Tag Archives: deadly sins

Lust: The Winner is…

 

Lust

Lust (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Despite my best efforts to laze about – using “recovering from surgery” as an excuse – I find I must re-enter the world of productivity – kicking and screaming all the way.  I’ll be returning to work in less than 10 days, and I find myself wondering how I ever managed to exercise, commute, teach, plan, write, blog, snuggle my pup, and occasionally speak to my spouse each day.

It is all I can do to wander from the desk to the sofa, to the table to the desk, to the sofa, to the table…you get my drift.  I keep discovering posts I missed while either under the influence of powerful drugs or snoozing the days and nights away.  I’m trying to catch up.

The deadline for voting in the “Lust” Round of the 7 Deadly Sins writing contest was noon on Saturday and the winner is:  Lorna from Lorna’s Voice.  Her entry:  I Want, I Need You, I Love You” was spectacular.  Congratulations.  Once again – a donation will be made to the charitable organization of Lorna’s choice and her name will be placed in the Wall of Fame over on the left of this blog.

I have to say that I was more than impressed with the quality of the entries.  The voting (for finalists) was extremely close.  This contest has been so much fun and I appreciate all of you who participated.

So, at some point in the near future I’ll resurrect the submission box and prepare the next round…for now – I must move to the sofa…

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Envy – Post 1

All right, folks – time for another round in the Deadly Sins Series…here are some of the great entries I’ve received so far.  You still have another week – so get those keyboards fired up, people!!!

Slap some coffee into that filter and let’s get this show on the road.  Enjoy!

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First up, from Darla at She’s a Maineiac:

Darling’s Cupcakes

When it comes right down to it, I guess I just didn’t want to come out. Who would? My mother never fails to tell my sisters how I howled as the doctor clamped down and yanked me from her uterus, a lifeless ragdoll. “You came out and lawd have mercy, you were bluer ‘n your Daddy’s eyes! We thought you were dead!” But I wasn’t. Not yet. Course, I always knew the real reason I didn’t want to enter this world–my older sisters.

But time marched on and I had to come out eventually. And for us Darling girls, timing was everything–it defined us for all eternity.  First out of my mom’s womb at 12:32 am was Stacy, flushed a rosy pink from her hearty cries. Then along came Tracy at 12:38, Stacy’s identical in every way with her perfectly round head, long feathery lashes and dewy soft skin. Me? I was the odd one from the start. And they always made sure I knew it.

My sisters were shining stars in our little town.  Boys always coming around, pacing on the front porch with flowers for one or the other. I sat in my room, watching from the window. “Tootle-loo, Lexy!” they’d sing.  I can still hear their fake laughs and the door slamming as they ran off to another party without me.

That all changed with my mom’s new cupcake business. If there was one thing she could do in life, it was bake a good cupcake. She started whipping up exotic flavors one afternoon, key lime pie with buttercream, red velvet with a dab of cream cheese in the middle and topped with dark chocolate fondant.

Soon my two sisters were standing by her side in the kitchen, the three of them wearing matching aprons dusted with flour, giggling and singing and making them damn cupcakes. They sold out the first few batches at the local flea market and not long after that Darling’s Cupcakes was born.

I let them have their cupcakes. I never liked to bake anyway. But the day I walked by the Royal River and caught a glimpse of Stacy on her tiptoes reaching up to kiss Jacob’s cheek my feelings about cupcakes changed.

Over dinner one night she told Mama that my sweet Jacob was going to marry her. She needed 200 vanilla buttercream cupcakes for the wedding guests. I offered to help. Mama was shocked and more than a little pleased with me. I spent hours melting that butter in the pot, stirring and stirring to get it just right for the frosting. Mama loved my idea of creating two extra special cupcakes for the bride and groom. I fixed them up real nice, added food coloring to make them pink and topped them with tiny hearts cut from raspberry fondant.

It was supposed to just scare her. Make her a little sick is all. I wanted to see her face as she threw up pink cupcake all over Jacob as they kissed.  I measured just the right amount into her cupcake, or so I thought at the time.  I served the happy couple my creations with the biggest grin I could manage. How was I to know how strong that rat poison would be?

By the time I noticed them feedin’ each other and the wrong cupcake crossing Jacob’s lips it was too late. I did my best to try and stop him. By the time I knocked the cupcake out of his hands he was choking and turning purple.

They say I’ll get a chance for parole in 12 years.

I’ll never have Jacob.

