A Betting Man – Friday Fictioneers February 2015

Copyright Dawn Landau

“You crazy? Thirty minutes?” asked Joe.

Martin scowled. “Ten dollars says so.”

If truth were told, he wasn’t that confident.

Three months back, he’d bet the guys she’d put out on the second date, but it had taken ten weeks to get into her pants.

Now he’d bet that she’d wait 30 minutes for him to show for their date, but after ten minutes she was looking itchy.

“Uh-oh”, said Billy, peeping round the corner. “I think she’s scored.”

As Annie wandered off with the Jones boy, Martin’s heart splintered slowly.

‘I sure can pick a heartless bitch,’ he muttered, kicking at a passing dog.

Three years ago this week since I first joined Friday Fictioneers with this offering.  Very few people understood it, so no change there then.  🙂  Not too impressed with my submission for this third anniversary, but a second attempt in a different vein didn’t turn out any better so here you go!  Thank you to Rochelle for her administrations, and congratulations on having your second book accepted by an agent.  Congratulations due this week also to Claire Fuller; some great reviews there.  You both make me feel very inadequate in such exalted company.  😦  

About Sandra

I used to cruise the French waterways with my husband four or five months a year, and wrote fiction and poetry. Now I live on the beautiful Dorset coast, enjoying the luxury of being able to have a cat, cultivating an extensive garden and getting involved in the community. I still write fiction, but only when the spirit moves me - which isn't as often as before. I love animals, F1 motor racing, French bread and my husband, though not necessarily in that order.
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104 Responses to A Betting Man – Friday Fictioneers February 2015

  1. Dear Sandra,

    Inadequate? Perish the thought? You’re one of my writing heroes. Those contest wins and publications are nothing to look down one’s nose at.

    I can’t say I feel much sympathy for Martin. Perhaps if he’d been more of a boyfriend than a betting man…A good one, as always.

    You were only a couple of months ahead of me. I started in April three years ago.

    Sorry about the link snafu. 😉



    Liked by 2 people

    • Sandra says:

      Awww thanks Rochelle. I thought you’d been with FF about the same time as me, and I’ve always enjoyed your contributions. Yes, Martin is an unlikeable boy, and I don’t think he’ll see the light any time soon. 😉


  2. Perhaps the Jones boy has a bit more to imm than the seemingly shallow Martin. Great dialogue – I’ve heard similar before.


  3. A, boys that kiss and tell. Not a gentleman. I like a good antagonist.


  4. I second Rochelle – you’re one of my writing heroes too, Sandra – and this story goes to show why. Great characters, story and dialogue. I feel some sympathy for Martin; I reckon he might just be doing the betting do try and big himself up in front of Joe. Perhaps now though, he’ll have learnt that lesson.


  5. Ha.. I think that Martin got exactly what he deserved.. pity that he didn’t seem to learn anything from it .. such a heartless boy. Good for Annie though


  6. Well, I hope he learned a lesson there. Well done, Sandra. 🙂 — Suzanne


  7. Tough luck to Martin (not.) Your story is spot on, as usual, but not so your analysis of your writing ability. 🙂



  8. Helena Hann-Basquiat says:

    Congrats on three years, Sandra. I think you’ve captured the heart of a scoundrel here perfectly. The same type of man to play games like that with a woman is indeed the same type to kick a dog.


  9. Dear Sandra,
    I went back in time and read your “Shattered” story. I understood it from the first read and thought it was wonderfully ambiguous and jet very clear.
    As for this week’s story, what a horrible boy, kicking that poor dog. That is one lucky girl, escaping the clutches of one sad excuse for a man.
    Love you writing and hope you continue to delight us with your talent for many, many moons. 😉


  10. Somehow I think Annie is a lot smarter than Martin. Wonderful take on the prompt – not lacking in a thing. (Sounds like you’re going through one of those periods every writing goes through. This, too, will pass). Alicia


  11. Let me finish that thought – Periods of self-doubt

    Liked by 1 person

  12. That’ll teach you, Martin. Another little gem, Sandra. I so understand being one’s own harshest critic, but please banish any feelings of inadequacy immediately. You rock.


  13. erinleary says:

    I love your work and look forward to reading it every week. I enjoy writing that makes me think. And yours intrigues, it teases, it evokes feeling. All that is sublime. Looking forward to the next 3 years.


  14. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Sandra, You’re anything but inadequate! One of the best writers I’ve ever had the luck to read! Enjoyable story this week too! Nan 🙂


  15. Michael B. Fishman says:

    I’d say ‘poor Martin’ but I think that arrogant little guy has a lot to learn before he grows up!


  16. I’m glad that kid loses all his bets… he sounds like a horrible person.

    Happy Anniversary, I always love your stories !! 🙂


  17. Honie Briggs says:

    Guys like him are a dime a dozen. Fiercely told, Sandra, as your stories always are.


