Category Archives: Encouragement

#FFFAW Flash fiction for aspiring writers. “Creek runs through it” by Raymond Roy. 

Photo credit Maria at doodles and scribbles
Summer days fishing for rainbow trout, wading through a snow melt creek of British Columbia with my older brother Danny,….those days could never be long enough.
Our hearts would flutter as we hiked into the trees toward the creek. As the sun warmed the trees you could smell the sweetness of pine sap and hear the dry grass and twigs snap under your feet. At times snow stubbornly hung on in the shade.

As we stepped into the water for the first crossing of a pool, I could feel the icy water flood through the eyelets of Converse Allstars, it took my breath away. I could feel life’s challenges melt away in the purity of that pristine snow melt creek water that was Mill Creek.

Working our way through the pools of crystal clear water, we would dip our lines in, the shadows in the rocks would come alive . The small trout would flash in the sun as you felt that exhilarating tug of your first bite. 

Word Count=167
This is a portion of one of my favorite stories called “A Creek Runs through It”. Submitted to  Flash Fiction for aspiring writers. The entire story can be found by clicking here. Peace to you. 

Presentation of his first fishing vest to my Grandson 2016

The Obituary 


I learned that you are dead. 
Although words say you have passed, your cruel deeds committed by you to me as a child still lingered for decades.
You might have softened and treated your own children better than you treated your foster children. 
I had a condition you judged as a plea for attention. Rather than love and understanding you provided physical and verbal abuse. 
Perhaps you learned cruelty from those that mistreated you. I have pity for you or anyone in that circumstance if that was the case. 
Perhaps you thought you taught discipline and tough love. You were mistaken. 

I learned from you how it was to feel neglected and mistreated. 
Because others that showed me what unconditional Love was, I was given the gift of learning that not all in the world were evil and cruel. 

With this gift I have strived to the best of my ability to choose Love. 

Love has the power to break all chains, yes, even the chains that until this point attempted to bind me, even from the grave. 
Dedicated to all child victims and survivors of abuse, neglect, and those many many upstanding Foster Parents that instill Love and understanding to those in need. God Bless You. 

Don Pancho:200 word Flash Fiction 

Don Pancho
End of a long day. 115f was the high today, calling for 120F tomorrow. Top off the jeep allowing the desert air to dry my hair. 

Entering the backyard just as the sun was going down. Norteño musica blared through dusty speakers, a mixed aroma of citronella oil and Mesquite filled the air. In the subdued light, a banquet table was calling. I filled my Dixie paper plate with doubled up corn tortillas with caramelized carne asada topped Pico de gallo and a dollop of crema fresca. The galvanized wash bin was filled bobbing golden metal topped Corona Extra bottles looking stranded titanic passengers pleading for rescue. I gladly accommodated.

The sun beaten screen door screeching for oil swung open and slammed shut. There he was, Don Pancho, standing just over 5 feet. He wore a straw cowboy hat. His silver sideburns made perfect bookends to his warm toothy smile. Out of respect, I stood and went to greet our host. “Hola, Don Pancho! I said. “Hola Raymundo, bienvenidos! ” I shook his calloused hand, a hard working hand of over 70 years. I had seen him out work men half his age. 

This is the Mexico I know. 

Word Count: 201

Don Pancho was not a fictional character, he was a well respected man that I had the honor of working with during my 9 year tenure as a landscape irrigation specialist during this period, Yuma,AZ. Man he could make a mean BBQ chicken. May God Keep him always. Peace. 

Written as part of Sunday Photo Fiction. Write a story ~200 words based on a given photo prompt given(above) Hosted by Al Forbes. details visit Here

To read more stories based on this week’s prompt, visit Here

The Omega 13: “15 seconds” of time travel(or how Galaxy Quest saved our marriage) 

“God Bless my first wife”my second wife of almost 20 years often thanks god for her “breaking me in”. Broken in or not, one thing if we are being honest, most married couples/couples can attest to is, people say Stupid S#%t. 

In the 1999 Comedy science fiction movie Galaxy Quest, what looked like a not-so-happy ending for the heroic crew was reversed by the “Omega 13 “, a super-charged time travel device which turns back time, you guessed it, for 13 seconds. Who knew that a prop from a Star Trek spoof would be key to improving a relationship. 

The “Omega 13” Copyright by Dreamworks LLC.

The Secret of the Omega 13

When you activate the Omega 13 or what we refer to as “15 Seconds”

When one says “15 Seconds!”, 

1. What was said in the last 15 Seconds is immediately drawn into a black hole located ~6 degrees of off The North Star. 
2. You are immediately admitting you messed up

3. It allows you a second GO by rephrasing, or simply shutting up and hugging the other person.(Wearing a protective cup may be advised if you choose the hugging approach and your initial blurt was incite-ful vs.”Insightful”)

4. You break the tension in the moment because you start thinking of that ridiculous movie and still are amazed that this crazy tool works. 

5. It allows the other person to show mercy. 

6. It allows you to laugh 

I think the real reason “15 seconds” works is because we both are committed to it working. It’s a sign that when you are both spent and really don’t fell like butting heads, you are both willing to (queue Cher, try not to think of that song) turn back time, and find your way, Together. Peace. 