But neither will Stacy.

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Next up:   K.L. Richardson at Closing Time

The Anniversary

 Kelly always said her parents were two of the hardest working people she ever knew.  Unfortunately, there were six siblings so she had to fight for every scrap she got whether material possessions or love.  Her absentee parents created a void in Kelly; as she grew so did the envy in her heart.  Now married she still was not content. If another womans’ husband liked the theater, Kelly envied that. Another she envied because he bought his wife expensive jewelry, yet another for the lavish trips the husband provided.  So she got what she wanted from other women’s husbands.  Just enough that her husband wouldn’t get too upset and so that the other wives would never catch on (after all they were just friends).

Her husband Phil was a forgiving man; content with what he had without ambition or pretension.  He loved Kelly but realized that she could never be happy with just his love. Something in her was broken; he just didn’t know how to fix it.  He would buy her gifts but they never seemed to be good enough. He felt that if he could get just the right gift then she might be happy and not feel the envy he knew was hardening her heart.

As Kelly’s envy grew so did her claims upon other husbands.  One day she became entangled with a man whose wife was not willing to give up without a fight.  Kelly didn’t know what the woman did; oh, she knew that this wife dabbled in the “arts” somehow, but not being a creative person herself she just didn’t ‘get it’.  She knew that this man loved his wife yet still had a craving for attention, a void like Kelly’s, waiting to be filled.  She also knew that this man was willing to spend on her, and spend he did. Kelly got  jewelry,  trips and rides on his motorcycle.  Eventually it took a toll on his relationship, his wife began to notice, protesting the so-called friendship.

Phil knew an important anniversary was coming up; he was determined to pick the perfect gift.  If Kelly would love it, and him as well, it might be the gift that would keep her content and at home. While Kelly was gone Phil took that time to shop around; he haunted all the small shops and boutiques hoping to find that perfect piece for his wife. One day he wandered into a small shop that he hadn’t noticed before.  Lots of colorful silks, jewelry and sculptures filled the store, creating a most magical aura.

As his eyes became accustomed to the candle-lit atmosphere he noticed a woman approaching, inquiring about his needs.  He was hesitant at first, but after awhile poured out his heart along with his story.  Phil felt that this woman could see into his heart, somehow knowing the importance of that gift.  Together they looked over the items in the shop, many of them hand-crafted by this woman herself. Phil finally chose a teak statuette, carved by the owner herself, portraying a lady with a look of longing that reminded him so much of his beloved Kelly. The shopkeeper cheerfully rang up the sale and Phil took it home.

Phil never got to give his gift to Kelly.  Despite his inquiries no one knew where she was, not even her “friend” who, oddly enough turned out to be the shop keepers husband. But unknowingly Phil did get his wish, Kelly never did leave home again. She stayed right on the oak mantle where Phil unknowingly put her on his return from the boutique.

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 Next – an offering from Lorna at Lorna’s Voice

“Behind the Mask”

She could see it in their eyes. That’s why she never looked at them directly; well, at least not at the women. Men’s eyes revealed the kind of poison she knew how to swallow, but not the women’s eyes. She had no antidote for what they injected straight into her heart.

She’d seen that look many times before.

“Don’t stare at me. I told you it ain’t polite to stare at people,” her mother said to her reflection as she watched in little-girl wonder at how powder, mascara, and lipstick created a mask, transforming her mother’s sallow, withered face into something close to radiant.

“You’re so pretty now, Ma. Can you teach me how to put that stuff on?” she said.

“Not on your life, Missy. God knows where you got your looks and you sure as hell ain’t gonna whore yourself up under my roof. Now get yourself outta here. I got a friend comin’ over and I don’t want you gettin’ in the way.”

She was nine. Or was she eight when this happened? Maybe it didn’t happen. She often lived in a fantasy world. That’s what her mother said with a disdain that suggested she needed a cure for this unfortunate condition. She liked to think she had a vivid imagination, but what she thought didn’t matter.

She knew about her mother’s “friends” and how they looked at her. She also remembered her mother’s narrow-eyed glare at her when she caught them looking. It was a hard look that said, “Why do you have to be so damn young and pretty?”

If only she could make a mask like her mother made, maybe she could become someone radiant like the sun—someone her mother could love; but that didn’t happen.

She learned how to make her own mask, though; and she became someone else she never could be without the mask. Behind the mask, she didn’t care that women envied her for her beauty and sensuality or that men only loved her for what—not who—they  saw. The mask and her imagination took her places she never expected. Then again, she never expected much.

