I have the collection and as the marathon continues on it occurs to me it never occurred to me how often Mel Gibson gets naked – he owns the love scenes, or wakes up in the morning and walks away from the camera. Well, wha’d’ya’know, he sleeps naked too. Hit the pause button, crack a beer and sit back… nah, I’d go for an ice cold martini, salute, let the movie play and don’t be lookin’ for a tip.
I remember, don’t ask why the thought was triggered, when I was in medical and finally getting back to school – can’t be promoted to doctor after all – that it took me a minute to put my finger on what was different at the university… the lightbulb came on and I laughed at myself – everyone was dressed. It would have made more sense, or wouldn’t have phased me if most of the student population walked around naked. Changing dressings, helping folks to the bathroom, changing sheets and chux, keeping on top of skin care, bed sores, in other words seeing nudity most of the day, every day, I think gives a healthier outlook, a different appreciation you could call it. There was one woman I just might always remember who had an open wound that needed to be packed each day. It was a wide smile across her generously rotund belly. We looked forward to seeing each other to BS recipes. I removed the gauze, pulled out the thin packing strips, cleansed it of course, packed it again, covered it with fresh gauze… what did we talk about during the procedure but meatloaf recipes. Now in my family we had a specific way using tomato soup as a sauce, the benefit being potatoes, carrots, onions could be cut up, spread around the loaf, and the whole thing could bubble to perfection in the oven – a one pot meal. As I worked I felt aware of how far I’d come in this profession, what terrific people I’d met, nudity, not nudity didn’t matter and appreciated the humor of our discussion over a sliced open belly, the same to me as not opened at all.
Some birds sing at 3am
Are they up to catch the worm
Or haven’t they been to sleep
Maybe flown in from Europe
Unaware of the time
Ahead or behind
Wondering where the sun could be
Are we in Scandinavia here or there
No should be much colder
Interesting creatures of the night as it is
Who knew it would be so
Like mermaids so beautiful to a sailors’ eye
But hissing like a snake
Take down the ship to debris
A cobra before it strikes then certain death
Innocent though they look
Gaze into their eyes
May be the last you see
It’s midnight madness movies at 3 a.m. Hercules this time and as I watch the all too familiar scene that for years I thought was a female stunt double driving the chariot it occurs to me it’s not a woman but a man, a man in a wig. In fact as I focus I’m certain the features, the face is much too strong, that it is definitely a man’s face in charge of those runaway horses who brings the chariot to the edge of the cliff struggling not to plunge into the sea beneath as Hercules grabs an entire tree, roots and all with that mystical-spooky music playing implying he’s not like everyone else, and throws it in front of the charging beasts saving the damsel, the female actress, in distress. Of course it’s been her the whole time the close up tells us as she collapses into a graceful faint. I get that same sensation, that excitement-warmth I felt as a young girl watching Steve Reeves, when WOR-TV had Sunday movie marathons and Hercules, Hercules Unchained, Jason and the Argonauts, Sons of Hercules, et al would play again, again, and again. I could shut the television, have Sunday dinner, put it back on and possibly watch from where I’d left off because the movie was playing one more time. TV was free, granted there were commercial interruptions but for these things they were limited, and there was always excellent programming, movie marathons being one of my favorites. Nowadays we pay a fortune and there’s never anything good on, or we’re paying big money to watch that one station not included with a basic cable package.
I feel an espresso coming on right after this fit of sneezing stops. I’m dusting today, no two ways about it.
They had a friend who worked in the kitchen. “Of course they did, how else could this work…
You had to have known, at least suspected there’d be a friend, a fellow vampire or sympathetic bystander to create the Steak Tar tare keeping it on the raw side or pan seared dripping bloody – vampires don’t eat food per se, of course; if there can be some that glitter in the sun rather than burn up we can have ‘em dining out” he said looking directly into the camera but the director didn’t say cut. He let it keep rolling figuring the directness would appeal to the audience like in older films but how effective would it be? Would they appreciate the banter? Hopefully. Maybe another promo to win a cameo on a Jeff Conrad movie could draw others like Nathan in. It’s not so hard to separate worthy from undesirables. Eh, it was something to do… for now. They had forever. Who can fathom ‘forever’? Even with a few centuries in, not yet.
Conveniently there were a chef and waiter who had always been helpful. They were seated, ordered and their meals were brought…
“What… the steak?” Everyone laughed as Marie and Christof walked toward Jeff. “How did you like it?” “Very believable.” Jeff poured the three of them wine from a decanter. “Thanks Nathan. What a good actor he turned out to be.” They gave knowing laughs as glasses were raised. “Your fangs!” Marie cozied up to Jeff, Christof moved close in behind. “You’ll break another one and cut yourself.” “Blood is blood.” “Where do you come up with these storylines? I can’t imagine only animals…” Jeff covered her mouth with his.
Every now and again something crops up about the end of the world. Individuals get the inside scoop or an ancient calendar had predicted it long ago now here it is. The Farmers Almanac might be the only thing that hasn’t thrown in on it.
Anyway… Now that I’ve mentioned it not that I’m worrying about it but a friend of mine and I … We would visit each other daily. My 4-year old and her 5-year old would play while she and I shared a bottle of Soave, enjoying the day talking about whatever popped to mind and life in general. One day though we learned it was going to end. Her fiancée’s parents had gotten the inside scoop. No, they didn’t walk up and down streets wearing placards shouting warnings. They were so certain, so positive, so so so just knew it, they and many of their friends began selling all their stuff and planned to gather at a designated area to meet the end together. As this day, place and hour approached, and that sounding biblical, his parents kept calling warning him to be prepared, and of course wanted him to be with them when it happened. I was there when some of those calls took place, and we’d sit there afterward shaking our heads. He’d tried to talk them down just in case but they didn’t see it like that. With a child’s innocence, and it was childlike excitement for them, they knew they’d stumbled onto something. We knew no one really knows so it could go in either direction making chances of the world ending 50/50.
