Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #472

Joan: “Look, I understand that you are upset, but there is absolutely no reason for you to be shoving your hand anywhere near my bosom. You’re not a casting director.”

Cliff: “No, you don’t understand. I have been in the kitchen all day, sweating my ass off and trying to make the perfect Christmas dinner.”

Joan: “Perhaps I should point out that such imagery does not make anyone want to eat anything that you’ve ever made.”

Cliff: “Stop trying to divert the issue. Do you have any idea how much planning goes into making sure that we have enough food for everyone to eat?”

Joan: “Not really. I’ve never cooked a single thing in my entire life. Except other actresses who wanted the same parts that I did.”

Cliff: “You can’t add new people to the guest list at the last minute. It throws everything off. At the very least, I’ll have to make another batch of scalloped potatoes, and another tub of green bean casserole, and the dessert list is shot to hell. This is an outrage that should not happen in modern society!”

Joan: “I can’t believe these words are coming out of my mouth, but you appear to be more controlling than I am. Tell me your secret. Is it a vitamin regimen? I must know.”

Cliff: “I don’t know you anymore. Why would you invite two extra people?”

Joan: “Maybe because they’re my children? Well, the two that haven’t written a tell-all book about my lack of parenting skills.”

Cliff: “Your children? We’ve been married for four months now, which is an outstanding accomplishment in Hollywood, and you’ve never mentioned that you’ve given birth.”

Joan: “Well, if we need to get into the fine print, none of my children actually had a staycation in my womb. But a certain blogger in Texas keeps insisting on posting these horrid little stories about how I got all my children during a sale at Macy’s and implying that I only did it for the sake of advancing my career.” [Joan turns toward the camera and winks at the blogger, knowing full well that any publicity is better than no publicity.] “And I just want to prove that I love all my children dearly and they are the foundation of my very soul.”

Cliff: “Oh. I didn’t realize how important this was to you. Okay, I just need to add a few place cards to the table. What are their names?”

Joan: “Um…”

Cliff: “Seriously? You don’t have an immediate answer for that? You have too many twisted secrets. Is Joan even your real name?”

Joan: “Um…”

Cliff: “That’s it. We’re done. I’m filing for divorce and I’m taking half of everything you own. Including your plastic surgery and one of your eyebrows.”

Joan: “Oh, I have an answer this time. This may startle you as much as it satisfies me to say. We aren’t actually married.”

Cliff: “Of course we’re married. There was a ceremony and we signed paperwork and there was that huge party afterwards with hundreds of guests. And before you try to get tricky with an annulment, don’t forget we consummated our marriage during our honeymoon at that Dude Ranch in Reno. Now that I look back, it was less of a consummation and more about me spelunking in a vast cavern that had seen a lot of tourists, but I got the damn job done.”

Joan: “How quaint of you to assume that you completed your duties. The ceremony was a scene in one of my movies, the paperwork you signed gave up any claim you might have on my earnings and possessions, including the eyebrows, and the party afterwards was merely the annual reunion for those who have spelunked before you and still have a special fondness for my echo chamber. My star might have a little tarnish but it still shines brightly in the eyes of many.” [Joan winks again at the certain blogger in Texas.] “So then, dearest Cliff, which is exactly where you are now standing, what do you suppose your next move might be?”

Cliff: “Um…”

Joan: “Thought so. Now, be a dear and work on those extra place cards. I’ll have my agent send you a text with the actual names you should put on them.”

Greta Garbo, wandering through for no apparent reason: “This is why I don’t care for the invention of spoken dialogue in movies. Things were so much simpler when all I had to do was look pretty whilst a violin played on the soundtrack.”

Blogger from Texas: “Girl, I hear ya. Those were the days, my friend, we thought they’d never end, we’d sing and dance, forever and a day.”

Garbo slaps the Blogger. “Did it ever occur to you that sometimes you push the trivia too far?”

Brian: “Um…”


Originally published in “Crusty Pie” on 12/04/16 and “Bonnywood Manor” on 02/17/17. Modified and considerably extended for this post. No green bean casseroles were harmed in the making of this production.


Brian: “Wait! I do have an answer. There are some lovely guests at Bonnywood who actually appreciate dated entertainment trivia.”

Tumbleweeds blow through the Echo Chamber.

Brian: “Okay, maybe not. “

Gloria Swanson: “Don’t worry about it, love. You’ll get another chance to be a star.”

Brian: “Really?”

Gloria: “Um…”


15 replies »

    • Oops, I just realized that this comment was meant to be a response to Sadje’s comment above. What I should have said is that I would be happy to get slapped by Garbo. Who wouldn’t?


  1. Okay I’m mighty confused (and that’s HARD to do, given the level of confusion that exists most of the time in my version of ‘reality’)…you spelunked a cave? Um…. (My evidence for the record): “…reunion for those who have spelunked before you and still have a special fondness for my echo chamber. My star might have a little tarnish but it still shines brightly in the eyes of many.” [Joan winks again at the certain blogger in Texas.] ” Well dear, if you went spelunking in THAT cave, no wonder… oh never mind. *koff koff** blame this silly comment on the fact that I have some sort of horrid flu and the meds for it include vast quantities of Heath bars (the bite sized kind. Someone at Hershey is an evil wizard). My blood sugar is NOT AMUSED. The sugar rush is making me a tad stranger than usual. Well that’s the story and I’m sticking to it! Like Joan there and her faux ‘virginity’ and much spelunked ‘cave’. Now I know what hubby meant when he used to say men needed a sturdy rope to find their way back out of certain caves. Not MINE and TMI. Oh my gawd. I’m shutting up.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Well, this comment was just a HOOT. But no, I ain’t done no spelunkin’ with Mizz Crawford. She was winking at me, just like she did earlier in the story, to show that we’re both in on her little game. Not that I wanted to have anything to do with her game, but you know how it is. If you want to keep your finger on the pulse in Hollywood, you’ll end up in a lot of twisted, lying relationships. Just like in the White House these days…


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