Seat Hogging – With Style (Friday Fictioneers, November 2013)

Copyright Ted Strutz

Friday Fictioneers brings together writers from all over the world.  Thanks once again to Rochelle for her efforts. 

If you’re not familiar with the work of John Masefield or Henry Longfellow, my effort for this week will probably be lost on you. 

And even if you are it might well still be lost on you.  (I’ve had a long day 😦 )

“Dirty-British-coaster-with-a-salt-caked-smoke-stack” exploded old Rufus, spraying his fellow passenger’s laptop generously with spittle.

 Alarmed, the man moved down the ferry.

 Rufus smiled, about to spread himself out across two seats until a bespectacled student slipped into the newly-vacated space.

 “Butting-through-the channel-in-the-mad-March-days…” continued Rufus with vigorous elbow thrusts, soon despatching the student to the outer deck.

 Almost immediately an elderly lady plumped herself down.

 “With a cargo of Tyne c…”

 Rufus fell silent as a wrinkled hand squeezed his thigh, perilously close to his crotch.

 “A soul mate,” she purred.  “My turn now… let me see…By the shores of Gitchee Gumee, by the shining Big Sea Water….”

About Sandra

I cruise the French waterways with my husband four or five months a year, and write fiction and poetry. I love animals, F1 motor racing, French bread and my husband, though not necessarily in that order.
This entry was posted in Friday Fictioneers, Just Sayin' and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

70 Responses to Seat Hogging – With Style (Friday Fictioneers, November 2013)

  1. vbholmes says:

    And speaking of tides (which we weren’t), looks like one has turned for ol’ Rufus. Fun, Sandra.


  2. DCTdesigns says:

    Rufus is a lucky ol man. Very enjoyable.


  3. Ah, wonder if Rufus is happy or not.. I followed the link.. and then it was not lost to me…
    Maybe I would add:

    With sloping masts and dipping prow,
    As who pursued with yell and blow



  4. helenmidgley says:

    Ha ha, this made me chuckle, great job 🙂


  5. J. Milburn says:

    The title fits the story so perfectly. I love that he met his match and she turned the tables on him.


  6. Well the last poem I know is Longfellow’s about Hiawatha, so I assume Old Rufus is about to meet his soul mate. I don’t think I want to visualize what happens next as her elderly hand continues its journey. Great how literature can bring us together — I think.


  7. hugmamma says:

    Love, love, love this gritty story of soul mates among the madhatters in our community. After all, they can be romantic just like the rest of us.


  8. Jan Brown says:

    So…he was bested at his own game 🙂


  9. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Sandra,

    You are brilliant!

    He has met his match and if not careful, will find her hoisted on his petard. Run for your life, Rufus.




    • Sandra says:

      Dammit Doug, that was the title I thought of on the plane today, (Petard Hoisting) but I was so tired by the time I got to my computer it had slipped my mind, and came up with this uninspiring title. Thanks, by the way, for always ‘getting’ my stories; you’re a source of great reassurance to me. 😉


  10. paulmclem says:

    Don’t know the poets mentioned but I don’t think it matters. For me it’s a story of someone meeting a kindred spirit. A story I enjoyed.


  11. kz says:

    LOL she definitely wins. 🙂 really enjoyed this.thanks for the laugh.


  12. Ye Pirate says:

    !! Very funny – great description too!


  13. emmylgant says:

    Wonderful story; very clever use of poetry (both Rufus and you!).


  14. plaridel says:

    fun stuff. almost fell off my chair while reading it.


  15. claireful says:

    I might even try that myself when the train is crowded, although I’m not so keep on an old gentleman coming and sitting beside me. Lovely idea, great story.


  16. Hi Sandra,
    Taking a break from writing this week and just enjoying reading stories from some of my favorite writers. Anyone who starting reciting Longfellow would most certainly make me want to remain seated next to them, but I don’t think the old man will be able to stand the competition. Very fun and creative tale. Ron


  17. Dear Sandra,

    I’m glad I went to the links first. Longfellow I was familiar with already. What a vivid picture you painted of these two. Can’t add a lot to what’s been said, but would love to stick around and see how Rufus handles (if he can) the situation. Amazing story.




  18. mike olley says:

    There’s always one… except now there’s two. Rufus and his new girlfriend will turn the ferries into ghost ships.


  19. Il aughed loud. Rufus is lucky, or is he? 🙂


  20. erinleary says:

    I think Rufus just met his match. Or is about to get lucky. Either way, fun story and in keeping with the greats you are paying homage to.


  21. unspywriter says:

    Ah, comeuppance! I’m sure they’re meant for each other. 😉 Well done.

    Thanks for the comment on mine. The last time you guys told me to expand one of these stories, I ended up with a novel!


  22. jwdwrites says:

    Very clever Sandra, though I am not sure the old boy fancies her as his Minihaha! Great story. 🙂


  23. They do say turn about is fair play. Rufus should have known, you reap what you sow.


  24. He’s met his match. I’d advise him to cut his losses and run but it might not be that easy to escape now. 🙂


  25. draliman says:

    I’m not familiar with the people you mentioned but I enjoyed the story!
    It reminds me of the time me and a mate were travelling overnight by train across Germany. Every time we came to a station we opened the window, switched the light to the setting which made it flicker, removed our smelly trainers and pretended to be asleep. It put everyone off sharing our compartment!


  26. rgayer55 says:

    Dear Sandra,
    I loved this. The way she clamped onto this thigh, I don’t think he’s going anywhere soon.


  27. This is great, Sandra! I truly love your stories. I hope your days are feeling less long.


  28. Steve Lakey says:

    Very entertaining, Sandra.


  29. elmowrites says:

    Ah, are we allowed extra words if we hyphenate them all together? Brilliant idea, Sandra, and one I’ll be stealing next time the edits get too tough.
    I didn’t get the references, but I enjoyed the story anyway – this guy has met his match … or his match … perhaps it’s a love story in the making!


    • Sandra says:

      Have you counted them? It never occurred to me. I did it to emphasise the staccato delivery of the lines, but now that you mention it…


      • elmowrites says:

        A few weeks ago, I had a character who went on and on and I struggled to show that within the bounds of the 100 words. No, I didn’t count, and this definitely wasn’t a criticism, it totally added to the character as you intended. Extra words is just an added bonus! I was impressed.


  30. atrm61 says:

    Ha!ha!So funny-not for Rufus though-getting the taste of his own medicine-am still laughing Sandra 😀


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