  18. I love your stories! Except, I wish he hadn’t kicked the dog 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  19. storydivamg says:

    Dear Sandra,
    Well I like it! And happy third anniversary too! I can’t say I’m a fan of Martin, but you’ve written a believable character indeed. If I had my druthers, all betting bastards like this character would be lonely for life. They don’t deserve girlfriends or wives (or mothers, for that matter).

    Nice work.

    All my best,
    Marie Gail


  20. karen rawson says:

    You’ve conjured so much in those 100 words. Beautifully done.


  21. I always look forward to your writing – and you are usually one of the first ones I read (although it is true that you are usually one of the first ones to post, too – but never-the less)



  22. plaridel says:

    i bet ten dollars martin can’t even pick a heartless bitch. three years? that’s an eternity in the blogging world. congrats!


  23. Jan Brown says:

    Sandra, I agree with Rochelle and Claire. Your writing is consistently excellent! I really liked this little story and the irony in its conclusion. You made me chuckle at the typical clueless young males 🙂


  24. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Sandra,

    It’s not that she’s heartless, rather, it’s that she’s smart. Great story to mark your third orbit around out bright FF sun.




  25. Liz Young says:

    Serves him right for playing boys’ games with a girl’s affections.


  26. draliman says:

    Brilliant last line, I think he’s blaming the wrong person! I hope Annie has better luck with the Jones boy.
    Reading it again, the line “Martin’s heart splintered slowly” does make me think he really liked her – hopefully this will teach him a lesson and help him grow up a bit.


  27. gahlearner says:

    That boy is far too full of himself. Serves him right! I, too, went back and read that first story, and I think I understood it. It’s painful in all it implies…


  28. i b arora says:

    but why kick the poor dog?


  29. Congrats on your 3 year anniversary, Sandra. I think your short stories are superb. 🙂


  30. mjlstories says:

    I actually feel sorry for these ridiculous boys. Very believable characters full of false bravado.
    Very good!


  31. wildbilbo says:

    3 years is impressive – and whilst you started well (I checked out the older post) – I like this one better 🙂
    You capture that stupid teenage competitiveness and all-to-frequent ugly misogyny (that I think comes from not actually understanding that other people are actually people too).

    Liked by 1 person

  32. rgayer55 says:

    Everyone’s been pretty hard on Martin. It’s not uncommon for teenage boys to brag about their “conquests” in a competitive manner. I’m not saying that’s right, it’s just hormones gone wild.


  33. I wish someday i be as good as you are! Great story of a mischievous boy!


  34. We do tend to judge ourselves more harshly. You’ve written a brilliant vignette of a story.
    It’s been a pleasure to read it.


  35. Poor dog. He was in the wrong place at the right time. The boy deserved it and Annie good on you. I’m only new Sandra but I’ve enjoyed all I’ve read of yours and look forward to much more.


  36. Your stories are SO far from inadequate, one must laugh at the notion, Sandra. And this story is wonderful. I like the simplicity of the story, while putting that unpleasant reality of how some men still see and treat women, right out there. Happy anniversary! I certainly look forward to your stories each time. 🙂


  37. Oh, don’t say you’re not impressed it’s adorable. That’s what he gets for gambling the feelings of others!


  38. Amy Reese says:

    Three years, wow. Congrats. Martin is no friend of mine. I’m betting he doesn’t have any real friends either. This is the story you wrote three years ago? What a great idea! It was worth repeating. 🙂


  39. Ellespeth says:

    I’m so happy Annie didn’t wait 30 minutes. Just like Martin to feel sorry for himself and kick a helpless dog.
    Cheers to three years!


  40. Sound to me like she waited 9 minutes too long. Congrats Sandra. Write on!
    Be well, Tracey


  41. Dee says:

    A great story Sandra good for Annie I say, she obviously got the measure of Martin. How you could ever feel inadequate I can’t imagine (funny but we both made similar comments) your writing is excellent, your stories always spot on.


  42. This is a good story. The gambling motif is fun and it’s good to see the jerk get what he deserves. Excellent.


  43. afairymind says:

    Great story, Sandra. I’m glad she didn’t wait for him – he gets exactly what he deserves! 🙂


  44. milliethom says:

    Martin doesn’t exactly endear himself to us, does he? I’m not surprised Annie went off with the Jones boy. Excellent story, Sandra. 🙂


  45. A rather jaundiced view of humanity there, Sandra.
    AnElephant heartily approves.


  46. AnnIsikArts says:

    Great exposition of the ‘double standard’. Your story has the ring of truth because unfortunately, it is true. 🙂


  47. Margaret says:

    Ohhh. I hope Martin learns something from this. It’s good that his heart was splintered – shows he has some feeling. And how many young girls are the subject of such talk, I wonder? Probably plenty. A very powerful portrayal of the characters and the situation.


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