She made a career out of being the woman behind the mask. Most men fell to their knees in her presence. She learned how to make them hers when the mask was in place. Most women were drawn to her and some emulated her as best they could. There was magic in the mask and these women wanted it badly. Imitation wasn’t, she found, only a form a flattery; it was a form of premeditated murder. Women wanted her gone. And so the acerbic stares continued, as if their stinging rays could pierce and dismantle the mask and the woman behind it.

When she was alone in her bathroom and all that remained of the mask was smeared colors on so many tissues scattered around her, she was naked and bewildered. Without the mask to define her, who was she? Adored goddess? Bitch?

She glared at the remnants of mask as if she was one of those plain women, her eyes muddled with the same odd concoction of adoration and hatred she had seen all of her life, and said, “I want to be just like you. You have it all.”

The mask stared back from the bits and pieces around her. It whispered, “And I wish I could be just like you. You are the one who has it all.”

She grabbed a marble soap dish and threw it at the mirror.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

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Gluttony: Post 5

Gluttony

Gluttony (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here are the final entries for the Gluttony portion of the Deadly Sins series.  Grab a beverage of your choice, put up your feet, and enjoy!

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From Julie over at gojulesgo

Becky stood in front of the open refrigerator door, the numbness settling in to so much more than just her limbs. It started harmlessly enough, like it always did – with the leftovers. This time grilled chicken and green beans.  But the taste of the tender chicken got her mouth watering, and now she craved something crunchy to satisfy the churn in her stomach.

For a long time she believed that churn was hunger, afraid to believe it could be anything else. Now that she knew better, she simply let the numbness take over.  She grabbed the jar of mayonnaise from the refrigerator door, and the potato chips and rolls from the counter, before she could change her mind. Leaving the refrigerator door open, she smeared a generous dollop of mayonnaise on both sides of a whole wheat roll. She barely noticed the crinkling sound of the potato chip bag as she reached in and pulled out a fistful. She placed the chips on the roll and closed it, pressing the soft brown bread down with her palm to make sure the chips wouldn’t fall out.

She finished it in four bites. She leaned her ear towards the nursery. Still quiet. The only sound now was the hum of the refrigerator and the wild racing of her heart. The numbness was starting to fade and the familiar anxiety inched its way into her throat.

Well, it’s too late to save myself now, she thought, and dug out her secret stash of chocolate-covered pretzels from behind the crockpot. She glanced at the clock. 11:51am. She knew the pretzels would be gone well before noon. She had just popped the sixth one in her mouth, savoring the rich sweetness of the chocolate and salty crunch of the pretzel, when she heard the garage door open. Her heart stopped.

“Hello? Bill? Is that you?” she called, a tremor in her voice. She quickly stuffed the pretzels back in their hiding place and slammed the refrigerator door shut.

“Yeah, it’s me. They let us out early ‘cause of the holiday weekend,” Bill’s low, familiar voice replied. Becky breathed a sigh of relief, but her heart continued to race. She started wiping down the counters, so that it looked like she was cleaning when Bill came up behind her and placed a breezy kiss on her cheek.

“You smell like chocolate,” he said innocently. Becky laughed. “Oh really? That’s weird. I feel like I haven’t had chocolate in ages.”

Bill opened the refrigerator door and she squeezed her eyes shut, hoping he wouldn’t notice the missing leftovers. When had it become so easy to lie?

Bill shut the door and sighed. “There’s nothing to eat. Want to order take-out?”

“Sure,” Becky replied. “I’m starving.” Bill grabbed the phone and suddenly paused.

“When’s the last time you checked on Abigail?” “Um,” Becky hesitated, trying to remember how long ago it had been since she started her latest binge. “About 20 minutes ago?”

Bill wandered towards the nursery. He opened the door fully and a moment later Becky heard what sounded like the phone hitting the floor.

“Becky!” Bill cried, his voice almost unrecognizable.

Becky’s stomach dropped to her knees. She knew before she entered the baby’s room that something was wrong. And it was her fault. She ran into the room and then it all came up. The chicken, the chips, the pretzels. The reason her baby wasn’t breathing.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Now from Audrey:

 We wandered under the leafy, green canopy of palms, our shoes scuffing across the worn pavement walkway.  Wat Phnom, the “Mountain Pagoda” came into view and we made our way up a flight of stairs to the main stupa.  A huge Buddah statue rested in a darkened room and wispy tendrils of incense smoke wafted to the ceiling.  Cambodians were kneeling in prayer and meditation throughout the room.  With heads bent in respect we moved on to a shrine for the widow who had founded this temple site as a holy place 600 years ago.

