Hunting the Great Whites #WOW555

And here’s the rationale and the prompt for this week. “…recent events in the real world have made this month not quite a great one for me and I could use a little of your company if you can spare the time. Who knows? It might even help you stick to a writing resolution you might think of starting in a week or so!

This week, tell me something uplifting. A moment of kindness between strangers, a child experiencing the joy of giving, a happy surprise for someone deserving. It might seem a little sappy, but if it does, fix it to suit you. As always, interpretation is in the eye of the beholder. I always love to see the creative ways you drift. Hope you have a wonderful holiday celebration filled with light and love and togetherness! And hope to see you Friday with some lovely stories for everyone to read!”

What could be more uplifting than a father and son spending time together. This week’s story goes into a flashback as dad and son wake up early to “hunt the great whites.” Enjoy. Oh and you should still have time to create your own entry! Head on over to Wendy’s place and find out what you need to do to enter.

“’Vegetarian’ is just an old Indian word for ‘lousy hunter.’” My co-worker had been giving me a rough time for the last five minutes. That’s why I didn’t mention my eating choice very often. People just didn’t understand.

“I’m actually a very good hunter,” I said. I smiled as I thought about it. “I just don’t eat what I shoot.”

His eyes narrowed. “That’s just disgusting. I can’t imagine killing an animal and just wasting it.”

I smiled. “I don’t waste any animals. And, you might like to know that I’m taking my daughter shooting this weekend.”

He looked at me suspiciously. “Well, I’ve heard about hunters donating the meat from their kills, so maybe you’re telling the truth.” He shook his head as he walked away. “I still don’t understand vegetarians.”

I smiled as he walked away. My mind drifted back many years.

————————————-

“Jesse, wake up.” My dad was whispering as he shook me gently.

“Mmmnn uhmmmm,” I moaned. I didn’t want to wake up.

“They’re here. We have to go now. We don’t have long to hunt.”

I let him drag me out of bed and threw some old clothes on. He handed me a Pop-Tart as we headed towards the car. I ate it slowly as dad drove us to our blind. As I began to wake up during the drive, I began to get excited. My dad had told me about these birds forever, and now I was going to get my chance to shoot them. Slowly I began to start talking to my dad as discussed what we might see and how we might shoot these birds.

We got to the parking place and grabbed our gear from the car. Our breath fogged the way in front of us as our feet crunched on the frosty grass as we walked to the blind. Talking not only wasn’t needed here, it would have broken the magic of the moment. We could see the birds dancing in the distance, but they were too far away to shoot right now. My dad has prepared for this night all year. The entrance to the blind had been set back far enough away that we could enter and get to the main area without disturbing the whooping cranes.

We got to the main blind area. I looked through the window before getting my gear out. “Whoopers!” I whispered to my dad. I was entranced with the beauty of their dance. I had heard about them ever since I was old enough to understand, and now my dad was taking me to shoot them.

I put the bag on the bench and almost reverently took the gear out. My dad had bought me a new Canon just for this shoot. He let me borrow his telephoto lens for this occasion. I slowly fit it to the camera and raised it to shoot. I clicked with abandon, making sure that I would get some good shots. No picture could capture the beauty of these animals and their dance. After a while I stopped taking pictures and looked up at my dad. “Thanks, dad,” I said. I wiped a tear away from my eye. We stood there watching for a few more minutes before it was time to head back home.

 

 

Defending My Brother

This is my latest entry in the #WOW555 challenge. The concept was something to do with fighting. I thought about Black Friday as a background, but decided instead to focus on a concern. In so doing, I use a word that I find highly offensive. It comes out of the mouth of the antagonist. I guess there are times when you have use words that you are uncomfortable with to make a point as a writer. That doesn’t make writing them easier. That being said, here’s the story.

“Hey you!”

I turned and looked. This was the guy they warned me about. If I could keep my cool around him, I’d be ok.

“Yeah, you. I hear your brother’s a retard.” He laughed. “I think you’re retarded too.”

Before my therapy, before the change in schools, my reaction would have won me a free trip to the office. The therapy had helped. I didn’t get angry right away. “Well,” I said, “my brother is always happy and tries to make other people happy; he works hard at his job; and he’s dependable.” I paused for effect. “I guess being called retarded by you is a compliment.”

Just as I thought, he didn’t get it at first. Then, when those who had gathered to see the confrontation started laughing out loud, he got belligerent. He got into my face. He coulda used some gum. “What are you trying to say, re-taaarrrrd?” He drew the last syllable out to sound mean, I guess.

