Friday, November 2, 2012

Flash Fiction Friday -- Basketball Socks

Sir or Madam


When I was a kid, my dad had kind of a soft spot for traditions. Except, not the traditions you'd think. Other families did things because the parents' own family had done it, like Christmas trees and Turkey on Thanksgiving; my dad had a bit of a different experience in boyhood, having been raised in a small community (read: a seclusive cult on a mountain). So, when he became a father he had a lot of deciding to do. 'How does the rest of the world (not on the mountain) go about life? What are we gonna keep sacred around here?'

His answer: firsts. He tasted ice cream for the first time when Mom had a craving for it, pregnant with my older brother. Thirty six years old, the man had his first ice cream. After that, he was hooked. He wanted a new first all the time, and he wanted to be there for every first of ours. He stayed at home and Mom worked, so he could raise us, and witness and keep them all in his head--every first. And once he'd decided a first was worth celebrating, it became permanent.

My first Halloween to be old enough to choose my own costume was when I turned five. I went as a home-made dinosaur. We were almost ready to go when Dad instructed, "Son, you'll need a place to hold the candy. Grab a sock." I bolted back to the linen closet, knowing just what I'd choose; he had a set of three pair of long basketball socks for when he played with his buddies every first and third Saturday morning. I carefully laid all of them side by side, to see which had stretched the most, and chose the biggest one. I brought my selection back outside, where they were already waiting. Dad turned and beamed at me, paused a second, then beamed bigger. He took my sock, wrote my name in permanent marker across the rim, and passed it back to me, turning to lead us into the candy-grabbing adventure of our dreams. It wasn't until I saw James' pillow case, with his name also scribbled in Dad's handwriting across the side, that I realized he had said to choose a sack, not a sock. It was too late now, though. This was my first choice on my first Halloween, and I knew I would never escape it. He respected the firsts too much.

I guess that's how I got here. To manage your jelly bean factory, I would pull upon years of experience at never eating as much candy as I want.

Thank you for taking the time to read my cover letter. I hope you'll consider me for the position.

Want to make one of your own? Next week's prompt is, 

"tall order."

Read Kindra's submission.
Read Jenari's submission.
Read Jeffery's submission.
Read Keri's submission.

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