Descending back to the main courtyard I espied dozens of monkeys scampering along the ground and through the verdant treetops.  Through the courtyard vendors were selling fruits and nuts that tourists were purchasing to feed the monkeys.  Throwing a handful of nuts into the grass would gather a drove of the little creatures.  They clearly understood how this system worked and eyed us over to see if we had any treats for them.

And then I saw him.  The fattest monkey I could have imagined with sitting on a stone pillar as if it was his throne.  He was at least 3 times the size of the others.  He slothfully slipped to the ground and padded across our path, his eyes puffy and belly dragging across the ground.  He had been watching some other monkeys nibbling on lichee fruit and swiped at them.  They ran off in a flurry of squeals and angry screams.  The gluttonous one plopped himself down on the ground with his precious fruit in hand.  Rolls of fat enveloped his hindquarters and formed a base around him.  And there he sat, king of his monkey tribe while we all stared at his largeness with mouths agape.

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 An entry from Katie:

In the darkness, the world shuddered. Light bloomed overhead, reflecting off of wrinkled plastic wrap, off of smooth lids to jars and jugs. The light beamed down through the levels, cut into rectangles by wire racking, eclipsed by drawers. One wall, covered in balconies populated by bottles swung away. Cold and light seeped from the world to fill the obtuse angle as it did in endless cycles.

The food was paralyzed in frightened anticipation, except for those that trembled for a moment before stilling under his gaze. He came at all hours, to look, to take. Some of the food had been there for a while; some was taken and returned, diminishing gradually. Some of it was not there long enough to get to know. There was a world outside the chill box. The food had been out there before each of them had been brought here, imprisoned, only to leave again to complete this reverse birth.

And all the while in that cramped darkness, a question plagued the food: was it better to be taken quickly, or to wait in that darkness that hummed sometime, to watch that wall swing away, those greedy eyes zoom in, searching. The question was only to pass the time. Eventually, they would all be encircled by those chubby fingers, all would end up in the maw of their jailer.

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And I leave you with this one from Elyse:

John couldn’t believe a Sgt. Friday clone was sitting across from him on the green leather ottoman, asking him questions.  Questions about his wife.  His late wife.  His lately late wife.  Her body was still in the other room, sprawled across the kitchen table across her laptop.

“When did you first notice the problem,” the sergeant asked.

“Problem?”

“When did she get hooked?”

“Uhhh, I’m not sure,” John responded.  “I guess about a year ago.”

“OK.  Did she come to bed last night?  Was her side of the bed messed.”

“It was always messed.  She hasn’t made the bed since she started her blog.  Not once,” he said, stifling tears.  “She’d get up as soon as her alarm went of and rush down to her laptop, shouting ‘how many likes do you think I got overnight?’  As if I cared.  She completely  stopped doing housework, gardening.  We used to fight about it – I mean argue.  Not fight.  I wouldn’t hurt her, Sargeant.  Just the other night she nearly burned down the house.  Blogging.  Writing a post for a goddamn blogging contest.  She heated up the oil and didn’t put in the scallops.  You wouldn’t believe what the house smelled like.”

“It’s the same old story,” said Sgt. Friday.  “They say the addiction is worse than heroin, worse than alcohol.  Worse even that reality TV.  They become gluttons for their posts, gluttons for the comments on their posts.  Gluttons for their other favorite blogs and the clever comment trails they leave for each other.  If I had my way, I’d outlaw it.  And the Word Press gang, well they’re the worst.” “

Word Press?  Isn’t that the free blogging site?”

“I think Word Press just cost you dearly.  We were afraid of this when we learned about their latest trick.” “

Huh?”

“Yes, John.  You may have a legal case against Word Press for what they’ve done recently.”

“I don’t understand.  How did a blogging site kill my wife?”

“Oh, you’d be surprised.  First they suck them in – this free blog crap.  Then they get them hooked.  Lastly, they rig it so that the bloggers become absolute gluttons, and just eat up other posts.  And then just today, they put the final nail in the coffin.”

“Nail?  What did they do?”