The extremity of it all was mind-boggling, really.
As we were leaving on what had been slated as the last day, I asked my friend if she thought the world might really end. Reflecting for less than a second she said, “There’s no sense worrying if it is.” “True, that’s true. I’ll see you tomorrow unless the world ends but maybe we’ll wind up somewhere soave flows freely and the kids can play as long as they want.”
Did it happen?
I awoke the next morning to a gorgeous Indian-Summer day. As I stood looking down at my son sleeping so peacefully my first thought was ‘it didn’t end’. As we began our walk I noticed the only thing resembling an apocalypse was the night winds had blown more brilliant fall leaves to the ground completely covering the roads. My son and I kicked them up making our own private path. My friend’s front door was open welcoming the unseasonably warm; she already had the Soave ready. “Well, the world didn’t end.” “No, it didn’t”, but I had to know. “What about Brent’s folks? Did they get rid of everything?”
It felt like plastic netting only soft. She sensed the ridges on her skin and heard “zzzip” like rolling ‘rrrrrhs” as she passed. “Spiders.” Glancing up she saw the web wasn’t damaged but glistened in the sun in a fine rough-edged sheet. A movie scene flashed through her mind of walking through seemingly harmless web and the hero’s back coated in tarantulas. “Poor things wouldn’t have a leg to stand on with this one” didn’t stop her from running her fingers through her hair and shaking off her clothing… just in case. No trespassers. She kept walking enjoying the not-too-humid-yet coolness.
He came to pick up his son. At the daycare the front doorbell rang but she was busy with the two year olds in the back room. He stood in the doorway she looked up surprised, and glanced him up and down as he did her. “We’re dressing alike. This isn’t good. He must be some kind of freaky.” Then she laughed to herself at the thought. He’d made a pass you could say the very first time she saw him running his hand along the remnant of her waist uttering a quiet rich moan as he passed her on his way to the back. In fact she could have laughed out loud at the delicious scenario, the wrestling match. “I’m an alpha. We’d argue about who’s in charge. Could be fun. He thinks he’s an alpha with that collection of concubines he’s attempting to accumulate.”
“She’s an alpha.” She heard. “She needs more love than any others.” He stood at the far end of the classroom signing his son out. He looked back. Looking ahead but just passed him she caught his full image. “Dressing alike pastels and white.” She smiled and walked toward Little Hercules, one of her favorites for sure, who’d taken the plastic broom and bent the handle close to in half. He was concentrating trying to get it to flip up and down…
“I’ve always loved September, in fact, this whole trimester” Dominique thought as she lay gazing up at ancient etching in silver, pure silver, so delicate. “It was my birthday, well still is technically. Leaves changing, weather cooling, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Persephone going to the underworld but will live again like I will. Mother Nature was telling me something when she allowed this change. No one needs to fear it.” A thrill shot through her as she thought of her maker, his elegance, so refined. “Oh, his passion…” A thud on her coffin lid distracted her from her thoughts.
The Prompt: “…Mother Nature was telling me something…”
What do turning leaves mean to you? 100wcgu #188
The gym picture window faced her office making two sides of the L. “Why would a gym even have a window? Good picture. I’d like to buy the architect a drink.” She watched him every day; no, not the architect but that man, thought about him in his shorts, sweat-drenched shirt, sweat-drenched self, drenched… dreamt about him. She couldn’t deny her rising feelings any longer. Tonight she’d figure out how to make it happen so he wouldn’t either.
Obsessed with plotting, her mind a whirlwind of scenarios, she didn’t see the garden hose stretched across the unfinished deck, stumbled and fell, hitting her head on a rock meant for her future patio. She came-to in the arms of her new neighbor, the man she hadn’t wasted her time to meet yet. There were bigger fish, bigger sweatier fish.
Her body jerked with the realization she was looking into the eyes of her obsession. He had been living next door all this time, well, just beyond the hedges, and now he was holding her! Adolescent glee shot through every crevice of her body. She instantaneously plotted how long it’d take to get back on her feet. Tingle-thrills pulsated through every facet of her being. It jerked again.
“There, there… I’m Hank. We work together.” The instinctive alarms that should’ve gone off dissolved as he smiled.
Gently he wrapped her arm around his neck to lift her. Her knees buckled from the sheer pleasure of his touch, his smell, the thought of being glued against the side of his body, his everything. “I’ll be the one to hold you down, kiss you so hard…” began playing through her mind but stopped as she felt something cold press against her. As she lifted her head she bumped an eyebrow into binoculars. There was a slight prick.
“Easy now. You’re going into shock…”
As the incisors closed in he shut his eyes in a shudder and opened his mouth to scream. There was no sound other than a guttural croak in his throat.
He’d passed out he’d thought but as he came-to felt coolness all around. Trembling he squinted first, but things were different, then opened his eyes. “What’s this? Am I Gulliver? What the…”
She had her door open again. Today was cooler than yesterday sending a delicious breeze throughout. Taking it in with a deep breath she heard a weak croak, and another, and another. Looking down she saw the smallest of toads nestled, trapped, in the corner of the patio’s sliding doors. Unusual it was with a red patch above its eye. It reminded her of the man who’d entered yesterday; he had a red streak in his hair. Sliding the screen door open she shoed it out with a soft bristled broom. It hopped around to face her.
“Well now little prince, is there a fair maiden to kiss thee, or should I say thou? Live the dream!”
She broke into laughter as he hopped away.