Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Flash Fiction Horror: "Half Past Five"


Peck's Corner

by CJ Heck

There’s a sewer drain in town on Peck's Corner.  At half past five every evening, the street lamp flickers on, near where gentlemen routinely take a leak after leaving the Raven's Wing Pub, after closing. 

It's been done for years.  No one even seems to notice, except for the smell of piss that assaults the nostrils when you step out onto the sidewalk. 

The smell immediately informs the brain, but only the vermin care -- and there were plenty of them out there, near the sewer drain in town on Peck's Corner.  I know.  I've been there.  That's where I saw the body.  

It was at half past five on Monday.  The chimes from the clock in the tower told me it was so, and when I called, that’s what I told the authorities. 

The body was posed, sitting.  The head
 was in his lap, resting between the legs which were all askew and bent at impossible angles.  


The arms hung down, elbows facing out. The hands were placed on top of the head, fingers entwined in the flaming red hair of the head -- the head that was in his lap. 

The body was sitting
 in a pool of its own blood, the mouth frozen in a scream that no one will ever hear.  But the eyes, the eyes ... I will never forget the eyes. The vermin had eaten both eyes. 

Will anyone ever know the horror they saw on Peck's Corner, just before half past five ...  


[From the Book, "Bits and Pieces", by CJ Heck]


“A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write.” ~CJ Heck


Monday, July 21, 2014

R.I.P. Common Sense

Common Sense

Obituary:


Today we mourn the passing of a beloved friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years.

No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape.

He will long be remembered for having cultivated such valuable lessons as:
Knowing when to come in out of the rain;
Why the early bird gets the worm;
Life isn't always fair;
And, maybe it was my fault.
Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policy, "Don't Spend More Than You Earn", and other reliable strategies, such as, "Adults, Not Children, Are In Charge".

His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned, but overbearing, regulations were recently set in place:

  • Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate 
  • Teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch 
  • A teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student

These, and others like them, only hastened to worsen his condition.

Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they, themselves, had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children.

Common Sense declined when schools were required to get parental consent to administer suntan lotion, or an aspirin, to a student.

Common Sense deteriorated further as the churches became businesses and criminals received better treatment than their victims.

But Common Sense took a real beating when we couldn't defend ourselves from a burglar in our own home and the burglar was allowed to sue us for assault.

Regrettably, Common Sense finally gave up his will to live, after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.

Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust, his wife, Discretion, by his daughter, Responsibility, and by his two sons, Logic and Reason.

He is survived by his five stepbrothers:

I Know My Rights
I Want It Now
Someone Else Is To Blame
I'm A Victim Here
Pay Me For Doing Nothing.

Not many attended his funeral.  It is believed to be because so few realized he had expired.

Some people, like me, are demanding a Public Inquiry into his death. Did he simply die of despair, as the coroner announced yesterday, or, (as I personally suspect), was he murdered by General Apathy? The early arrest of any suspects by police is not anticipated.

It is times like this I wish I believed in reincarnation.

Sincerely,
John Q. Public


[Author Unknown]


“A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write.” ~CJ Heck




Sunday, July 20, 2014

Child-Speak: Made Up Words of Childhood

Bethany, Heather, Carrie
I miss the days when my three daughters were little.  Now they're grown and raising my eleven grandchildren.

One thing I used to love is how they made up words for things they didn't know the real name for. I always called it, "child-speak".

I remember once overhearing a conversation between Carrie, the oldest, and Heather, the youngest. They were watching TV together on the couch.

Carrie asked Heather if she would tickle her back for awhile. Heather said she would, IF she could borrow a clo from Carrie.

Carrie seemed all right with that. She knew just what Heather was asking, because she said, "Okay".

Whatever a "clo" was, they had made an equally beneficial barter and both girls were satisfied. The more I thought about it, the more curious I became, until finally, I had to ask, "Girls? What's a clo?"

Carrie matter of factly stated, "A clo is a clo, mom. You can have a lot of clothes, but just ONE of them is a clo."

(Hmmm ... how stupid of me).

Noo-Noo
Here's another example of child-speak. Sesame Street had an animated typewriter guy on the word segment of the show.

He had this cute little song-sound that he made when he wheeled to the left or right across the TV screen, "Noo-Nee Noo-Noo", or something similar to that.

