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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Week(s) (02/10/11)

TITLE: Sylvia Gets a Green Uniform
By Ambrose W


Curtis stood in the bathroom and licked the palm of his hand. He gazed in the mirror as he watched himself rake his fingers through his thick hair.

“Go get ‘em, Tiger.” He coached himself. He puffed out his chest and hooked his thumbs through his belt loops.

He strutted over to Sylvia’s desk and leaned against it, hoping she’d catch a whiff of his aftershave.

“Curtis, disco is still as dead today as it was yesterday. Button your shirt, please.”

“Oh Sylvie,” he cocked his head to the side and stuck a toothpick in his mouth. “When will we stop playing these games and tormenting each other? My heart can’t take it.”

“My eyes can’t take it. Seriously. I’m starting to have nightmares about your chest hair.”

“So you dream about me?”

Sylvia’s mouth downturned and she emitted guttural, spitting noises in response. “Ew, wow, no. Anyways, Mr. Foreman wants to see you in his office for your twelve-week evaluation.”

“Right,” Curtis winked. “Well don’t you worry, Sugar Lips. I’ll be right back, and we can continue this little chess game.” He tapped the desk with his knuckles and went into the office.

Curtis sat down, and twirled his toothpick with his tongue.

“Top of the mornin’ to ya, Mr. Bossman!” Curtis saluted.

“Indeed,” said Mr. Foreman. “Listen, Curtis, I want to cut right to the chase, here-“

“So do I, Mr. F. You know, being here at Foreman & Sons for the past twelve weeks has been swell, don’t get me wrong, but there are definitely some changes that I’d like to see happen.”

“I’m sorry, what?” Mr. Foreman squinted and rubbed his temple.

“Don’t apologize, man, you didn’t know. That’s why I’m here giving you this evaluation. Now, first thing’s first. The uniforms. What made you think these orange mu-mu things would look attractive? You wanna know who looks good in orange? Well, I guess me, kinda, but I can safely say that none of the gals up front do.

The ladies ain't half-bad looking in real life, but you’d never know that with this uniform. And that breaks my heart, man. Cause I don’t know about you, man, but I’m a woman’s man. I support their suffrage and stuff. They’re beautiful and I want them to maximize on that potential. You’re suffocating them, dude, and if you’re not careful, one of them is gonna figure it out in that little cotton-candy head of theirs, and they’re gonna slam you with a lawsuit that - trust me - you want no part of.

Instead, I'd get a deep, forest green uniform. Everybody looks good in that. Well, maybe not everybody, but Sylvia sure would, am I right?”

Mr. Foreman jutted his jaw and stared. “Think so, eh?”

“Yes, I do. Now, my second order of business would be to extend lunch breaks…with pay, of course. You see, forty minutes is not enough time to eat, take a nap, and then go hit up Sylvia for a breath mint. Which, you know is to just get her thinking about my breath, which makes her think about my mouth, which makes her think about kissing me. It’s not like I actually get bad breath, I dunno why, but I’m just naturally delicious-smelling. Care to sniff?”

Curtis lunged toward Mr. Foreman and offered him an olfactory sample. Mr. Foreman declined.

“Hey, can’t blame a guy for trying, right?” Curtis guffawed.

“No, I suppose not. Curtis, I’m going to go ahead and cut you off-“

“Totally understood sir, we’ve gone over enough for today. I think we’ve covered some great points and given you two clear goals: new uniforms, and longer lunch breaks. I think it’s reasonable to expect physical solutions to these issues within the coupla weeks, don’t you, sir?”


An hour later after Curtis cleared out his locker, he walked outside and sat in his car. He pondered the morning’s events, trying to figure out where he went wrong.

Sylvia tapped on the window.

“Curtis, I want to make it clear that I never want to see you again in my life. But I only need to thank you, because I do really look fantastic in forest green. And here. You need these. I mean truly. Use them every day of your life. Good luck, Curtis.”

She tossed a pack of breath mints into his lap and left.

He watched her go and grinned slyly.

“Oh, yeah. She wants me.”

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This article has been read 388 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Theresa Santy 02/17/11
My favorite humor piece for 'weeks' so far. (Okay, so it's the first humor piece I've read for this topic, but really, very funny. I'm still smiling.)

You presented Curtis in high definition. I read a writing tip once about precision, 'dot the dragon's eye and it comes to life'. I'd say you dotted Curtis' eye magnificently, not only with his priceless dialogue, but with little details like, 'tapped the desk with his knuckles' (before walking away). That motion right there brought this likeably repulsive character to life in my mind.
Noel Mitaxa 02/17/11
Terrific active, descriptive and over-the-top dialogue, which reminded me of a temporary boyfriend of my niece. He was in our local army reserve unit, but resigned because he didn't like the way it was run. It's doubtful whether there were any mass retrenchments at our medal suppliers because of his departure...
Danielle King 02/18/11
Loved it. Brilliant dialogue, kept me captivated all the way through. I had an overwhelming urge to thump Curtis on his snout! (Sorry, that wasn't very Christian of me was it!) You brough the scene to life so well.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/18/11
This is absolutely hysterical, I laughed so hard. I could easily picture the MC and see the whole scene play out my This is positively fantastic writing!
Troy Manning02/21/11
With Curtis being so "over-the-top," one immediately anticipates his come-uppance. It was nice to see his green uniform suggestion adopted. I would even have liked to see the rug completely pulled from under the readers' feet by his landing the girl. Engaging writing. :)
Lollie Hofer02/22/11
I knew a guy like this once. You pegged his personality perfectly. Great read, lots of humor. I really liked not liking him (hope that made sense). Well done.
Tracy Nunes 02/22/11
Oh Curtis, Curtis, Curtis! There's at least one of you in every town, business, school.....

So fun to read!
Lisa Fowler02/24/11
Congratulations on your placing of this very funny read!
Patricia Protzman02/24/11
Congratulations on your win.
Verna Cole Mitchell 02/24/11
Congratulations on placing for this "made-me-laugh out loud" wonderful story. You made your mc so class, I could see him, hear him, smell him! Great job!