The Red Dress

Throw a bunch of words in a hat, pull one out, and write a story using that word.

This week’s word: DRAW.


Learn to Draw. Simple as that. It’s what the sign says, and the business card too. The business card from the teacher, from her niece’s birthday, he was there and so calm and so caring, she could see why they liked him. All the way from the Valley, over the hill, thirty minute drive, she could see why they did it, why they liked him, so calm and generous and caring.

And so she is here, in her car, outside his building, Learn to Draw. Ages 5+, paint, sketch, sculpt, all easier said than done.

Especially for her, because five she is not. Not ten, not even twenty, she’s an adult, pushing thirty. This art class for kids and she’s an adult, doesn’t belong. She should go home, turn around, go back to her home. Where she normally goes, where she’s comfortable, after work, all night long. But the traffic is too much, thirty minutes here is ninety minutes home, and how often does she come here, to Santa Monica, to the west side? So pretty and quaint, filled with fun places and lovely times.

No, she’s come all the way here, she’ll make good of her time. Not art class, she’s not five, but there’s more to this life, there’s storefronts and there’s shopping, there’s dresses, purses, boots, belts, hats, accessories, shoes. Yes, there’s plenty to do.

So she goes into Starbucks, perks up with some coffee. Then it’s shopping, store to store, and she’s not here to buy. Just trying things on, how they touch and they feel, how they feel on her body, on her skin, around her curves. Down her back, over her butt, down her legs, to the floor. Over her shoulders, cross her breasts, down her belly and down below. It feels good, it feels grand, it feels pretty and smooth. She feels like a million, so chic and so cute. And you know, she looks good, she looks really good too.

Yes, she likes this dress, she likes it a lot. Fits her snug, fits her perfect, and maybe she will, she’ll treat herself. She wasn’t planning to but wasn’t that the point, why she came here, over the hill and to the art class with the caring teacher who her sister and niece love so much. A treat, something new, something different and pleasurable and exciting and fun. Yes, this red dress, she will buy it, because it is fun.

And with that it is done, it is purchased, it’s time to go home. An expensive night, more than planned, but that doesn’t matter because she feels good and won’t let anything ruin her mood. Her pretty dress, all for her, it’s something she deserves. She works hard in a man’s world, and sometimes you need a pick-me-up, a treat, to pamper yourself. A new dress to feel pretty, to feel special and strong. To get through the day and the week all year long.

Yes, sometimes you just need to treat yourself. Treat yourself and then nothing can go wrong. She’s on her way home now, left the store and to her car. Down the street, to the freeway and as just she guessed, it is stopped, filled with traffic, a long drive home. But she doesn’t mind, turns on the radio, lets the tunes fill her car. And with her dress and her music, she continues forward, continues driving, continues on home.


Zone In, Zone Out

Throw a bunch of words in a hat, pull one out, and write a story (two pages, double spaced) using that word. NOTE: This is a weekly exercise. Pick the word at the beginning of the week, post the story by the end of the week.

This week’s word: ZONE


Two years they’d been planning this. Two years and today is the day. Guests arrived, everything in place. Two years of venue scouting and interviews and invitations and food tasting, planning and coordinating and yes yes yes, nod your head yes. For this is her night, her event, all you can do is agree.

Agree and zone, zone in, zone out. To college, to your frat brothers, drinking and partying, having a good time. To high school, baseball, the game winning homerun. She goes on, the flowers and the roses, red with some orange, to match the dresses, not hers, the bridesmaids, and you, you’re back in high school, circling the bases, your team on their feet, the entire crowd cheering, a game winning homerun. To the finals, first time ever, for you, for your team, for everyone, to state championships and then nationals, the cheers, the attention, the fun.

They’re here. Get ready, they’re here, ready to go. He can see them, pairing off, lining up, the walk down the aisle, the time has come. The band begins to play. That band, oh man, two thousand extra for a band. What’s wrong with a DJ, what’s wrong with that? He lost that battle, lost it big time, didn’t take up any more. Just nod and smile, nod and smile and zone.

Zone, zone in, zone out. Zone in, zone out. To that one time, Junior year, spring break in Miami, best time of his life. How it happened he didn’t know. Why it happened, he didn’t know that either. But for once he was on, suave and cool, doing the right thing, he was the man. And the result? Diane, him, his hotel room, alone. The hottest girl he’s ever been with, hottest girl he’s ever seen, together, with him, alone. And it’s good, she’s making him feel real good. What did he do? What did he do to deserve this? This Goddess, this beauty, sexy and soft and smooth, this perfect woman, arched back, long brown hair down her sides, perky breasts standing firm as she bounds up and down, riding him hard, sweating, grinding, she lowers down, in for a kiss, and —

“I do” he says to the priest as he looks at his bride. The priest continues on. “Do you take this man to be your husband, to love and to cherish, to have and to hold, in sickness and in health, till death do you part?” “I do.” And that’s the trick. Zone in, zone out, as long as you come back, come back when you’re needed and no one’s the wiser. Come back to your wife, here on your wedding day, her day to enjoy, your day to dance and hold hands and smile with joy. To kiss. Because she does look beautiful, standing here, at the altar, all dolled up in her white wedding dress. She does look beautiful and she is your wife and she will be yours, tonight.