VGSA
Kid Memories

Finding Softball Diamonds in the Rough

I’ve been thinking a lot about softball lately. From that moment a few months ago when it popped into my head and gave me the name for this blog, to now as I sit here trying to find a story, the memories of my childhood passion are always ready to help.

I don’t recall what year it was exactly, late 70’s or early 80’s most likely. The Vancouver Girl’s Softball Association(VGSA) had finally secured a home of its own. A portion of the old Klineline sand and gravel pit land would be cleared to make way for the complex. In those early years, before there was money to pave the parking lot or even procure an official sign to mark the entrance, making our way into the facility felt like an off-road adventure.

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Flash Fiction

Reel Them In

This is a submission for Monday’s Finish the Story challenge. Write a story of 100-150 words excluding the first line provided and incorporating the photo prompt.

fools lake

Copyright – Barbara W Beacham

Dropping her line into Fool’s Lake she patiently waited for something to bite, casting out the negative thoughts and doubts that constantly swam through her mind and nibbled at the edge of her consciousness. She had never tried her luck here before, always sticking with what she knew and using proven bait. As she teetered and swayed slightly, absorbing the waves of heat from overhead and begging for even the faintest ripple, time seemed to stop. Then, mercifully, the strike came. They laughed! This wasn’t just an obligatory,head shaking ‘Man, do I feel sorry for her’ type of chuckle either. The convention hall was filled with ‘I just about drowned in my cocktail’ kind of laughter. The joke she had worked on for weeks had hooked them. Now it was time to reel them in.

Click the frog to see stories from other writers who have accpeted the challenge this week and to submit your own.

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Flash Fiction

An Audition to Remember

Friday Fictioneers is a writing challenge hosted by the talented Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Writers from near and far use the photo prompt provided to create a 100 word piece of fiction. Click the frog below this post to add your own story and check out everyone’s submissions.

garden-maze

Copyright – Melanie Greenwood

I seem to be seeing the brain, specifically my mom’s brain, in every challenge lately.

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Her thoughts and movements were like a troupe of actors reinventing themselves, weaving through the maze of roles that were new and more difficult to them. Their greeness kept her trapped in a maddening script of continuous wrong turns. Lefts pretended to be rights and rights swore they were lefts. She shuffled and bumped into the shadowed corners of their stage, stuck until the faint memory shone through and illuminated her mark, briefly. When darkness returned, as it would today, tomorrow, and always, rehearsal began again. She’d practice, not knowing the curtain would fall before she ever perfected her part.

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Mom's Brain

Super Bowl Monday Blues

Monday – February 2, 2015

All day I felt down, kind of depressed. Blank.  Physically I wasn’t at my best which could have been a contributing factor to my less than perky mental state. My body was working double time to correct all of the bad decisions I made on game day. But a hangover created from pulled pork tamale pie, what seemed like gallons of mimosas followed by beer, and a grand total of about three ounces of water taken in over the course of twelve hours wasn’t the sole perpetrator of my condition.  Sure, the game itself, or more accurately it’s outcome, was weighing on me too. Shaking my head everytime that final down replayed itself in my mind only served to worsen the migraine that was stabbing and thumping behind my eyes, but I couldn’t stop myself from doing it. That innate response to disbelief and disappointment couldn’t be controlled. Three feet and three chances squandered. Gah! Commence skull cracking head shake. But the Seahawk’s loss to the Patriots wasn’t really the true culprit in my sulleness either. Super Bowl Monday has, for a very long time, been a day of discomfort born of something much more than who won and lost or my level of indulgence from the previous night. Continue reading

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housecall providers
Uncategorized

Hospice Volunteering – Not Always What You Expect

This is a story I wrote about my experience volunteering for Housecall Providers, a non-profit organization in Portland, Oregon that provides both primary care visits and hospice in the patient’s home.  The story was published this week in the quarterly newsletter that goes out to all of their donors.

