Bamboo Shoots rules and regs for August

Okay, below are the titles and opening pieces of the July entries. This month, your entry will be a 100-word addition to one of these openings. You can continue your own, or you can choose another one. Doreen B, I didn’t want to eliminate yours.

The title of your piece for this month will be the original title. So your title will be

Uncle’s Advice


Dat Buggah, Ma Fadda


There goes the neighbors


“So what da buggah said?”

Remember, your addition to one of these will be EXACTLY 100 words, and you can write the continuation to your own piece, or you can choose another one.

* * * * *

Uncle’s Advice

So what da buggah said?

Coach said, “Can try again if I like.”

You see. Can.

No use. No can. I no can.

Remembah da book, you used to like? Da small choo-choo train pull da whole line of cars up da hill. All da big trains tell “No use.” Or “No can.” Or “No like.” Da small train da only one try um. He tell himself, “I tink no can, I tink no can…”

Ha, ha! Uncle, da train went tell himself, “I think I can. I think I can…”

Yeah, yeah. You get um. Can! “I tink no can. I tink no can…”

* * * * *


When you wish for something hard enough, you just might get it. Then comes the part about how hard you thought about what happens next, as in being careful what you wish for. Jiminy Cricket says nothing about which star you should wish upon, nor about possible evil consequences of choosing poorly. How about the venerable first star I see tonight? Does that imply a filter, a guarantee against bad choices and evil consequences? Suppose you say you’re bored stiff and wish something interesting would happen? By interesting you mean? Who cares? Nothing could be worse than this. Let’s give it a shot: I really wish something interesting would happen. Oh-oh.

* * * * *

Dat Buggah, Ma Fadda

“So what da buggah said?”

ma madda asked afta

ma fadda dropped me off.

“About what?”

“About what?” she said,

mocking me. “How about

what he promised fo pay

me in child support?

About what?

How about what he owes

me for trowing one brick

tru my windshield?”

She sat at the table looking

out da window, her eyes

neva looking at mine.

I always hated wen she

brought him up.

Even yeas afta, wen

I tot she wen foget him

longtime already, she

go, out of da blue,

“Dat buggah was one

real piece of shit

I tell you.”

* * * * *


When you wish hard enough for something, you might get it. It was getting late, and I moved over to a barstool to tell her that I was in the mood for her. She looked at her watch, took my hand, turned it over, then rested her chin with her other hand and looked at me with a troubled look. I gave her a quizzical smile and asked if she was a palm reader and what did she find. She lit a cigarette and then took a long hard swallow of bourbon from a glass marred with lipstick and told me with a whiskey/cigarette voice what she read from my palm.

* * * * *

There goes the neighbors

“Yessir, that’s the way it goes,” Dad declared. “Sooner or later come our turn.”

Mom and Dad had participated in a graveside memorialization yesterday for a recently deceased neighbor at the Hawaiian Memorial Park Cemetery. It was a private affair; a somber circle of family members and two neighbors gathering to commemorate a man who was a husband, father, grandfather and good neighbor to us for over forty years. Word of Mr. Masaki’s passing spread quickly through the neighborhood. There was no obituary.

“Mr. Hidoi stopped by today,” Mom blistered. “He named all the neighbors who died, then snickered saying that your father was next!”

* * * * *

“So what da buggah said?”

“So what da buggah said?” Rudy the barber asks me.

“Some bullshit about Denise and Chris.”

I’m waiting for a haircut. Out of the corner of my eye, I see Christopher Andaya enter. He’s dark, looks real Hawaiian.

“Chris, whas’up?”

Suddenly he pulls a knife, comes at me. I grab my gun inside my jacket and shoot him three times, but instead of dying, he turns around and staggers outside. I follow.

I say, “Chris, you’re supposed to be dead already,” and boom, he goes down. I flip him over.

His face looks weird, his eyes all glassy, looking up at me like I’m God.

* * * * *

* * * * *

Good luck to everyone. Who knows? We could end up with something massively impressive down the line : )


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