Sunday, August 15, 2010

Where is the Saturday Centus?

Jenny Matlock

So this week I was so pumped and ready for a new Centus to jumpstart my creative juices. I woke up early for work on Saturday morning to check and see what the new prompt was that would somehow inspire so many great stories. I had planned on reading the prompt in the morning before work to give myself something to think about throughout the day.

Normally, I spend my workdays wandering around asking people if they need help finding anything and pondering why parents buy the screeching toys for their kids that have already annoyed them in just the few minutes they've been in the store.

Or I see things like this -

a remote controlled cooler, and think. Only in America.
Only in America would people be hanging out drinking, and all be so lazy that none of them wants to get up to get more beer, and instead would rather invest fifty bucks in paying for a cooler that, by remote control, can bring beers directly to them. Will we ever need to get off the couch again?

Or I imagine things like this -

when I look at the cardboard cut-outs we have on display.

Or try to guess what customer might actually buy this-

I thought it would be much more productive to spend my time thinking of what to do with the prompt rather than all of these. So I clicked on the Saturday Centus link and saw the same Centus as last week. It hadn't been updated. It was still early in the morning, so I thought, well maybe she hasn't gotten around to posting it.

After a few hours of boredom interspersed with girls screaming about the Edward Cullen dolls with built in glitter, the long debates over which Silly Bandz to buy, and explaining to customers how we are not racist just because we don't happen to have your country represented in our World Cup merchandise, it was my lunch break.

I used the internet on my phone to see if maybe the prompt was posted now, give myself some sort of purpose and mission for the next few hours, but once again, the link took me to the old Centus. Huh? Well I'll just keep waiting.

When I got home, I clicked my Centus button and no... Still no new prompt. Was my link wrong? I clicked on the Saturday Centus link off of Jenny's blog just to be sure. Still "Objects in the Mirror.." Alright, well I'll just check tomorrow morning. Save it to ponder about at work tomorrow.

The next morning, (today) same issue. Hmmm...lunch break. Still no. I clicked the comments button to see if anyone had said anything about there not being a new prompt this week. No one mentioned a thing. Was something wrong with Jenny?! My mind went into worry mode.

When I got home from work I decided to go a different route, and went to Jenny's page directly. Made the html as simple as possible. I saw the post made by Mr. Jenny, so surely everything was fine. But why was there no Centus? I kept scrolling...

Ah! There it was. It HAD been posted Saturday morning. And already 26 of you had not only seen the prompt but already submitted! I was very behind to say the least, but excited to finally start.

The prompt this week is: "I listened to them from my perch on the top step and didn't know whether to laugh or to cry."

My take that came out of it I've titled, The Old Family Tree. The prompt is used in bold.


The Old Family Tree

Like a tree, the lines on his face told his age. Rooted to the same spot on the porch for 50 years, he took in the sunrise.


"Don't leave without saying bye to your Grandpa boy." He grumbled.

The boy bounding off the porch stopped. Embarrassed.

"Uh bye, Grandpa."

"That's better.  Now pull your pants up! People should know you, not your underwear."

The boy obliged then continued walking.

"Billy! Sit, I need to tell you a story." He always had stories.

"But I-"

"During WWII the..."

I listened to them from my perch on the top step and didn't know whether to laugh or to cry. 

That wasn't Billy. He was talking to the newspaper boy, Enrique.



(This has been part of the Saturday Centus hosted by Jenny Matlock at Off My Tangent.)


  1. doesn't all older relatives always have a story? nice take on SC

  2. Poor Enrique, ha. It's sad, heartfelt and poignant all rolled into one. I loved this. So realistic. Good job.

  3. This was wonderfully evocative. And Enrique must be a good boy, to humor the old man. Regardless of his droopy drawers :) Loved this!

  4. Awww, listen to the stories for someday you will tell your own...

    Great take on it no matter how you got here. I had to do the same thing :)

  5. Way cool take on the prompt Lissa! You really squeezed out a wonderful story in only 100 words! Excellent job!

  6. A brilliant tale, lol - I loved it. ;-)

  7. Beautifully written bringing tears to my eyes.

  8. Well how bout that? I like spitting mouthwash too!

  9. Wait! I have a new comment up each Saturday at 3:00 AM MST.

    Here's a link to it:

    Tell me where you looked?

    I'm going to check that button and see what's up.

  10. I'm back. I apologize. I forgot to put the tag into the post that links it to that button.

    OK, now I'm going to read your story. I read everything up to that point and then got concerned.

    I'll be more mindful of this!

    My apologies.

  11. Wow. Girl. I really put you through the wringer. You can always look in my sidebar at the bottom to link, too.

    And after all that frustration you did a great job with the prompt!

    Loved your twist to the story.


    I know I'm apologizing too much here but I feel really bad.