But I digress … in the following scenario, I hadn't seen him yet.

We were all in the car headed to the library and a tiny foreign car pulled up beside us at a red light. One of the girls pointed to it and yelled out, "Hey look!  Look!  A Noo-Noo car!" 

The other two understood perfectly and they were excited. As I said, I had never seen the little typewriter guy on Sesame Street, so again I had to ask ...

What follows is yet one more child-speak word, an invention of three little girls who had to play inside on a rainy Saturday afternoon.  

I found them in the bathroom mixing a bowl of ... something kinda-sorta green.  When I asked what it was, they all proudly replied, "Hey Mommy, we invented Permagosh!" 

Inventing Permagosh










"Permagosh"


From "Barking Spiders 2" (the sequel)

Mommy's on the couch.
Daddy's in his chair.
I'm in a corner on a stool ...
yeah, they put me here

'cause I did somethin' naughty
that I'm not supposed to do.
I invented Permagosh
mixing things with their shampoo.

First a real long worm of toothpaste,
then a cloud of shaving cream,
then two glugs of mouthwash
('cause I love the color green).

I stirred it in a mixing bowl.
Boy it smelled real good!
It was even looking better
than I ever thought it would!

Could it be a cure for cancer?
Take the itch from skeeter bites?
Or maybe, heal a sunburn
when it hurts to sleep at night? 


Two shakes of baby powder
made it WAY too hard to stir,
so I added Mommy's perfume.
Permagosh smelled just like her!

Eww ... then the bowl tipped over.
Permagosh was on the floor
and when I turned around,
my mom was by the door.

Now mommy's on the couch.
Daddy's in his chair.
I'm in a corner on a stool ...
yeah, they put me here.


Enjoy your Sunday, my friends.
~Hugs, CJ


“A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write.” ~CJ Heck


Saturday, July 19, 2014

Children's Story: "Mommy, What's Abuse?"

Jeffie

by CJ Heck


When Hannah Hobbes got home from school, she looked for Mommy. Mommy was putting clean dishes away in the kitchen cupboard, so Hannah plopped herself into one of the four chairs at the round oak table. "Hi Mommy. I'm home."

Claira Hobbes stopped what she was doing. She looked over at her pretty six-year-old daughter. Hannah was usually a bright and bubbly little girl -- almost always wearing a cheerful smile which brought the cutest two dimples right along with it.

Today, Claira could see right away that there was something wrong. "Hello Hannah-Banana. Everything okay today at school?"

With all that had happened today, Hannah couldn't help herself. She started to cry. Her jumbled words all came out at once. "I was talking to Janie at school today. Mommy, Janie was so sad and it made me feel sad, too. She's staying with her grandma and grampa because her mommy is in the hospital.

Oh, Mommy! Janie said policemen came and took her daddy to jail! When the policemen took her to her grandma's house, she heard them whispering the word 'abuse'.”

Hannah stopped talking and took a deep breath. She was feeling just awful and the tears kept making little rivers down her cheeks. To make things worse, her nose was crying, too, and she swiped at it with her sleeve.

Claira sat down in the chair next to Hannah at the table and handed her a tissue. Then slowly, she patted her lap. Hannah saw and climbed up on mommy's lap. She really needed one of those special mommy-hugs right now.

Feeling safe inside the hug, Hannah asked, "Mommy, what's abuse?"

Claira gave her a gentle squeeze and laid her cheek on her daughter's soft brown hair. "Well, honey, abuse is a very bad thing. That's when someone who is bigger, or stronger, or older, hurts someone else. It can be words that hurt, or actions that hurt. Sometimes it's someone they love, and that makes it hurt even more."

Hannah might have felt safe, but she also felt confused. She didn't understand, and the tears kept coming. "Janie's very upset. She told me her mommy and daddy might get a divorce. I've been over there lots of times. Her daddy and mommy act happy. Don't they love each other any more?"

Claira thought for a moment. This was a grown-up situation and she wished it hadn't touched Hannah‘s life, but it had. She had to find a way to explain this. "Hannah, people can love each other and still not be good for each other. Do you understand?"

Hannah sniffled and shook her head in a great big ‘NO‘. "This is too hard. I don't understand! Janie said they get angry and shout a lot. She said sometimes her daddy hurts her mommy, but then he's always sorry. Then things are okay again. Janie says they're happy and she doesn't want them to get a divorce."

