Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Write in the HUMOR genre (04/12/07)
I settle in front of my computer to write. But my mood and the dripping rain outside my window both belie my assigned topic. How can I write a humor piece on a gray, dreary day? Maybe a cup of tea will help me get into the mood. I patter into the kitchen and put the teakettle on to boil.
I know! I’ll scan the headlines in the morning paper. Surely something in there will prompt me. However, the instant I open the door, out squirts Chaz, my little dog, and sprints across the yard. Whatever is he chasing?
“Chaz, come back here! Come NOW!” I might as well be talking to myself.
I bolt after him, barefoot and in my pink jammies with teddy bears all over them. My foot hits the step, flies out from under me and I scoot off the step and halfway down the driveway on my scantily clad derriere. This is definitely NOT funny!
With my seat, hands, and vanity wounded and throbbing, I glance up to see Chaz sitting at the end of the driveway. A doggy grin stretches from ear to ear, and it’s pretty apparent he planned the whole thing. I scoop him up and limp toward the obscurity of the house muttering mild obscenities.
But… oh, no! I couldn’t have… I have locked myself out in the rain! I must have forgotten to turn the lock when I ran out. Only now do I remember I loaned my spare key to my friend Esther last week. I can hear the teakettle screaming inside. I’d like to join it. I can visualize tomorrow’s headlines -- “Suburban Writer Goes Bezerk in the Rain.”
I’ll have to call Esther…. but I have no phone. Let’s see, all the neighbors work except … no, not Morton, please not Morton!
There’s no choice. I’ll have to ask Morton, the weirdo who’s always scheming on me, if I can use his phone. I clutch tiny Chaz so hard he squeaks and pad in my bare feet, wet pajamas, and dripping hair across the street to Morton’s house.
He seems a little too delighted to offer me his phone and his bathrobe. “I like your new haircut,” he offers as he helps me into the robe. I brush my streaming locks out of my face and wonder who under the sun he could be talking about.
As Morton is insisting that I have tea while I wait for Esther, I glance over his shoulder and notice rows and rows of framed bugs and spiders on the wall. My throat constricts and again I resist the urge to scream. I would run out of here and far away if I had any place to go. But instead I perch primly on the edge of the brown vinyl rocking chair so I don’t ruin the sofa.
Morton sidles close, his green eyes alight with pride, carrying a board bristling with bugs. “Here are some of my latest trophies. Would you like to look?”
Meanwhile, Chaz has been trying to engage the cat. Fortunately for me, the cat picks this moment to dart away and Chaz’ dream has come true. Somebody to chase! Ya-hoo!
The cat scampers over the back of the couch with Chaz in hot pursuit, up onto the side table – minus Chaz this time – and dives onto the table where Morton has neatly set out tea service for two. Brakes! Too late! With four paws spread-eagled, kitty glides the length of the table taking tea service, sugar, creamer, and table cloth with him. He ends up hanging over the far edge of the table, where Chaz waits, doggy tongue curled up in a delighted smile. Second touchdown of the day!
The bright blue of Esther’s car glides by the window. I scoop Chaz up, and dash out of the house, borrowed robe flapping, leaving Morton with the mess -- and his prize bug collection.
An hour later, I settle down at the computer again with a cup of tea and dry clothes. There! I’m ready to get back to work. Now, what can I write about humor?
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