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Sue Spitulnik

Flash Fiction and personal thoughts

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respect

Stifled Opinion – flash fiction

His driver looked at him, “Sarge, can I ask a question?”

Michael was seething after leaving the meeting with the Afghan leader, but he answered, “Of course.”

“I never hear you bad-mouth that guy. All of us think he’s a maniac. How do you keep your cool?”

“First off, I’m in his country. It’s my place to show respect regardless. Second, it would be wrong to create a hell-storm when we’re here trying to obtain peace. Third, it would anger me if they talked against our leaders.”

“I admire you, boss.”

“Just so you know, I am screaming inside.”

Written in response to Charli Mills July 16, 2020, prompt at Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that expresses the phrase, “scream inside your heart.” Who is involved and why is the scream contained? Go where the prompt leads!

Take Charge of Yourself – flash fiction

The church teen choir started practicing without Gaylan. He joined them ten minutes later and the group came to life.

Tessa’s father, Don, running the rehearsal, after dismissing all but Gaylan, asked: “Would you say you respect this group?”

“Sure.”

“Do you attend by choice?”

“Yeah.”

“Do you understand belonging comes with responsibility?”

“I guess.”

“Do you believe your continual tardiness proves your answers are the truth?”

Gaylan hesitated. “No, sir.”

“Michael wanted to ask you to take charge tonight but didn’t trust you to be on time. Show up early from now on and you’ll earn that trust.”

 

Written in response to Charli Mills March 26, 2020, prompt at Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story in which a character takes charge. Who is this character, and what situation calls for their action? It can be playful or serious, fantastical, or realistic. Go where the prompt leads!

 

Standing In Respect – flash fiction

The funeral home parking lot was full of cars which hid the numerous motorcycles stashed in the back corner, but their large American flags flapping in the wind gave them away. I had to go look; The Patriot Guard was in presence. To enter the building I had to pass between the colonnade of men, standing at attention, on duty protecting a fellow veteran, a fellow biker and a friend. The haunted look in their eyes wasn’t for the current grief, it was from a long ago senseless war. I know, they were my friends too. Damn Viet Nam.

In response to Charli Mills January 17, 2019, prompt at Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes colonnades. It can be natural, architectural, or a metaphor. Take a stroll and go where the prompt leads.

Police Escort – Flash Fiction

When my parents arrived for my son’s birthday party, my father was red-faced and sputtering. “We couldn’t turn off the side road because a cop blocked it for almost five minutes while a line of motorcycles flew by.”

“Did a lot of the bikes have American flags attached and were the riders wearing vests with lots of patches?”

“So what. They made us late.”

“I think you missed seeing the front of the line. That was the Patriot Guard escorting our neighbor’s cousin to her funeral. She was killed in Afghanistan.”

“Oh. I guess she deserved a cop escort.”

 

In response to Charli Mills May 3, 2018, prompt from Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less) use a line in your story. You can think of the variation of the word meaning, or you can think of visual references. Go where the prompt leads.

May 3: Flash Fiction Challenge

 

 

 

 

 

Make Someone’s Day

Do you like compliments? Do you give compliments? I’m over 60, but a real compliment still makes me perk up and smile wide, especially when a published writer tells me I have written something well. One of these days, if I stick to it, I’ll be able to say I am published too. I keep hearing it just takes grit and to never give up trying. Continue reading “Make Someone’s Day”

Freedom Isn’t Free

This day is observed to honor the 3,500 Americans who lost their lives or were wounded on December 7th when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor and gave the U. S. reason to enter WWII.  Continue reading “Freedom Isn’t Free”

Be On Time

It’s National Watch Day. I’ve always been a punctual person. I believe being on time is showing respect to yourself and others when you arrive at a destination, job, party, or whatever in a timely manner. I also feel people that are constantly late have a control problem. They don’t control themselves, thus they do control the others that are waiting for them. Rude!

As a teenager, I can remember going out in the back yard with my girlfriends during the summer sunshine, beach towels, cokes, and a transistor radio in tow. We would take our watches off so as to not get a white wrist band from them while we soaked in the sun. We would check them every so often to make sure we turned over so we didn’t get too much sun all at once on just one side. The watch was always placed under one corner of the towel. I don’t remember our reasoning that it had to be covered.

When cell phones became the in thing, I gave up my watch because I could always “pull out my phone.” Everyone was doing it. I have recently realized that action can be conceived as rude. Yesterday during a talk at a museum, both my husband and step-son pulled out their phones and started looking up baseball and golf scores. I thought it very disrespectful to the speaker, but have to admit, if mine had vibrated, I would have pulled it out too. Our phone addictions might not be so bad if they helped us be on time.

Watches are coming back in style, and can be chosen to show off your own personality. Of course doctors and nurses have always worn them. I know a few people that have recently gotten new watches, because let’s face it, pulling that phone out is not always convenient (especially when driving) and sometimes just plain rude. I think I need to get myself a new watch to wear, especially when in public.

Stand in Respect

On May 30, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation deeming June 14 as Flag Day.  President Wilson stated, “It is the anniversary of the day upon which the flag of the United States was adopted by the Congress as the emblem of the Union.” He also wrote, “On that day rededicate ourselves to the nation, ‘one and inseparable’ from which every thought that is not worthy of our fathers’ first vows in independence, liberty, and right shall be excluded and in which we shall stand with united hearts.”   [courtesy-National Day of Calendar]

I was going to add, nothing more needs to be said, but then I remembered a couple of times in my life that just seeing our flag brought tears to my eyes. One occasion was when I pulled into a funeral home parking lot to pay respects to a very dear friend. The Patriot Guard was standing at attention in two lines I had to pass through to enter the building. I almost couldn’t do it. One has to have an understanding of being a veteran, have a high degree of patriotism, and respect for the men behind the grizzled faces to grasp the emotion that sight filled me with.

The other memory had to do with when I attended Rolling Thunder in Washington D.C. It is held on Memorial Day weekend. 500,000 motorcycles, lots of American Flags, more veterans and a feeling of reverence and peace. Yes, motorcycles and reverence go together in this situation. I recommend it to anyone to experience at least once.

I hope you will fly the flag of this great country today and forget it has a few problems.

No Thank You

It’s National Lima Bean Respect Day. In my opinion, they need a day to demand respect. I eat most anything, but lima beans are at the bottom of my list, and I avoid them if possible. They are that childhood vegetable that would keep me sitting at the table for hours because I wouldn’t eat just three.

According to the National Day of Calendar, lima beans are an excellent source of protein, iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc.  They can increase energy levels by helping to restore more iron.  Most of us tried them as a child and didn’t like them.  They advise it’s time to give them a second chance as adults.  They can be delicious in soups, stews, salads, casseroles, by themselves or mixed with other vegetables.

I have to admit, as a child, I didn’t like the texture of lima beans as I chewed them. They were gritty and made my teeth squeak. Now I will eat them in soup or a package of mixed vegetables and pretend they aren’t there. If they are such a healthy food, maybe I should give them a real chance to change my opinion by trying them with nothing else, and an open mind. Well, maybe not. Some parts of me haven’t matured enough to go that route.

It just hit me, if there is a day of respect for them, I must not be the only one that doesn’t like them. That makes me feel better. If you like lima beans I’ll give my respect to you.

 

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