Interruption

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Today’s photo comes courtesy of Roger Bultot.  Thanks, Roger.

In the “I’d Rather Die Than …” category comes this little tale of a police officer and an off-duty cop when a “disruption” hits.

Albeit re-written to an extent, this story was originally called “Interrupted” and first appeared on June 12, 2014.  Please enjoy.

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BANG!  BANG!

The people in the street screamed.  Officer Carson drew his gun from the holster. “Get down, everybody!  DOWN!”

BANG!

“Hickman, you see him?”

Off-duty Hickman eyed the balcony.  “I see him.  Let me try something.”

Hickman darted across the street.

BANG!  BANG!

He ran up the fire escape.

BANG!  CLICK.  CLICK.

Hickman jumped the gunman in mid-reload, almost choking him.  “Drop it!  DROP IT!”

The back-up wagon later came, taking the gunman away.  Carson shook Hickman’s hand.  “Great job, Hick.  That was pretty rough.”

“No, I’m happy it happened.  I HATE going to the dentist!”

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It Was A Very Good Year

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This picture comes to us courtesy of a one Al Forbes.  Thanks, Al.

From November 6, 2014, comes this story, extensively re-written.  I don’t know if it’s a superior version or not, I just know I drug it out of mothballs and went to work.

The restaurant mentioned in this story actually exists, by the way, and is one of my favorites — the Gas Light Grill in Leawood, Kansas.  Elegant food, a classic jazz ensemble and a dance floor.  Love it!

I’m a fan of vintage stuff, although this story really has nothing to do with cars. It’s actually about a guy going out with a younger woman and the guy feels the age gap is, for him, anyway, an elephant in the room.

You see, Tom and Janine are on their third date and she has chosen this restaurant.

So … let’s listen in —

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Tom’s third date with Beautiful Janine started feeling awkward.

“Janine, why’d you choose this place?”

“Why wouldn’t I? I like steaks, candlelight, soft jazz with dance floors …”

“ …and thought I might like it because I’m older, right?”

Janine sighed.  “Older?  Look, Tom. You’re 52, you never married. But, you’re accomplished and respectable. I’m 30.  Men my age are nothing but boys.  You’re like vintage wine aged to perfection …”  She took his hand. “… and good enough for me.  Dance?”

As they danced, Tom held her in his arms, softly singing, “It poured sweet and clear, it was a very good year …”

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Some Frank Sinatra to add to the mood.

 

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You Got Another “Think” Coming

 

Presenting Dale Rogerson’s photo, everyone.  Thanks, Dale.

Dale’s photo here reminded me of something futuristic, so I thought I’d write something science fiction-y.  A “thought conversation,” if you please.

Why do I picture this happening to the Sonic Guys, Pete and T.J.?

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In the gym cafe, Pete read the thoughts of his buddy Tim ogling the female eye-candy.

“That one’s married …  that one has a boyfriend …”

Pete interjected.  “Tim, I taught you to read minds, not pry into people’s lives!”

“Dude, you can’t get arrested for what you’re thinking.  Look! That girl … she wishes she looked sexier … no kidding!  Look at that sorry butt!”

“That Girl” approached Tim, smiled, grabbed his front waistband, took his smoothie and poured it down the inside front of Tim’s pants.  “For your information, you’re not the ONLY mind-reader in this gym … you thoughtless TURD!”

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My Al Hirschfeld-style characature by Rochelle “Hershfeld” Fields.

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Well … What Are You Gonna Do?

On September 13, 2013, I published the first of what would be a series called Seven Days In Jerusalem.  The story was called “Sheitel.”  In it, the “Tourist” comes to meet his old friend, “Chaim Glicksman,” to catch up on old times.  Now, in the second installment, Chaim takes Tourist in and around Jerusalem to see the sites.

Photo by C.E. Ayr.  Thank-you, sir.

I based this story on an actual anecdote told by our Israeli tour guide about an incident that happened while shooting a Frank Sinatra movie in 1969.

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Chaim pointed at the field. “The stunt pilot for Cast A Giant Shadow got lost during the filming and landed here —- on what was our airfield.”

“They mistook it for a hostile act?”

“Hey, you set down your plane on property we use for our two-plane air force, the farmers will surely come at you with axes … which they did!  So, the pilot, scared witless, got out of the plane, hands raised, yelled whatever Hebrew words he knew:  ‘Shalom!  L’chaim!  Chutzpah!  Gefilte fish!’

“The farmers rolled their eyes, threw up their hands in disgust and went back to work!”

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“The Eternal One Does Not Deceive”

This story originally appeared on July 7, 2015.

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Photo graciously provided by our wonderful Sandra Crook.  Thank-you, Sandra!

The image reminded me of some of the equipment of an old agronomy compound I visited back in October of 2014 (now an historical site and museum) formerly owned by the Aaronsohn Family.

One of the sisters, Sarah, played an important role in their story.

And this is it …

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After four days of excruciating torture by the Turks, Sarah asked for permission to change her bloodied dress.  A small price, she thought, for an intercepted message to the Brits.  She wrote a letter awhile back telling the story of how she hoped the efforts of the NILI* Spy Ring would destroy the Ottoman Empire’s cruel dominance in exchange for British rule in Palestine.

The soldiers escorted her through her family’s agronomy compound to the farmhouse.  Walking into the bathroom, she grabbed the gun concealed in the wall panel and used it on herself.

Now, they would NEVER break her.

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*NILI stood for “Netzach Israel Lo Ishaker  (1 Samuel 15:29)  which, translated into English, is also the title of the story.

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The Late Early Bloomer

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Photo provided by Shaktiki Sharma.

This story originally appeared May 1, 2013.

We get Jack Hibbler’s shocking account about finding out what his dad’s dying words, “Jack, you should never have been born,” REALLY meant.

I guess you don’t mess with forces beyond your control, do you?

It’s thirty years later and this is all Jack had to say of it. Although he never went insane, he’s never been the same since.

 

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Ben Hibbler, Jr., my Pop, died on September 12, 1987 and told me I shouldn’t have been born.

I didn’t know how right he was until that fateful day I read his diary.

I went up to the attic, found his typewriter and the notebook where he put his secret writings.  Leafing through the Underwood typefaces, the pages getting yellower towards the back, I noticed the oldest page printed in a different, fancy typeface.

Attached was a newspaper clipping with his birthdate on it. I laid it beside today’s morning newspaper.

Both read:  “Benjamin Hibbler, Jr., born September 13th, 1987 …”

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The Peace Summit

Originally published August 12th, 2016.

Two people meet.

Each has a legacy of hatred for the other, handed to them from being on opposite sides of a great war.

It is Christmas Eve and they meet in a church as a soloist sings.

So, who exactly are these people?  It doesn’t matter.  What matters is leaving the past as past and moving forward into the future — a lesson we all could use, huh?

Merry Christmas to all of you!  Yes, I mean ALL of you.

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The woman smiled.  “How do you do?”

The man bowed.  “Nice to meet you.”

They sat down in the pew.

“Surely He taught us to love one another …”

Her thoughts burned.  Blue-eyed devil!  Your race imprisoned us.  My family suffered for it!

His mind raced. Rodents!  Your people used my uncle as a human shield!

“Chains shall He break, for the slave is our brother …”

On hearing this, he re-thought.  She wasn’t responsible.

She realized it, too.  We weren’t even born yet.

Together they wept, holding the other’s hand, hearing —-

“ … and in His name, all oppression shall cease.”

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