"I know, sweet girl. I’m sure Janie doesn’t want them to get a divorce. Please listen to me, honey. Hurting someone you love is always wrong. Janie has lived with it all of her life. To Janie, that is what seems normal, but only because she doesn't have anything else to compare it with."

Claira saw Hannah was hurting inside. She just had to find some way to help her understand. Then she spotted Hannah's dog, Jeffie, all curled up in a ball and fast asleep on the rag rug by the kitchen sink. Claira's breath caught in her throat. She suddenly knew how to make it easier for Hannah to understand.

"Hannah, let‘s talk about Jeffie. We've had Jeffie for a long time, even longer than we've had you. You really love that old dog, don‘t you?"

Hannah sniffled, but she couldn't help but smile, too. Jeffie was a great dog! He was her best friend in the whole world. She told him all of her secrets -- and she knew his secrets, too. He didn't like broccoli or spinach either, and he really wasn't too happy when she gave him her spaghetti, but ...

Mommy interrupted her thoughts by asking, "Hannah, how would you feel if you came home from school one day and Jeffie didn’t run up to you and lick your face, wagging his tail and his whole body right along with it? What if Jeffie showed his teeth and growled at you?"

Hannah stopped crying just long enough to giggle a little at the silliness. "Mommy, Jeffie loves me. He would never do that." Hannah tried to sniff her nose tears back inside and Claira handed her another clean tissue from the green box on the table.

Claira went on to ask, "But what if he did bare his teeth and growl at you? What do you think you would you do?"

Hannah‘s big blue eyes looked up at the ceiling. Why is Mommy asking such silly things about Jeffie? "Mommy, If he did THAT, I would tell him to stop!"

Claira paused, thinking about Hannah‘s answer. Now she knew what to ask next. "And what if that didn't work, Hannah? What if Jeffie growled some more, maybe even louder? What if he even tried to bite you?"

Hannah couldn't believe what she was hearing. "Then I would yell at him. I would yell at him and say JEFFIE, NO! STOP!"

This was working, Claira thought to herself. Then she asked, "Okay. But what if it only made him madder and he DID bite you?"

Hannah answered, "Then I would want to hurt him for biting me, but I know you're not supposed to do that. We would probably have daddy put him in a cage so he couldn't bite any more. Or maybe, we could take him to a place where people teach dogs that biting is bad."

Claira smiled to herself. Yes! This was working. "Excellent answer, Hannah. How long do you think that would take?"

Hannah thought for a minute, her mouth squinching to one side and then the other in deep concentration. "Well, until he stopped biting, I guess."

Then Claira took it a step further. "What if he decided not to stop biting? What if Jeffie hurt you very badly? What if he hurt you so bad that you had to go to the hospital?"

"I don't know, Mommy. I don't know!” Hannah's voice rose louder. “I don't want to think about that! He would stop biting. I love Jeffie and he loves me, too. I know he would stop. I know he would."

The thought that Jeffie would ever hurt her brought fresh tears to Hannah’s eyes and she mopped at them with her already damp tissue, trying to catch them as they slid down her cheeks.

Claira gave Hannah another hug, then handed her a fresh tissue. "Yes, Hannah. Jeffie could learn to stop biting, but he would have to be willing to learn how very wrong it is to hurt someone you love."

Suddenly Hannah’s eyes opened wide. She understood what Mommy was trying to say. It was all making sense to her now. Mommy was showing her that what happened with Janie's daddy was just like the story about Jeffie. "Mommy? When Janie's daddy hurt her mommy, the jail is like Jeffie's cage, right?"

"That's right, Hannah," Claira answered, giving Hannah a gentle squeeze.

"And Mommy, Janie’s daddy really could go somewhere and learn how not to do that any more, right?"

"Right again, Hannah."

Hannah quietly nodded her head in understanding. Then Hannah sighed. "Well, I hope he decides to learn. Then he won't have to be in jail and he could go home again. Then they wouldn't have to get a divorce. I don't want Janie to live like that. Janie's my friend and I want her to be happy."

Claira smiled, feeling proud of her six year-old. She wiped the last of Hannah's tears off with her apron. "I love you, little Hannah-Banana," she said with another mommy-hug. "You're a very smart little girl."