“Well, whenever a blogger comments on another blog, they used to have a choice.  There’s a box that says “Notify me of follow-up comments via email.”  It used to be you had to remember to check that box to get all the comments for a post.  Most bloggers don’t do that.  But bloggers who checked that  could get an email with all of the comments made on a blog.   Now,” said Friday, “well now the box is always checked unless the blogger remembers to uncheck it.   That represents so many blogs and comments, that, well something snaps.  Something in their swallower.  And then Word Press forces them to swallow comments even when they know they shouldn’t.  The bloggers?  Well they just know that no matter how many blogs and blog comments they swallow per day, they won’t be able to get them all down.  But they keep on swallowing, the gluttons.”

John looked up quizzically.  “You mean … my wife … she choked on too many blog comments?”

“Precisely, Mr. Watson,” said Sergeant Friday.  “Precisely.”

“I’m going to start a blog about this.  People need to know the truth about what’s killing bloggers” said John.

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This has been ever so much fun – and the level of talent in these stories is incredible.  I am closing the entries for the Gluttony portion of the writing contest.  A huge thank you to all who entered

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Filed under 7 Deadly Sins Writing Contest, General Mumblings

Gluttony: Post 1

Happy Wednesday, loyal readers.  Today I offer the first five entries in the “Gluttony” competition of the Deadly Sins Series.  I hope you enjoy them:

Lorna over at Lorna’s voice 

Proof of Life

Her problem was that she felt empty and everyone around her seemed full. She wanted to be filled with what everyone else had—the stuff that made them real, solid, visible. If she didn’t find a way to become solid, she was convinced she would evaporate into thin air.

And so she began collecting the evidence that would, when examined by anyone who cared to notice—and everyone would certainly notice her once she was done—provide proof of life. Her life. Her full life.

She began by collecting personalities. For every occasion, she had the perfect persona to fit in. None of them fit her, but that didn’t matter. What mattered is what those around her thought. Sex-pot, naïve little girl, perfectionist, klutz, intellectual star, joker, and compassionate helper: she was all of these people. Her closet was full of costumes for any situation. But she felt like a mannequin—the costumes were what people responded to, not her.

Still feeling empty, she began hoarding comfort. Solace, she found, came in a wide variety of packages. At first, she tried food and filled her mouth and belly with an odd assortment of indulgences. She chewed Double Bubble bubble gum only until the sugar was gone then inserted another piece. Her collection of tiny cartoon wrappers was a marvel to see. Wintergreen mints that were pink—she named them “Pink Things”—were another of her favorite splurges. She could effortlessly consume a bag a day. A large box of Fiddle Faddle was, to her, a single-serving size.

The comfort of sugar was, she found, short-lived, except around the belly. She abandoned sweets for alcohol, which could also be sweet both in taste and consequence. Alcohol was very comforting, indeed. She found herself wrapped in the warm and woozy world that one drink could never evoke, but many drinks always did. In that world where her blood was full of alcohol and her brain was empty of memory or inhibition, she could animate the mannequin in the costume and she felt full. Until the next day. But there was always another bottle of alcohol to unlock the key to that world, so she collected bottles of alcohol and emptied them along with herself.

The attention of men was another source of comfort for her. When she wanted, she could be sexy; but she rarely wanted to be sexy. Alcohol made her feel sexy, so alcohol had the added benefit of helping her to collect men. She wasn’t a slut or indiscriminate when drunk, but she was more willing to make love to her boyfriend or to the nice guy she met at the bar. She always made love; she never just had sex. Collecting trophies didn’t make her comfortable. Collecting men who adored her did.

Like lying on a hammock, things that are comfortable when young and supple start to hurt as age takes its toll. While she was busy collecting personalities and things to make her comfortable in a skin that she never felt she occupied, she began to ache. Her life of hoarding, of gluttony, had not fulfilled her. She felt more vacant, more vaporous, than when she began this quest. Something had to change. But what?

She felt no inner resources upon which to draw—there was nothing inside her empty shell. Yet she built a whole life around it. How did she do that?

Perhaps there was something inside of her all along. Perhaps her emptiness was perfect and she was blinded by the fallacy of fullness.

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Lisa  at Woman Wields Words

HAPPY EVER AFTER (NOT) GUARANTEED: CHLOE

“This is incredible!” Chloe said, “I can’t believe we opened the door between dimensions. Look at all the delicious food. It smells like heaven.”

Nobody answered. Chloe turned to see the faces of the other girls, but found herself looking through a carved golden doorframe at the dusty attic and feeble circle of candles they had lit moments before reciting the spell. She was all alone.

