Personal Musing

All posts in the Personal Musing category

30 September 2022

Published September 28, 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 © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Genre: Hysterical Fiction (Wow, what a rush!)
Word Count: 100

If this is phto and story’s deja vu for you, it’s true. This is a rerun of a rerun. I wrote it in 2013 and posted it again in 2016 for the same reason I’m posting it this week. It has been an incredibly busy week and my muse is flat comatose. Since the high holidays are upon us, I take liberty…because I can.

If you’ve posted a story for this photo before, feel free to give yourself a break and post it again. Hey. It’s been 6 years. 😉 Who’s going to remember it? Right? Of course, right!

ASHAMNU

             Rhoda cast furtive glances in all directions, inhaled throat-burning smoke, held it, and then exhaled, handing the joint to Marcus.

            “Don’t be so paranoid.” His bloodshot eyes glittered.

            Candles illuminated the corners of his darkened bedroom. In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida blared from the stereo and patchouli incense tickled her nose.

            After they’d downed an entire bag of chips, Marcus plopped his yarmulke on his head.

            “So much for fasting. Let’s get back before they miss us.”

            Side-by-side they sneaked into the synagogue and giggled through repentance prayers.

            Every year afterward, when Rhoda dutifully attended services, she chuckled as she recalled the “High” Holiday.

The Ashamnu  is a traditional prayer of repentance  recited on Yom Kippur, the Jewish highest of holy days or day of atonement. The word “ah-SHAM-nu” means we are guilty or we have sinned. 

19 August 2022

Published August 17, 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.

This was my fifth annual visit with my brother and sister-in-law. As always it was hard to leave, but good to come back home. The ocean was rough this year and dangerous for swimming most of the time. Still great beach times. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. 😉

Genre: Histrionic Fiction
Word Count: 100

ANNUAL HOLIDAY

“You take separate vacations?”

Rochelle grinned at the tanned woman beside her as the plane made its ascent. “Every year for the past five. He goes to South Dakota for the bike rally and texts me pictures of the most gorgeous scenery.”

The North Carolina landscape dwindled below. Rochelle turned from the window. Ten days of sightseeing and beachcombing with her brother zipped by. They’d laughed at punchlines without telling the jokes and reminisced about things only siblings would remember.

“Wouldn’t you like to go with your husband sometime?”

“Nah.” Rochelle wrinkled her nose. “It’s way too peopley for me.”



5 August 2022

Published August 3, 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 © Sandra Crook

Genre: Hysterical Faction
Word Count: 100

ROAD READY

My best friend and I took Driver’s Ed the year we turned sixteen thinking we’d get our licenses together.

I passed the written part with flying colors. Recognizing road signs and learning the rules of the road was a snap.

The actual driving part was another story. Both excitement and terror welled up as I gripped the steering wheel. Images of every traffic accident I’d seen on the news zipped through my mind.

My instructor shook his head at my attempt to parallel park. “Your final driving score is negative fifty-one. Might I suggest you purchase a lifetime bus pass?”

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. 😉

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