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Previous Challenge Entry (EDITOR'S CHOICE)
Topic: Oops (01/14/10)

TITLE: Grandma Gets Sacked
By Patricia Herchenroether
~3rd Place


“Hey, Grammy, are you okay? We haven’t heard from you for a couple weeks.” I was happy my granddaughter called, but kind of reluctant to tell her about my latest flubberment. After all, if I talked about it to one grape on the family vine, I’ve told the whole blasted bunch. Oh bother, might as well get it over with.

“To tell you the truth, Sweetie, I’m a touch depressed. I got f-fired,” I admitted.

“Fired! From a job? How long have you been working?” Carol Ann’s normally squeaky voice rose even higher, making her sound like a sow-stomped piglet.

“Well….I only worked one day. Actually, it was only part of one day. Since I couldn’t keep up the whole farm anymore and the golldarn pension only covers the gotta-haves, I figured I could use a little extra; you know, for the wanna-haves. So I applied at the Foods-R-Us store down there by the post office. You remember old Willy Fartham? He’s been shuffling around there as a greeter, sayin’ ‘Hello’ and shovin’ a cart at customers when they come in. That Willy’s older than dirt and just about as smart, so I knew I could do it easy-peasy.”

“I understand, Gram, but how did you get fired?"

“Just hold onto your petticoats, Carol Ann, I’m coming to that. The store manager, Mr. Grimm, interviewed me and gave me the job right away. He’s a skinny little man with a strange hair cut, kinda looks like a red bowl on his head, like those haircuts my George (God rest his soul) used to give your Mama and the rest of the kids. Mr. Grimm handed me the cutest blue smock to wear and a nametag and employee discount coupons and-”

“Graaamm, just tell me what happened, would you?”

Sigh. Young people are so impatient. “Okay, I was up by the door, smiling’ my choppers off and howdy-dooing everybody as I gave ‘em a cart just like I was supposed to do. It was easy as pie, too. One lady had just taken her cart and stopped at the pyramid display of cereal on her way inside. You should have seen her, Honey, all dressed up and wearin’ more jewelry than King Midas Muffler. Why, she had gold hangin‘ all over; must‘ve weighed ten pounds.”

“Puhleeze, get to the point already!”

“Hush, child, I’m tryin’ to. There she was by that display and there I was trying to give out the next cart to a man with a whole passel of noisy kids. You know how those blasted carts sometimes get stuck together and don’t want to go their separate ways? Well, I had a pair like that, stuck tighter than a tree frog on a window. I pulled and pushed and kicked the darned things. Finally, I wedged my shoe on the bottom rail of the front cart, yanked back hard on the t’other one, and all-of-a-sudden, whoosh! That cantankerous cart went scootin’ down the aisle and rear-ended the lady in gold.”

“Oh, Gram, how terrible!” gasped Carol Ann. “And that’s when you were fired?”

“Uh, not exactly, Dear. When the cart hit the lady, she plowed head-first into the display. About a hundred boxes of Sugar Pops came down like an avalanche, and flew every which way. A lot of the boxes were broken and people were slippin’ and slidin’ on the cereal all over the place. Those rowdy kids started gobblin’ nuggets as fast as they could scoop ‘em up.”

Carol Ann said, “What a mess that must have been, but the whole thing was an accident. You shouldn’t have been fired for that!”

“Oh, I wasn’t let go for that. Mr. Grimm heard all the racket and ran out of his office. He slipped on the cereal. and went down like a stone in water. He wasn’t hurt, thank the Good Lord, but that red topknot of his turned out to be a toupee and it took flight like a cat-chased cardinal The man sat up, clapped his hands on his bald head, and turned redder than his flyin’ rug.

“At first, I stood there and gawked, sort of stunned. But Sweetie, I just couldn’t help myself-I started laughin’ and laughin’ until I thought I’d bust my girdle. And that, Carol Ann, is when I got fired.”

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Member Comments
Member Date
Anita van der Elst01/21/10
Gotta be a winner! Wonderful descriptions of characters & action. Love the MC's voice.
Janice Fitzpatrick01/22/10
This is so cute and good medicine for a blue mood.:0) Thx for writing this. Very well done, great voice and the dialogue was colorful and descriptive. I could see the whole escapade in my mind and had to laugh. Loved it!!
Scarlett Farr01/24/10
hilarious and I can see the action. Great job!
Lisa Harris01/25/10
Loved your story! What a Hoot! Keep up your great writing.
Allen Stark01/26/10
Your dialogue hooked me right away. You have a great ability to show AND tell.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 01/26/10
You have a vivid imagination and have mastered storytelling! My favorite word was flubberment.I can't wait to read more of your work. Brilliant!
Shirley McClay 01/26/10
I love this Grandma! Too funny! Excellent.
c clemons01/27/10
Very good. Grammy voice was very authentic, keep up the good work!
Jim McWhinnie 01/27/10
Spot on with the dialog and the comedic timing was perfect.
Glynis Becker01/27/10
Fun dialogue and I could just see the toupee up in the air. I love stories like this!
Ruth Brown01/27/10
Oh I'm holdin' my side I think I busted my girdle too, because grammy is a hoot!
I could see this as a comedy skit on a clean Saturday Night Show. Thanks ,laughter is such good medicine.
Lyn Churchyard01/27/10
This is probably the best I've read this week. What a hoot! I just love Granma and all her wonderful sayings. This has got to be a winner, and if it isn't, well well done anyway. I loved it!
Chely Roach01/27/10
Too funny! I loved how you paced the story...it was very visual and entertaining. Gram is quite a character. Nicely done!
Mona Purvis01/28/10
Just now got around to reading this entry. It is just wonderful! I love humor that's done well and this certainly is. Love the character! Well-deserved win.

Margaret Kearley 01/28/10
Congrats Patti - brilliant writing and great fun. Its good to have you back! - I've missed reading your entries. Margaret
Carol Penhorwood 01/28/10
A well deserved 1st Place! Great fun writing, I bet! Loved reading it!
Joan Campbell01/28/10
You create a fabulous Grandma character! Well done on your win.
Lyn Churchyard01/28/10
See! See! I told you this would be a winner. Talent, girl, talent :-)
Sharlyn Guthrie01/28/10
Great writing! This was loads of fun. Congratulations on your EC!
Edmond Ng 01/28/10
Congratulations on your winning third in the Editors' Choice! (",)
Bryan Rudolph01/28/10
I wanted my Grandma . . . I mean Carol Ann’s Grandma . . . to hurry up with the story, too. Then, after that climax with Mr. Grimm, it dawned on me . . . wait a minute, this is a story . . . I’m not actually there . . . I’m reading this, not living it.

Freely flowing vivid imaginings made vital, through nailed-down entertaining dialogue held in character.

Pleasure personified. Just fabulous, Patricia. Thank you.

Connie Dixon01/28/10
Congratulations! Love the comedic (word?) descriptions and the overall humor in this piece. Great title!
Nicole Campbell01/29/10
What a sweet and funny story! I laughed so hard at the grandma's accecnt. Well done!
Charla Diehl 01/29/10
Congrat on your level win and EC placement with this lighthearted and entertaining story. Loved the voice of your MC and all her cute expressions. Great piece.