Monday, March 5, 2012

Three Minutes with a Yodeling Gnu

Normanday #18: A gnu writing prompt

Write for three minutes about…

…the yodeling gnu you met at the bus stop. The weird part? His yodeling wasn’t the strangest thing about him. He…

Email what you wrote to woof at bright dot net by the end of the day March 11 (put “Norman Gives Good Advice” in the subject line). I’ll post as many of my favorite entries as I want next Monday. Include your first name (or, even better, use a pen name) and age (unless you’re tortoise-old). If you’re a published writer, include a biography to be posted with your entry.

Here are the entries from last week when I asked you to write for three minutes…

convincing Eddie Bernard, manager of Edward Bernie’s Traveling Show of Diverting Wonders, to hire you because of your unique ability.

Kelly Bingham


Dr. Mr. Bernard,

I am writing to you today to offer you the unique opportunity of employing me, K.C. Cat, as your headline entertainment STAR!

I have some jaw-dropping talents and here they are:

1. I am a seasoned Endurance Napper. This means I can sleep for far longer than humanly possible, in all weather, all seasons, all conditions, and can therefore hold an audience spellbound for hours and hours at a time. For no extra charge I strike captivating poses while I sleep—like, paws folded over my eyes (always a favorite), my back feet up around my eyebrows (I’m very limber), and tail curled over my nose. If you want a marathon napper, I’m you’re gal.

2. I am also a World Champion Groomer. I can dazzle the crowds by washing my shoulders, hips, and chest to a sparkling shine; make a fist and scrub my paw, hold my tail and clean the tip, and for the showstopper: The paw over the ears swipe. Believe me, people go nuts when I trot that one out. Hearts melt, people coo, cameras flash, yadda yadda. I have enclosed photos in my portfolio!

3. Last but not least, I am the Undefeated Claw Sharpening Victor of the year. I can stretch up to three entire feet and shred mattresses, couches, curtains, carpet, rope, backpacks, gym bags, and any leg that is encased in denim. This always get a reaction! Imagine the crowds going wild! Imagine the volunteers from the audience!

And for no extra charge, I can offer you the “Stare Package.” People really eat that one up. It involves staring at someone very intensely without blinking for a really long time, then suddenly looking bored and walking away. Really gives people food for thought.

So, there you have it. I urge you to take advantage of this offer while it’s still available! My agent has many other offers for me and the clock is ticking! We can discuss compensation in the form of catnip socks, toy mice, or tuna fish. My rates are reasonable!

Thank you,

K.C. Cat


Dear Mr. Bernard,

I want to be in your show. I’m a medium. Not a large or a small. That’s a joke. Being a medium isn’t about my size. It means I can channel spirits. They enter my body. Sometimes they make me whistle. Sometimes they use my hand to write messages. Don’t you think that would be a great act? I could—

Eddie? Is that you? It’s Grammy. Be a good boy now and hire this talented and charismatic medium. He’ll liven things up. I saw your show last night. It nearly bored me to death.

I’m sorry about that, Mr. Bernard. Sometimes the spirits come when I’m not ready. I just want to say that I’m a hard worker and honest and—

Eddie! What have you done with the family business, son? I just looked at the books. Why are you paying Swanson so much? He is NOT part alligator. Fire the fire-eater. And the spoon bender. Hacks, the both of them. Hire this medium. Pay him triple what you’re giving the contortionist.

As I was saying, Mr. Bernard, I’m honest. And I have my own costume. I can also—

Eddie? It’s Grammy again. Don’t break an old dead woman’s heart…hire this medium at once! I like him. He’s got pizzazz.

I can also type 60 words per minute, in case you need help with the paperwork.

Eddie Bernard, Abraham Lincoln here. I’m pleased to meet you. I highly recommend you hire this talented medium. He’s the real deal. Honest.


Theodore Dorian, Grammy, Dad, Abraham Lincoln

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