Prompted: The Race.


Tipsy Lit is a wonderful site for all kinds of writers. If you’re interested in joining the fun, check out the details here and add your story to the link by Friday. Voting is on Saturday. If you like this story PLEASE VOTE for it, Saturday. Click this link to vote.  I appreciate the support!  This week’s prompt: Age is Meaningless

image: huffingtonpost.com

image: huffingtonpost.com

The Race

As she tried to keep pace, Diana grew tenser. It seemed nothing flustered her aunt Ginny. Diana needed to run off her stress, Ginny liked to exercise. It drove Diana crazy.

“Aren’t you ever in a bad mood” Diana asked Ginny, as they rounded a bend in the trail and headed back.

They’d already pounded out three miles, and Diana’s legs were loath to do the three miles back; her nearly seventy-year old aunt seemed as consistent and positive as always.

“What? Of course I have bad moods.” Ginny smiled serenely.

Damn, Diana thought, she’s so perky!

Ginny glanced at her niece, sweaty and looking flustered.

“What’s bothering you? Would it help you to know that I have bad moods, Dee?”

Ouch. Diana ran a little harder, but Ginny kept pace. She doesn’t sweat as much either.

“Nothing in particular’s bothering me. It just seems like you don’t really get what it’s like to be my age and have so many things to figure out.” She wiped her forehead with her arm. “I think it’s just easier to let things go… at your age.”  Diana kept her eyes focused on the trail.

“Sure, what would I know about being young? After all, it happened so long ago!” Ginny teased.

“Don’t take it personally, I just meant–”

“I know what you meant Dee. No need to clarify.”  She bit her lip as they went up the backside of hill that had been much kinder, when they were running down it.  “I’m well aware of age! Trust me; I notice it every day. You think I take things in stride, and perhaps I think you take things for granted.  You think it’s easier for me, and some days I wish I had the ease and options you have.”

Diana stopped. “Ease?” She adjusted her sweatband and pushed some loose hairs off her face. “See! That’s just what I mean; it all looks easy to you.”

Ginny started running again, a little slower, allowing her niece to catch up. “Yes love, ease. You just don’t appreciate the ease you have now. It’s a burden to think about which man you want to spend time with, which one might be your partner one day.” She watched Dee’s face; glancing sidelong. “I have your uncle Ben. He’s the love of my life, and for that I am grateful. But sometimes after we’ve made love,” she noted with humor that Diana winced, “I long for that wildness we once had. We’re so familiar with one another that everything’s safe, even when we’re trying something new–”

“Seriously! TMI!” Diana snorted.

“Grow the hell up Dee!”  Ginny turned and looked sternly at her niece. “You’re twenty-seven years old; I hope I’m not just your running partner. We’re both women, despite age. Get over it.” She waited a moment gauging the impact.

Diana pulled it back together and held her pace.

“I have sex with your uncle, and we like it. I hope you can say the same some day. I don’t wax my netherlands, and we don’t try the things I’ve read are standard these days, but we do have a good sex life.”

Diana smiled, a peace flag.
“But, we know each other so well; it’s so safe. Maybe I’d like the option to try to some of those things I’ve read about.”

Diana laughed out loud, as Ginny nudged her gently; then continued.

“You have the ease of options… the option with lovers; options in career choices; you’re not tied down yet– the options of youth. My options have become much more limited, in virtually every aspect of my life.”

She slowed her pace, her knee suddenly aching more than usual.

“I can’t go out there and try too many new things, sweetie; time is limited. When I was your age…” she paused as her young children’s faces flashed through her mind. “It’s just that age is a strange thing: when you’re young enough to have options, you just don’t see them. You push the clock forward, dying to see where you’ll end up…”

The parking lot came into view, and Ginny felt relieved, suddenly tired.  She stopped and looked at her niece. Diana looked confused by the change in their routine.

“Look Dee; back to your question: it’s not that I don’t ever have bad moods; I just don’t want to waste that much time on them. In a way, age is meaningless. None of us get it whatever age we are; we’re looking ahead or looking back. When you’re my age you know the clock is ticking; things matter a little more because of it. I’d rather not waste too much of that time on bad moods. Tick-tock.”

Maybe age is meaningless, Diana thought. It’s all about attitude?

As they approached the parking lot, she grabbed her aunt’s arm and they sprinted to the finish, together.

