Daily Prompt: Masks Off – The genuine me

We’re less than a week away from Halloween! If you had to design a costume that channelled your true, innermost self, what would that costume look like? Would you dare to wear it?

Shop Window, Halloween Dress, Rochester

“It’s Saturday so that must be Wordy at the door. Hello Wordy, how are you today?”

“Eeeek, Help”

“Wordy, come out of the broom cupboard and stop hiding behing the vacuum cleaner.”

“Mrs. Angloswiss, is that you? There is a monster at the door. I am not coming out until it goes away. My screws and bolts are all shivering and I am sure a shadow passed across my little cyber heart.”

“Wordy, it is just me, I was trying my Halloween costume for next week. Don’t you think it is brilliant. The things you can do with a photoshop programme. Now I am ready to go. I am sure I am just what the vampire ordered.”

“That’s you Mrs. Angloswiss? But you are all sort of funny with red eyes and pointy teeth, with an owl on your shoulder and a spider hanging around your neck.”

“Wordy it’s all make-up, bought at the local store. I haven’t made any chocolate cake this week, but have some devilled eggs.”

“No thankyou Mrs. Angloswiss, I don’t do devil stuff. Just a glass of water will do to help me recover from the shock.”

“Here we are Wordy.”

“But that’s not water it is red.”

“Just some colouring from tomato juice for the genuine Halloween effect. Wordy you are shaking all over, take a seat.”

“B-b-but there are no chairs.”

“Sorry, I replaced them with coffins, but they are quite comfortable. I even lined them with red velvet to make them softer when you sit in them. They were quite reasonable, the local undertaker was selling them cheap, I think they were second hand.”

“But, if they are second hand, then who used them before you bought them? No don’t bother to answer that question, there are some things better not known. Mrs Angloswiss something is hanging over my head.”

“No problem, you must have brushed against a cob web when you left the broom cupboard. All part of the Halloween props. What do you think Wordy. Will I be given the first prize in the Halloween blog contest showing my genuine inner self.”

“Oh, definitely Mrs. Angloswiss, it is very realistic. I am sure you will be given the WordPress Halloween t-shirt, dyed with genuine cyber blood. What are you doing, sitting on that broom?”

“That is the final effect. I will arrive at the Halloween ball on the broom.”

“With Mr. Swiss.”

“No, I don’t think so. Since I started to get in the mood for Halloween, he decided to spend a few days at the local hospital.”

“Oh, is he ill?”

“No, just needs a few blood transfusions. When Halloween is finished, he will be his old self again.”

Daily Prompt: Masks Off – The genuine me

Daily Prompt: Out of Breath – Who???

We all seem to insist on how busy, busy, busy we constantly are. Let’s put things in perspective: tell us about the craziest, busiest, most hectic day you’ve had in the past decade.

Woodgrange Park Cemetery
What’s that? Busy, busy, busy? Yes there was a time in the dark ages when it was all happening, now I am too busy keeping my doctor appointments, having my golden oldie midday sleeps and thinking about what to write for my daily prompt. The craziest, busiest day – does not exist, they were an every-day occurrence when I was young and lovely and still belonging to the work force. It was easier to count the days that were without stress, although I think they were the days when I caught up on the stuff that I missed out on because on all the other days I had no time. Now I can take it easy, left the rat race behind me, just me, Mr. Swiss and the two felines and son No. 1 who still belongs to the workforce.

My photo is a typical example of stress. What was the grave digger thinking? Any good looking graveyard has upright stones showing proudly the deceased names and dates. This was a rush job. Just dig a hole, throw them in and cover it up. There was no thought spared to measuring out the ground, making a solid foundation and letting the stone settle. The result you can see, everything tilting and ready to crumble: a typical stress job at the graveyard. Admittedly the graves are from the first half of the 20th century and the graveyard is no longer used. They even dug my family up and removed all the evidence. Grandad is now hovering in an iCloud searching for the remains. It is one of the reasons that I will have a funeral pyre on the banks of the local river and the ashes placed neatly in an urn. Shame I will not be here to blog about it, but I am sure it will be the event of the year.

Now to the serious part of the blog: today was a sort of stress day. Not really for me, but for all the employees at the local supermarket. It was 10% day, where everything is 10% cheaper.

It all began in the parking lot. Mr. Swiss threw me out of the car and told me he would see me inside the hall of shopping. There were no visible parking places free, but I was convinced he would wedge our car into a free space somewhere. I was on my own, found a spare trolley and made a bee line to the computer department.

