Hands

I found an intriguing prompt at writersdigest.com and I had some time so I decided to practice.



Chyna reached across the table and took his right hand in hers; in the dim light, she studied his knotted and lumpy knuckles as she massaged the back of his hand. He was old; his skin was thin, and mottled. He seemed relaxed and passive; accepting of her actions.

“Your hands are strong,” she told him.

“Used to be,” he replied, “not so much anymore.” He studied the differences. Her hands were young; his, old. His skin was parchment-like, fragile, and freckled with age spots; hers was clear and youthful.

Finally, she turned his hand over and ran the tip of her index finger around his palm.  She followed his life line first before shifting her attention to his unhealthy line. She clucked her tongue softly and moved her gaze to his eyes.

“What?” he questioned.

She took a deep breath, “I have concerns for your general well being; your health.”

“Why?”

“This line,” she pointed it out, “we call this ‘the unhealthy line.’ On you, this line is broken, composed of many parts. Rather than sweeping down with a single stroke, it is terraced as it works downward. This indicates ill health.” She shifted the location of her index finger, “But look at this,” she said, “look at your life line,”


 

Advertisements

Who’s to Say What Normal Is?

Thanks to Ms Rose for the inspiration. It’s kind of silly but I couldn’t resist.


Bettie, a genuinely overweight, middle aged woman stands at the pharmacist’s counter waiting for someone to tell her why she was given the wrong prescription. While she waits, she does what she can to put off horrible thoughts of what might have happened should she have gone ahead and taken the wrong drugs.
A woman’s voice behind her says, “Your ass looks really good in those pants!”
Stunned, Bettie turns and confronts the other woman. “Well…I have a lot of it…”
“No, I mean it! You look great in those pants! Who are they?”
“I don’t know. I got them at Macy’s; on sale.”
“Seriously, you look great!”

“Do you really mean that?”

“Yeah, I wouldn’t have said it if I didn’t.”

“Well, thanks.”

The woman held her hand out to Bettie, “I didn’t introduce myself,” she said, “I’m Wilma Stokes. I’m new in town. Fred and I bought a house near the corner of Third and Carlisle.”

“I’m sorry,” Bettie replied, “you and your husband are Fred and Wilma?”

“I know; it’s horrible; isn’t it? At least our family name is Stokes and not Flintstone!”

They both laughed and then lapsed into a silence there in the queue. Bettie was fidgeting a bit, seemingly uncomfortable. Finally she spoke up, “Is that the grey and white house near the east end of the block?”

“Yeah, yeah, with the flat roof.”

“OMG! I live just over your back fence on Cobblestone Way. I’m right behind you! I’m Bettie, by the way. I’m so glad we met.”

“Oh, me too! Hey listen, Fred and I are planning a housewarming this weekend. Maybe you could come?”

“We’d love to! Can I bring my husband along?” Bettie asked, smiling.

Wilma got a serious look on her face, “His name’s not Barney, is it?”

“Oh, heaven’s no, his name’s Steve.” she said, “Steve Rubble!” she kind of mumbled afterwards.

“Get out. It is not – NO FUCKIN’ WAY! I need to buy you a drink!” she looked at her watch. “Look, it’s almost noon – where can we find an open bar?”

“There’s the Martini Lounge. It’s downtown. I think they open for breakfast.”

They both stepped out of the line, spun on their heels, linked arms and marched out of the pharmacy.


 

Daily Prompt; Cur

Daily Prompt; Cur



Carol was an outlaw. Born in Boston, he came with his family to the territory in 1864, when he was about five years old. They homesteaded a ranch just outside Bayard on the banks of The Whiskey River. His father was killed in a poker game when Carol was eight and his mother took up with a hotelier, named, August Blake. She abandoned the ranch to move herself and the boy to Silver City. Blake adopted Carol who then took on his name.

Carol Blake had almost a complete year of schooling at the one room schoolhouse in Silver City. He learned to write, a little, and learned to read a little too. It was there that he met, the two people who would help to shape his life. He fell in with William “Billy” McCarty and Juana Montoya Patron, whom everyone called La Tullida, as she walked with a limp.

Like most boys of the day, Carol and Billy were delinquents. They started by taking penny candies from the jars at the General Store, but quickly the severity of their crimes grew and soon they were robbing rooms of the guests at August Blake’s hotel. It was about that time that both teenage boys took a fancy to their mutual friend, La Tullida. All was well and good till the time that Billy found Carol with Juana and called him out. In the ensuing gunfight Carol Blake lost the ring finger and the pinky finger of his left hand, Billy was unscathed. Carol Blake slunk out of town, and drifted  to Arizona. There, with the help of his pistol, he gained a modest amount of notoriety by robbing stage coaches, trains, and the occasional bank. His picture was on the walls of most every Post Office. He continued to evolve into a merciless killer and outlaw who would not let anyone or anything stand in the way of something he desired. He cut a swath of terror across Arizona. The Yuma Weekly News published a story in ’76 where they called him and his crew of five, curs. Carol quite fancied the moniker and adopted the name Carol “The Cur”, aka Cur Blake.