Vapor

  As winter sets in and with the human tendency is to hibernate, comes reflection. Drawing upon memories both recent and past, memories can be like vapor. Like vapor, you cannot hold them in your hand, misty visualizations just a thought away.

As time passes the fog may thicken making way for one’s own interpretation. 

Depending on your motivation/disposition, those seeking pity as a survivor of hardship may exaggerate past experiences embellishing details as for the creation of ones own personal “Odyssey”. 

On the other end of the spectrum, circumstances of mediocre events can be reshaped/glorified, placing them on a pedestal as a trophy which was never warranted. 

Recognizing that there are times when we are in the valley and our lives lack joy and happiness. Where else do we have to turn but our memories? 

During these melancholiac times, memories can easily turn to bitterness because of the longing for the “glory days”. A cautionary note during this yearning for what was, our vision may be clouded to the blessings directly in front of us. I cannot think of better insurance in the pursuit of happiness than to make a daily deposit of thankfulness into our memory banks. Thankfulness for what is right in front of us. Peace. 

The Sin Of Anger

There is a saying that when you hold onto anger, it’s like drinking poison while expecting the other person to die. 

Last year at this time we were part of the loving vibrant church. It was a large part of who we were as a family and we miss it dearly. I won’t go into any details of what happened at the church other than to share how I feel. I can honestly say I don’t hate those responsible for destroying the church as it was, as hate is too strong a word even for those I am angry with.

 Yes, I still find myself angry.   

 I am angry with the lies and rumors that they chose spread even after they  were shown to be untrue. 

I am angry with those who failed to make amends towards my family and to those close to me.

Jesus Christ took away our permission to call people sinners and said, love your neighbor. And by the way, (here is the tough part ) everyone is your neighbor. 

Up until this point in my life I feel I have been a forgiving person. I have gone toe to toe with someone, got my nose busted but afterwards sat down for a beer together as if nothing ever happened. Perhaps it was because physical wounds are easy.  
Recently I was sharing with my best friend on how I was amazed that my children could be so forgiving of those who have crossed them while I as the parent, struggled to be forgiving of the infraction against them. It’s simple she explained, those are your children and you want to protect them.

 I believe as Christians, if we want to hate sin, it must be our own sin.I must now choose to spit out the poison of anger. The sin of anger. May God have mercy on me. Amen. 

What we can learn from Archie Bunker? 

” That guy is a regular Jew”! As a 10 year old, I really had no idea, what that statement was insinuating. As an adult it came to my attention that it was a derogatory remark meaning somebody had a stereotypical frugality that supposedly Jews were known for. I was still trying to figure out why I was being called a “Cheesehead” (supposedly being Canadian born had something to do with it). For a moment think of Archie Bunker. He made bigoted stereo typical comments such as these. He was a hardworking man. Drove a taxi as a second job to make extra money. He came home like clockwork and expected dinner on the table.

Periodically Archie also showed his soft underbelly. I remember an episode of All in the Family when Archie painfully reminisced about being tormented with the nickname of “shoebooty”. It turned out the nickname came from his childhood when his family was so poor, he didn’t have a matching pair of shoes and was forced to wear one shoe and one boot. 

 Recently , it dawned on me , that the above description could’ve easily been that of my stepfather Tony. If he missed work because he was sick, that meant he couldn’t get out of bed. When my dad was on strike at work, he picked berries in the fields as well as bailing hay to make extra money. Tony also shared stories where he had struggled growing up, For example it was was a treat to eat a raw sweet onion, just like an apple. or the luxury of getting fruit in his stocking at Christmas. A stark difference between these two men was that Archie was a White Anglo Saxson Protestant aka a WASP and Tony was a Mexican American originally from Texas.The premise of this post is not too belittle or dishonor but rather take an honest look at perhaps what made these men tick. Just in the past week, millions of, Archie Bunkers showed up to vote. The reference is not to that of the bigoted ignorant not politically correct voter, but rather The citizen that is busting their ass, see their house devalue. Seeing manufacturing jobs go elsewhere and a government that seems to be only interested in themselves.

 Back to the comment at the beginning of this post. What statement have you made? Typical, (fill in the blank), right winger, bible thumper, socialist, libtard, liberal, and conservitroll. I remember a few of Archie’s favorites, Pinko Commie, (still never figured out the “pinko”reference). 

Point being, how much of the “fill in the blank” portion of your statement is shaped by what we are being fed by social media, agenda driven news sources, as well as, personal relationships. 

I will leave you with this, *Carroll O’Connor who played Archie Bunker, was one of the most liberal open-minded caring people you can imagine. Not only is this a tribute to his acting skill but also a tribute to him as a human being, A human being who took the time to not only portray but, also understand somebody elses point of view. A point of view on the other end of the spectrum. Peace. 

-RR

 

*Carroll O’Connor played Archie Bunker on the groundbreaking 1970s sitcom All in the Family. His comedic portrayal of a working-class bigot brought political and social issues into the popular dialogue of the time.