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Monthly Archives: November 2012

Guilt

On the island of desserts, beautiful Sirens beckoned with their golden brown, flaky crusts and fruity insides oozing cherry red, apple yellow, and blackberry purple. How perfect they’d look with a dollop of fresh whipped cream or homemade vanilla ice cream plopped atop their heads.

Jane licked her lips and wished she was marooned on that island, swimming in the white caps of frosting washed over a three-layer cake. She wanted to dip her fingers in the Bavarian pie fillings and slather their rich, silken flavors on her tongue while floating on a raft of s’mores.

I will not get shipwrecked today, Jane thought. That island is nothing but trouble…and empty calories. I will not succumb to their temptation.

Her measly salad offered little consolation or support for her resolution. Even her billowing waistline seemed to shrink away as if to say, one bite of sugar won’t make a difference. No one has to know. It can be our little secret.

Jane made a pact with her weight loss group. Each vowed to abstain from surgery sweet foods at their family holiday meals. Just one day. That’s all they had to do, the group leader said. It sounded so easy until Jane arrived at the restaurant her kids had chosen and spotted the mountain of gluttony looming across the room.

Mama, why don’t you sit on this side of the table, her daughter suggested. That way those sweets won’t be staring you in the face.

No, no, it’s all right, dear. I need to learn how to face my demons.

You don’t have to be a martyr, Jane, her husband grunted.

I’m not trying to be, Bill. I don’t think we need to make a big deal of this at the table. Let’s enjoy our meal and be thankful for each other’s company.

Her family shrugged and let her stew in sinful dreams as she chewed a bland piece of lettuce fifteen times. One, two, three…warm apple pie…four, five, six…moist chocolate cake…eight, nine, ten…soft chocolate chip cookies with crispy edges…how many times had she chewed? Was it ten or eleven? Shoot, she’d lost count.

Jane cursed her group leader for proposing such a hard challenge on one of the few days her family came together. Then she felt bad for taking out her anger on the poor woman who was trying to help curb her indulgences. And the bakery chef who’d gone through all that trouble to make his delicious desserts, of which she could have none. All because she had a sweet tooth which packed forty pounds on her petite frame over the past ten years.

But those pies were singing for her, their sugary notes harmonizing between her ears.

Come hither, come hither, they pastry likenesses sang.

She could hardly face her group on Saturday if she steered her ship in their direction. Ashamed of her weakness, Jane rose from the table.

I need some fresh air, she said, fanning her face. Please excuse me for a few moments while I step outside.

In the frigid air, Jane parked herself on a bench and tried to settle her frazzled nerves with a five-calorie peppermint from her purse. At the very least, she no longer heard those cakes and fruit pies calling out her name.

– Written by Miss A on November 22, 2012

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Spy

When Hattie was seven years old, she dreamed of becoming a spy, like those mysterious women wrapped in long trench coats who hid in the dark shadows of alleyways on the black and white picture screens that papa took her to see every Sunday afternoon. During the summers, she practiced her covert moves hiding in bushes and tall, leafy magnolia trees to watch her neighbors and report their behaviors in her little marble notebook.

Eight years later, Hattie hadn’t outgrown her dream, although marrying her high school sweetheart, raising two kids, and volunteering at the local library had gotten in the way of roaming the world and catching bad guys. These days the spies had changed, too. Now her grandkids took her to giant cineplexes where movie stars in skintight dresses and lycra bodysuits wiggled through air vents and typed on fancy, space-age computers. They made buildings blow up and raced through city streets in slick black sports cars. They exposed too much of themselves, Hattie thought, shaking her head. There was something to say about leaving a little to the imagination; she should know, having been married for sixty-five years.

Modern spies weren’t subtle. That’s why they got caught and their photos were posted on the evening news. They could take a lesson from the old world spies. To this day, her neighbors had no idea she knew which ones overwatered their lawns, came home early on Thursday afternoons, and left their cars running in the driveway when they ran in the house to grab the coats and lunches forgotten by their kids. Every month the Johnsons fought on the 15th when Mrs. Johnson asked her husband for a check to pay her outrageous credit card bills. And Little Janey Mills liked to climb out her window and jump into her boyfriend’s truck during weeknights. Guess she wasn’t so little anymore, Hattie noted in her journal.

In her old age, she was bolder, sitting on the front porch to observe the comings and goings of everyone on her street. They would hardly suspect a gentle old woman who smiled and waved and uttered trivial comments like “such nice weather we’re having” was tracking their every move. Yes, she was most discreet in her operations. No flaunting pouty lips and strutting around in skimpy undergarments to get the information she needed. All a good spy required was two sharp eyes, or a nice pair of bifocals.

“Mom, why does that old lady sit on her porch all day?” Jonas Mills asked his mother as they climbed into the car.

“Miss Hattie? She likes to spy on all the neighbors,” chuckled Mrs. Mills, turning to look through the rear window for kids playing in the street before she backed out of the driveway. “I guess she gets a better view from the porch.”

“Doesn’t that bother anyone?”

“Nah, she’s harmless. I hope we’re all giving her a good show.”

 

– Written by Miss A on November 17, 2012

The Holidays Are here! Still Time to Sign Up for Winter Wonder Week!

Taking a small break from our normal writing-focused posts to share Winter Wonder Week with you! Bring a fun holiday event to your readers and gain some new followers by signing up for this year’s event!

Winter Wonder Week is a week-long event to celebrate the Winter Holidays with lots of prizes & gain followers at the same time! There will be 4 prize pack giveaways and a Grand Prize (Cash collected when signing up – final total to be announced) for a total of 5 prize packs. Winter Wonder Week will from December 8 – 15 and be heavily promoted. All giveaway posts need to be live no later than 3 p.m. on December 8th. To sign up and for more information, please visit: http://parentpalace.com/2012/08/winter-wonder-week-sign-ups/.

an Apple

An apple’s crunch is bigger than its bite. Especially the green ones that Granny likes to grow in her backyard. Granny Smith, that is. Grandma Jones doesn’t like apples, but she can bake one helluva cherry pie.

I don’t like apples much either. Raw apples anyway. Stewed and baked apples are okay. Applesauce used to be on the dinner table every time Ma cooked pork chops. I don’t know who thought apples should be served with meat. Seems kind of weird to me.

When I see someone bite into an apple, I cringe. It hurts my teeth. Makes them want to scream. The nerves tingle from the tart gravel scraping against enamel. I shudder at the sight of an apple. So shiny and round. Vermillion, lime green, pale yellow, and blushing pink. Innocent beauties beckoning with sweetness. Until they trap your mouth in a death grip and refuse to let go.

I’ve seen others lose teeth in apples. They’re a ruthless, savage fruit, dangerous to the core. Bad seeds don’t just come from anywhere, you know. People’s lives have been changed for the better, but mostly for the worst after a single bite. One crunch is all it takes. If you know what’s good for you, you’ll stay away.

– Written by Miss A on November 4, 2012

365 Things to Write About – an Apple, written by Miss A