I had already earmarked my new computer and a few extras to go with it. I got quite pally with one of the guys who works in the computer department. We had a few technical discussions about the world of Apple and its computers, although he admitted that he still works with his Windows machine at home. He mentioned that his next computer will probably be a Mac. He had already written out an official sheet of my requirements as I had already had a few conversations with him. We tied up the deal, I paid with a plastic card and I took the extras home, such as blue tooth mouse and extra external disk. The computer will be arriving within a week which suits me fine. The real stress will begin when I fit it up (although Mr. Swiss fitted his up in half an hour). That is the difference between me and Mr. Swiss, he has all his passwords organised in a place that he knows. I also have them organised, but I forget where I put them.

The actual supermarket was not so much stress. The shoppers were acting quite civilised and there were no fights or arguments about who was there first. Yes, the Swiss are a disciplined, trained folk when it comes to special offers. Eventually our shopping was accomplished. We were tired, but happy and made our way to the car. Oh, that was a little problem, but Mr. Swiss explained that he discovered the last free parking space in the car park. It was quite a special place as it was a single parking place. It seems when they were constructing the car park, they did not know what to do with a leftover of land, so they painted it with a white stripe and gave it a number. That was our own private shopping space today. Oh and our little supermarket mascot cat was also there keeping an eye on things.

Migros Cat

Daily Prompt: Out of Breath – Who???

Daily Prompt: Ready, Set, Done 5 – Potato Talk

Our ten-minute free-write is back! Have no mercy on your keyboard as you give us your most unfiltered self (feel free to edit later, or just publish as-is).

Heart Potato

Another ten minute free write which brings as much inspiration as a potato

“I am a heart shaped potato, not every potato is heart shaped.”

“I know, so what am I supposed to write about a heart shaped potato, or will you change into an artichoke if I kiss you.”

“No, not exactly, but I will get wet. You can peel me and perhaps even cook me. I promise I am tasty to the last bite and I won’t scream.”

“How can I kill a heart shaped potato?”

“That’s life. Some are born to write boring daily prompts and others are born to be eaten.”

“I suppose that is true, although I cannot cook and eat a potato that I had a conversation with. It would be murder. You were not the only potato, I bought a whole kilo. I have already cooked the others. Do you think they suffered.? It just so happened that you were heart shaped, so I saved you for a photo.”

“No, of course we were having quite an exciting conversation before we were separated about our futures, boiled or fried. You know, if I am peeled I look even better. Naked potatoes can be really sexy.”

“I never thought of you in that way, you mean that my blog might be banned if I took a photo of you without the outside layer, peel-free.”

“Try it”

“I cannot bring it over my heart to peel you.”

“If you just leave me I will dry out and shrivel and no-one likes a shrivelled potato.”

“Ok, you have convinced me. I will peel you and cook you. What do you prefer hashed browns, mashed potato, french fries or a röschti.”

“Ohhh a röschti sounds good. Really exotic, but fry me in butter. I love butter.”

“And you really don’t mind. It will be death by grating and frying. Can you forgive me?”

“Mrs. Angloswiss, forget it. I am a potato, not a living thing. Think of all the vegetarians that are convinced that eating potatoes has no negative effects on the life of a potato.”

“But we are having a conversation. Hello, hello”

Did I dream that? Or was it just something stupid for a 10 minute writing exercise to keep the guys in the WordPress t-shirts happy. I hate this Thursday prompt. Someone said it reminded them of throwback Thursday. It reminds me of a Throw-away Thursday. Oh and yes, the potato disappeared with some of its brothers and sisters in a röschti.

Daily Prompt: Ready, Set, Done – Potato Talk

Daily Prompt: Imaginary Friend – My own little Teratoma

Many of us had imaginary friends as young children. If your imaginary friend grew up alongside you, what would his/her/its life be like today? (Didn’t have one? write about a non-imaginary friend you haven’t seen since childhood.) Based on a true story.

I did have a Teratoma and it was removed. I was born with it and it only began to grow and expand when I was 50 years old and no, Stephen King did not get the idea from me for his novel The Dark Half, although …. Who knows? Restaurant Decoration in Romford for Halloween “That is not me, I looked completely different. Typical.”

“Who’s talking?”

“The imaginary friend that you never had and never wanted, but I got my revenge, remember?”

“If I had had an imaginary friend it would definitely not have resembled something from a Halloween comic.”

