Out of it


In case of doubt I revert to Monty Python; this is a vet based sketch that ends with these businesses superimposed on the credits. This week’s prompt is about disorientation, from Charli Mills

January 28, 2015 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about disorientation. A character could be lost in the maze of the mind or in a storm of unexpected traffic. What are the sounds? The sights? The smell? Explore the different ways confusion can be expressed and how it can create tension, provide relief or move a story forward.

Practical matters confuse an disorientate me. Wood especially. I’m no good with anything that has a grain – wood, whiskey… Take this example: we needed to adjust the toilet door in a  house we were doing up back in the mid eighties after we had laid some cork titles in the hall.  The Textiliste went out for the afternoon so I thought, I’ll just skim a few millimetres off the bottom of the door and that will be that.

I took the door down, laid it on the kitchen table, clamped it tight (I am a tool-collector, even if I’m a tool-incompetent (some might just stop and say I’m a tool)) and took off a strip that I judged to be sufficient. I rehung the door but it still stuck.

Feeling annoyed I tried again but still it stuck.

After the third attempt I couldn’t understand why nothing was happening. By now it was getting late and I turned the lights on. It was only then, with the ceiling highlighted by the strip of soft yellow that shone from above  the toilet door that I realised I had been so befuddled that I had sliced the top off. I still can’t believe I made the same mistake three times but I did. As with a lot of mistakes in my life I immediately thought ‘how can I hide this from the Textiliste’ but this one was beyond me. And as with those self same mistakes, she shrugged, smiled and forgave me.

And so to the flash. Mary’s story continues. Here are the previous episodes.

Good news? Bad news?

Mary sat, conscious of her hands vibrating. ‘Am I mad, doctor?’

‘Mad? No.’ Dr Penfold tapped at the keyboard. ‘The blood test was fine. You’re a healthy woman.’ He paused. ‘It might be anxiety. You are…’ Another pause. ‘You’re pregnant.’

Mary nodded slowly. She felt herself float, watching the scene from above. The doctor’s eyebrow rose, testing the news to see if it was good or bad. The sweat on her neck, chilling in a light breeze. A voice filled her head, a comforting voice. Mary replied. ‘Shh Sharon.’ Her twin, her dead twin breathed again and Mary shivered.

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published four books - Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle, My Father and Other Liars, Salisbury Square and Buster & Moo. In addition I have published three anthologies of short stories and a memoir of my mother. More will appear soon. I will try and continue to blog regularly at geofflepard.com about whatever takes my fancy. I hope it does yours too. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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32 Responses to Out of it

  1. Amber says:

    Hmmm, it seems Mary might be having a bit of a breakdown. Poor thing.
    As to the top off of the door, that was too funny.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. willowdot21 says:

    OH! please you are just so honest! The Textiliste is obviously smitten a woman of great fortitude! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Sacha Black says:

    pahahahahahahahahahahaha, I actually had to read that to my wife, I couldn’t get through it without laughing my head off, which thoroughly interrupted the story and her patience. Your a hero for that door incident, YOU SEE…. you see, you NEED to start writing humour, you really do crack me up.

    Liked by 2 people

    • TanGental says:

      The incompetence of man, huh?! I bet you can relate to that! As my dear old dad once said after one holiday disaster ‘how on earth do you hold down a job; don’t they realise? have they no clue?!’ He was right to.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. lucciagray says:

    Disquieting but effectively disorienting 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Charli Mills says:

    First the door…at least you tried. My son has similar carpentry skills (although in the kitchen he’s a regular Betty Crocker). He once built me a spice rack that leaned with uneven and unfinished edges. It’s ugly, no other way to describe it. When he was about 17, I did some minor kitchen renovations and installed a fancy spice rack. He came home and saw it immediately and said, “I bet you threw mine away.” After he left the kitchen I ran out to the garbage, retrieved his rack and put it in my tea cupboard. To this day, it still holds a tea cup askew, nestled among boxes of tea and I now see its inner beauty — my son expressed his love, though not his skill.

    Mary, Mary…disorientating as the Alien movie! I hope she can better reconcile with her twin than she did with her brother. This is sounding permanent!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Annecdotist says:

    Not sure which is funnier, you with the toilet door (I’m very much like that with practical matters, Mr Annecdotist has the sense not to trust me with too many, but still fails to understand how I can’t cope with the simplest job) or what you’ve done to poor Mary. Is this going to be the turning point when she finds joy in a new life or is it going to get so bad you have to kill her off eventually?

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Sherri says:

    My hubby would commiserate with you Geoff…and great flash, but I feel for Mary. Is she losing it? I hope not…

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I told you you should have your own comedy show on TV, Geoff. I admire you for even having a go at shaving off some of that door. And oh the memory of cork tiles. At least they absorbed any spillage I guess? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. 😀 “I’m no good with anything that has a grain – wood, whiskey…” Tools. Hmm. Let’s leave that alone, shall we?

    Gah! Mary is pregnant! Reincarnation seems a bit too, um, not you. Is this Mary’s breakdown?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: Lost & Confused « Carrot Ranch Communications

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