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Beat me by Seven Seconds

Scalzi Story

Wherein I take a band name from Scalzi’s Next Band Name list, and spend no more than 20 minutes writing the story with the band name as a title. Current one is Beat me by Seven Seconds.


"Mom! Grandpa is telling that story again!"

Mindy looked through the door towards the living room, knowing her dad would most likely be on the porch. He liked that rocking chair they bought for him a couple birthdays back, loved playing the part of the old man rocking on the porch, watching the world drift by.

She knew better. She knew he was as sly and sharp as he had ever been. And loved him for it, too.

"I'll go get him," Lynn said, moving to set down the pot she was carrying.

"It's okay, sis," Mindy responded, tugging on the apron strings along her back. "I have it."

"Okay. Let me know if you need help."

Mindy smiled at her sister, dropped the apron down on the table and walked out of the kitchen, through the house.

She could see through the front window that the old man had most of the neighborhood boys sitting on the porch. Counting them as she walked through the living room, she realized she didn't recognize most of them.

"There are quite a few more this time," a voice commented from her right, stopping Mindy as she smiled.

"I was just thinking myself that I don't recognize most of them. Any idea where these kids are from?"

"Clearly the neighborhood," Mindy's brother answered from the couch. "Other than that, I have no idea."

Mindy stood watching the small crowd mesmerized by the old man's tales. Their expressions ranged from small smiles to utter delights. Mindy smiled, too, when she realized the crowd was almost only boys. "I'm pretty sure I know which story he's telling, but, do you know?"

"His world record one," Jim said.

"Of course," Mindy smiled larger, and started moving towards the door again.

"Of course," her brother echoed.

Mindy walked through the front screen door, keeping the door from banging shut, as her dad continued his tale.

"... and then, could you believe it! I get this call, they'd been trying to call me for days, trying up to twenty times every day to tell me my record had been beat! Beat me by seven seconds! they tell me! Seven. Seconds." his last two words punctuated by dramatic jabs of his pointing hand.

"And what am I to do? I had trained all my life for that record. Even I couldn't beat my record, and he beat me. Do I start drinking water again? Do I switch to coffee so that I can train faster? Do I ask him the secret to extreme duration urination?"

"Dad," Mindy stood behind the boys, smiling broadly but with a warning in her voice.

"Well, it's true, girl. There is a secret to duration urination. It's all in the control of the flow, and I had it. I could..."


"Well, okay. But see here, I could piss longer than a giraffe..."


The boys around them erupted in laughter.

The old man was smirking with delight at the reaction from his audience. Mindy was smiling, too. When the laughter settled to a stream of giggling, she asked, "Could I just go get your world record plaque for urination duration and we move on to a different story."

A twinkle in his eye, "Sure," he answered.

"Now boys, have I told you about the time ..."

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