Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #426

The lovely Saturday evening had been going splendidly until Claudette laughed just a bit too hard and the cauliflower casserole from dinner backfired unexpectedly. Her bloomers billowed, the conversation ceased, the cab driver discreetly rolled down a window before they all perished, and the possibility of a second date suddenly skittered onto perilous ice.

Claudette, obviously, was not pleased with this development, and she tentatively eased her way into a desperate mode of damage control. “I’m not sure what to say at this point.”

Clark: “Well, your ass didn’t have any problem finding the words. I can still hear them now.”

Claudette’s mortification eased slightly, tempered by budding discontent with her date. “It’s not as if I did it on purpose, carefully-selecting the highest-fiber items on the menu at the restaurant just to powder the cannon. There’s no reason to be rude about things.”

Clark: “I’m not being rude. My ass hasn’t said a peep, although there was a brief moment when I thought it might have something to share when we hit that pothole back on Fifth Avenue.

Claudette, discontent now winning: “I don’t think you’re being very considerate of my delicate condition. Perhaps we should cut this evening short so you won’t be in danger of further changes in atmospheric pressure.” She leaned forward. “Oh, driver?”

Driver apparently did not have an official response prepared, and he said nothing.

Clark: “Perhaps he’s suffering from PTSD. Give him a few minutes to recover.”

Claudette: “Driver? We’ve had a change in plans and we won’t be going to the 21 Club.” She leaned forward and tapped Driver on the shoulder. “Did you hear me?”

Driver had a response this time, in that his head slumped forward and then stayed there. Perhaps it was a moment of sudden prayerful devotion, what with the startling climate change of this experience hinting at an apocalypse, but it did not appear that Judy Garland would soon be singing a perky song on the soundtrack.

Clark: “It’s worse than I thought. You’ve killed him with your ass. Are you happy now?”

Claudette jerked her hand away from Maybe-Dead Driver, apparently not having learned that sudden movement on her part was ill-advised at this point, considering the repeating cauliflower. “Would you stop saying the word ‘ass’?” I get it. You are not impressed with mine. Frankly, I’m not impressed with yours, for a different reason. So stop being one and help me figure out what to do now.”

Clark pondered.

Claudette clenched, because the cauliflower was hinting at an encore, damn it all.

Driver continued to not do anything.

Clark, finally, had a moment of brilliant observation. “Say, this cab is no longer moving, just like Driver.”

Claudette, sweating because of the clenching: “What are you saying? What does this mean?”

Clark: “It means that we can just get out and walk away. And I won’t have to pay the cab fare. I think everybody wins.”

Claudette, nearly hyperventilating with the extreme muscle control: “But what about Driver? We can’t just leave him here.”

Clark: “Oh, now you’re concerned about Driver? You certainly didn’t have his interests in mind with your Chernobyl incident. I don’t think anybody will be able to use this cab for fifty years due to all the radiation.”

Suddenly, Driver’s head popped up.

Claudette crop-dusted once more.

Clark screamed, in a manly way, according to his publicist the next day.

Driver: “Live from New York, it’s Saturday night!”

Claudette, waving away the fog: “Are you kidding me? This was just the opener for a TV show?”

Clark: “What kind of crazy producer would approve of this?”

Lorne Michaels, Saturday Night Live creator, walking past the non-moving cab and chomping on a street-vendor hot dog, extra onions: “Hey, if the ratings get low, you have to get low with the writing.”

The Writer: “Thanks, Lorne. Happy to help. Now, can I meet Tina Fey like you promised?”

Lorne: “You know the rules. You don’t get to meet Tina until you’ve hosted the show at least five times.”

Claudette: “I feel so violated.”

The Writer: “Me too. So dirty.”

The Seat Cushion: “Both of you have nothing on me.”

Clark: “So do I have to pay the cab fare or not?”


21 replies »

    • I did pause briefly to ponder whether or not you might feel I was, making some sort of inference here, but I valiantly got over it in about two seconds. (I make constant sacrifices for my art.) But since you like raw cauliflower, I also used to make a salad that involved chopped cauliflower, olives, onion, bell pepper, cheese and… several other ingredients that I am not recalling at the moment that resulted in a delicious hybrid of tapenade and a relish tray. I need to dig that recipe out, as I haven’t seen it in years…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. A few words, carefully chosen. *insert polite snicker* (oh who’m I kidding? I’m laughing so hard, it’s possible my own cruciferous veggies will shortly re-appear via weapon grade gas..) One. Ladies NEVER fart. To fart is to imply crudeness beyond the boundaries of lady-like behavior. We fluff. Fluffy things are cute (even if they smell like the overly described corpse in the novel I read yesterday)… Two. I’m disheartened a little… “Maybe Dead Driver” could have been “Possible Dead Driver” giving a nod to one of my personal favorite films (and perhaps yours?) “To Wong Foo. Thanks For Everything.” Of course this blog wasn’t written by me or for me, nor is it about me (despite the cruciferous veggie involvement). And there are no dust bowls nor strawberry festivals consisting solely of eating pie while the dust blows in the whipped cream on the scene. Mz. Colbert and Mr. Gable weren’t involved in that effort and some of the actors, including Sheriff Dullard (it’s a MISPRINT..) are really dead instead of possibly dead, so I suppose it’s moot.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, you have opened up my eyes to several missed opportunities with this bit. I must now retire to the salon and plop despairingly on the swooning couch, whereupon I can contemplate my various sins. (I have no idea where that Victorian theme just came from, but it was fun typing such.) But I must also address this issue that women perform bodily functions in such a delicate manner that it is almost a Disney movie. It’s nice to have visions of woman “fluffing” instead of tooting and “glistening” instead of sweating, but it seems a disservice to allow these myths to continue. Based on my own family, I know damn well the women sweat when they toot. They are just more gracious about it, unlike my PeePaw who would leave a stunningly offensive olfactory trail from one end of the grocery store to another whilst I hid in the Produce section and begged for Scotty to beam me up….


  2. One more thing…perhaps we should be the teensiest bit afraid. My first thought, upon viewing the photo (not having read any of the excellent satire below it), was she looked as if she were thinking “Who Farted?”: and he was thinking of plausible deniability for said faux pas…except he left his dog at home… So afraid because we’re coming to think exactly the same. Is the world ready for THAT?

    Liked by 1 person

    • The world is not ready for us, true indeed. Which means that when we finally initiate our campaign for world domination (and it’s coming!), we must be swift and merciless with our actions…. 😉


    • Delusion is one of the basic tenets of respectable societal behavior, yes? We must all pretend to be something we are not or people end up writing bitter blog posts in the middle of the night and… wait, this sounds familiar….

      Liked by 1 person

    • The SNL bit didn’t surface until the moment I typed out the “live from New York” line in random moment of inspiration. Which meant that I had to go back and sprinkle in a few NYC references and change the opening line from “The lovely evening” to “The lovely Saturday evening”, just to give this mess some degree of planning. To tie in with your previous comment, wordsmithing is all about deception and a healthy use of post-inspiration editing…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My husband’s previous incumbent wife who he generally refers to as the Ex-Cremant (sshh … don’t tell 😉) claimed never to fart and always blamed others in the room when those gaseous stenches stole in. Assuming she had not undergone an honesty epiphany, we live in hopes that the inevitable build up inside her will eventually reach point crical and she will simply go off bang in the manner of Roald Dahl’ s vile Violet Beauregard …. my dreams are not all sweet 💨💨💨💥😆

    Liked by 1 person

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