We were nose to nose, and it wasn’t my fault this time. “I’m saying that if my choices are to be like you or be retarded like Blaise, I’d prefer to be retarded.” His eyes narrowed and his teeth clenched in response. “But you are trash and you aren’t worth my time,” I said spitting out every word.

My Tae-Kwon-do training and therapy had taught me how to defuse situations; I wasn’t trying to now. I saw the punch coming and moved so it would glance off my head. “That was your last free hit,” I said. “You try it again and you’d better hope your friends know the number for 9-1-1.”

“Do you think you can last ten seconds against me, retard?” He snorted. “You’ll be down and we ain’t calling 9-1-1 for you.” He swung again.

This time I decided to duck the punch. As I ducked, I did a sweeper kick, taking out his legs. The look on his face as he slammed to the ground was quite enjoyable. I stood up and walked over to him while he was writhing on the ground. I turned him on his back and took out his wind with a punch to the solar plexus. He was gone. There was no more fight left in him; he gasped for breath. His friends stopped videoing since their champion wasn’t victorious. I looked at them and laughed. “About eight seconds. Your idiot friend was right. I didn’t last ten seconds against him.”

That’s when the school’s rent-a-cop came. I shrugged. I was used to this. It gave me a chance to get used to the office. I had hoped not to spend too much time there, but….

The Assistant Principal told me to sit down. “Jimmy, eh? I heard what happened. Isn’t Blaise your brother?”

That was strange. I nodded. “Blaise and my son Cam swim together,” he said. “Now, is it really your story that Brock slipped on the grass when he took a punch at you?” he asked with a knowing smile.

Head on over to Write on Wendy’s site to read all the stories and vote on your favorite!

Songs of A Day #WOW555

Here’s the contest prompt for this week – now that NaNoWriMo is over… (click the title to head to Wendy’s site)

Contest Prompt

Now that NaNoWriMo is over, how about we take a refreshing break from the stories we’ve been working so hard on. Once you’ve written the draft, it’s always a good idea to let it rest a bit before going back to edit/revise. For this week, let’s take a prompt suggested by Christy Lynn Foster: Describe a day as your favorite color.

So, I got a little whimsical here….enjoy

 

“That’s right, buddy!” I shouted. “I am smiling at you. You have a great one.” He walked on, without responding other than to keep on singing. I just kept smiling at him, and anyone else who walked by. Some looked up at me, as if they could feel my smile or hear my greetings. They couldn’t, I knew that. Still, I kept smiling – even if they didn’t know the song.

Whitey came along trying to cast a shadow by getting between me and the people. I got a bit perturbed, of course, and started to say something, but he cut me off. “Sky,” he said, “Ain’t nobody down there that can hear you or feel your smile. Get a grip on reality.”

I just kept smiling. Why, when I’m in full force, most people have great days. People go on picnics and look up at me lazily saying things like, “Isn’t this a great day?” When I’m on a roll, kids ride bikes, run, and swim. I am the Sky that everyone wants to see.

Whitey looked like he was getting a bit upset and was turning a bit gray. I decided to kid him a little. “What’s up old man? You’re beginning to cloud up a bit. We gonna have some tears now?” I forgot he didn’t like being called an old man.

He lashed out, trying to hurt me. “You ain’t even blue, you know that, Sky? Your nice white light family gets scattered and you look blue because you have the shortest wave length!”

I started laughing. If I had a dime for every time they told me that, I would be rich! Whitey clouded up some more, blocking me from seeing the people down below. Sparks flew from his eyes and every time they flew out, I laughed so hard that I shook.

“You laugh at me,” he roared, “but some people like me! People like farmers like me,” he spat through his teeth. Whitey got darker and darker as he got madder and madder.

“Hey!” I yelled. “Calm down! You’re going to …” I looked down and saw that it had happened. Whitey blocked me from seeing most of the ground, but what I saw didn’t look too good. People were putting newspapers over their head and running; running for any kind of shelter. They had embraced me. They knew that I smiled at them. Whitey, cried out of anger and frustration and they didn’t like his tears so they ran to shelter so that they could hide from them.

Whitey laughed at that thought. He was happy that now it wasn’t all about me and my smiles. Now, his gray sky would rule all that they could see and no one would see me. I looked at Whitey and shook my head. “You shouldn’t have done that, Whitey,” I said. “Those people were happy and enjoying me. Now, you’ve cried all over them.” I shook my finger at him. “You have given these people the blues.”

 

with homage to Irving Berlin at the beginning….