Wednesday, December 27, 2006

3 Word Wedesday #16

This is Wednesday, isn't it? The holidays have my mental calendar screwed up.

Each week, I will post three (or more) random words. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to write something using all of those words. It can be a few lines, a story, a poem, anything. This is a writing exercise. It doesn't have to be perfect. The idea is to let your mind wander and write what it will. I'll also attempt to write something using the same three words.

Be sure to leave a comment if you participate.

This week's words are:

Tony Culver was a bully. He was mean. His family was mean. And everyone knew it. Unfortunately, my grandma lived on the side of Culver Hill, home to every Culver in Clarke County.

My grandma's house was the first house you came to once you left the paved road. After that, the gravel road twisted upward until it disappeared into trees and shadows. My uncle had driven me about half a mile up the road one time to someone's house he knew. Other than that, I'd never ventured past grandma's driveway.

Even the cops were afraid to go up on Culver Hill. At least that's what my nine-year-old mind believed. Of course, I also believed my mother was fourteen at the time. And I was more than a little afraid that a watermelon might be growing inside me at that very moment.

On this particular day, my cousin Brian, two years my junior, and I were throwing rocks from my grandma's driveway towards the gravel road that wound up the hill. A favorite pasttime of ours, that we sometimes got in trouble for, although I was never quite sure why. There wasn't much to hit besides trees, the air pipe on top of grandma's storm shelter, and more trees.

We stopped when we saw an old, rusty Ford truck creeping up the gravel road. The driver was eyeing us. At least that's what I imagined.

"That's Old Man Culver," Brian said, as we both almost subconsciously scooted a few steps closer to grandma's porch.
"I know," I answered, wide-eyed.
"Did you know he beats his kids with a big leather horse whip," Brian stated more than asked, as our eyes remained glued to the old pickup.
"Does not!" I snapped. I had asked my Dad about the horse whip and he said it wasn't true.
"Does too!"
"How do you know?" I was easily convinced.
"Daddy and me was up at Mister Roy's one day and I heard it."
Brian's imagination was bigger than the sky, but I was afraid not to believe him.

After the truck disappeared, talk soon turned to who dared walk farthest up the gravel road. Tony Culver had told us both several times that we'd better not ever come up there. He was twelve, and probably bigger than me and Brian put together.

Brian told me that he had once walked as far as the third house, and dared me to do the same. Gullible as I was, and not willing to be bested by my seven-year-old cousin, off I went. Traipsing down grandma's long gravel driveway.

I turned around every few yards, checking to see how far away I was getting, and making sure my cousin was still there by the porch. Then I'd turn back around and look up the hill, imagining mean ol' Mister Culver, rabid dogs, and listening for the faintest sound of anything that would send me immediately scurrying back the way I had come.

As I walked, my steps became slower, my glances back more frequent. I tried to think of any way I could get out of this deadly dare.

I had just reached the end of the driveway and started up the perilous road when I heard my grandma whistle. Grandma had the softest voice, but when she put those two fingers in her mouth and whistled, I bet you could hear it in the next county.

Oh I had never been so glad to hear her whistle as I was that day. I stopped in my tracks and turned to see the two of them--her and Brian--standing on the porch. The little rat had told on me!

I gladly took off running towards the house. Whatever punishment awaited me, I was certain it would not involve a horse whip.

"Muddy roads, muddy feet. I didn't live on no blacktop street. Things have changed a lot but I never did..."


  1. This is the fifteenth week? Wow.

    Those aren't easy words. I know as I did mine--well, I could have written:
    I snapped the buttons on my leather coat as we went up the hill.

    But, uh, too easy

  2. Teresa Hill had been a great woman, serving her community all of her life. She was always the first one at the soup kitchen every Thanksgiving day for the past 53 years. She loved to help others, always scrimping and saving in order to buy Christmas presents for the orphans.

    Most of all she was determined in her dedication to the city. She snapped her fingers, and donations were given. Tough as leather she was, but with a heart of pure gold.

    What I'll remember most about Mrs. Hill was last year on a frosty Christmas morn. She made her usual appearance at the orphanage, and was in such bad shape that she had to be rolled in a wheelchair. Though once those children opened the gifts her face lit up ten times as bright as the twinkles on the tree. Everyone knew it would be her last appearance Not one person left without getting a kiss on the check, and a hug around the neck.

    Goodbye, sweet Mrs Harris. Heaven's a better place now that you're up there, spreading your joy.

