Saturday, October 12, 2013

Watching Dad's Cigarette Burn

     This weekend's Trifextra challenge is to use the accompanying video as a springboard to creative brilliance.  Not sure if what I wrote is brilliant but, I like it.

     This piece is based upon the shocked reaction to the Stones that took place in many upstanding, church-going family homes at the time.  My childhood upbringing was done in an atmosphere of black and white TV and black and white opinions about the world.  I know that, if my folks had been tuning in the night this show aired, they would have reacted the way I described in my piece.





Watching Dad's Cigarette Burn

Mom gasps, quietly.
Dad stares. His cigarette burning down.
Mick, seemingly possessed, writhes on the stage.

The song ends.
Dad turns the TV off.
Silence fills the living room but, the Devil remains.





35 comments:

  1. First of all, I so enjoyed hearing you read your work! Really a great idea and now I feel like I've met you. :))

    As for your Trifextra piece, it is wonderful. In so few words, you've conveyed atmosphere of both the internal and external variety. Well done, Tom. Really well done.

    By the way, can I add that your phrase in the introduction: "My childhood upbringing was done in an atmosphere of black and white TV and black and white opinions about the world." is worthy of a novel itself. I hope you'll write that novel, sir.

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    1. Where to begin in reply to such a wonderful comment? Ok, first of all, reading stories aloud is my very favourite part of being a teacher. My only worry is that my rendition of the story will take away from the interpretations others bring to my work....if that makes any sense? Secondly, I am not sure how interesting my life story would be to others. I have had the luxury of being able to live a good life, surrounded by love. If I were to write about that, I could hear the yawning echoing throughout the land. :) But, anyway, I appreciate your support and your very kind words.

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    2. Congratulations!! Amazing piece of writing - I'm so happy it was tops with Trifecta!!

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    3. Thanks! I am completely taken by surprise. Gotta figure out how to get one of those widget thingys now, i suppose. Thanks for always sticking with me. :)

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  2. Ha!

    The "devil" always gets through. Rock and roll is unstoppable. I like the preface and the delivery. Good 33

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    1. Coming from someone who bleeds music, your words are, indeed, a compliment! Thanks, Lance! :)

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  3. What a great scene you've painted in those 33 words! I can picture it perfectly and I can feel the tension in the room.

    And I love that you included the clip of you reading your work. That is so cool! I might have to try that myself. (I love reading out loud to my son.)

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  4. I'm going to try to provide an audio version of each post that I contribute. Thanks for your kind words about my writing.

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  5. Awesomeness. Love this. The lingering effect of your writing is fabulous and says much more beyond your 33 words. Thanks for linking up!

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  6. I felt like I was sitting in that room. The tone was perfect like a window into the times and states of minds. I an with Lance on the instoppableness of Rock and Roll (music really) I love hearing someone's voice. It adds another layer to them.

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    1. Thank you, Gina. In my mind, watching this performance would have been a clash of generations, for sure. Once the BBC started airing performances such as this, TV was never the same; especially in the minds of button-down folks such as the Mom and Dad in my story. Rock n' Roll is here to stay, eh?! :)

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  7. Thank you, very much, for such a nice comment. I guess that having our words leave a lasting effect is one of the few things a writer can truly wish for, when all is said and done. Thanks, again. :)

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    1. This reply is for the Trifecta comment above Gina's. As I was typing my reply, Bjorn and GIna both popped in, almost at the same time, and disconnected my reply from the TRifecta comment, somehow. So, anyway, this comment pair goes along with Trifecta's comment, for those of you keeping score. :)

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  8. How atmospheric this was... this said much more than your words...

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    1. Thanks, Bjorn. I was attempting to paint a portrait of an older generation watching and realizing that a newer, much less inhibited generation was banging on their door. Glad to know that you saw what I was attempting to do with this piece.

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  9. This day and age, imagining the scene in my head, I can only laugh. I suppose that makes me a bad person but ah well haha Awesome work.

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    1. Ooooooooooookkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk?! Thanks for stopping by.

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  10. You described the scene well (like your reading of it, too!) This kind of made me laugh because it seems every generation is appalled by the music of the next generation. Elvis Presley...Rolling Stones...Madonna (she gave them all a run for their money :)) I won't even get into some of the people my kids' generation listen to...it will just make me seem old!

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    1. I know! I am completely appalled by One Direction! :)

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  11. This is a fantastic take. You had me at the title, and that last line is a zinger. Well done.

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    1. Coming from such a fantastic writer as you, your words are, indeed, a great compliment. Thank you. :)

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  12. So cool to listen to you read your own work, Tom!!

    I too could relate to the black and white television era and shock effect of the Stones, and then a few years later, my devil of choice was Aerosmith. How I loved being "possessed!"

    Great 33!

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    1. Glad you liked the audio. Funny thing, though........it is Thanksgiving Day weekend up here in Canada and so, the house was full of people. For a few moments, everyone seemed to be occupied elsewhere and my thoughts turned to my post and to recording my audio version. The only place that was unoccupied and quiet enough to record in was my youngest daughter, Sophie's bedroom. So, picture me, crouched between her bed and her toy shelf, almost whispering into my iPad. I had to do several takes to get the one that you heard because I kept picking up background noise; the kids singing, peals of laughter and chatter. I went back to be semi-social after I had posted the audio clip. As far as I know, no one really missed me when I stepped out and no one knows that my words came alive for your ears to hear all around the world.

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  13. A great take on the prompt! I like the atmosphere of it.

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    1. Merci beaucoup! Atmosphere is important to this piece. I am glad that you liked how I went about trying to create it. :)

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  14. Atmosphere indeed. So clear. Black and white like, or something. ;)

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    1. Thanks. I appreciate your words. Glad my story struck a chord with you. :)

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  15. you always impress Tom, ALWAYS.
    Like the others, I could see, hear, even smell that cigarette in that room. Don't we all have memories of our parents witnessing our own idols (for me people like Madonna for the first time I suppose..and me blankly looking at them saying "So?" )

    but you reading it was incredible and outstanding. Thank you for doing that.

    Music in our lives is an incredible force and "seeing it' through LIVE performances adds the layer just like you did, to the experience.

    hope you had a wonderful weekend

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    1. Thanks you, Kir! I appreciate your true blue loyalty and support all througiut my time with Trifecta. Never thought I was ready yet to be in the so-called winner's circle but, here I find myself. Feels humbling. Thanks for standing beside me through it all. :)

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  16. the devil remains
    That's such an awesome place to leave this piece, Tom. We all go back to the devils and/or elephants in our childhood living rooms.
    Cool recording!

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    1. Thanks, Kymm, on all counts. I always appreciate the fact that you find time to stop by my blog each challenge and leave me your thoughts. :)

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  17. This is excellent! I love the last line. Even though Dad turned off the TV, the "evil" is forever burned in the minds of all who watched. This is so real. Every generation has its "evil." I'm pretty sure Miley Cyrus is today's. Lol! You've really captured the shock so many parents undoubtedly felt witnessing some of our musical icons for the first time.

    Well done. This one's on my list of faves this weekend. :)

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  18. You are absolutely correct, today's "Mick" is, indeed, Miley. Can of puts her shenanigans into perspective, doesn't it?! Thanks, as always, for your enthusiastic support and wonderful comments. I appreciate your stopping by, very much. :)

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  19. Congrats on the win, Tom. This is terrific. And I loved the recording. A home run for sure!

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    1. Thank you, Steph! I really apprecaite your kind words. Feels odd to have won but, happy it happened. :) Take care.

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