>The proposal was intimidating. Suzann said yes, an emphatic, physical yes. Now her brain had to catch up. Three kids, instead of two, a smaller house instead of a larger one to accomodate the schools, then she remembered what her heart told her, she stopped worrying. She left his house and called her friends. Then she called her daughter. Delia answered, she could hear her daughter smiling. “I kind of sorta knew, mom. He asked me if he could marry us, I mean you.” she said. The drive usually took 25 minutes, that morning, she was home within 15.

*blogger’s note* This is my latest 100 word challenge for the awesome http://www.velvetverbosity.com/ ‘s 100 word site. The opne word prompt was WITHIN. I will be combining the entries into the other site http://www.writingonsteroids.com/ for a short story to be completed soon. Thanks for reading.

Happy Birthday to Marsha aka TinFoilMagnolia. See her at http://www.tinfoilmagnolia.blogspot.com/ or @TinfoilMagnolia on teh twitterz.



>Frantic, I ran from the house to look for the dog. The yard looked bizarre. Pale light cast over my home. My golden retreiver seemed ghostly. He led me to the field next to our home. It was desolate, save dozens of graves with perfect granite tombstones, some engraved, some bare. I surveyed the acre and noticed the supernatural maze of relationships symbolized by rock tablets. I walked barefoot aside the dog to the first row of stones. There was no wind, no cold, the weather was dead. I read the first engravings, they were people I missed, deeply. As my dog and I walked through the strange labryrinth of forgotten, I realized the tomstones were laid out by importance. Some were necessary to see and read, others were ignored, just piles of concrete. My four legged gride began to change face and look normal. He was hungry. I awoke to the sound of the dog barking. Stunned, I peeked outside and saw a peaceful, usual yard. The past was gone.

My spine chilled, brain scrambled, I walked into the hot shower and felt peaceful. I started to dry off and the dog was back. The eerie look was back. I threw on jeans and a t-shirt and followed the golden outside. the Yard was supernatural again, this time the spirits were above ground, appearing to congregate. I turned and walked back inside. The dog followed. We were done. We were moving on.

*blogger’s note* this is part of 52/250 ‘s flash fiction site. Every week they presenta  theme, this week’s is TOMBSTONES, just in time for Halloween. http://52250flash.wordpress.com/

provided I’m cool enough, they’ll post this entry on their site later the week.

Thanks for reading

>Happiness, more or less


>My notebooks and pads are full of stuff I wouldn’t let my golden retriever, Buddy, blog. In a few hours, I leave for Houston, for work, and I will have a lot of time to think (which isn’t always a good thing for me) and then I will spend four nights in hotel rooms, not sleeping, and so I will write. Whatever you don’t like, I will blame Buddy.

Last week was good and bad, like most, but different. The end of the week opened my heart and mind to my wife and children more than ever. I am the luckiest son of a gun you have ever virtually known. My wife is beaufiful, funny, and special. My kids are just as much. In midst of the bad, my teenager, Tay, was the picture of maturity and cool. Of course, she reverted into teen form quickly because it was homecoming week. But her moment of awesome, showed me that my priorities had been skewed over the past few years and now they are not.

Maybe because last week’s 100 word prompt from my friend at http://www.velvetverbosity.com/ was VAGUE, I am choosing to be so now, but rest assured that the storm is over, and I am head over heels in love with my wife and daughters.

If The Verve is right, in the song Lucky Man, that happiness, more or less, it’s just a change in me, something in my liberty; then I’m happy. It took twenty something years, enough bad relationships to make Jennifer Aniston judgemental, and some pills, some really good pills, but I’m there, you know, the happy place, whatever.

I don’t give advice, because I’m terrible at it. It would also violate the no superhero complexing agreement I made with my wife. But, if you have someone in your life, someone that you know is special, meaningful, different; make them your priority. Hold them tighter than you ever have and tell them they are amazing. Say thank you, please, I love you; a lot. Say it even after they tell you “ok, I get it”. Wait, I think I just gave advice. Don’t listen to me. Just be true. Be true in your instincts, your word, your emotions.

I have to go to the bank now. I promised my number one priority I would. My word with her is good.

Write ya laterz, taterz.

>The Gaslight Anthem "American Slang" (OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO)



If you are looking for something real, American, heartfelt, moral, and rocking to listen to in the car, the shower, or around the house, check out The Gaslight Anthem’s American Slang. This is what Bruce Springteen used to be like in the 70s but not as overtly commercial. Gaslight Anthem’s first record is even better, google it too. American Slang is a terrific rock song. Blare it.