"I love you, too, Mommy," and with a smile in return, Hannah wiped her nose with her sleeve and hopped down to go wake Jeffie from his nap.

“A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write.” ~CJ Heck


Sunday, July 13, 2014

Poetry: by Vietnam Vet, Rick Turton

Rick Turton


This first one is something that I wrote a long time ago. I was watching my Father-in-law (who lived with us for fourteen years) interact with my sons one day and realized that I never knew him when he was young, before life took its toll.

I started writing this and then I realized, someday, this could be me... wait! It is me!





REMEMBER…


When I grow old, remember…
I once possessed dignity and manners; I knew how to use them
I once conversed intelligently & insightfully
I once led with direction, drive, intensity, and scope
I once shared opinions valued by others
I once desired and was desired in return
I once dined with important people
I once remembered much more than I do now

When I grow old, remember…
I once raised children; the toughest career of all
I once loved and was loved in return
I once cried…well, maybe more than once
I once laughed, easily and often

© Richard Turton 2014
All Rights Reserved



Eagle Crying ...













The Eagle Cried
by Rick Turton

The acrid smell of cordite
Still hovered in the air.
No breeze to wash away
The scent of Satan’s hair.

The Medivac’s are fading now,
Their cabins filled with dead.
So many grisly pictures
Are surging through my head

Another hill’s been taken
The earth all charred and black
We all know what’s coming;
Tomorrow…”Give it back!”

The Eagle cries from barren trees
His tears, he cannot hide.
Where once a proud, young soldier stood
My Warrior Brother, died.

The scorched ground that surrounds me;
Am I in Dante’s Hell?
This skirmish now is over.
We saw them as they fell.

My Warrior Brother, Donny,
Died that gruesome day.
He took the bullets meant for me
With his final words did say,

“Tell Mom and Sis I loved them!
Please! Don’t let me down!”
I promised I would tell them
A promise I’d soon drown.

The Eagle cried that tragic day,
Back in Sixty-Eight.
A promise made…un-kept,
To my Warrior mate.

One thing that I’m sure of,
A thing that gives no rest.
The hounds of Hell still battle
Deep within my chest.

A bottle’d been my address
For forty years or more.
I’d take ‘most any drug,
I couldn’t find the door.

Somewhere there’s a record,
Of drugs and booze and tears.
When I crawled out of the bottle
I’d been buried in for years.

Half a decade sober.
Not a real long time.
That’s how long I’m clean tho’,
My life’s becoming mine.

The winds of war are blowing by;
In history books they last.
I’m in the winter of my years,
My best days...they have passed.

The one thing that I’ve never done
One thing I cannot face:
To visit the Memorial,
The headstone for that place.

My daughter said, “You have to go,
To honor those who died!”
I said I know I should…
But that I’d go…I lied

Then one day the phone rang;
A call I knew I’d dread.
It was Donny’s sister,
“Please help me!” Karen pled.

“I’ve spent these years just searching
I even hired a sleuth.
I finally found out where you live…
I need to know the truth.”

“The Army’s always been real vague,
And their answers never matched.
I need to know what happened;
They always seemed detached”

“Our Mother has passed on now,
But I still need to know;
I’d really love to meet with you,
Please…just show me how!”

The hounds of Hell are roused again;
Their howling has re-started.
I force their shrieks out of my mind,
My path, it has been charted

Quiet now, you dogs of war!
It's time for a new quest!
It's time for me to wrestle you,
And lay your souls to rest!

Then I thought the one thing,
A thought I'd never say,
Should I meet her at The Wall,
And put my hounds at bay?

I finally said I’d meet with her,
With a voice that was not mine.
The Wall is where I’ll meet you.
I’ll see you there at nine.”

I saw flowers in her hand,
As she walked my way.
“Yellow roses were his favorite.”
Later she would say.

“Hello, my name is Karen.”
She said when we did meet
“Donny wrote me many things,
I knew that you’d be sweet!”

“I know this must be hard for you,
But I really need to know.
Please tell me how my brother died,
That day, so long ago.”

The moment had arrived.
I could hide this fact no more.
I said things I’d kept hidden,
Behind my mind’s locked door

She took my hand in hers,
And waited patiently.
My head bowed down as I thought
Of words I had to say.

I knew my words would stab her heart
But she would not look away.
She watched me as I told her
Of that ghastly day.

