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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Sport or Fitness (02/15/07)

TITLE: Hobnobbing With the Rich Folks
By Jan Ackerson


Hobnobbing With the Rich Folks

Hey, Bud, yer lookin’ kinda curious. Can’t say as I blame you, pal. If you got a minute, I”ll tell you somthin’ dandy.

Last summer, I entered one a them radio contests. I always been good at trivia, so when the deejay asked who was Moses’s wife I called in quick with Zipporah, and I won. It was a one-week membership at the Pine Valley Croquet Club—ain’t that a hoot?

I went there all set to learn me a new game and maybe hobnob with some rich folks, who I figger needs a friendly “hey” much as regular folks do. I knowed it was a fancy place, so I wore my best dungarees, and buttoned my shirt all the way up.

The gal in the lobby took a gander at my guest pass and sniffed, then pointed at a little sign. And that was real nice of her, ‘cause the sign said croquet players was required to wear white. Ain’t that fancy?

God watches out for us, that’s the truth. I just happened to have a pair of new white painter’s coveralls out in my pickup. I pulled ‘em on and trotted right back in.

The gal looked surprised to see me back so quick, and she sniffed again. Reckon she had a cold, but she didn’t want my handkerchief, even though I only used one corner of it. She just showed me the door leadin’ to the croquet place, then set down and fanned herself.

I seen three people standin’ around, so I introduced myself real friendly-like, and invited ‘em to play me a game. They was two other guys and a real purty girl, and at first they was kinda speechless. Jealous of my coveralls, I reckon, since they was wearin’ funny-lookin’ white shorts and knee socks. I ain’t no fashion expert, but I think that’s a fo paw, pardon my French.

I told ‘em not to feel bad, even King Solomon weren’t dressed no better’n a lily. Well, when I mentioned lilies, one of the fellers said he guessed I should join ‘em, seein’s how the purty girl’s name was Lily, wouldja believe it? And she weren’t wearin’ shorts, neither, but a real flowy dress, and she had the saddest pair of eyes I even seen.

So we commenced. I grabbed me a mallet and smacked my ball a good one. It sailed right through them first two hoops, and I thumped one of the fellers on the back and gave a holler. Hoo-doggy, any sport where you can run around and whack things with a mallet’s a real good time. God’s sun was shinin’, the birds was singin’, and as it happened, I was awful good at croquet.

Them white shorts fellers just didn’t have no muscle. They’d give their stripey balls a little tap and creep up on them hoops all gradual. That was all right fer Lily, I guess, but it just don’t seem manly to me. You shoulda saw how I could make my ball fly with one good whack.

Here’s somethin’ you might not of knowed—if’n you hit the other feller’s ball, you git another shot at it! I was real good at that, too—like when the Lord smiteth. As the Good Book says, he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy. I done memorized that, but you kin look it up.

‘Bout halfway through the game, Miss Lily-Sad-Eyes cracked a smile—it coulda been when I sent the orange ball sailin’ into another croquet game. Anyways, by the time I hit the pole thingamabob and high-fived a guy who was trimmin’ bushes, that gal was laughin’ out loud, soundin’ even sweeter than them birds.

Lily and me had us some fancy tea, then I brung her to my favorite pizza spot. We been hangin’ out fer a while now, sometimes in Lily’s world, sometimes in mine. She’s learnin’ to bait a hook and drive a stick, and I’m learnin’ to use proper silverware and not say “I seen.” We found us a nice little church where don’t no one care where we come from, only where we’re goin’.

Well, I best be off, I’ve took enough of yer time. Looks like the folks in lane 3 is done, and look—someone bowled a 289! Hope you git a mark in every frame, Bud. Looks like the preacher’s here, and my Lily’s waitin’ fer me in lane 10. Ain’t she a sight in that weddin’ dress?

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This article has been read 1425 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Helen Paynter02/22/07
You really are the master at combining comedy with pathos - who wouldn't choke up a little at his innocence being the subject of others' mirth? And I loved the character - his naivete yet his wisdom shining through. Another great piece from this writer.
TJ Nickel02/22/07
This is fabulous writing.
cindy yarger02/22/07
Plain good fun all the way through! Great job.
Lori Othouse 02/22/07
That last line was the best! Very well written, entertaining with a lot of truth woven throughout. Loved it!
Jen Davis02/22/07
This was so cute from the very first paragraph. I giggled all the way through. I adore your character’s voice. The final paragraph brings the story to a completely unexpected yet delightful ending. To bring laughter to others is such a gift. Thanks for sharing yours with us. I loved it!
Betty Castleberry02/23/07
Now *this* is the way to tell a story. It was so much fun! Excellent.
Sharlyn Guthrie02/23/07
WoW! This is so well written and extremely funny...my favorite so far this week.
Allison Egley 02/24/07
OH, I loved this. You did a wonderful job of weaving humor with a message. Mine seem to be one or the other. lol I loved his "accent" throughout.
Joanney Uthe02/24/07
I like the POV of this story and the ending was an interesting twist. Great job.
Jacquelyn Horne02/24/07
When I read the first few lines, I thought, "What in the world?" Then I realized that was the very essence of the story. Good job.
Leigh MacKelvey02/24/07
Again, stop amazng me, woman!
Barbara Hartsook02/25/07
What a great read! I was raised where some folks talked like our hero, so I heard every word! Loved it! And I laughed out loud the whole way through. Loved the irony of a wedding reception in the bowling alley...
Joanne Sher 02/25/07
Absolutely delightful. Love love LOVE your main character - absolutely everything about him. I'm sure this was a RIOT to write - it sure was to read :)
Tabiatha Tallent02/26/07
LOL. This reminded me of listening to Jerry Clower. My favorite of all times comediens. I loved the last paragraph LOL!
Joanne Malley02/26/07
One day in your head is all I want! But being on this side reading is fun enough. Excellent job! Still giggling. :) Jo
Suzanne R02/27/07
Just gorgeous, and I love the ending!
T. F. Chezum02/27/07
Very fun read. I enjoyed the humor a lot. Great job for something that is just silliness.
Donna Powers 02/27/07
I could hear Buddy Ebsen narrating this wonderful story. I smiled through the whole thing. Thanks so much for giving me a smile today!
Patty Wysong02/28/07
Absolutely wonderful!! Some people talk like that around here...wonder if they play croquet? hehe. I'm still laughing over this one...
Sara Harricharan 02/28/07
ohhh! I loved this! So fun and the ending was just great. I liked the 'tone' and the easy going personality of the MC. This definitely made my day and I love the touch of 'Lily'. Very, very well done! ^_^