. Following an afternoon of dodging poison ivy and climbing hills, we’d gather around the campfire. Our mouths and fingers gooey from roasted marshmallows, we topped off the day with ghost stories about the infamous and spooky Rickey Road.

            “My uncle found a man’s head in the grass,” said Lucy in a loud whisper.

            “Ooooooo,” we’d giggle. “Gross!”

            Margo’s cheeks glowed in the blaze. “It opened its eyes and screamed, ‘I want my golden arm!’”

            Our childish imaginations kicked into overdrive. Each storyteller sought to outdo the last.

            Back home in my own bed, I wouldn’t sleep for a month without a nightlight.  

            I miss those good times.

 

*********

 

Troop 499-Can you find me?

 

HOMEWORK

Published January 20, 2018 by rochellewisoff

This week Pegman takes us to Haiti’s neighbor, the Dominican Republic, in the central Caribbean. Feel free to use the crazy capture I posted, or find your own photo sphere anywhere within the country’s borders.

Your assignment is to produce 150 words (or less) inspired by this week’s location. Will it be fiction? Essay? Poetry? The only limit is your imagination. After you’ve polished your piece, you can share it with other participants at the link up:

I’m back after being MIA last week and probably will be a few more times. However, when I saw Dominican Republic in my inbox I was hooked. 

Genre: Memoir

Word Count: 150

HOMEWORK

                There’s a special place in my heart for the Dominican Republic. However, not in the way one might think. I’ve never played on the sandy beaches of Santo Domingo nor lounged under its palm trees beside the Caribbean Sea.

            From 1964-65 I was in 6th grade. Our teacher, Mrs. Humo, assigned each student a country to study for the entire school year. This included keeping track of current events.

            Those lucky ducks given Laos and Vietnam, as you might imagine, had much to report and clipped tons of newspaper articles. Not so for the hapless girl assigned the República Dominicana.

            I diligently studied, drew detailed maps and combed the Kansas City Star for any news of my tiny tropical island. Nada.

            The following spring, after I’d moved on to the trials of junior high, revolution broke out. The Dominican Republic headlined the news. What? They couldn’t have revolted last year?

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