“Where are you?!” Chloe called, but heard only the grumble in her stomach reacting to the scintillating smells beckoning from an elegant hall filled on every available surface with colorful, aromatic and delicious-looking food. The room became a complex maze with passages lined by mounds of food. Every breath titillated her nose with the spiciness of cinnamon, baked apples, and exotic spices she could not name. The succulent scent of roasted meat and freshly baked bread made her stomach complain even more. She began to wander through the maze sampling anything that looked good enough to eat. Everything did.

Between mouthfuls she started talking, forgetting that her friends had not followed her through the door.

“Delicious!”

“I’ve never tasted anything so wonderful.”

“I love food.”

Chloe lost herself in the flavors and textures, moving deeper and deeper into the maze. If she looked back, she would no longer have been able to see the mysterious golden door. But she never looked back, always moving toward the next new taste sensation.

“It’s so wonderful to eat without Mom harassing me. ‘Don’t eat that! You’ll get fat!’” she said, stuffing a giant chocolate éclair into her mouth, eyes darting forward toward a pile of chicken wings, dripping with a savory sauce.

“You can eat all you would like here.” A deep voice spoke from somewhere behind an immense multi-layered wedding cake that reached toward the cathedral ceiling.

“Who said that?” Chloe asked, wandering around the cake, gripping the chicken wing as if it was a weapon.

She found a group of people crowded around a huge round table, laden with more exotic dishes, each looking more delightful than the rest. For the most part, nobody spoke. The table rang with the sounds of mastication, the scrape of spoon against dish, the groans of pleasure. The man who spoke wiped his mouth with a fancy well-used fabric napkin before attempting to heave his large frame out of his throne-like chair. He gave up and grabbed a turkey leg instead.

“Welcome to my kingdom,” he said. “You may eat anything and everything here, and nobody will stop you. My joy is providing the best of the best in food.”

At this point the other people at the table mumbled in agreement, some of them even saying welcome around mouthfuls. They all wore rich colorful fabrics stretched to the breaking point over abundant flesh. They all had looks of joy and contentment.

“Please join us,” the King said. The table seemed to expand and a chair appeared out of nowhere in front of a bowl of bubbling soup.

“I’d love to,” she said, and sat down in the cushioned chair, grabbing a jeweled glass full of sweet wine. She joined the feast.

She didn’t notice when some of her fellow diner’s movements began to slow, or the bodies glistening with sweat even with the slight movements of their hands. She didn’t notice that occasionally one diner would simply stop, his dying breathe filled with his last taste sensation. That person would disappear, while the table adjusted itself. Chloe kept eating.

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Nancy at Not Quite Old

Gluttony

I didn’t get my driver’s license until I was eighteen.

I let my friends think that I didn’t drive because my parents wouldn’t let me, but the truth was that I was a little afraid of driving. I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to do it. I finally couldn’t avoid it any longer. I was about to graduate high school. Time to pretend I was an adult.

I was right of course. I wasn’t very good at it. But lots of lousy drivers get their license and so did I. But that’s another story.

But despite the fact that I was a mediocre driver, I liked it. Because I realized that I had never been anywhere outside my neighborhood by myself.

As a kid, I had always liked being alone. But whatever was beyond walking distance meant that I had company.  Back in grade school, I often used to walk to Church after supper to say the rosary. I wasn’t especially religious. I liked having the church to myself.

I liked being alone in the car. The old car my father bought for us kids to use didn’t even have a radio. So I’d sing. I liked driving alone. I liked singing alone.  I could pretend I was good at both of them.

I also found that I could shop alone. I could buy things for myself without anyone’s approval. My mother didn’t even have to know what I bought. Of course, I didn’t have much money. But it was strangely satisfying to buy a lipstick and put it in my drawer. My own personal possession.

When the weather got warm, driving was especially sweet. I loved the dry heat when you first got in the car at the end of the day. (I still like that). And I liked the open windows and the floor vent that would ruffle my skirt. (I love air conditioning, but I miss that little breeze.)

In June I got an after-school job. Every day I drove by a small strawberry field. “Pick You Own” for fifty cents a pint.  A pint of strawberries is only a dozen or so. It only takes a few minutes to pick them.

And I started to take those few minutes every day on the way to work. I picked strawberries and ate them in the car. They were so fresh and yummy. I didn’t share them with anyone. That was the best part. With older sisters and a little brother, I had spent my whole childhood sharing. I savored the strawberries and I savored my selfishness.

