Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Pastville, USA - Flash Fiction - A to Z Challenge

Joe cheerily greeted the woman at the switchboard.

"Busy day, Marion? You look exhausted."

She smoothed her poodle skirt admiringly. "Orders for 50 Davy Crockett coonskin caps, 2 service calls for TV tubes, 12 tickets for South Pacific, 15 orders for transistor radios...oh, and your father wants to know if we can install one of those new window air conditioners.  I told him to check with Mr. Earl."

Joe grinned. "You sure you didn't put the bug in his ear?"

Marion patted her bouffant. "You're a sharp one, Joe. Go on in, he's waiting."

He took a quick glance at his cellphone, then pocketed it and tapped at the door to his left. "Hey Dad, ready for some dinner?"


Meatloaf, mashed potatoes and Jello salad accompanied by the crooning of Rosemary Clooney and Perry Como, followed by an egg cream at Woolworth's. Not bad, all things considered.  His father had been unusually chatty;  he chalked that up to the Salesman Of the Year award, newly displayed on the living room wall of his neat little cottage.  As they waited for the tubes to warm up so they could watch Ed Sullivan together, a gleaming 57 Chevy pulled into the drive. Joe couldn't help admiring the lithe legs of the nurse as she climbed out in her starched uniform;  he wondered if his Dad was paying attention as well.

Nope. He was engrossed in a bowl of the newly introduced Sugar Smacks.


"So how is he?" Joe asked, waving away the doctor's cigarette smoke.

Dr. Earl flipped through the chart. "In remarkable health, actually. As you know, we monitor his vitals and heart rhythyms wirelessly, and there've been no alarms.  He seems to have settled in quite nicely.  Asks about you, but nothing about your mother or any others from his ... past isn't the right word, is it? And yet, it is the town's name.  Maybe we should change that at some point. Let's say "other life" for our purposes. You believe that he's content?"

Joe sighed. "It seems he's more content than just about anyone I know. In fact, everyone that works here seems to be on cloud nine as well. I'm almost considering moving here myself."

The doctor chuckled. "Well, we do have an opening at the garage if you know anything about repairing old cars. Most job openings are snapped up in a heartbeat here in Pastville, despite the strictures on clothing, technology, and such. Out of work actors and college students in particular seem to love it here.  I suppose you can hope ... and again, I'm not sure hope is the right word ... that you're genetically predisposed to your father's condition, in which case we'd have a home for you in our late 1970s subdivision.  Like funeral arrangements, it's never too soon to start pre-planning for your dementia.  And it is a rather nice place to be, far better than those smelly old warehouses referred to as retirement homes. Think about it, OK? There's already a huge waiting list for that group. After all, who wouldn't want to spend their old age being stoned, listening to the Doors and watching endless repeats of Barney Miller, Carol Burnett and Laugh In ... "

P is also for "prompts" today, as in fellow blogger Laura's Bambrey's new book  100 Blog Prompts.
Check out the link or pay her a visit at her blog Daily Dodo


  1. Hmmm...hoping for dementia. :) Fun story Li. Now I'm wondering what type I'd like to live in.

  2. Great story Li - I think a lot of people would opt for a lady of the manor - Mr Darcy's wife kinda dementia... Thanks so much for the shout out - it's really kind of you!
    Laura xxx

  3. What a great story. I'd love to be in Haight-Asbury in the 60's.

  4. "Pre-planning for your dementia." Wonderful idea! Oooh, I could go back to a time when MTV really was for music videos!


  5. Wonderful concept, love to live in Pastville. Think I'd pick the summer of love; I always wanted to be at Woodstock.

  6. I think I'd want to be a postman in Pastville, so I could enjoy all the different subdivisions. Especially if they go back to the 1880s or so, so I could start my day on horseback.