Back Up Up Up


Meanwhile, back up in the upper U.P. …             We joke about being without our devices but imagine if your phone and your computer crashed and burned at the same time. Now imagine that they do this in the midst of a mammoth blizzard. Immobilized and isolated, Charli Mills has somehow kept the Ranch going and is digging out. Find out more at Carrot Ranch. This week after a post about the vital practice of backing up your files on your computer, Charli is back with the February 28, 2019, prompt: “In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story using the term backup. You can back up or have a backup, just go where the prompt leads!” I have three; if you don’t like one there’s backup, keep reading, maybe there’s something for you. If you’ve enjoyed Marlie, the girl with the Destiny Doll, she’s back. I recycled a story from last week’s “intermittent challenge” about being buried in the snow. And something new just for fun. Go to Carrot Ranch for more fine fun flash.


Traditional Does Not Equate With Destiny

“Honey! I could use some backup.”

Marlie’s dad came out of his office. “Yes?”

“Our first grader has figured out that she no longer needs to attend school.”

“I can read and my teacher says if you can read you can learn anything. But we don’t have time at school.”

“What about math?”

“We keep doing the same things over and over. I’ll do math here by baking and using your tools to fix things.”

“You did tell her that was real math.”

“Let’s let her try it. I work from home, she can work from home.”

“Some backup.”


 Fire in the Hole

Dusted by the unremitting snowflakes, the explorers carefully made their way across the glacier.

“They say each snowflake is unique. No two alike.”

“Are they still saying that? That makes this landscape even more diabolical, a conspiracy of snowflakes of astronomical proportions.”

They stopped to take a GPS reading. “Here we are. Standing over downtown. Welcome to Houghton, Michigan.”

“Back up! A crevice.”

They took another reading by the crevasse and checked their notes.

“Down in there, that’s where the CFC used to be. Is.”

“Listen! Hear that?”

“Yes. This means…”

“The Continental Firehouse Company is open! Let’s go!”


Best Laid Plans

“Mom, Dad. Sit down, I have something to tell you.”

They sat, exchanging wry smiles. They weren’t naïve.

“I have struggled with this but really have no choice.” Their child fell silent, swallowed nervously. They held hands under the table. “You need to know that I am…”

“You can tell us, Dear. It’ll be okay.”

“I- I’m a writer.”

Now it was they that blew out their breath. This they hadn’t expected. Perhaps they were naïve.

“But what about money?”

“I’ll write a book.”

Damn. A partner might have meant income, security.

“Tell us you have a backup plan.”


25 thoughts on “Back Up Up Up

  1. I love Marlie’s Dad. He’s just my type!
    Love your take on the Houghton snow scene. I think the CFC scene might be more fun! It’s great to give them another mention.
    I think there are many parents who may not take well the news of an offspring wanting to be a writer. Well told.
    I enjoyed all three but would vote for Marlie’s dad (and give him a huge hug) if I had to. I’d back him up. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good stories. It’s funny that all kids want to be adults and all adults want to be kids. I love “a conspiracy of snowflakes.” I didn’t have the last issue with my parents. My mom’s been very supportive. There was a girl, though. I could tell she was interested until I told her I was a writer.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a brilliant trio! I’m starting to see a familial pattern in Marlie’s outlook. Like that girl! I busted out laughing over the glaciated Houghton, MI. Mind if I read that at the next dance performance during intermission? I think the crew at CFC will get a kick out of it. Aw, that last one — yes, a partner would mean far more security.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Backups « Carrot Ranch Literary Community

  5. Pingback: Carving Out 99 Words at a Time | ShiftnShake

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