“How do you know, you never gave me a chance, I could have made you famous. Stephen King would have been nothing in comparison. “OK, so explain …..”

“Remember that memorable operation you had, the one that lasted seven  hours.”

“You mean the second operation, when they discovered that what they should have removed the first time, after a three hour operation regrew.”

“Yes that’s the one, although if they had done the job properly the first time, I would have been gone forever.”

“But you were just a collection of cells, nothing special. In the Stephen King story they found teeth and hair and all sorts of human spare parts. You were just a blob somewhere in my back.”

“Yes, exactly. If you had not stifled my chances I could have been your identical twin, and perhaps even a Siamese twin. Think of the fun we could have had.”

“Then I think I am glad I did stifle your chances. I wouldn’t exactly describe being a Siamese twin as fun. You were just a normal, average Teratoma which was removed. So how come we are having a conversation. You were eliminated at least ten years ago, and why did you only appear after fifty years.”

“It was lonely just sitting around in your back, so I decided to expand. You were having all the fun going places and seeing things and I was just a passenger, although I quite enjoyed it when you had a meal. I had fun absorbing some of the treats, I love ice cream.  Are you sure there were no taste buds in the blob?”

“I really do not know, the surgeon did not give me a detailed description: how come we are having a conversation?”

“I am still sort of hovering, something like a computer cloud or a daily prompt that is there, but does not develop, for some unknown reason, when it shows 0 responses, like today. But I think you were glad. Today you (we?) were busy in the garden clearing the Autumn leaves away. I was actually glad that you removed me, as I noticed you had backache.”

“Oh, thanks, big deal. Yes I had backache bending down picking up the fallen leaves. Just a minute, you were watching me. I had you removed.”

“Stay cool, I am always watching you. Remember when you broke your arm a couple of years ago. I was only trying it out to see if I could materialise. It was just a little push and I really didn’t mean to cause problems.”

“Oh, thanks, I spent a week in hospital afterwards and it was your entire fault. I hope that experiment is finished.”

“Yes, I decided it was boring just laying around in a hospital and now I have found a much better job and I have become famous, although not exactly that everyone knows it is me/us.”

“Tell me about it.”

“I sleeked my way into the cyberworld. I decided if I can be your individual cloud, I might as well have fun and be everyone’s cloud”

“And?”

“Where do you think the iPad/iPhone/I everything people got the idea of the iCloud?”

“You mean that was us?”

“Oh no, you had me removed remember. This time it was all I, me and myself. There is no longer any us or we. You do your thing and I will do mine, but do not worry, I will always be watching you.”

“No more materialisation experiments?”

There was silence, no-one answered. You are never alone it seems.

Daily Prompt: Imaginary Friend – My own little teratoma

Daily Prompt: Grand Slam – Happy Birthday Mr. Swiss

The World Series starts tonight! In your own life, what would be the equivalent of a walk-off home run? (For the baseball-averse, that’s a last-minute, back-against-the-wall play that guarantees a dramatic victory.)

Didier Drogba

“Cough, cough, splutter, splutter” and I just cleaned my computer screen and the keys; rescued them from a fate of clogged up contacts. I was in the process of eating my caramel desert garnished with whipped cream, when I read this prompt, but of course I know what the World Series is. It is when the best cricket team is announced, or perhaps the winner of the Hornuss championships, but wait. Hornuss is only played in Switzerland, particularly in the village of Derendingen and cricket, well if you are Indian, Pakistani, Australian, New Zealander or even British you will know what I am talking about. Then I forgot, they do not have a world cup because it is not played worldwide. Although I thought that the term Grand Slam was applied to tennis (you know where two people – sometimes 4, hit a white ball back and forth). My cats love watching that game on the TV.

Now we are talking about baseball, which is of course placed worldwide,and we all know that baseball is celebrated everywhere, especially in ……. Yes well, I suppose the States. I was known to play a game called rounders at school. It is similar, but we did not wear those nifty caps with Names engraved on them. I once had a New York Yankees cap, but forgot it in a taxi somewhere in Portugal. I bought a replacement, a white one with Lakers written on it, some team in Los Angeles. I cannot remember where I lost that one, but now I have none, although Mr. Swiss has one with an little fur elk on it. It was an advertising gift from one of his trips to Sweden when he was working for the company beginning with V and ending with O that make trucks. We do not wear it, unless we remove the elk.

