This week’s Carrot Ranch prompt is
January 31, 2022, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about “the ’49ers.” Who or what are they? What is the significance of the number? Do you follow the Gold Rush history or venture into new territory? Go where the prompt leads!
He Who Hesitates
Little Tittweaking’s council’s standing orders provide that nothing is decided if any one member adopts the 49ers stratagem. The origins of this local filibuster is long forgotten but easily understood. If an item – verge-trimming, say – is put to a vote those opposing (usually Mrs Owl-Eerie) are required to forcibly interrupt proceedings with a continuous hesitation, thus blocking the chair from putting forward its motion (technically a ‘forced constipation’). These days that is achieved by the utterance of a continuous stream of 49 ‘ers’. Some say this quaint provision exemplifies the gold standard of local democracy in action.