Thursday, June 30, 2011

Holiday Hijinks

Flags rippled in the faint evening breeze. In the dim light of the just-set sun, the plot gleamed with a newly-buffed sheen. People moved with reverence among the flags. Except for the children, who ran with yelps of laughter. Eugene Kosinksi looked down from his bunting-draped platform and grimaced, worried about the kids ruining the refined ambience he had worked so hard to create. He worried whether too many people would visit, worried not enough would come. Most of all, he worried he had given away too much. No, no… tonight was the least he could do. The dark deepened. He reached for his cell phone. Now.

The three spotlights flicked on. The huge flag hoisted up the pole, America the Beautiful thrummed the night. A large ooh wafted into the air. The crowd stood reverent, even the kids, hands held hearts, and gazed at the red and blue filling the field of night. The song ended with raucous applause. Eugene’s chest swelled with pride as he observed his seven-acre empire of F-150s, Explorers, and Fiestas glittering under the light beams criss-crossing the sky. Just wait until the free hotdogs, he thought and rubbed his hands together. Just wait until the balloon launch.


I'm going green this week -- Patriot Ford is an encore, a recycle. I originally wrote this last year, but it fits the upcoming 4th of July holiday. If you wish to read a review of the story, Susan Tepper discusses this wee fiction here: HERE. I found her review googling myself looking for a paper I'd written for the day job. Sorta scary what's out there and you don't even know it...

Writing-wise: One grad school application in the admissions queue, another in process. A couple of chapbooks subbed to contests. The gazillionith draft of my first novel 80 pages from the end, the third one percolating merrily in my head. I've suffered pins-and-needles in my right shoulder, an old injury exacerbated by my writing habit, but will start physical therapy soon.

Reading-wise: Inhaling Jenna Blum's THE STORMCHASERS. Magnifico! And it even has a bipolar character! Also, the 2011 Pushcart Prize Winners (I laugh, I cry, I feel like hanging up my pen, these stories and poems are sooooooooo excellent).

Lot's to celebrate this weekend: living in the land of the free, my children celebrating another year, good weather, a colorful garden, a day off with a pedicure for my tootsies. Peace...


  1. What could be more American than free hot dogs at a car dealership?

    It sounds like you have a great many irons in the fire, Linda - congratulations! Have a happy 4th!

  2. I remember this one! For whatever it means, "Just wait until the free hotdogs" is one of your most memorable lines for me. Maybe because its implied anticipation and nigh-scheming is so different from what I typically expect of you.

    Enjoy Blum and the 4th, Linda.

  3. Oh, Beautiful, for spacious SUVs....

    Nicely cynical.

  4. If only our car showrooms were as much fun in the UK! Some of yours look like its the 4th July every day. This was fun to read. Irony always feels good on a friday.

  5. Love it ... You captured those dealerships perfectly...

  6. I remember this one too. It's still an excellent reminder of how merchandising has bastardized more than one holiday, all for the sake of making a buck.

  7. Love this Linda, just love the whole American feel throughout, and how great for you to find such a nice review of it.

    I hope those pins and needles vanish soon, I know all too well not only how painful but also how frustrating that can be.

    Congratulations on all these irons in the fire! I swear you're Super Woman and not even in disguise. :)

  8. A whole basket of lovely Linda things to enjoy here: a terrific story (love his name! love the whole thing! adorable!); some happy news about your writing and a gusty review of other writerly stuff! I get pins and needles in my hands all the time when I'm writing. It's like using somebody else's hands to write... some klutzy person's hands. It's seriously a wonder I don't get more typos.
    Happy 4th! Happy pedicure! Happy hot dogs!

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