“Your Brother died in my arms
In that nameless place.
He took the bullets meant for me
And died as we embraced!”

Her head dropped down, when I was done
Her chin upon her chest.
A single tear rolled down her cheek,
“Now Donny’s laid to rest.”

I walked with her as she made her way
To the Wall of Stone.
She laid the flowers at the base
Her silent prayer was sown.

At last I’ve honored those who fell,
Whose names are etched in rows.
We touched the name of Donny,
Who died so long ago.

And we cried…

The Eagle’s cry is heard again;
It lives within the Wall!
Each time a name is touched
The Eagle gives his call.


© Richard Turton 2014
All Rights Reserved

Vietnam 1970-1971

[Post Script:  Jodie Stevens, a Christian Radio Personality in Sacramento CA read “The Eagle Cried” on the air in honor of Memorial Day on May 23, 2014. Her show is syndicated nationally and is available online at 1039thefish.com. Understandably, Rick felt truly honored and humbled.]


“A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write.” ~CJ Heck



Friday, July 11, 2014

Witticisms & Old Wives' Tales

I hate colds ...
Robert says the only time I'm not good company is when I'm sick.  Well,  I woke up with a cold. My throat is raw and scratchy, it hurts to talk, and I feel crabby ...

Whenever I have a cold, I always wonder about that old wives' tale and I can never remember whether it's "feed a cold, starve a fever", or "starve a cold, feed a fever".

As a child, I remember when Grandma Parrish was visiting.  If she heard one of us had a cold, she would grab her jar of Vicks and head for our room.

Vicks was slathered on our chest and back, a dab under the nose on that little divot between nose and mouth, and then on a hanky for when we blew our nose. As much as I hated the smell of Vicks (still do), I did sleep better, because I could breathe.

Colds are awful at any age
Grandma Parrish could tell me about the cold saying. She had a million of those old wive's tales.

She could look out the kitchen window, watch the leaves on the trees turning backwards in the wind, and predict, "It's going to rain" ... and within a few hours, it did.

If someone dropped a fork, or knife, Grandma would say, "Somebody's coming," and sure enough, someone usually did.

For good luck, she would "knock on wood", especially if she said something was going to happen and she didn't want to jinx it.

Clouds were always a favorite. She could look up at the sky and say, "Mackerel scales and mares' tales, sailors carry low sails". That meant rain within twenty-four hours. Another was, "Red skies at night, a sailor's delight. Red skies in the morning, sailors take warning".  Again, either rain, or a storm, within twenty-four hours.

When I was about ten, Grandma and I were sitting on the porch swing at dusk. She pointed into the sky at the first star and said, "Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight, I wish I may, I wish I might, have this wish I wish tonight". Then we would both send our wishes out into the night.

Whether the wishes will come true is anyone's guess, but it's an old wive's tale that I have passed along to my own grandchildren.

On second thought, I remember a few years ago, my oldest grandson, Liam, and I were on his front lawn one evening. We had just found out his mommy (my daughter) was having another baby. They already had three boys.

Liam and I had made our wishes to the first star and we were sitting quietly in the grass, enjoying the silence, when Liam said, "Gram, do you know what I wished?"

I told him, "No, Liam.  Would you like to tell me?"

Liam went on to share, "I wished mommy would have a girl."

Lauren
Months later, mommy did indeed give him a little sister, Lauren ...

I remember Grandma had a plaque on the wall by the front door and I would read it over and over to myself. In my child's imagination, I would try and apply it to my world.

It wasn't until years later that it actually made sense to me.


Use it up
Wear it out
Make it do
or do without.

It could be applied to just about anything, but they are words to live by in a throw-away society like ours has become.

In the end, are old wive's tales actually "tales" at all? Seems to me that most of them actually work.

Now, if I could just remember how the cold saying goes ...


“A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write.” ~CJ Heck


Thursday, July 10, 2014

SHMILY...

Love Can Last Forever
My grandparents were married for over half a century, and they had their own special game they played, beginning on the day they first fell in love.

The object of their game was for each to write the word "shmily" in a surprise place for the other to find.

They took turns leaving "shmily" all around the house and, as soon as one of them discovered it, it was then the other's turn to hide it once more.

They dragged "shmily" with their fingers through the sugar and flour containers to await whoever was preparing the next meal.  They wrote it in the dew on the windows overlooking the patio, where grandma always fed us warm, homemade pudding.

