Personal Musing

All posts in the Personal Musing category

8 April 2022

Published April 6, 2022 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 © David Stewart

Genre: Historical Friction
Word Count: 100

TRASH 80

            “Isn’t it beautiful?” Jan showed off his latest acquisition from Radio Shack.

            I fumed. “Our electric typewriter works just fine. A computer will end up being another dust collector like your precious Polaroid SX-70.”

            “How was I supposed to know the film would cost a fortune?”         

***

            Several years have passed since that day.  I’ve acquired my own desktop, scanner-printer combo, a laptop for travel and Jan takes sharp pictures with his iPad.  

            He reads the screen over my shoulder and says with a sly smile, “Lemme get you a rag.”

            “Why?”

            “You’ve been at it for hours. You’re collecting dust.”

*Note: Radio Shack’s computer was actually named TRS 80 but became widely known as Trash 80. From there we went to the Commodore 64 and Jan had a Kaypro, a portable computer that I refer to as the Commodore in a Can. All cutting edge technology in the latter part of the 20th Century.

Remember computers in the early 60’s?

4 February 2022

Published February 2, 2022 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 © Na’ama Yehuda

Genre: Hysterical Faction
Word Count: 100

CUSTOMER DISSERVICE

As a small business owner, Missouri sales taxes I’ve collected the prior year are due 31 January. For five years I’ve sent in a paper form and a handwritten check. No problem.  

This year the Department of Revenue introduced the “more efficient” electronic submission.

Determined to master the system, I kept banging my head and phoned for help five times. Call waits took 45 minutes–minimum. Emails were answered with breakneck-turtle-speed.

Storm clouds of frustration mounted

“Look. I’ve got thirty others waiting,” said one DOR representative.

Two days ago, I sent the paper form and a handwritten check. No problem.

*
*
*

I’m pretty amazed at our growing small business. Loving “retirement.”

21 January 2022

Published January 19, 2022 by rochellewisoff
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Friday Fictioneers and Poppy

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 © Ted Strutz

Genre: Memoir
Word Count: 100
WORLD OF HER OWN

Her fourth-grade teacher dubbed her “Messy Bessy.” Each time the frustrated child attempted to organize her desk chaos quickly returned.

Mrs. Smith moved the girl’s desk to the front of the room. Perhaps sitting beside the teacher would encourage her to mend her slovenly ways.

The kid didn’t mean to misbehave. Reading or illustrating stories she wrote in her head took priority over neatness. She’d simply lose herself in her latest adventure.  

One morning, Mrs. Smith jolted Rochelle from the Ingalls’ cabin on the prairie with, “Miss Wisoff, would you care to join the class for our daily spelling test?”

My granddaughter Olive and her faithful companion Poppy

Weekend Writing Prompt – Smuggle

Published December 12, 2021 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in Sammi’s comment section. Thanks for the challenge, Sammi!

Original Artwork © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields
One of my therapists suggested I illustrate my feelings during this particularly ugly and potentially lethal time in my life.

CIRCLES IN THE SPIRAL

Denise and I used aspirin to punish our hungry stomachs. Did you know you can get high on mega doses of plain old Bayer? Or that you could be addicted to them?

Once when she was in treatment, I smuggled the contraband in a baggie in my large Diet Coke.

Oh, we had lots of tricks up our sleeves next to our boney arms.

Killer ideas.

**Not one of my prouder moments. Denise wasn’t her name and I’m not sure if she’s still alive. 😦

Weekend Writing Prompt – Vellichor

Published October 31, 2021 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in Sammi’s Comment Section.

BY DEFINITION

Breathing in the volume’s musty aroma,

The secondhand bookstore patron opens a volume.

Rife with intricate engravings and photographs

It tells stories of long ago.

She relishes the feel of pages between her hungry fingers.

Tattered leather bindings with embossed titles entice her.

Aaah.

To read.

To dream.  

1 October 2021

Published September 29, 2021 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 © Dale Rogerson

Genre: Non-Fiction
Word Count: 100
NO WORDS

Seven years ago, after a long silence, Linda called me. “I need to hear your voice, Rocky. Are you okay?”

            I laughed, happy to hear her voice. “Those eating disorder days are way behind me.”

We called her Mother Tucker. She was a platinum blonde firebrand who never suffered fools gladly. No one saw through my lies faster, loved me as fiercely or hurt me as deeply.

            “I’m your bad habit.” She’d say, her eyes flashing ice-blue flames.

            Recently I learned the damned virus took her. I whisper through tears, “I need to hear your voice, Linda. Are you okay?”

***

I worked with Linda Tucker in the late 90’s. She saw me through the worst of my eating disorder. She’s also the one who nicknamed me “Rocky.” No matter how I fought it, the name stuck. My former coworkers still call me Rocky. For a time Linda and I parted ways (a story for another time…or not 😉 ) We hadn’t spoken for years when she turned up on Facebook and then called. R.I.P. Mother Tucker.

Linda was just a bit on the ornery side.

Weekend Writing Prompt – Portmanteau

Published September 26, 2021 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in Sammi’s Comment Section.

I’ll admit to being on the grammar police squad. My mother instilled it in me early in life.

“Ain’t isn’t proper English.”

            It’s “they were” NOT “they was.” And “was you?” No way. No how.  

“I seen it” makes me cringe.

I beg you on bended knees, for the sake of my bleeding ears, refrain from committing such grammatacide.

***

  • Dictionary.com defines a portmanteau word as one that combines the form and meaning of two other words. Hence “grammatacide” is mine. 😉

WEEKEND WRITING PROMPT – RAMSHACKLE

Published September 19, 2021 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in Sammi’s Comment Section.

It was the early 70’s. I guess you could’ve called it our…

HONEYMOON SUITE

“The rent is $85.00 a month,” said the landlady, cuddling her Schnauzer. “No pets allowed.”

            What can I say about that ramshackle, third-floor walkup comprised of four rooms and one closet? It was our first home together and within walking distance of my school, the Art Institute.

A former tenant had painted the kitchen cabinets red and black. Try waking up to that every morning.

            The walls must have been constructed of foam core board, held together with masking tape. We heard every clever word our next-door neighbors uttered such as, “Oh wow, man! What a rush!”

This is the only picture I have of our first apartment. The rest I leave to your imagination. 😉

Weekend Writing Prompt – Pre-loved

Published August 21, 2021 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in Sammi’s comment section.

HOLDING HER HAND

Wayne urged me to get in touch with my inner child.

“It hurts,” I whined.

“It’s the path to healing.”

One day, on the way to my appointment, I stopped at a thrift store. Spying a hand amid a pile of pre-loved stuffed toys, I pulled out a doll with a familiar face. I hugged her soft body and was comforted.

Wayne smiled at her. “She’s you.”

Coincidence? I think not.

“Hold the hand of the child
that lives in your soul.
For this child
nothing is impossible.”

Paulo Coehlo

6 August 2021

Published August 4, 2021 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© Jennifer Pendergast

Genre: Hysterical Fiction
Word Count: 100

DATE NIGHT

          “Let’s do something besides a movie.”  

           “I’m game,” said Kevin. “Whatcha thinking?”

         “Ice skating” I replied. “The bowling alley just opened a new rink.”

***     

           Donning my rental skates, I visualized gracefully gliding across the ice like Peggy Fleming. As I stood, reality set in. My feet took off in two different directions.

           I managed a faulty stride or two before Kevin seized my hand. We fell and slid on our butts. After a few more stabs at staying upright, he said, “If we hurry we can catch ‘Yellow Submarine.’”

            I rubbed my sore bum. “Milk Duds and popcorn. Extra butter.”

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