  3. The snow had finally subsided after a 3 day long blizzard. The kids were excited because the roads still weren't clear enough to return to school. Randy grabbed the leather straps on the old sled as they headed to the park.
    It was very difficult for the kids to climb the sledding hill with all that snow. Their feet kept sinking in with each step. Eventually they did make it...and they squabbled over who would be the first to ride down the hill.
    Finally it was decided that Randy would take the first ride as he had dragged the sled the entire way. So with anticipation he boarded the sled and grabbed onto the straps with all his might as his friends gave him a good shove down the hill.
    What the kids didn't know was that the blizzard had knocked down a tree and covered it up with more snow on their favorite sledding route. No one had noticed until it was too late. Randy and the sled hit the tree going way too fast and the sled immediately snapped apart into too many peices to count.
    At the same time Randy went flying head first over the sled and over the tree. Luckily he came to rest in a snow bank and managed to make it without even a fact when the kids reached Randy, he was sitting there laughing and wanted to do it again.
    Unfortunately the sled was ruined...Dad's sled. They don't make good leather strapped sleds anymore. He wouldn't be happy about this.

  4. "And I don't wanna think about tomorrow
    I don't need anything money can buy
    I don't have to beg, steal, or borrow
    I just wanna live until I die"

    First thing that popped into my head when I read this!! Great song :-)

  5. Pia: Thanks. You stole mine. Now I had to go and write this long, drawn out story :)

    Big Man: Um, I'm thinking perhaps this one's true? Is that a Freudian slip in the last line?

    Renee: Very good. I do remember sledding a couple of times, out of the five times it has snowed in my life :) We never get enough to have a snow bank though.

    Now we're getting some participation here!

    Arlene: Yep. Seemed to fit perfectly with the story.

  6. Nope. None of it is true. The only thing that's close is that when my family went to see my grandmother in the nursing home, not one person left without getting a hug and kiss. But that's it, the rest was just culled from thin air.

  7. Ya know... the snow could have snapped the tree too. hummm Oh well, it's written.
    Inspiration was from our looks like we're expecting some more. DH is upset because it looks like we might get snowed in again and he took off work again.

  8. oh re the gum drop tree... yeah, I'm a regifter, degifter & returner! I've decided that life is too short to keep stuff I don't want...besides I keep too much stuff that I do like. gotta clean out this house.

  9. I didn't mention that DH gave me a ring that I don't want and keeps bugging me about getting it resized. I have to figure out how to tell him that I don't want it...he isn't a fan of the returning.

  10. Alright, I participated :-)

  11. Big Man: Oh, OK. I thought maybe you had let someone's real name slip there at the end.

    Renee: Yep. It definitely could have. I loved your post about your weekend. Because it was honest. It was probably what a lot of people feel or think, but don't say.

    Hmm... that's a toughie about the ring. I can't even remember a Seinfeld that addressed that problem. Probably because none of them were married.

    Arlene: Thanks for participating. I'll be over to check it out in a bit.

  12. And I was more than a little afraid that a watermelon might be growing inside me at that very moment. Somehow, I can believe this!

    I loved this story: good stuff! Much better than my attempt... though I had an excuse... ;)

    Btw, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Clay Walker. Great job!

  13. every week I really think about doing the three word wednesday and every week I chicken out. Mine would be something like Pia's, a quick sentence that doesn't require paragraphs or artful segues. Just nice and straight forward, and this, my friend is why all of my college papers were all of three pages. You're always so prolific with this and again it's a good one, pal.

  14. Hey, that's not my real post. That's on my blog

    But I loved the Sourthernness and the voice in Bone's post.

    Made being nine and so innocent that you think your mother is 14 because she probably did say that once so real

    Of course I did think that my mother was 20 until I was because that's what my parents told me

    It was just a beautiful endearing slice of life post--Bone's not my real one

  15. D'oh! Forgot my own character's name. I'm gettin' old man, I'm gettin' old. Now where'd I put my teeth? :)

  16. Traveling Chica: That was true :)

    You really have a talent for writing clearly and concisely, among other things.

    Heather B: Mmhmm. I know it's because you really just don't want to show me up.

    Pia: I thought this week's was one of your best, honestly. Oh, and it's the 16th week. I had to go back and change the title of the post, because I noticed last week's was 15, too. Oops.

    And I did believe my mother was fourteen for a long time. Even defended her when she'd make the claim to other family members.

    Big Man: Haha. It's OK. We all do it. My advantage is I can edit my posts. You can't edit comments on blogger.

  17. I didn't feel like I had a talent for writing anything yesterday, so I think I'll go with the "among other things" part of that compliment. ;)