I picked a pint and ate a pint every day. When the season was at its peak, I found I could pick three pints and still make it to work on time. But I couldn’t really eat three pints, even if I had a dollar and a half. But I usually had a dollar, so most days that’s what I picked. I ate half and saved the rest to eat on the way home.

The days got warmer and the car got hotter. The sun would still be shining at seven when I got out of work. And that second pint of strawberries would be very warm and juicy indeed.

The last weekend of strawberry season, my father ran an errand in my/(his) car.

He wasn’t happy when he got home. “Why is the car full of ants?” he asked.

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Harry at Dribbling Pensioner

Mr and Mrs glutton had three little gluttons, they were called, Fatty age 14, Tubby age 12 and Lardy age 10, and the whole family were obese.

They were so fat that the parents never went out very much, except to buy food at the nearest supermarket, they also took the fat brats with them to push the three trolleys.

The little glutton kids got a packed lunch to school each day, one lunch could have fed a whole class room, but they were still hungry when they got home.

They all got up at 7am to start breakfast which might have taken 45 minutes and when the kids went to school mum and dad went in to have a break with more fizzy drinks and a snack.

Mum and dad gluttons day consisted of food and tv, the only time they got exercise was going to make meals, and going to the toilet to make room for the next meal.

Of course all this gluttony was very bad for them all and they were all told this would be very serious for them by the doctors that tried to treat them, but it did no good at all.

Daddy and mummy glutton died within two months of each other, and with no-one to look after them the kids glutton were taken into a local care home for children.

Being a charity run home the children were well feed but did not get the amount of food that they were used to at home. So they all lost a lot of weight and fat and through time got down to the weight of normal children.

When they left the home and went to college there was no sign of gluttony and everyone treated them as normal.

They knew their life style of gluttony was wrong and stayed slim.
Fatty went on to work as a dietician, Tubby works as a fitness coach and Lardy is now a model.

So this story shows that gluttony kills, but it can be overcome with help.

 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Peg at – Peg-O-Leg

Gluttony: You’ll Spoil Your Appetite

Mom knocked only once; a perfunctory rap on the door before she walked into his room a scant second later.  Billy barely had time to hide the forbidden snack under his desk.  He took a quick swipe at his chin to erase any evidence before turning around to face his mother.

“Billy, time to get washed up for dinner.” Her eagle eye swept the room.

Her gaze rested on his chubby tummy, which was straining the button on his chinos.  A familiar frown settled on her face.

“You didn’t stop for a snack on the way home from school, did you?”  Her sharp gaze bored straight into her 12-year-old son’s eyes.

Billy called on all of his resources to resist her motherly mind-reading power and keep his expression one of wide-eyed innocence.  “No, of course not, Mom!  You know I’m not eating between meals.”  His virtuous tone of voice would have done a saint proud.  “I’m trying to slim down – like we agreed!”

She continued looking at him for a long moment, as if she could compel him to give up his secrets through sheer force of will, then turned away.

“Remember we’re having the Silvermans for dinner tonight.” Mom said, and then shut the door behind her.

“Whew!”  Billy exhaled loudly, slumping bonelessly in his chair.  That was a close one.  After a quick glance over his shoulder to make sure his mother hadn’t snuck back in the room, he drew his sweet treat up from its hiding place.

No need for Mom to know about his stop at Kerlands Sweet Shoppe that afternoon.  She was constantly on him about his weight, telling him he shouldn’t eat so much, especially before dinner.  “You’ll spoil your appetite,” she always said.  But he was always hungry.  What was he supposed to do?  He was a growing boy!

Kerlands was loaded with candy and cakes, and young Mrs. Kerland was just as sweet as her wares.  “I wouldn’t mind having a piece of that!”  That’s what all the guys said about her.  Usually Billy just pressed his face longingly to the glass, but today he had gotten up his courage and went inside.

He smiled as he sunk his teeth into the treat, the sweet, red juice dribbling down his chin.  He just couldn’t resist gooey, sticky sweets!

He finished up his snack, licked his fingers – mmm, mmm good! – then stood up.  Time to get washed or he was risking Mom’s mighty wrath for sure.  He slowly shuffled to the door and tried to drum up some enthusiasm for the upcoming meal.  They’d had the Silvermans for dinner just last night.

“Oh well, the Silvermans are ok.” he thought.  It wasn’t as if he was full after the little morsel he’d just had.  “Who knows?  Maybe tonight Mom will let me eat some of their  brains.”