About Dawn Quyle Landau

Mother, Writer, treasure hunter, aging red head, and sushi lover. This is my view on life, "Straight up, with a twist––" because life is too short to be subtle! Featured blogger for Huffington Post, and followed on Twitter by LeBron James– for reasons beyond my comprehension.
Aside | This entry was posted in Aging, Awareness, Blog, Blogging, blogs, Honest observations on many things, Life, Personal change, Tales From the Motherland, Weekly Writing Challenge, Women, Women's issues, Writing, Writing challenge and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

59 Responses to Prompted: The Race.

  1. unfetteredbs says:

    Tick tick tock…..sigh

    Like

  2. I agree with Ginny about not spending too much time on bad moods.

    I love the relationship between Ginny and Dee. I can imagine that they’ve had many talks like this.

    Like

  3. El Guapo says:

    Beautiful! I’ll be keeping an eye out for the voting button.

    Like

  4. Carrie Rubin says:

    Wonderful story. One of my favorites of yours, though I can’t imagine ever having conversations like that with my own niece (for which I’m sure she’s grateful). 😉 But the message is so important, and I grasp it now much better than I would have two decades ago. Great stuff, Dawn.

    Like

  5. An interesting slant on the perennial thorny problem of young and old perspectives on age. As for the sex? I once wrote a story about sex between two old people in a terminal care hospice, and the people who liked it most were… you guessed. It wasn’t the youngsters.

    Like

  6. Pingback: Prompted: The Race. | ugiridharaprasad

  7. Pingback: Polling Prompted: Age is Meaningless | Tipsy Lit

  8. Reblogged this on Tales from the Motherland and commented:

    If you didn’t read this yesterday, or read it and liked it, voting is Saturday only. EVERY VOTE COUNTS! IF you like(d) this story, please support it by voting at Tipsy Lit: http://tipsylit.com/2014/01/25/polling-prompted-age-is-meaningless/ THANKS!

    Like

  9. Mike Lince says:

    I am catching up on my reading. Fortunately, I caught up on a Saturday so I could vote for your story. On the one hand I think it is disheartening to vie with a writer who enlists his fan club to get votes. On the other hand, I sense you are competitive enough that, like the niece in your story, compels you to step up your game – a strategy that seems to be working. I perceive levels of imaginative creativity coming out that tell me your writing skills are being honed nicely. Keep it up, Dawn. You know I am a big fan! – Mike

    Like

    • Thanks Mike. I think the ideal situation would be if the stories were listed on Saturday, voting day– I got a LOT of read yesterday, but then you have to count on folks to come back the next day. In addition, I wish there was a way to post stories with out author’s name or identifier… then we’d have a real competition! 😉 Thanks for the vote, Mike. Buena noche!

      Like

    • OK, so Mike you’re a big fan of Dawn’s, by your own admission. So it’s not uinfair for a fan of hers to vote, but it is unfair if a fan of mine votes? I’m struggling with the logic a bit here.

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      • Mike Lince says:

        If there is logic to be found here, and I am not claiming that is the case, it is only that it seems a shame to pit one fan club against another rather than have each submission win or lose on its own merits. That having been said, I still voted according to the rules. – Mike

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        • Thank you Mike for your (as always) balanced response. I agree that this has been more of popularity contest. You are and have always been a supportive “fan,” but I know you to be honest as the day is long. I appreciate your vote, and apologize that you have to defend yourself against an “attack” that is sad to see on my comment section. (I am now wondering about the definition of “sour grapes” and “poor loser”), when I have tried to be extremely open and courteous to Duncan/ nobodysreadingme.

          As I said in my previous comment to you, Mike: I think it would be most fair if ALL of us were unidentifiable and neither “fan club” could be used. Ericka, the founder of TL, encouraged us all to bring in our fans… but that means that others stories get very few reads! It’s hard to believe, that in all that voting, the story I voted for (Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover) got ONE VOTE, mine??? That defies logic. I would prefer to enter my story and truly let the voting decide. It is nothing short of interesting that there were 15 new votes in the last hour+ of voting… when no other story got a single other vote in that hour?? It is indeed a popularity contest. I am fine with losing it.

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        • So did I. So did my ‘fanclub.’ So did Dawn’s ‘fanclub.’
          I shall ask a couple of different questions.
          Did you read my story before you voted for ‘The Race?’
          If so, how many others of the stories did you read?
          Can you honestly say you read all of the offerings?
          If not, well just shut up. I read all of them every one, and voted for the one I REALLY LIKED. Get that idea? I really liked it. Not mine. The one I liked.

