Tag Archives: marriage

2217. Wheels

Darryl’s sister, Molly, didn’t want to go for a ride on the Ferris wheel at the fair, so Darryl said he would go on his own. The man guiding people into the “buckets” asked Darryl if he minded sharing the double seat with a stranger, so he said he didn’t mind. A young woman sat down. Her name was Connie.

Around and around the Ferris wheel went! Up then down! Up then… It stopped just as Darryl and Connie’s “bucket” reached the apex. That was fine.  Clearly they were loading new participants aboard. But they weren’t. The Ferris wheel had broken down. They were stuck.

Eventually they were rescued.

Ferris wheels have improved since then. That was years ago. Today Darryl’s sister, Molly, is popping around to help Connie and Darryl move into a retirement village.

2144. Courtesy quandary

Anton and Anthea had this thing going ever since they were married. Anton always said “Anthea and Anton…” and Anthea always put the names in that order as well.

“You should put the other person first,” said Anton, “and not put yourself first. You should say ‘Anton and Anthea’ and I should say ‘Anthea and Anton’.”

It always inevitably led to an argument. Anthea thought it only proper that the wife’s name should come first. “It’s like a man stepping aside and opening a door for the woman,” she said.

“That’s sexist,” said Anton. “These days courtesy would demand that the man steps aside for the woman and the woman steps aside for the man. Whoever gets to the door first.”

“What nonsense,” declared Anthea. “It has been the custom for thousands of years that the woman comes first. It’s Anthea and Anton and that’s definite.”

Anyway, these days it doesn’t matter; it’s Anthea and Zachary, and Anton and Priscilla.

2112. Just a bus ride away

It was a sad day for Hilda and Murphy. They had been married for eleven years and things hadn’t worked out very well. It’s not that they argued; it was more that they had nothing to say and the silence was stressful. More and more stressful. In the end they did talk, and with mild enthusiasm – they would go their separate ways. The decision brought both sadness and relief. There were no children; not that they hadn’t tried. This was liberation of sorts.

Hilda booked a bus to a neighbouring town. In fact, it was the town where she worked. She had rented a small cottage. Murphy would stay where they had been.

Well, Murphy shopped around and bought a big box of chocolates as a sort of farewell gift. Hilda loved chocolates. She didn’t realize that chocolates could come in such a big box!

What a dismal failure. Off Hilda went, chocolates and all. Not a month had passed before she went back to the original house. She had brought the chocolates with her – unopened.

They opened them.

There was much to tell.

No one could shut them up.

2095. Who was out to murder?

Urs was a tyrannical husband. Alice had long felt trapped in the relationship. She knew she should untangle herself from such a situation but really she didn’t know how. Her only time of peace was after the evening meal when she would take her coffee (Urs was watching the evening news) and wander down to the back of the garden where Urs kept his racing pigeons.

Urs was besotted with his pigeons. Alice found their gentle cooing both soothing and consoling.

The racing pigeons were worth a pretty packet. He would enter racing competitions with them regularly. He cared for them more than he cared for his wife.

One of his more tyrannical aspects was that Alice should prepare only healthy food. He regarded vegetable greens as a must to every meal, especially peas. “Peas are riddled with nutrients,” he would say. “That’s why they are so green.”

Alice hated peas. Part of her post-dinner evening walk was to take the peas she had hidden in her napkin and give them to the pigeons.

One early morning, Urs went down to see his pigeons and they were all dead. A veterinarian post-mortem showed that they had eaten poisoned peas.

2093. Oh what a tragedy!

Have you any idea how expensive it is to get a divorce? Raymond wanted to get rid of his wife but he wasn’t keen to lose almost half of what he’d worked for throughout his life. It was cheaper (and quicker) simply to get rid of her in a cunning and imperceptible way.

He devised a fabulous plan. As far as he could work out, it hadn’t been done before – at least he’d never heard of it. He had one of those cars whereby the driver had controls to lock the car doors. It was a child protection device. If the children in the back and passenger seats were messing around they couldn’t accidently open the door and fall out.

What Raymond would do was to stall the car on a rail crossing just as a train was hurtling towards them. Then he’d quickly press the button to lock his wife’s door, leap out his own door, and… Oh what a tragedy! Oh what a sadness! Why did it happen to me?

It wasn’t exactly something he could practise. After all, how many cars can one afford? But he drove the route several times and knew well the times the trains passed.

The day arrived. They were to visit great aunt Maude and bring her the usual weekly supply of chocolate and cat food. They were just about to leave (Raymond was actually wearing his running shoes!) when a message came that great Aunt Maud’s sister also wanted to visit Maude, and could they pick her up on the way? That ruined things. The request meant they would have to take another route. Murder would have to wait another day.

The following week off they went on their habitual visit. Raymond’s wife (goodness, as yet she is not introduced – her name was Fiona) had trouble dragging Raymond’s drugged body to the garage and into the car. Once done she drove to the rail crossing and stopped. She got out to watch.

Oh what a tragedy! Oh what a sadness! Why did it happen to me?

(P.S. A Happy Easter to all who wish to be wished such! I shall be hopefully back with a murder on the 5th, Easter Monday!)

2060. Them’s the breaks

Ivan was a weedy little man and Sheila was buxom. After seventeen years marriage Sheila decided that enough was enough and wanted a divorce.

“Enough is enough,” she said.

“Enough of what?” asked Ivan.

“Enough,” said Sheila.