>The dress was teal, the nails were clear, the hair was curly, and the tears were real. Taylor, aka Tay, my fourteen year old daughter, just left the house for her first homecoming dance. Before you ask, I’ll just tell you, heck no I’m not ok.

I’m different than many parents. I don’t think about the benchmarks life will bring before they happen. That’s too much stress. I don’t read parenting books, I don’t take parenting blogs, especially mommy ones too seriously; and as of a couple of years ago, I stopped listening to other parents direct advice. Parenting is heart, instinct, and not making the same mistake twice.

Today was a whirling dervish of emotional clarity. My wife and I are not good, but great parents. Tay woke up this morning around 9 o ‘clock and asked for eggs, not pointers on how to handle her first real date. Deana aka Bobina, made her eggs and told me to keep my mouth shut, lovingly. Later, Bo and Tay hit the nail salon and to calm my building nerves, I ran from our house to my gym, about a mile and a half away. Then I pounded iron like a college football player. No amount of sweat or heart rate monitoring could distract me from my daughter’s inevitable event.

The homecoming dance starts at 7pm, as I write this, it’s only 5:20pm. Yet, a little after 1pm, Tay, with hair straightener in hand, attitudinally started the date preparation. I tried 2 or 3 wisecracks, the death glare I got from my wife and daughter told me to keep watching football, silently. Every few minutes my opinion was asked. I made sure beautiful, stunning, amazing, perfect, flowed from my clueless mouth and I tweeted accordingly.

Bobina and I realized how great we were as parents when Tay was ready, and her attitude had subsided enough to enjoy taking pictures in the backyard. She looked at us with pride, not disgust; with love, not annoyance. We were letting her have her day, and keeping our emotions separate from hers.

I wonder why my wife wanted to drive over to Tay’s “date” (I dislike that word) but I figured out quickly that paying attention to the road was distracting her from breaking down in front of our gorgeous daughter. As we walked to her date’s door, Tay stopped a few feet short, sighed deeply and smiled at her mom. Why Bo didn’t didn’t break down, I’ll never know, but it was one of her finest moment as a parent. Her date was a nervous mess. I liked his tie, I liked is family being as emotionally goofy as Bobina and I. Tay glowed around him. I hope the little scamp realizes how lucky he is to be in her aura.

The next stop was Tay’s friend’s house. Her friend wasn’t ready. Her family was going through the same motions we were 90 or so minutes earlier. We got details on the chaperoning, they were a little different that we originally thought. Bobina saw the look on my face and rushed me out of the house, politely. As I starting asking questions and worrying incessantly, she told me to shut up and get in the car. As we started backing out of the driveway, Bobina kissed me, perfectly, and told me “she’s going to be okay, she’s our daughter.” For the first time today; for the first time in two and a half years, I believed her.

In case you’re keeping score at home…..I’ve cried three times, I’ve asked Bo twice if we can pick her up earlier than scheduled, and no, I’ve not even close to okay. I hope Tay is having a good time, just not too good of a time. She looks beyond beautiful.



>She runs into the warm Cancun breeze to check on her husband. Dazed, he vaguely looks into the dropping sun. She tenderly brushes his wet hair across a cut above his left eye. “We need to get that doctored”, she drawls. “I just bumped my head on the surf board. I’m fine.” he replies. She waits until he turns away before she wipes a tear, then looks down at her left ring finger and sees the diamond gleam in the Mexican sunset. He says, “Come on, love. You promised a day on the beach, I promised a night of dancing.”

*blogger’s note* – This is my latest entry into http://www.velvetverbosity.com/ ‘s 100 word challenge. The one word prompt was VAGUE.   I am compiling the entrys along with other writing into a story being posted at http://www.writingonsteroids.blogspot.com/

>I’d Like To Thank The Academy


>you know….I just want to thank ME for being ME and winning this award:

That’s sarcasm, I want to thank a fellow writer for liking this web address. You are reading an award winning blog. Today, your humble writer has been recognized by the hallowed blog halls of velvetverbosity.com http://www.velvetverbosity.com/2010/10/13/100-words-whos-to-judge/#comment-201
Monday’s entry in the 100 Word Challenge titled “Back To Life Back To Reality” prompted by the word HANDSOME. Initially written as a breakup post for something else, wrongly, but later refined to reflect on the changes that happen when you come back from vacation and delve into every day life.

Please visit my friend at velvetverbosity, she’s a fine writer and has equally fine writer colleagues. I stumbled onto her site through my boy, Brian at DadsChalkboard, and the site and Brian’s site have helped me through some writer’s block, and to get started on a book. Velvet’s inspiration came at a great time for me a few others.

For the record, my wife does have extraordinarily cute toes.

Thanks for reading.