"Shmily" was written in the steam left on the mirror, after a hot shower, where it would reappear time and again after each bath. At one point, grandma even unrolled an entire roll of toilet paper to leave "shmily" on the very last sheet for grandpa to find.

There was no end to the places "shmily" would pop up. Little notes with "shmily" scribbled on them were found on the dashboard in the car, on car seats, or taped to the steering wheel. The notes were stuffed inside shoes, in bureau drawers, and left under pillows on the bed.

"Shmily" was written in the dust on the mantel and traced in the ashes of the fireplace. This mysterious word was as much a part of my grandparents' house as was the furniture.

It took me a long time before I was able to fully appreciate my grandparents' game. Skepticism long kept me from believing in true love, one that is pure and enduring; however, I never doubted my grandparents' relationship. They had somehow gotten love down pat. 

But it was more than a flirtatious little game to them -- it was their whole way of life. Their relationship was based on devotion and passionate affection, which not everyone is lucky enough to ever experience.

Grandma and grandpa held hands every chance they got. They stole kisses as they bumped into each other in their tiny kitchen. If one of them passed by the other's chair, they would pat them gently on the shoulder.  They finished each other's sentences, and shared the daily crossword puzzle. 

My grandma once whispered to me how cute my grandpa was, how handsome he had grown to be. She claimed that she really knew "how to pick 'em." Before every meal, they bowed their heads and gave thanks, marveling at their blessings: a wonderful family, good fortune, and of course, each other.

But there was a dark cloud in my grandparents' life.  My grandmother had breast cancer. The disease had first appeared ten years earlier. As always, grandpa was with her every step of the way. He comforted her in their yellow room, painted that way so she could always be surrounded by sunshine, even when she was too sick to go outside. 

Now the cancer was again attacking her body. With the help of a cane, and grandpa's steady hand, they went to church every morning.

Grandma grew steadily weaker, until finally, she could not leave the house anymore. For awhile, grandpa would go to church alone, praying to God to watch over his wife. Then one day, what we all dreaded finally happened. Grandma passed away.

"Shmily" was scrawled in pink on the yellow ribbons of my grandma's funeral bouquet. As the crowd thinned and the last mourners turned to leave, my aunts, uncles, cousins and other family members came forward and gathered around my grandma one last time.

Grandpa stepped up to grandma's casket and, taking a shaky breath, he began to sing to her. Through his tears and grief the song came, a deep and throaty lullaby. 

Shaking with my own sorrow, I will never forget that moment. For I knew that, although I couldn't begin to fathom the depth of their love, I had been privileged to witness its unmatched beauty:

S-h-m-i-l-y:  "See How Much I Love You."


[Author Unknown]


"A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write." ~CJ Heck




Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Humor: Hair Wax ...

Hmmm ... I wonder
I have no idea who wrote this, but it's priceless ...

Hair Wax ...


My night began as any other normal week night...

I came home, fixed dinner, played with the kids ... I then had the brilliant thought that would ring painfully in my mind for the next few hours: 

I thought, "Maybe I should pull the waxing kit out of the medicine cabinet."

So I headed to the site of my demise -- the bathroom.

It was one of those 'cold wax' kits. No melting a clump of hot wax.  The directions said to rub the strips together in your hand until they got warm and then peel them apart, press them to your leg (or wherever else) and you just pull the hair right off. No muss, no fuss.

How hard could it be? I mean, I was no genius, but I was mechanically inclined enough to figure it out. (YA THINK!?!)

So I pulled one of the thin strips out of the box -- there were actually two strips facing each other and they were stuck together. Instead of just rubbing them together, my genius kicked in ... I decided I knew what would work faster, so I got out the hair dryer and heated it to 1000 degrees. Cold wax, yeah...right.

I laid the strip across my thigh, held the skin around it tight, and pulled. Hey, it works! OK, so it wasn't the best feeling in the world, but it wasn't THAT bad. I could do this! Hair removal no longer eluded ME!

I thought, "I am She-Rah, fighter of all wayward body hair and maker of smooth skin extraordinaire!"

So, with my next wax strip, I confidently moved north. After checking on the kids, I sneaked back to the bathroom for the ultimate hair fighting championship. I dropped my panties and placed one foot on the toilet.