There was no reason for a divorce except Sheila wanted change. After seventeen years the humdrum-ity of life was calling for a change in direction. Ivan was at first mystified and then angry. All papers and things were filed. The divorce came through. Sheila moved down the street in search of the great tomorrow.

The next day Ivan won a hundred and twenty-four million in the lottery.

2058. Nest building

Norma had a saying which she oft cited: I’ve buried three husbands you know.  If the truth be known, all three had died unnatural deaths. They had all been murdered.

Norma was exceedingly rich. She lived in a big house (these days alone). Her sole interest appeared to be her two pet canaries. She had a yellow canary and one with bits of yellow but it looked more like a sparrow. Only the yellow one ever sang, and usually with a melancholic air.

Norma had tried to breed them but she wasn’t sure if she had two girls, two boys, or one of each. Whatever the case, neither had made any attempt at making a nest.

Norma belonged to the local Caged Birds Association. There she met and befriended Gordon, mainly because she thought he might know how to sex birds. He did, and so Norma invited him to her house. Well! One thing led to another, and before you knew it they were married, and Gordon’s two pet canaries went into the same aviary as Norma’s two. In the blink of an eye one of Norma’s and one of Gordon’s were creating a nest together.

Norma was delighted with the success of her breeding program! So interesting! There were four fledglings! All grew into a bold yellow and sang with a melancholic air. They were a great consolation to Norma when she came to bury her fourth husband.

2046. A typical life

As if expecting her third baby wasn’t difficult enough. It was made a thousand times more difficult now that Clifford has run off with his secretary. The two boys were under the age of five, and there was still four months to go before the arrival of the third boy. Clifford had wanted a girl. It was Lynette’s fault – the third male.  It didn’t cause the dissipation of her marriage but it certainly hastened it. And now Clifford was refusing to pay for anything until “matters were cleared up”.

Thank goodness Lynette’s mother lived just around the corner. At least someone was “there” – although she drank heavily and couldn’t be trusted after seven in an evening. Still, she could help with the two boys for an hour or two in the mornings while Lynette went off to her part-time motel-cleaning job. At least it meant that there were a few pennies coming in.

And then Lynette’s mother died suddenly. Who was going to pay for the funeral? Lynette was a relative. It was her responsibility. Would the motel owner mind if she brought her two little boys along while she cleaned? The motel owner had enough on her mind without having to worry about other people’s toddlers. The answer was no.

Lynette was at the end of her tether. She walked the street with her two boys in search of some “help for the helpless”. It was not something until recently that she had ever given half a thought to. She couldn’t find the place. She stopped and asked a gentleman in the street if he knew of anywhere.

“Excuse me,” said Lynette as politely as she could muster. They got talking. That is why today Lynette is now Lady Lynette Snodgrass-Grbin, married to billionaire Lord Hector Snodgrass-Grbin, and they have five boys counting Lynette’s three, who run around the manor grounds playing hide-and-seek when they’re not at their excellent school.

Clifford recently contacted Lynette and said he was destitute. The secretary had fled. He had no job. Lynette sent him a thousand dollars and told him to stay out of her life permanently. She subsequently learned that he had taken “permanently” to mean more permanent than she had intended.

Oh! And did I forget to mention? Lady Lynette is now expecting her sixth. It’s a girl.

2034. On safari

(The opening sentence for this story was suggested by Doug Jacquier of Six Crooked Highways. If you want to join in the fun of suggesting a future opening sentence for these stories, please leave your suggestion in the comments – only one suggestion per person!)

If he had his time again, Clarence wouldn’t have bought the giraffe. His wife had always been hard to buy for and he had thought that the giraffe for her fortieth birthday would have been welcomed. After all, she had given him a colony of penguins (just six) for his forty-fourth birthday, plus a gigantic walk in freezer. Cristobelle (that wasn’t her real name but the name she preferred) had taken a particular liking to the giraffes when they were on safari in Africa. She was forever sitting up the front of the jeep with the Guide having a wonderful time seeing the giraffes, and in the evenings when Clarence retired early after such a fun-filled day she would ask the Guide to take her out to see the giraffes again.

Naturally Clarence thought she would be thrilled with a giraffe for her birthday but she seemed quite disgusted with it.

That was almost a year ago. As if Clarence was not busy enough trying to look after his (now seven) penguins, he also had to look after this jolly giraffe. He offered it to the local zoo but they said they were giraffed-out. To be honest, Clarence already knew that they had too many giraffes because that is how he had managed to purchase one for Christobelle’s birthday.

It therefore came as a big surprise when Christobelle announced that for her forty-first she wouldn’t mind going alone back to Africa to see the giraffes.

“I know that once is enough for you, darling. So I don’t mind going alone.”

A few months after Christobelle arrived in Africa, Clarence got an email, part of which is printed below:

Hi Clarence. Well I got the same Guide as before which was fantastic. But there’s this woman on Safari from London who is a total nuisance. She’s loud and sits up the front of the jeep all the time with the Guide like she owns him. We don’t need to see any hippopotamuses because there’s one all the time sitting up the front with the Guide. She has completely ruined the safari by her dominating presence. I’m coming home.

It was too late for her to come home. Clarence’s friend, Annie, had moved in. They shared an interest in penguins, and she said she would be delighted (among other things) to help out with looking after the giraffe. And guess what? Clarence has bought Annie a warthog called Christobelle for her twenty-second birthday.