What if?: Overheard at a BBQ

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Overheard at a BBQ

[I've been a wee bit busy of late. I know, I said that last time too. As I missed the previous assignment, I combined it with this assignment. Hopefully you can follow it okay. I had fun writing it, at least. -Paul]

"The first time I heard "Sportin' a Woody" by Dangerous Toys, I was over at Samantha Miller's house and we were dancing around her living room like idiots."

"Aw, come on Frank, not this story again."

"What do you mean? I haven't heard it yet."

"Yeah, Steve, why do you always have to be such a dick? Let Frank tell his story."

"Thank you, gentlemen. As I was saying before I was so rudely interrupted by Mr. Grumpy-butt over there..."

"You're going to burn the hamburgers, Frank. Either cook, or tell your story and let someone else manage the food."

"Is he always like this?"

"Steve? Usually. I'm not sure why we're still friends with him, honestly."

"Thanks Mike, I love you too."

"Don't flip him the bird, Steve, there are kids running around. Why don't you have another beer?"

"Because Dan's fat ass is blocking access to the cooler."

"Holy crap, Steve, did the wife cut you off or something? You've known Dan for a whole hour and you're already treating him like an old high school buddy."

"Bite me, Mike."

"Okay then, beer for everybody. Thanks, Dan. As I was trying to say, I was at Samantha's - she was a crowd favorite in high school, by the way - and we were dancing around like idiots to whatever raucous music we could find.

"I see you haven't outgrown your idiocy."

"Do you want me to burn your burger? Anyway, I'd never heard the song before and thought it was a riot. The second time through the chorus I decided I'd jump on the couch and perform an aerial crotch thrust, singing at the top of my lungs."

"And then her dad walks in, right?"

"Who's telling the story, Mike? I've got Steve over there on his fancy little chaise lounge giving me the riot act, and now you're trying to usurp my narration. I'm sorry that you have to witness this, Dan."

"That's okay, but the brats are flaring up..."

"Oh crap!"

"Just spray some water on the coals."

"I told you you were going to screw up the food. Get out of the way, Frank."

"Fine, take the damn tongs. Bend over and I'll show you where you can stick them."

"Easy there, big guy. Let Steve handle the meat, since obviously his own meat isn't getting handled, and you can finish educating Dan here about Samantha's dad, the warden."

"No way, he was a warden? At a jail?"

"Oh yeah. The door flies open and he's standing silhouetted in the doorway, the lamp light reflecting off his shaved head, and I'm jumping on his leather couch grabbing my crotch in front of his seventeen year old daughter."

"Hot, seventeen year old daughter."

"Crap, man. What did you do?"

"He shat himself, and begged not to be fed to the ass-rapers at the prison."

"Would you shut the hell up already? Damn, Steve."

"Hey Mike, isn't that your kid over there?"

"What, Dan? Oh... Jonathan Adam, where are your pants? Don't you run away from me!"

"We'll help you coral him! Frank, keep an eye on the..."


"That's the extent of the recording?"

"Yes, sir. That's all we have."

"Well it's worthless! I don't give a damn about what his idiot friends did in high school, I want to know why Steve Gheffer isn't in our custody!"

"I understand, sir, but we were lucky to be able to salvage even this much. The tech said that the recording device was destroyed in the fire, and what was left of the tape had been severely damaged. It's a miracle that they were able to extract as much as they did."

"I don't care if they extracted the gospel of Jesus, there isn't any useful information about Agent Gheffer. How the hell did this get so screwed up?"

"We think that he must have somehow detected our surveillance, and planned the barbeque as a cover to go underground. It appears that he planted some sort of incendiary device in the grill, which set fire to the house when it detonated. He escaped with his wife and child in the confusion."

"And nobody saw him leave the premises?"

"No, sir. There was a general state of panic as people fled the explosion. The details of everyone's memories of the event were lost in the chaos."

"It's amazing that nobody was injured considering the scale of the damage."

"Yes, sir."

"Very well. We'll throw out the net and wait. He'll snare himself in it again. He's a fool to think he can hide with a family. I expect you to make a full report of your failure to the Director."




Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cool story.

Although that is not why I came here. My main reason. Please inform Leesa that her Stories blog has a small problem that prevents it from being seen (at least with Firefox). The line that contains the following needs the comment closed at the end:

"-Open Comment- Commented out Lines of Title -HTML removed- I started blogging to improve my writing; I really did. Painters don't start with masterpieces – they start on scraps of paper, and even when planning a great work, they do many other drawings in preparation. I think writing is the same. You just don't start and finish a novel by merrily typing into the computer; you experiment. Blogging is sort of like a writer's doodling. So this is my scratch pad of sorts. This is less than scraps of paper actually, just 1s and 0s on your computer screen.-HTML removed-"
(Closed comment --> missing)


Anonymous Commenter

6:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The problem has been fixed. Please feel free to delete the previous comment (and this one).

Anonymous Commenter

7:51 AM  
Blogger Giovanna said...

I hope you see this Paul, because I loved it. Wonderful twist at the end. You created some dramatic tension and colorful characters with the opening dialog.

While you did an admirable job with showing who the characters were through dialog I would suggest you add a smattering of tags here and there, only because I was a little lost at first. You never want your reader going back to re-read.

I would even play with this and expand it. What did Steve do? Why are they after him? God it would be great to take this and re-tell it through Steve's POV. (Actually, that may be a good exercise! Time for a new post!)

2:09 PM  

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