It was about that time that word reached him about his old friends, Billy and Juana. Word was that they had gotten hitched and set up house somewhere back in New Mexico. “Cur” determined he would go back and extract revenge on his one time friend and rival, Billy. He just wasn’t sure where they were in the territory, and it was a large territory. He rode east to Silver City, figuring that was as good a place to start looking as any. On the ride he began to dream of rekindling his romance with La Tullida.

###

Blake pulled Cerveza, his pony, up short at the top of the hill overlooking the town he had once called home. He knew that Billy was a drinkin’ man and he figgered he might just start lookin’ for him at the saloon. He clucked with his tongue, pulled his hat low over his eyes, and moved the reins against the horse’s neck. They moved slowly down the hill and into Silver City. Outside the “Miner Saloon” he looped Cerveza’s reins around a post and pushed his way into the barroom. His reputation had preceded him and someone there recognized his face under the brim of his Stetson.

“Blake!” was whispered from the long bar and the whisper quickly spread.  He stood at the doorway allowing his eyes to adjust to the gloom inside. Slowly a hush fell and he moved deeper into the room, his spurs jangling with each slow, measured step. It was deadly quiet when Carol stopped and took a place at the bar.

“We don’t want no trouble, Mr. Blake,” the barman squeaked.

A grin spread and Carol replied, “Me neither.” The room remained quiet as the drama at the bar unfolded, the girls were watching from the landing upstairs. The gamblers were watching from the card tables. The piano man was watching from his stool. The tension was so thick it could be cut with a knife. “You know what they call me in Arizona?” he turned and asked the room.

No one answered “Cur Blake’s what they call me, and I’m lookin’ for Billy,” he said softly.

No one said a word. The silence pressed down suffocating all except Carol.

Blake held up his mangled left hand, “I’m lookin’ for the man who shot my paw.”


I had to rise to this challenge, I just had to. Sorry it’s so corny. Hope you got a smile out of it.

Questions (unanswered)

link it here:

https://pressingpatience.com/2018/04/19/questions-unanswered/



So I saw this on Marilyn’s blog, Serendipity, and I was entertained by it. I figured I might have a go too. Gracias to Willow for asking.

Do you have a nickname? What do you prefer to be called?
In the Navy my name was Dad. My kids still call me that.

Do you have books on your shelf (ereader) that are begging to be read?
I’m working on “Y is for Yesterday” right now. It won’t take long.

Are you a doodler? What do your doodles look like?
Poetry or flash fiction

What do you do if you can’t sleep at night?
Read or write

How many days could you think you would last in solitary confinement?
I could last forever. I used to live on a submarine and, I enjoy my own company just fine.

Do you save old greeting cards and letters or do you toss them away?
I have some old ones. They are handmade by artists I admire. I save them. Store bought ones are normally recycled.

Who is the biggest pack rat you know?
My great-aunt Clint, she never threw anything away. Had four houses filled with stuff, and drove a ’40-something DeSoto. She passed away in an earthquake.

Were/are you a good student?
No.

How often do you look at yourself in the mirror?
I have no idea.

What is the strangest thing you believed as a child?
I actually believed that adults, for the most part, knew what they were doing.

Do you re-gift items that have been given to you?
Maybe… why? Did you get something from me that you recognize?

Do you know the difference between a crocodile and an alligator?
One has a long narrow nose; the other – less narrow

Do you still read the newspaper?
There is nothing but advertising in the ones here now. I watch the morning news and weather on TV.

Are there any animals that frighten you?
Humans

Are you a collector of something? If so, what do you collect?
Woodworking tools, you can never have enough routers.

What is something about yourself that you hope will change, but probably never will?
I’ve never won the lottery. I hope that will change, but doubt it ever will. Does that count?

What’s a strange occurrence you’ve experienced but no one believes you?
See this: https://tnkerr.wordpress.com/2014/05/16/daily-prompt-worldly-encounters/

What’s something that amazes you?
Babies are the most amazing.
I often consider the difference between a liar and a storyteller to be insignificant and yet only one is socially acceptable. That’s pretty amazing too, although not as amazing as babies.

Do you prefer the blunt truth or would you rather people temper their words?
It depends on what they are telling me.

What’s one thing you’d rather pay someone to do than do yourself?
Pour concrete

What are the qualities that tend to draw you to someone new?
I like open, honest, a quick smile, and a good sense of humor

If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to?
McCool, it was my Grandfather’s name.

Do you believe ignorance is bliss? Why or why not?
No, I don’t, but you’ll never know why ‘cause I’m not telling.

What (if anything) do you consider unforgivable?
Mistreating others

Do you ever break out into song just because you feel like singing?
This often happens when I’m driving


Daily Prompt: Fret

Daily Prompt: Fret



Danny clutched the case and pushed into the shop. Mendoza was perched on a stool at the counter caressing a Stratocaster.

“I been ‘specting you Danny, heard what happened.”

Danny set the case on the counter and popped it open. Inside was cradled his ’56 gold face Les Paul. The finish was dinged bad and the neck was bowed.

“Can you fix it?”

“I can straighten the neck and re-fret the fingerboard. The finish is probly done though. She threw it out in the rain, huh?”

“After she swung it at me; I don’t blame her, I prolly deserved it.”