Hello everyone, everywhere,

You know, this past week or so, we out west have been enjoying lovely weather. All of a sudden, Eastern Canada must have gotten ticked off because we got dumped on. Anyway, that’s enough about the weather. It’s winter. What are you going to do?

My focus has been on our upcoming concert (Friday at Ross Street downtown). Also, while we were preparing for it, we were notified by the City of Red Deer that we have been chosen to be the feature act on Labour Day when they close down the streets and party.

I’m pretty sore, so I’ll wrap it up. It’s yoga, swimming, and the whole health thing tomorrow. Let’s go health!

That’s it.

And now it’s time to close our eyes and our thoughts, if only for a moment…and rest. Michelle challenged me to write a story out of my comfort zone. I was thinking on this project, and since I was challenged, I knew I had to do it. May I present my version of…



It started like every boozin’ story, except it wasn’t. It was mine. Here’s how it goes; stay with me, because I’m confused enough.

Where do I start? My name is Bert Flynner. Last week I spent half the night at the bar telling everyone I could talk to fish. Everyone, apparently, turned out to be three guys from some ball team. They were not getting me. So I said to the bartender, “Call me a cab.” (Wait for it. I love this part).

“You’re a cab,” he said.

I was on a mission: to go talk to fish. I headed outside to find the cab. Half stumbling, half in control, I arranged myself in the cab.

“Where to, sir?” said the cab driver?

 Omen’s Pier or Dock…where the water is, you know.”

The cabbie checked me out and thought, I hope this guy is all right, but what the hell, he already paid. We’re on.

That cabbie dropped me exactabilily where I wanted to go. Yeah, that’s it. I was at the right spot. Now the drama. I was sitting on the dock, calling to the fish, “I’m here. Let’s talk!”

All of a sudden a puff of smoke appeared, and then…”What the hell!” I said. Out of the mist, a guy appeared. I’m nobody’s fool, but heck, this guy was red, and he had horns! This person kept walking closer, and believe me, if I were sober, this really would have  screwed me up.  “Did I miss Hallowe’en or is that a banana in your pocket?” I said.

The whatever-he-was glared at me and said, “Young man, I am the devil.”

“I’m a bit of a scallywag myself,” I said. “Where do you get those horns? You know, what store?”

“Forget the horns. I want you to take my daughter on a date. You are the right fellow, Bert, when you’re sober.” (Let it go, let it go, go now).

I laughed and said, “Does she have horns?”

The devil stared down with his weird eyes and said, “We have been following your…shall we say…existence. Really Bert. Really? This is real. Date my daughter once, and you can go back to talking to fish.”

I gazed down at my shoes and said, “One black one and one brown one. Good thing I’ve got the other pair at home.” I said to the devil, “She’s got no horns or a tail, right?”

The devil, already fed up with me, said, “No horns. No tail.”

“Too bad,” I said. “Oh well, bring it on.”

The next night, I had been home for an hour, having a beer and thinking about this dream I had last night. Drinking. Every time. Drinking. That would change the score for sure.

The doorbell rang, which is in itself odd because I thought it was broken. I looked out and gasped, “Shit! That’s a woman!”

Now slowly, but quicker than you might think, I remembered: fog, horns, and I guess I forgot to mention Horny told me I could have anything I could dream of. I wondered what that was.

I opened the door and in walked a beautiful girl. My first thought was, do I owe you money? Whoops, sorry. That was another girl.

Her eyes washed over me. I felt dirty.

“Daddy sent me,” she said.

“Yeah yeah,” I said. “Afterthought…no horns or tail, right? Are you sure?”

She cast a smile on me and said, “Do you bowl?”

I laughed and said, “Of course. Who doesn’t? By the way, your name is Gloria, am I correct?”

“Actually, it’s Gertrude.”

“Nice one. Sorry. Okay, I’m going to get my lucky socks on. Hey, Brenda, there’s a beer in the fridge if  you’re thirsty. Just drink half. It’s my last one, and I could use a sip or two.”

 Next thing I saw Helen, no, Alice, no, wait a minute, Nancy! Oh, the hell with it! Whoops. Gertrude. I know that. She was phoning her dad on my phone, which was odd because it was cut off two months ago. Horns were coming out now. (Sort of).

“Daddy, I have had enough of this date. I mean, really really had enough.”

I darn near flipped. Smoke filled my little house, as the devil appeared. I said, “I’m not paying to get the smoke out of here.”

The devil stared down at me, shook his head and said, “Come child. We’re leaving”.

Hand in hand (or claw, however you see it), they turned to leave. Well, I had a thing or two to say like, “Hey Red. Who’s paying to get the smoke out of here?”

No answer eh? Bert Flynner don’t care!

“Nice to have met you, Bridget,” was the best I could muster.

As they left, the devil’s daughter said, “It’s Gertrude you idiot!”

“Okay, okay.” I said. “I’m going bowling. The hell with both of you.”

That’s all.


By jamesghutcheson

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