Wow, one post after another! crazy eh?
Today I woke up and I thought that it would be wonderful to be a caterpillar or a bear or some other animal that gets to sleep for a long time. Maybe a lung fish. Yeah, one of those!
It was rainy (it still is) and cold cold cold. I forgot to put on my cuddleduds, which was a mistake. I frizzled all the way to my lecture, just like Troll in Moll and Troll, and I didn't have any newspapers to protect myself like he did. I slipped on the stairs and fell on my bum on my way to my lecture, and I am pretty sure I am going to have a sweet bruise as a result. It sounds kind of like a ho-hum day, but it really wasn't. I had fun in all my lectures because...I didn't really pay attention and instead wrote a little sketch, which I have put here just for fun, in case anyone wants to read it. I liked writing it, but I don't know if it's any good or not, so don't be too excited or anything:
Mr. Wood: a Sketch
It was springtime, but Mr. Wood scowled from his stool behind the counter of the general store. He had no objection to birds singing or flowers blooming. He even patiently endured the running of his nose under the affliction of seasonal allergies. Yes, Mr. Wood was really a genial man. However, the one thing he could not endure had sent the bell of the door dingling that very moment, so he scowled.
Simpering within a fashionable, flower-laden straw bonnet came a tittering young lady on the arm of a slightly nervous, yet proud and adoring young man with a very pressed silk handkerchief tucked dandily into his pocket.
“Look at all these dear ribbons, Robbie!” she gushed at the collection of mauve ribbons draped appealingly over some fabrics. Mr. Wood snorted inwardly. What was that warning Wilde had written about women and mauve?
Young ‘Robbie’ obediently admired the ribbons while murmuring little compliments in her ear—”how well you they would look in your curls, Dora my love.” He gently stroked one of the golden curls as he spoke, and Mr. Wood wished that he could push both of them out the door and bar it against them and all of their kind. Such ‘live in thy heart, die in thy lap, and be buried in thy eyes’ romantic mush-gush made him ill.
Young Robbie and Dora would have pointed to his disgust as a case of sour grapes. Mr. Wood, though his scowls aged him, had no more than a few years over the besmitten pair. Springtime ought to have sent him to the general store with the love of his life on his arm, not to the stool behind the counter. If his life was like theirs, they would argue, he would view ribbons in a different way.
However, it was not for the disdain of the ladies that Mr. Wood sat on his stool. Many young women in the town eyed the dark-haired, straight-nosed individual with interest, and many even said he might be handsome if he did not scowl so much. They would have been happy to oblige had he asked any of them to go walking with him. But Mr. Wood disliked it all. He would not simper, he would stroke the golden curl. His compliments would have disappointed—a young lady may doubt her lover if his most sincere praises were for her “very strong cheekbones” or the “very durable and practical fabric of her dress.” He lacked sentimentality, and he found it unbearable that these cooing pairs of love doves would choose the general store as a place to ooze some of their own superfluous measures of it. He tried to put his mind off it by re-balancing the till and organizing a jar of candy drops by color until the dingling of the bell made him look up eagerly, anticipating the couple’s departure. He was disappointed in this, for Mr. Robert and Miss Dora were still cooing among the ribbons, and instead some new customers had entered. It was a bustling middle-aged woman with a critical eye, accompanied by a young lady who looked to be 15-20 years her junior.
“Hmm. Here it is, Katie, a very well organized shop after all. I had not thought it would be so from the crookedness of the hanging sign,” the woman remarked to her companion.
“Indeed Aunt, it had a decidedly careless air. But look how these pickle jars are arranged—professional, I do say,” said Katie.
In spite of himself, Mr. Wood felt some pride. His employer had set him to arranging the pickle jars the day before, and he had felt at the time that his work had been fine, and was glad for this confirmation of it. He made a mental note to adjust the sign.
“Excuse me, young man,” the woman addressed him, “ Do you sharpen scissors here?” The arch of her brow told Mr. Wood that the fineness of the pickle jar arrangement would be forgotten in an instant if he answered in the negative. Thankfully, he did not have to.
“Yes ma’am. Simply leave them here and they will be finished in and hour or two. Then you may return to the pick them up.” Katie and her aunt exchanged a look. “ I’m afraid we cannot stay in town that long, we have been out too long already,” said the woman, “I shall send Katie tomorrow for them, if you don’t mind, Mr —?”
“Wood ma’am. James Wood. That will be no inconvenience. What name shall I put on the order?” he queried, pen poised.
“Mine, I suppose—Mrs. Eleanor Brickle, and my niece’s as well, since she shall fetch them.”
“Katherine Ashby,” the young lady offered.
Mr. Wood wrote both names down in neat block lettering.
“They will be ready as soon as you care to come for them tomorrow,” he assured them. Mrs. Brickle nodded approvingly.
“Thank you Mr. Wood. This is a well-run shop.”
“I am happy to please you, and I will pass your compliments on to my employer,” he said, with another swell of pride.
The two women turned to go, but before they left, Miss Katie Ashby looked back over her shoulder.
“The jar of candy drops, Mr. Wood, is most splendidly organized,” she said, with a flash of admiration in her eye. Then the door bell tinkled, and out they went.
Mr. Wood folded the receipt carefully and placed it with the scissors into a box for sharpening later. Mr. Robert and Miss Dora finally came forward with their ribbon selections. They gazed lovingly at each other as he rung them up, but he did not notice so much as before.
“What very strong cheekbones Miss Ashby has,” he thought.