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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Fragrance (10/24/05)

TITLE: od'a skunk #22
By dub W


Jerry stepped into the garage elevator and saw Mike standing in the car. “Morn’ Mike, what’s happening?”

“About to puke, Linda Smith was here earlier; take a deep breath, ode da skunk number twenty two.”

Jerry turned and pressed the button for the sixth floor, he really wasn’t ready to confront Mike’s negativity.

“Hey, Jerry, you think she bathes in that stuff every morning. I know it’s her, cause I walk past her cube every day and the same mist blows me over.”

Jerry looked up at the number indicator. Oh Lord; send this thing to six as fast as you can. “So, Mike, are you working with the Wilson account, I hear there is a lot of leg work in that thing.” Maybe changing the subject will help.

“Man, I can’t believe you asked that. That crazy ol’ bitty has me running from New York to Boston every other day. Have you ever got a look at her in person, shessh.” He paused, “you know there are a bunch of ugly folks in this world.”

Jerry turned and looked at the man standing in the elevator with him. “Mike, have you ever thought that God made us all just a little different? We are like snowflakes, each of us special.” Now, he’s going to blast me.

“Well God doesn’t smell like Linda or look like that Wilson woman, at least I hope not.”

“Hope not Mike?” Jerry’s mind raced back to the Sunday sermon. “Do you think God is concerned with our fragrance or beauty? God loves us no matter what.”

The door opened and Mike pushed past as Jerry held the door. Guess I’m glad he didn’t answer.

Later that day a familiar face appeared in Jerry’s office doorway. “Hey, man, can we talk?”

Jerry looked up. “Mike, I was just thinking about the Wilson account, I have some data you can probably use.”

“No man, not about that.” Mike had a serious look on his face.

“Sit down, shut the door,” Jerry stood from his desk and pointed to the small round table in front of his bookcase.” Something’s up.

Mike settled into a chair opposite Jerry. “You think I’m a real S.O.B., don’t hedge, I know it, everyone thinks that.”

“Well, Mike, sometimes your attitude concerns me, but hey, I’m not your supervisor.”

Mike looked straight across the table. “Word is, I’m about to get canned.”

“I haven’t heard that.”

“I did.”

“Something going on with the Wilson account?”


“Well, you are never late for work and you put in extra hours, what’s going on?”

“I don’t know, except maybe someone doesn’t want me here. Maybe they don’t like the way I look. Who knows.”


“Yeah, I think someone found out about my son.”


“You know, he was caught in school selling cocaine. He’s eighteen, so he’s going to prison. We mortgaged the house for his defense, but he got fifteen years.”

“So why are you in my office telling me all this?” This man is crying out in pain.

“I got to thinking about what you said.”


“Yeah, that God makes us all different, and he loves us no matter what. Even S.O.B.s.”

“That’s right.” Jerry picked up the Bible off of his desk. “And all of us, as you might put it, are ugly different.” He chuckled. Jerry put his finger on a book mark. Look at Nahum I hope he doesn’t jump up and run away. Jerry read, “The Lord is good, a stonghold in the day of Trouble and he knows them that trust him. I skipped a little of it.”

Mike sat with his head bowed. “Michael is just a kid, I don’t know what to do.”

“Listen Mike, there’s a lot of healing going on right now, if you will let Jesus handle the problem. The only thing you can do at this point is give it to Him. You have to love your son more now than every before, turn the corner, turn hurt into love. Jesus loves Michael just as much today.”

Mike stood up and offered a hand to Jerry. “Thanks man.”

Jerry strained to listen as he watched Mike walk down the corridor and stop at Linda’s cube.

Mike leaned over the low cube. “Hey Linda, cool perfume, I got a hint of it walking by, what’s the fragrance? I might get some for my wife.”

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This article has been read 1186 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Sara Westhead10/31/05
Beautiful story!
Linda Watson Owen10/31/05
So contemporary in situation and timeless in truth! Wonderful story!
Nina Phillips10/31/05
Very nice..and what a commentary. I like the fact that it was realistic and to the work place. Real life stuff. God bless ya, littlelight
janet rubin11/01/05
who doesn't know a "Mike"? Your article was a wonderful demostration of how loving those people in our lives can have a great outcome!
Jan Ackerson 11/01/05
Very nicely written, with an authentic voice. A few spellings to note: eau de / ode da and biddy / bitty. A highly original take on the topic, written well.
terri tiffany11/02/05
Very nice! I was thinking how good it was that where he worked he could keep a bible on his desk!I also liked that you made him bold with his words.
Cassie Memmer11/03/05
good modern story offering hope to someone that is hurting. If I were Mike, though, I'd probably still think the sec'y's perfume stunk! LOL! I'm glad he could change though and become nice. Good story.
Joanne Malley11/03/05
Good story, unique character and great message! :)
Karen Ward11/04/05
I liked the different types of ugly. I also liked that he stopped at her booth on the way back, but I felt like he was being sarcastic when he said he'd buy some for his wife! That's a big turnaround! Still, very real characters, and I enjoyed it very much.
:) Karen
Julianne Jones11/04/05
Mike's got a lot going on: his son, possibility of losing his job, his attitude prob, facing up to his own ugliness. Glad there was a Jerry who wasn't afraid to speak God's love into his life. A challenge to us all. Good work.
Rachel Burkum11/04/05
I enjoyed the story, and how you ended it.
Got a little lost in some of the dialogue where there was no action, but I understood what was going on.
Your characters were brought out nicely, and I liked reading Jerry's thoughts. :)
Kell-Ann Hoyte11/04/05
Good story. It brings home the fact that it's easier to show mercy when you're desirous of it.
Scott Hesch11/04/05
Confused me at first but then after I had read it all through, I got it. Very real.
Garnet Miller 11/04/05
Nice! This could be used as a Sunday school lesson. Sometimes negativity becomes so like second nature that we don't even realize we are doing it until someone points it out to us. It also goes to show that you never know what is going on in the life of another. What a great story:)
Brandi Roberts11/04/05
The title had me confused. I thought for sure you'd never name it that. I really liked this, very well written!
Debbie OConnor11/04/05
I like it a LOT. Great fun and sort of similar to the contemporary angle I took this week. I love the different voices of your characters. Very strong.
Shari Armstrong 11/05/05
A nice start in his change of attitude - good example of how he still loves his son even though he messed up -gives him a glimpse of what God does for us.
Sally Hanan11/06/05
A great example of the difference circumstances can make on someone being open to talking about God, and also about how pride was stripped away enough to make him think of being nice to someone else.