Story for my great-nephew Liam

One reason I enjoy reading and writing is that I enjoy words. Linguistics fascinates me. I see or hear a new word and curiosity causes me to question it. Where did it come from? How long has it been around? Is it used anymore or is it antiquated? How can I get it into my writing vocabulary. More words are added to my my writing vocabulary than my spoken vocabulary. I reject words that might make me come across as being pretentious.

I’ll do anything to avoid making spelling or vocabulary words boring. I was probably in fourth grade when it dawned on me that instead of just creating sentences with the words, I could create a story. One of these days when I find that box that has some of my stories from the late 60s. I’m too lazy to do the math of how old I was when I was in the fourth grade.

My niece, Ruth, emailed me her son Liam’s words for the week, and I created a story around the word. Since the words aren’t covering a certain topic, the stories tend to be very strange. For the story I am working on now, I’ve got to pair up bowling with poodle. I could have the poodle bowling and behind the lanes there’s a lagoon.

Here are the words:

Words091315

And the story:

41T4FEC7WAL._SX300_The toaster dinged, but Philip poodle didn’t hear the bell nor the toast jumping out of the heat and onto the counter because of the noisy mower right outside of the kitchen window. It didn’t help that while Philip were shaking up the orange juice so it would be foamy, that he started to daydream.

Daydreams are a great way to get those bizarre black sheep of the word lists.

Philip had an important hockey game tonight; his team, the Crowing Roosters were going up against Blue Lagoon, a team that hadn’t been beat in two seasons and would test Philip’s goalie skills. The pressure was intensified with the knowledge that all of the boosters for the team would be in the stadium, taking stock of who should stay and who should go.

The sound of Ralph the Retriever scarfing up a piece of toast  that Ralph absconded with as the pair sat on the counter unprotected and not guarded. The retriever slowly sauntered out of the room with tail between legs and head bowed, looking as apologetic as possible. The Retriever knew. Philip knew; they both knew that if the same thing happened again with the toast landing on the counter instead of on a plate, the same outcome would happen. Philip hardly ever had the chance to eat two pieces of toast.

Philip put away the no longer needed bamboo tongs, but couldn’t resist playfully snapping in the direction of Bo Jangle Beagle, sending the hound dog fleeing as the pretend crocodile snapped. Philip laughed; silly dog was afraid of everything.

If Philip hadn’t seen it with his own eyes, he wouldn’t have believed that his dog was even afraid of cats, but Sylvester Cat had that dog running for his life. Sylvester’s owner Jake witnessed the bizarre reversal of roles and acted as if it represented that Jake’s ability to make Philip run and would probably never let Philip forget the embarrassment.

At least the toast wasn’t burned, but burnt toast at least welcomed butter to spread, but cold toast was not so welcoming and fought the clumps of butter. If he weren’t so hungry, he might have microwaved the butter, but he had to get something into his stomach soon since he had already taken his vitamins, and vitamins on his empty stomach only motivated his stomach to reject the pills.

Holding the sort of satisfactory toast over the sink, Philip looked out the window and thought, What a trooper the baboon was being to be on the lawn mower. At least that was one less thing that Philip had to nag about though that list was endless, so getting this one thing done really wasn’t going to get Bergeron off of the hot seat.

Bergeron the Baboon slowly shook his head, muttering to himself, Why in the world am I doing going around in circles, when I could be out on my boat? Because of the chores, Bergeron had to turn down an opportunity to go bowling. Why did I tell that goofy poodle that I would get it done today, though he’d been telling Philip that he’d get it done for the last three weeks of todays.

Below, the mower blades approached the dry grass and various weeds as if the Red Queen were shrieking, “Off with their heads” over and over and over. Meanwhile, all of the critters that reside in the grass, weeds, and ground were scurrying around madly trying to avoid the fate of being harpooned and chopped up.

Thinking about all the things that needed to be done alongside with all of the things that he wanted to do, caused the baboon to have gloomy thoughts. It was easy for Bergeron to compare his life living with his husband as to that of living with his parents and in many ways, things weren’t much different. Chores are chores regardless of how old someone begins. Nagging is nagging; doesn’t really matter if the nagger is a partner or a parent or a teacher, and Bergeron sure had his hands full of those who enjoyed nipping at his heels, directing his life. Why did he think his life would be any different now that he was out on his own.

Maybe, just maybe, Bergeron would agree to do something different on this Saturday night. The Bloated Blue Fish were in town playing, but Jazz infused with Blues and a little bit of country music wasn’t the Baboon’s favorite kind of music, but the Poodle knew that if he played his cards carefully, used that long laundry list of tasks that Bergeron had promised to take care of.

While Bergeron rinsed his soapy hands, Philip snuck up behind him and the poodle poked him on both sides of his love handles, causing the Primate to jump and utter a swear. As a result, he flicked the remaining soapsuds at the Poodle.

Careful, careful you brute of a Baboon, I just got my hair done yesterday. How come you never notice when I get my hair done?”

Bergeron lovingly embraced his poofy Poodle, the love of his life, but his hands were still wet so Philip worked himself free. Was this playful interaction a sign that Bergeron was in a good mood? No point in asking about the concert if he were stewing in the same bad mood he’d been in for the last three weeks. Philip reminded himself of the leverage.

“Remember how you asked me if we could go rowing in the lagoon, and I said that I would think about it? I’ve got a proposition for you.”

“So, you are finally getting around to propose to me?”

“No, you silly, I’m thinking that if I agree to row with you, will you at least consider going to see the Bloated Blue Fish with me. I know that BBF isn’t really your cup of tea, but that’s a deal where you can’t go wrong.”

Bergeron sighed with a loud humph. He imagined how much fun he would have fun exploring the lagoon, and would that balance out how bored he would be at the concert. He could use the noise canceling ear muffs that Philip gave him for his birthday and at least be cancel out the painful noise that Philip considered music. He thought about how he could negotiate and perhaps either swap out a chore or at least buy some more time.

Bergeron couldn’t get out of cleaning the bathrooms or doing the dishes, but he was able to get out of grocery shopping.

Philip embraced the burly baboon, giving him a quick kiss on his cheek. He was so excited about going to the concert, and he would have taken on going grocery shopping all year if asked, but Bergeron hadn’t thought of that.

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