          Like

          • Duncan, I would ask that you show some respect as a GUEST on MY blog site. Mike has said NOTHING TO YOU directly, and merely commented on writers winning on the steam of fan clubs, something that I had discussed with him, and have publicly stated on the Tipsy site. He has not commented any further, but did say that he “voted according to the rules.” Mike, who you don’t even know, is a very honest writer and reader. He should not have to defend himself to you, and telling him to “shut up” is ENTIRELY disrespectful and poor form. I was accused of being “sour grapes” and a “poor loser” (before I even lost) on your comment section, and I’d said nothing– that I’m aware of, other than good luck and I liked your story. I apologized for anything you perceived I’d done, in that same comment section and got no response… but you continue to visit my blog site comments to attack and insult my reader. If you can’t be respectful, than respectfully, please don’t visit. I welcome polite feedback– not taunting, bullying, or nastiness. It is uncalled for.

            Like

            • Oh please spare me the crocodile tears. It’s OK for your guys to diss me, then I’m supposed to sit back and take it…
              I’ve lost patience now.
              Have a nice life. I truly mean that. I wish nobody any harm. You apparently do.

              Like

              • You are the only one doing any dissing here. No one has suggested harm to you, but you have told folks to shut up. I hope this means you will stay away. I have not personally, ever had someone behave so poorly on my blog. Way to be a winner.

                Like

          • Mike Lince says:

            I always read all the stories. I also voted for the story I felt was best written. It wasn’t yours. Now take your meds and go to bed.

            Like

        • So did I. For somebody else.

          Like

  10. Very good piece Dawn. you make a fine point, in a few amount of words. The best way.
    Have to tell you I was sad by the end of your tale though.
    Funny, but today I do feel old and am now unable to sprint, ski or swim away the blues. Believe that this means there are other ways of passing accumulated wisdom to my daughter -smile-.. The sex thing is all good though; she called to tell me when she had her first orgasm lmfao
    Wonderful post my friend!

    Like

  11. Pat says:

    Good story! Good writing, Dawnser. You got my vote!

    Like

  12. WendyStrain says:

    I really like this too. It is difficult to keep other perspectives in mind sometimes, but I like the way Ginny overcomes the divide between herself and her niece so that they can talk just as women.

    Like

    • Thanks Wendy. I would like to think that one day, my nieces and I will be able to talk like this. I’m very close with them, but multi-generational relationships are hard to maintain, over time. I appreciate you taking the time to read, Wendy. Your story was wonderful!

      Like

  13. Brian says:

    I thought it was a well written story, but I didn’t vote for it. Mainly because the prompt was: write about a character whose life cycle is noticeably different from others. And your story didn’t have anything to do with that. One old person, one young person…..that’s pretty darn normal.

    Like

    • I really appreciate you taking the time to read my story, even if you didn’t vote for it, Brian. That’s the point of this competition, to select the story you like the best, from all of the stories. However, I don’t agree with your point. The prompt was: “They can be extra long-lived or have an accelerated aging process. Maybe their development is different from others or maybe they just perceive it as different. You know how I feel about rules, surprise us with your brilliance.” (verbatim) I went with “maybe they just perceive it different.” The entire point of my story was that age is how your perceive it. Ginny looks at age differently than her niece. I provided “one old person, one young person” (yes, pretty “darn normal”) to explore the perception of age. If that was lost on you, as a reader, I accept that… but I think it was well within the parameters of the given prompt. Also, Tipsy Lit encourages writers to be creative with the prompt. Thanks again for taking the time to read my story. That is why I write, and I appreciate your effort. 🙂

      Like

      • Not clear what this smile is, Duncan, given the negative tone of your other comments for me and readers on MY blog site. Is this a smile for “Brian” or in response to my comment to him?

        Like

        • It was for Brian, because he amuses me. Not that I should need to explain myself, but in deference to you I shall make an exception.
          I believe it is still my privilege to comment when I am mentioned. Same with your friends Certainly your friend Mike Lince felt free to take me to task. I didn’t whine about that.
          So don’t whine at me if my friends give you a tough time. Quid pro quo.
          Have a really nice day.