By the way the photo is of a famous footballer Didier Drogba (you know the game with the round ball which I believe even the states have now discovered). It was a match being played on 28th April 2008 between Liverpool and Chelsea (two English teams). I took the photo from the TV, hence the bad quality. Why this picture? Because this is how I feel in the morning when I awake: no go, flat out and “do not touch me, I might fall apart” feeling. In the good old days when I was young and lovely (well I was young), I would spring out of bed like a Spring lamb, nothing could stop me. I bounced my way to the kitchen and full of energy prepared my breakfast at the same time (multi-tasking was then no problem) I would be organising the offspring for their day at school. Yes, no holds barred, I was a fountain of youth, a source of inspiration to all.

Today I had an interesting discussion with Mr. Swiss. He found I no longer move as much as I used to. I should go for walks in the fresh air, not just read a book or (oh horror) sit on the computer. I seem to have no energy and it would definitely be to my benefit to be more active. I was compared to a machine that gathers rust with age. I had to agree as I often feel like a rusty machine. It was an inspirational talk and I decided that today I would take a walk in the open air and write my daily prompt Pulitzer prize suspicious entry later. Unfortunately we are now experiencing strong winds with dark clouds gathering and the temperature has fallen. Is today Armageddon? This changed my mind. I decided this back-against-the-wall situation was not my thing. It would definitely guarantee something dramatic, but not quite a victory: more one of my unfortunate accidents where a gust of wind would catch me off balance and cause an emergency situation. So, as usual I am sitting at my newly cleaned computer (the whipped cream and caramel stains have been removed) and am writing my prompt. I decided that a Tai Chi practice would take place when I am finished as a compensation for not taking my death defying walk in nature.

Before I draw to a close I would mention that today is a memorable day. No, it is not the world series (although it coincides with the beginning of the World Series), it is Mr. Swiss birthday. We celebrated by me cooking a five star meal. Of course telegrams and congratulations were pouring in from all over the place. The Swiss government have not yet sent their telegram, but perhaps he is too young.

Anyhow happy birthday love, and may there be many more (I bet he won’t read this blog, too busy listening to music on the computer).

Daily Prompt: Grand Slam – Happy Birthday Mr. Swiss

Daily Prompt: Finite Creatures – oh happy day

At what age did you realize you were not immortal? How did you react to that discovery?

Present from my cats

This is a dead mouse. The mouse is not blurred because it was moving, it was my hand shaking with the camera. This mouse was probably completely convinced that he was immortal until he met my cats. Even then the thought probably did not cross his mousey mind that it was be the last encounter of his life.  My felines were proud (I cannot remember which one it was) and brought the mouse to show me. I picked it up by using an inverted small plastic bag, and it went to the happy mouse hunting grounds.

What a happy go lucky prompt we have today, but it is food for thought I suppose. Was it the first time when I killed a fly, leaving his squashed remains on the window pane or was it on one of my early childhood walks over the cemetery? Mum made a habit of taking me to the cemetery when I was a kid. We visited a large grave, containing five departed, the last being my maternal grandmother who I never really knew. I do not think that mum knew who else was in the grave, it was all before her time, but the names helped me when I was exploring for my family tree. There was still room for one apparently and that was going to be my grandfather, although he stayed around for a few years, being almost 90 when he decided to fill up the grave. I often wondered if he knew that his place was secure. Growing up in such earthly circumstances it never crossed my mind that I might still be here when Armageddon arrived. By the first shower of frogs and the arrival of the four horsemen of the apolocalypse my time would come in any case.

Oh, come on, there was never philosophical discussions in our family about life and death, it just happened and I grew up with it. It never entered my mind to be immortal; I just got on with life.

Living in Switzerland casts a different outlook on existing or not going to the next step on the journey. I remember when I moved into the Swiss way of life and we had a daily Swiss newspaper. There were always 2-3 pages included (according to the death toll) with large black square outlined boxes showing names and dates of life spans. Details were given when and where the funeral was taking place, or already had taken place (those that wished to get it done and done with without a big party) and the near relatives were neatly listed at the bottom. No. you could not get away with being immortal in Switzerland, everyone knew when you were gone. “Did you see xxxx has passed away?” “Yes, there was an obituary in the newspaper, he was older/younger than I thought.” When the daily newspaper arrives in the post box you do not study the headlines, you turn to the last pages and see who is no longer amongst us.

There is a disturbing detail in this whole thing about “let’s read the obituaries”. I am now 68 years old, not exactly fit, but still writing the daily prompt and looking forward to writing many daily prompts. One day there will no longer be a daily prompt written by me. Do not be disappointed, there is always someone else that will write a daily prompt and Wordy, being immortal, will let you know I am sure. Not that Wordy was asked, but he just needs a touch of oil and a few new screws and he is as good as new.