Billy shuffled just a bit faster.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

All right – you still have 10 days to get your entry in.  If you don’t want to write, please consider being a judge!!

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The Deadly Sin Series – Who is In?

 

Hieronymus Bosch - The Seven Deadly Sins (deta...

WHO?  All the blogging buddies, writers, writer wanna-bes, friends, strangers, and others.

WHAT?  A contest series based on the Seven Deadly Sins (Gluttony, Pride, Envy, Lust, Anger, Greed and Sloth).

WHEN?  Starting today (or whenever I get the drop box set up) and through May 4th, 2012 entries will be received for the first round in the series  which will be “Gluttony” (chosen at random).  Topics for subsequent contests will also be chosen randomly until all seven topics have been exhausted.  A definitive schedule has not been determined but as long as there is interest, and I am physically (and mentally) able,  I will continue the series.

WHERE?  Right here on WordPress.  I will host the series, gather the entries, select a panel of judges, post the finalists, post polls for reader voting, and award prizes.

WHY?  Because we can.  And because I want to.

* * * * * * * * * * *

I think it is quite ironic that one of the questions in my “Let’s Play 20 Questions” interview this week with the Byronic Man was pertaining to the 7 Deadly Sins.  Learning that continued practice of Gluttony as a favorite deadly sin could, in fact become deadly, I chose Sloth as it’s replacement.   Just today, Lisa over at Woman Wields Words wrote about Envy.  I guess, perhaps, it is true that great minds think alike.

This is an idea that I have been kicking around for quite some time now.  I am proposing a series of writing contests, each centered around one of the Seven Deadly Sins.  If you wish to participate, and complete the series, you would have an anthology of pieces that would reflect your ability and range.  When someone asks to see a sample of your writing, you could toss your scarf over your shoulder and oh so casually say, “Well, I do happen to have an anthology based on the Seven Deadly Sins which showcases my talent”.  Or some such.

I will host the series, gather the entries, and post them.  From all entries submitted, a selection of 5 finalists (as determined by a panel of judges) will be posted for a vote for each round.  Readers will vote on their favorites via a computerized poll.  After all the rounds have been completed the winning entries of each round (7 Deadly Sin entries) will be pitted against one another for the Grand Prize.  Which I haven’t determined yet, but it will be something fabulous.

For the first contest “Gluttony” the winner will receive a sinfully delicious (see what I did there?) batch of k8edid’s Top-Secret World-Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies, vacuum packed and shipped overnight to their destination (mainland U.S. only) AND a $20 donation will be made, in their name, to the Food Bank or other hunger-fighting charitable organization of their choosing.  If the winning entry is from a writer outside the contiguous 48 US states, the winner shall designate a local eatery for which they will receive a $20 gift certificate (or cash) – or the winner may wish to have donated, in their name, an additional $20 to the charitable organization of their choosing.  Each contest will have a “themed” prize awarded and a charitable donation made to an appropriate organization, designated by the winner.  (I don’t know, but for “Lust” is there a Hookers’ Benevolent Fund??)

Everybody wins.  You get to flex your writing muscles and amass a themed anthology.  We get to read the fabulous posts.  Winners get prizes…and charitable organizations get donations.  I get to deduct the donations on my taxes!!!  If Darla wins, she will make a fabulous vlog post!!!

Of course, there must be rules.  But they will be simple.

  • Each entry must be 600 words or less.
  • One entry per round
  • You may use the same characters and settings or you may change it up with each round.
  • You may use any genre that you wish for each round.
  • Entries must be submitted by the deadline, which will be announced at the beginning of each round and will be no less than 2 weeks.
  • Entries submitted must be your own original work.
  • You may participate in all the rounds to complete the series; or as few or as many as you choose.
  • Oh, and the series is called DEADLY SINS so in each entry someone should be dead, dying, damaged or in grave danger.

It is going to be a lot of fun.  Okay, who’s in?

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Disclaimer:  I will be also writing an entry for each round (because I want to have fun, too).  However, my entries will not be entered into the judging.

If you want to play along but don’t want to commit to writing seven stories – please consider being a judge.  I   I have 4 people (non-bloggers) in mind, but it would be nice to have a “jury of your peers” to help determine the finalists of each round.  Just let me know, but I’m hoping you’ll write.

 

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Filed under 7 Deadly Sins Writing Contest, General Mumblings, Uncategorized