Words for Wednesday was begun by Delores and has become a moveable feast of word or picture or music prompts that encourages us to write stories, poems, or whatever strikes our fancy.
This month, the prompts are being provided by Elephant's Child.
This week's prompts are two phrases and a very short story for you to expand (or not):
You can't judge a book by its cover;
The squeaky wheel gets the grease
"What's this newspaper ad clipping in Granddad and Gramsie's scrapbook?"
"Let me see -- oh! I had no idea they'd kept that!"
"You know about it?"
"Yeah, it's part of Granddad's story, and rather romantic of him to keep it, although I'm sure Gramsie encouraged it."
"Granddad doesn't look like the kind of guy who has a dramatic or romantic backstory."
"Well, you can't judge a book by its cover."
"So what happened?"
"As much as he loves Gramsie, as good a life as they've had together, there was someone else once."
"If you tell me he ever cheated on Gramsie, I'll punch your lights out!"
"Calm down! It's nothing like that, nothing at all. Granddad isn't that kind, never has been. It was before he ever met Gramsie."
"The deep, dark family secret has to do with a weird ad in the newspaper classifieds years ago?"
"It isn't even a deep, dark family secret. Most of the older members of the family know the story, it just doesn't get mentioned much. My dad told me when I was looking through a picture album a couple of years ago and saw a picture of a young girl I didn't recognize. When Granddad was in high school he had a sweetheart. They were going to get married, then she got cancer."
"They continued their wedding plans for right after graduation anyway, even though she got sicker and sicker. Cancer treatment then wasn't what it is now, and she went into the hospital and was there over a month. The hospital didn't want to let them get married in her hospital room, back then they were so strict children couldn't even visit their own parents and non-family members were discouraged from coming, too. But the squeaky wheel gets the grease. She said if she was going to go to heaven, she wanted it to be as his wife, and they all wanted her to be happy. He even helped her pick a dress from a mail order catalog, one that was really too expensive for them, but he made it happen.
"The big day came, and as her mom and sister were going to help her get into her dress, she looked over at Granddad, said, 'I love you so much,' and she died. They say he lost it, fell on her bed and howled. When he finally calmed down, he snatched the dress, said he would deal with it himself. Put that ad in the classifieds and joined the army. About a year later he met Gramsie."
"I don't blame him for keeping it, or Gramsie for letting him. Thanks for telling me."
"You're welcome," he said to his cousin as he touched the outlines of the yellowed old newspaper classified ad that read:
Boss's Day -- either celebrate, or roll your eyes, both are acceptable responses (begun by Patricia Bays Haroski in 1958 in honor of her boss, who was also her father; this date was his birthday)
Chicago International Film Festival -- Chicago, IL, US (oldest competitive international film festival in North America; through the 27th)
Chrysanthemum Festival -- Japan ("The Festival of Happiness", various shrines; through Nov. 15)
Circleville Pumpkin Show -- Circleville, OH, US (celebrating with over 100,000lbs of pumpkins, squash, and gourds; through Saturday)
Clean Your Bug Zapper Day -- internet generated, and we're getting a bit overboard here, aren't we?
Day of National Concern About Young People and Gun Violence -- US (students around the nation are asked to sign the Pledge Against Gun Violence)
Day of Pope John Paul II -- Poland
Dictionary Day / Learn a Word Day -- Noah Webster's birth anniversary
Dress Like A Dork Day -- does someone have it out for us with these?
East Texas Yamboree -- Gilmer, TX, US (yam it up with the family at the carnival, watch them crown the Yamboree Queen, enjoy the livestock show, and more; through Saturday)
Elephantine Festival -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (several such celebrations of elephants were held around this time of year in Egypt)
Ether Day (first demonstrated use, see History)
Feast of 'Ilm (Knowledge) -- Baha'i
Frankfurt Book Fair -- Frankfurt, Germany (world's largest international book fair; through Sunday)
Hagfish Day -- a day to celebrate the uniqueness and necessity of even the ugliest of sea creatures, like the hagfish
National Fossil Day -- US (National Park Service information)
National Liqueur Day
National Support Your Local Chamber of Commerce Day -- US
National Take Your Parents To Lunch Day -- US (sponsored by Kiwi Magazine, encouraging parents to go to school and have lunch with the children, learning what goes into a healthy lunch)
Niihama Drum Festival -- Niihama, Japan (three day festival with two ton drum floats)
Sennin Musha Gyoretsu -- Tochigi, Japan (procession of 1,000 warriors; through tomorrow)
St. Hedwig's Day (Patron of brides, duchesses, difficult marriages, widows; Bavaria; Berlin, Germany; Gorlitz, Germany; Silesia; against the death of children, jealousy)
Teachers' Day -- Chile
World Food Day -- UN
The first birth control clinic in the US is opened, 1916
Brigham Young University is founded in Provo, Utah, 1875
Girton College, Cambridge is founded, becoming England's first residential college for women, 1869
Zion's Co-Operative Mercantile Institution, America's first department store, opens, 1868
The Collegiate School is established(forerunner of Yale University), 1701, Old Style Date
John Mayer, 1977
Kellie Martin, 1975
Tim Robbins, 1958
Melissa Louise Belote, 1956
Barry Corbin, 1940
Bob Weir, 1947
Suzanne Somers, 1946
Gunter Grass, 1927
Angela Lansbury, 1925
William Orville Douglas, 1898
Eugene O'Neill, 1888
David Ben-Gurion, 1886
Oscar Wilde, 1854
Noah Webster, 1758
"The Red Mill"(Musical), 1945
"The Man Who Came too Dinner"(Play), 1939
"Billy the Kid"(Ballet), 1938
Jane Eyre(Publication date), 1847
Today in History:
Jadwiga (yes, a she) is crowned King of Poland, 1384
Olivier van Noorts' ships reach the Philippines, 1600
George Washington takes Yorktown, 1781
Marie Antoinette, wife of Louis XVI, is guillotined, 1793
Sir William Rowan Hamilton comes up with the idea of quaternions, a non-commutative extension of complex numbers, 1843
Dentist William T. Morton demonstrates the effectiveness of ether, 1846
Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre" is published, 1847
John Brown leads a raid on Harper's Ferry, West Virginia, 1859
The Cardiff Giant, one of the most famous American hoaxes, is "discovered", 1869
John Harwood takes out a patent on a self-winding watch, 1923
The Disney Company is founded, 1923
Benjamin O. Davis Sr. is named the first African American general in the United States Army, 1940
Fidel Castro is sentenced in Havana to 15 years in prison, 1953
The People's Republic of China detonates its first nuclear weapon, 1964
In response to the October Crisis terrorist kidnapping, Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau of Canada invokes the War Measures Act, 1970
Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho are awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, 1973
Pope John Paul II is elected after the October 1978 Papal conclave, 1978
Wanda Rutkiewicz is the first Pole and the first European woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest, 1978
Desmond Tutu is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, 1984
Reinhold Messner becomes the first person to summit all 14 Eight-thousanders, 1986
Bibliotheca Alexandrina in the Egyptian city of Alexandria, a commemoration of the Library of Alexandria that was lost in antiquity, is officially inaugurated, 2002
A 1,255lb. portion of the Chelyabinsk meteor is recovered by divers in Russia, 2013
New Zealand, Malaysia, Angola, Spain and Venezuela are elected to the United Nations Security Council, 2014
Ed Whitlock, 85, becomes the oldest person to ever finish a marathon in under 4 hours, completing the Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 3 hours 56 minutes, 2016