I have also noticed, much to my regret, that the birth years of the deceased in these black surrounded boxes in the newspaper, are approaching mine. Ok, we all have to go one day, but I do not have to have a daily reminder. I think I will stop reading the newspaper. Mr. Swiss has just returned from his daily afternoon walk, guess where he was? Yes, he took a walk over the cemetery and was annoyed to notice that the gardener had not yet replaced the flowers on the grave for the Winter season. It seems the gardener is probably overworked at the moment, everyone wants their grave to look good for Winter, especially as Halloween is approaching. You have to keep the spirits happy.

On this happy note I will leave you and hope to return tomorrow with some more words of wisdom.

Daily Prompt: Finite Creatures – oh happy day

Daily Prompt: Fourth Wall – Bruce Willis, Brad Pitt or Humphrey Bogart? there are so many to choose from.

You get to spend a day inside your favorite movie. Tell us which one it is — and what happens to you while you’re there.

Casablanca super super

“Hello Mrs. Angloswiss, are you ready for the big day shooting for Casablanca?”

“I certainly am Wordy, how do you think I look. I really don’t want to disappoint all those stars, especially Humphrey Bogart.”

“A little too much colour Mrs. Angloswiss. It is a black and white film, they didn’t do colour in those days. That red dress will look a little too dark grey, and the shoes to match will not work. Try something in black and white.

“Err Wordy, I thought this would be my big break. And what about a Bruce Willis or Brad Pitt film, they were the first on my list. You know at the end when the romance arrives and the last scene shows me in their arms, waiting to be carried away.”

“We had a small problem Mrs. Angloswiss. In the Bruce Willis films there are not many female parts, and they are usually killed off in the first part of the picture and WordPress cannot afford the life insurance, you know funeral costs etc. Only the toughest survive and your grey hair might not be so good for the part. Bruce Willis shaved his hair off, so it doesn’t notice so much. But with you …..”

“Wordy are you suggesting I would have to shave my hair to get a part in a Bruce Willis film. I was thinking on the lines of the role of his ex-wife in Die Hard. She was a heroine.”

“Doesn’t work Mrs. Angloswiss, too much copyright involved and film contracts. Bonny Bedelia, the lady playing the leading part, objects. It diminishes her film star value.”

“So I have to make do with Fight Club?”

“Not exactly. Both Jennifer Anniston and Angelina Jolie raised objections to having you as a main leading female part, although they gave their permission for a role as a female boxing champion. With a little make-up for the bruises and scars it would work.”

“Wordy, if you continue, I will show you how good a punch I can land on your nose.”

“Stay cool Mrs. Angloswiss. No problem, Casablanca, your third choice,  is OK, The copyrights on the film were exhausted some time ago and there is no-one left to object, so step this way.”

“You mean I can take the part that Ingrid Bergman played: Rick’s girlfriend and faithful companion. I can see Rick gently placing his hand under my chin and raising it so that our eyes meet and saying “Here’s looking at you kid”. Oh my legs feel quite shaky at the thought of it.”

“Not exactly Mrs Angloswiss, we were thinking more in the way of playing the role of Ricks’s previous girlfriend, Yvonne.”

“Who?”

“She said a few lines in the film, it is quite an important part.”

“But she was the one that was drunk most of the time and a fight started.”

“We will give you a bottle of whisky before the filming.”

“I can play “As Time goes By” on the piano, I could be the one playing when Rick says “Play it again”.

“Mrs. Angloswiss, you are not the type meant for that role.

Just follow me Mrs. Angloswiss for your big break”

What chance did I have. WordPress were paying (at least I didn’t have to wear a t-shirt for the part) and were transporting me to 1942 when the film was made (I wasn’t even born then). Things went quite well actually, although I got a little wet in the last scene when Claude Rains and Humphrey Bogart were saying good-by. It was raining and I had the job of holiding the umbrella over Humphrey Bogart (although they removed that from the film).

I should have chosed The Gladiator, Russell Crowe looked quite good in the leading role, but knowing my luck I would have been placed as a female gladiator, being mauled to death by a lion, although perhaps Russell might have taken me in his arms and closed my eyes in a last gesture.

Daily Prompt: Fourth Wall – Bruce Willis, Brad Pitt or Humphrey Bogart? there are so many to choose from