Using the same procedure, I applied the wax strip across the right side of my bikini line, covered the right half of my hoo-ha, and stretched it down to the inside of my butt cheek (it was a long strip).  I inhaled deeply and braced myself...RRRRIIIIPPPP!

Oh My Gawd ...
I thought, "I'm blind!  I'm totally blind from the pain!....OH MY GAWD!"

My vision slowly returned and I noticed that I had only managed to pull off half the strip. CRAP! I took another deep breath and RIP! Now everything was spinning and my vision was spotted.

I thought I would pass out.....I had to stay conscious...I HAD to stay conscious. Did I hear crashing drums?  Breathe, breathe...OK, it was (almost) back to normal.

I wanted to see my trophy -- a wax covered strip, the one that had caused me so much pain, with my hairy pelt sticking to it. I wanted to revel in the glory that was my triumph over body hair.

I held up the strip, but there was no hair on it. Matter of fact, there was nothing on the strip at all.

Where was the hair? WHERE THE HELL WAS THE WAX?

Slowly, I eased my head downward for a peek, with my foot still perched on the toilet. I saw the hair. The hair that was supposed to be on the strip was not! I hesitantly touched. What I was touching WAS wax!

I ran my fingers over the most sensitive part of my body, which was now covered in cold wax and matted hair. Then I made the next BIG mistake... remember, my foot was still propped on the toilet, right? Well, I knew I needed to do SOMEthing. So I put my foot down.

No! No! NOOO!  Oh My GAWD!  I was sealed shut!  My butt was sealed shut. Oh Sweet Lord, my friggin' butt was sealed shut!

I penguin-walked around the bathroom trying to figure out what to do and I thought to myself, 'Please, God, don't let me get the urge to poop... my head may pop off!' 
What could I do to melt the wax?

Hot water!  Yesss!  Hot water melts wax! I thought, "I will run the hottest water I can stand into the bathtub, get in, and immerse the wax-covered parts. The wax should melt and then I can gently wipe it off ... right?"

WRONG!

I got in the tub.  The water was slightly hotter than what they used to torture prisoners of war, or sterilize surgical equipment -- but frantic, I sat down.

Now, the only thing worse than having your nether regions glued together, is having them glued together AND glued to the bottom of a bathtub in scalding hot water, which, by the way, does NOT melt cold wax.

Oh Noooo, now what?
So, (picture this) I was stuck to the bottom of the tub as though I had cemented myself to the porcelain!

God bless the man who convinced me a few months ago to have a phone installed in the bathroom!

I called my friend, thinking surely she had waxed before and had some secret of how to get me undone. It was a very good conversation starter.

"...so Sally, my butt and hoo-ha are glued together to the bottom of the tub. Tell me what to do to undo it."

There was a slight pause on the other end of the phone. She didn't know any secret tricks for wax removal, but she did try to hide her laughter from me. She wanted to know EXACTLY where the wax was located. 

"Are we talking cheeks, or hoo-ha?"

I gave her the rundown. She was laughing out loud -- I could hear her. She suggested between guffaws that I call the number on the side of the box. YEAH, Right!  So I would be the joke of someone else's night, too?

While we went through various solutions, I resorted to trying to scrape the wax off with a razor. Listen to me, nothing feels better than to have your girlie goodies covered in hot wax, glued shut, stuck to the bottom of the bathtub in super hot water and then dry-shaving the sticky wax off!

By that time my brain was not working, dignity had taken a major hike, and I was pretty sure I was going to need Post-Traumatic Stress counseling because of it.

My friend was still talking when I finally saw my saving grace....there in the box was a tiny tube of lotion they gave you to remove excess wax. What did I have to lose at that point?

I rubbed some on and OH MY GOD!  The scream probably woke the kids and scared the dickens out of my friend. It was sooo painful, but I really didn't care. IT WORKED!  It worked!  I got a hearty congratulations from my friend and she hung up.

I successfully removed the remainder of the wax and then noticed to my grief and despair... THE HAIR WAS STILL THERE -- ALL OF IT.  So, I recklessly shaved it off.

Hell, I was numb by that time. Nothing hurt. I could have amputated my own leg at that point.

Next week I'm going to try hair color......

[Author Unknown]


“A writer soon learns that easy to read is hard to write.” ~CJ Heck


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