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My phone chimes and the pop-up notice displays simply… Jean, reminding me that it’s time to get on the road. I hardly need the prodding, for Wednesday has quickly become my favorite day of the week. When I enter Adella’s Adult Foster Home, the women she cares for are sitting around the dining table in the cozy, warm common area, finishing up their breakfast. I am always struck by how perfectly kept this home is, how comfortable all its residents appear, and how welcoming Adella is to me. All of my preconceived notions about care facilities were quickly forgotten when I began visiting Jean. “Miss Jean, Chris is here!” Adella says with an enthusiastic smile and then quickly gets Jean settled back in her room for our visit.

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Flash Fiction

Old Sparky

Friday Fictioneers is a writing challenge hosted by the talented Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Writers from near and far use the photo prompt provided to create a 100 word piece of fiction. Click the frog below this post to add your own story and check out everyone’s submissions.

electricity

Copyright Ted Strutz

“Don’t plug the damn thing in!” Riley screamed as he jumped out of the contraption nearly fumbling the instruction manual, and, truth be told, almost soiling his uniform.

Right now he missed Old Sparky, so easy to use and plenty of life left in him.

“Oh, sorry Boss” was all that his very own Barney Fife could say as he stood there daydreaming with the cord still too close to the juice for Riley’s liking. “Put that down. We aren’t there yet!”. “Once we’re ready to practice, I’ll let you know”.

“Boss, will I get to say ‘Dead man walking’?”

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Flash Fiction

Ignorance and Bliss

This was written for Monday’s Finish the Story challenge. 100-150 word limit starting with “She was unaware she was being watched..” and using the photo prompt for inspiration.

wolf

Copyright – Barbara W. Beacham

She was unaware she was being watched, no coveted, by those fierce, golden orbs. That which would end her, hidden and waiting. It was probably for the best. Given an option of knowing or not knowing she always said she would choose the former and did. Always safe in the certain. Ignorance of what would be finally allowed her to live fully, even if briefly. Terror and the stabbing pain of her organs trying to win the race could have been the last thing she felt. Instead, as she navigated her way through the final minutes of beats and breath without a compass, nothing but bliss.

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Flash Fiction

Remember When

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction Challenge.  200ish words of fiction based on the photo prompt:

 

bookstore

 

Nostalgia immediately stirred her senses, making her happy and sad all at once. Her mouth watered as the tang of fresh baked sourdough hit her taste buds, reminding her of the warm little shop that used to be just a short bicycle ride from her home. Her toes wiggled, remembering how the cold edge of the shoehorn tickled her heal as it guided her foot into those loafers she coveted as a 6th grader. What ever happened to that nice man in his suit and tie who, after helping her on with the shoes, had watched her walk back and forth across his store, confirming that the fit was just right? Her eyes stung as she remembered shopping with her mother. The plan they followed didn’t begin and end with a single massive purveyor staffed with strangers. It required more thoughtfulness. “Mr. Selby sponsors your brother’s baseball team, so we’ll get the potroast at his butcher shop” her mother would tell her as they developed their route. Community and connectedness mattered more to her mother than the time it took to make multiple stops. As she stepped into that bookstore and smelled it’s glorious mustiness she thought “Sorry Amazon, we’re through.”

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Virginia Woof
Uncategorized

Why I Love Virginia Woof and Outside In

He’s long and lean with sinewy muscles that contract and ripple as he runs his abbreviated routes. Golden hair with swirls of black accents give him an exotic look. When he arrives the place becomes electric with happy, anxious energy. He’s greeted with a boisterous “Neil!”, much like the portly accountant Norm was whenever he planted himself in his regular spot at the far corner of the bar in the television show “Cheers”. He excites the crowd as he prances in, towering over all of them and grinning big under a nose that can’t help but lead the way. He’s Neil the brindle Greyhound, one of about 40 dogs that spend their weekdays at Virginia Woof Dog Daycare while their people toil away in the city. Continue reading

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