Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #123


  Fred had no idea if Barbara was telling the truth about that thing he was supposed to be investigating, but he was fairly certain that if she uncrossed her legs at this moment it would be quite obvious that she had little concern for undergarment propriety.

Barbara: “I could say the same for you.”

Fred was startled. “Did you just read my mind?”

Barbara: “I didn’t have to. You just look like a man who doesn’t bind the pendulum. Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to loosen.”

Fred: “How interesting. Now, let’s get back to this business about your husband being dead.”

Barbara: “I didn’t say he was dead. I said he was dead to me. There’s a big difference between the two. One involves annoying funeral arrangements and the other means I no longer put out and I block him on Facebook.”

Fred: “Then why did you call the police? Making a false claim can lead to a long stretch in the slammer.”

Barbara: “Well, it’s been a long stretch in the boudoir since I’ve stretched my toes and something simply had to be done. Meaning me. Aren’t you here to protect and serve? I’m really interested in the serving part.”

Fred: “I think it might be time for me to head back to the station. I’ve got to file some reports and work on other cases and get as far away from you as I possibly can.”

Barbara: “Oh? Did I misread something? Are you one of those festive guys who thinks it’s fun to stay at the YMCA?”

Fred: “What? No! Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Some of my best friends have memberships.”

Barbara: “Well, then it’s settled. Let’s rock the Casbah.”

Fred: “But I’m still on duty.”

Barbara: “And I’m still technically on duty as a wife, but I’m not getting all whiny about my personal issues. Perhaps you need a bit of convincing. How about I show you the evidence.” She suddenly uncrossed her legs with such agile and athletic grace that three of the five Olympic judges held up placards indicating a perfect score. (The other two judges held up Village People albums in a sign of protest.)

Fred tried not to look but he eventually succumbed to the succubus because, well, people named Fred often don’t have that many opportunities. “Wait, is that… is that a turnstile?”

Barbara: “Sorry. I forgot to disconnect that. I’ll have it off in a jiff.”

Fred: “But how does that thing even work?”

Barbara: “It’s wi-fi. You can find the most amazing things on Amazon these days. It emails me a monthly report for my doctoral thesis at Berkeley.” [Sounds of unstrapping followed by a metallic clank.] “There. The runway is clear. Shall we prepare for takeoff?”

Fred: “You’re doing a research project?”

Barbara: “You could say that.”

Fred: “So, in a way, I’m just contributing to the advancement of science.”

Barbara: “Exactly! See? It’s all good. Now, follow me. And bring the handcuffs.”

Fred, sighing: “Okay, fine. But don’t tell my three sons about this.”


Previously published. Considerably revised and extended and sprinkled with lots of pop culture references, including a very obscure “Seinfeld” shout-out and a last line that only works if you know Fred MacMurray trivia. These are the risks one takes at 1am on a random Thursday morning…


17 replies »

  1. Lol. Double entendres abounding! Having it off in a jiff? The sweet release of handcuffs? My my, laid-back father figure Fred is going to provide a very enlightening and instructional ‘birds and the bees’ talk with Mike, Robbie and Chip. Should have buck-toothed eavesdropping Earnie steaming up his glasses too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Double entendres give me a reason to live. Okay, maybe not, but it sounds good…

      And now that we have been apprised of Fred’s randy past, it completely changes the aura of his eventual sitcom from “humorous observations about family life” to “sordid hotbed of repressed carnal desires”. But then again, that usually happens to all of us at some point, eh?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. And what did get out of the deal, weird hallucinations about having 3 sons, or was it 4. Well he should have gone with the old Easter Eggs on May Day, instead of smelling that stuff he had in his basement lab, phlahburr silly putty. He ended up thinking he was an alien from Mia Orca.

    Liked by 2 people

    • But THEN Claudette Colbert showed up (after making seven films together; they were tight and she could walk in without knocking) and insisted that Fred give her the password for Bill Frawley’s laptop. Fred knew that Bill would never allow anything to sit on his lap that required a password and therefore he knew that Claudette was not really Claudette and most likely the reincarnation of Alforth Rambuck, an obscure statistician that he had studied during his three days working on a degree at Beaver Valley Community College. Fred slipped into another room and searched an obscure closet for the only obscure weapon that could properly resolve this situation. He finally found the aboriginal soapstone and proceeded to confront Not Claudette….

      Liked by 1 person

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