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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Gossip/Rumors (either or both) (10/28/10)

By Barbara Lynn Culler


Sitting in the sunny window, the gray striped cat licked her paw and seemed oblivious to her nemesis lurking in the shadows. But she did notice her human reclining on the blue couch. LAP TIME! With one graceful leap, she landed her lithe body onto the unsuspecting creature. Her human responded as trained and scratched the little enchantress behind her ears. She closed her eyes and purred with pleasure; until she heard an intrusive sound. Her nose twitched and her eyes flared open. What was HE doing here?

The big orange tabby was glaring at her.

Hisssssssss. RAAAREEER. The little cat screamed, splayed her claws, and then jumped off her personal perch. With head and tail held straight up, she hissed with all the bravado she could exude and pranced out of the room.

“Strange creatures.” Jody whispered into the air as she shook her head, and returned to reading her newspaper.

The next day, Jody was having lunch in the office break room. She nestled into the vinyl wing-back chair, and was reading her Bible when colleagues Kathy and Cheryl entered the room, lunch bags in hand, and deep in conversation.

“Can you believe what Terry did? You just do not do that kind of stuff at work.” Cheryl sat down at the table near the window, and responded to Kathy’s question.

“I know! And did you hear what Joe said about what she did?” She pulled out her tuna sandwich and took a bite.

“No! What?” Kathy leaned in closer to hear the answer.

Well, I did not actually hear it myself, but Debbie said that Donna told her that Joe said that she should be fired!”

“No way!” Kathy looked shocked. “It wasn’t that bad what she did-was it?” Kathy shook her can of diet chocolate shake and poured it into a Styrofoam cup.

“Well, you know that Joe is the boss, and he is a stickler for ‘propriety’, as he calls it.”
"Ha ha ha ha” the two women cackled as they completed their lunch.


Jody did not want to hear anymore of the gossip. She liked the persons they were talking about and she did not want to participate in the immature lunchroom conversations. Without defending her co-workers, Jody picked up her trash and deposited it in the receptacle near the exit door.

“Hey Jody, I didn’t know you were in here! Where were you hiding?” Kathy asked as she was also leaving the lunchroom.
“I wasn’t hiding; I was in the big green chair, trying to take a peaceful break.”

Cheryl appeared after a quick smoke break outside. “Good thing we weren’t talking about you!

The two burst into giggles.

Jody did not find them amusing. “You know, it’s not very nice to talk about others, and spread rumors like you are doing. It could very easily cause major problems or even hurt someone’s feelings.”

“We’re just talking to each other! What harm is there in that?” Cherie queried of Jody. “Oh, and you should hear what Terri said about you!”

“Oh puleeze.” Jody rolled her eyes and walked out of the break room.

Jody returned to her work station, and noticed that Terri was standing at the fax machine. With as much righteous indignation she could muster, Jody pounced from her desk chair, sashayed over to where Terri was working, and breathlessly exclaimed:
“Terri, you should hear what Kathy and Cheryl are saying about you!”

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Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 11/04/10
Cats are amazing creatures. I've watched mine often knowing something is brewing between them. Though I can't understand their meows often it is clear one cat is telling another off. Humans aren't that different at times are they? :)
Jan Ackerson 11/06/10
As a cat person, I really loved the cat introduction and analogy.

I have mixed feelings about the ending...it's definitely a shocker, but I'm not sure if it helps to make your point or not. Have to think about that for a while.

Your conversation was so realistic that I felt as if I were eavesdropping, myself! Well done.
AnneRene' Capp11/11/10
I thought the ending was great! Self righteousness 'exposed'! Put a smile on my face. Also loved the cats and the true to life descriptions of them!
Rita Garcia11/20/10
I like this very much! THe different facets of gossiping. I thought the ending was purrrfect! We sure can get a little too full of ourselves and a tad self righteous!