          Like

          • Well, I’m glad to have confirmed that Brian is your friend. I suspected as much. However, let’s clear some things up: Mike did not mention you in any way. He responded to the idea of writers whose fans vote only for them, which he and I had discussed previously. He did not attack you, nor did he go on your blog… this is MY blog site, where he commented. None of my “friends” have gone to your site to leave negative comments; my friends are above that, and would find it poor taste and mean spirited, as do I. As for “whining”… I think you’ve done plenty of whining here, and it should stop. You have literally sent a friend over to insult and or challenge my work. You have bullied and insulted a reader on my site, and you have harassed me… when I have done none of this to you. And yes, you do need to explain yourself, when you choose to play so badly on my blog site. This is entirely wrong. I have done NOTHING of the sort to you, on your site, mine or anywhere else. Please stop.

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            • Brian says:

              Just to clear up a point here, no one sent me here to do anything, and I did not think my comment was giving you a hard time just stating my view of things. I am friends with Duncan in the sense that he and I have had some interesting chats about writing and that is about the length of it. I am no tool or pawn and while I have voted for Duncan, I certainly do not always vote for him. I live in Arizona so seeing 80 yr old women jog around as if they were 30 really isn’t than unusual, especially this time of year. Personally I thought your story needed a little something of the fantastic to pick it up and carry it that extra mile (and to meet the prompt) but obviously that is just my opinion.

              Like

              • Brian, my first response to you was my response. I think it was respectful and covered it. I have no issue with you, personally, and have no problem with you leaving a comment. I don’t think the comment was particularly kind. In general, none of us go on blogger’s pages to say “I didn’t vote for you.” As I said, it’s absolutely fine that you didn’t! I didn’t vote for me. 😉

                However, IF you read Duncan’s comment, he is the one who says you gave me a “tough time,” and that it was “Quid pro quo.” For the record, the Mike Lince he refers to NEVER addressed Duncan; he did not go on Duncan’s blog or to his story and leave a comment. I’m not sure if Duncan understands Latin; quid pro quo does in fact mean something. He has been rude on here and he made you a tool, not I.

                If you read other posts of mine, and the comments, you will see that I am generally well respected in blogging. I do not attack people; I am always respectful on here, and I have NEVER gone to someone else’s blog site and tried to stir up trouble; I’ve never even left a negative comment. I believe that if I don’t have something encouraging to say, why comment? That said, I respond too all comments on my blog, every one. I had no issue with your comment and again, my initial response was courteous. I suggest you read Duncan’s comment and take this up with him. He is the one who called you his friend, suggested you gave me “a hard time” as “quid pro quo; I did not say any of that. I have said virtually nothing about you. I hope this clears up some points.

                Regarding my story, thank you for your suggestion regarding adding “something of the fantastic.” Again, that was not the direction I chose, and I can see why I did not consequently win your vote. I followed the prompt in the direction I was inspired to go. I am content with how it turned out, and the feedback I got on it. Thanks for taking the time to read it. I appreciate it.

                Like

            • I sent nobody anywhere, and it’s an insult for you to suggest otherwise.
              Bullied and insulted? I asked for clarification from one of your readers, who incidentally replied to me, and with whom I am in agreement. You can see his comment and my reply on my blog if you care to.
              And as for your not being abusive on my site, well I think you may want to reconsider that. I’ve left your comments up there when I could simply have deleted them

              Like

              • Duncan, you clearly point out that Brian was giving me a “tough time” as “quid pro quo.” None of my friends left any kind of negative comment on your blog at any time. You did not ask for clarification but made clear accusation and then told Mike to “shut up.” Read your comments. I have no need to visit your blog to follow your dialogue with Mike, or anyone else. I don’t go on other people’s blogs to harass or argue. I left you a single compliment when I first read your blog, and then when I noted on TL that you seemed upset, went to get your email, and noted your dialogue about sour grapes and poor loser. I left one comment Duncan, aside from my praise of your story, and that comment was very clearly an apology. I was not sure why you felt attacked and told you I was sorry for any misunderstanding. I tried with sincerity to turn this around, and you did not respond to that apology. I’m not sure what you’re referring to, but this is the only place where I left a single comment, not “comments”: http://nobodysreadingme.wordpress.com/2014/01/25/tipsylit-poll-is-up-and-running/

                Suffice it to say, we do not see eye to eye. I will not engage in any further dialogue about any of this. There is no point. We do not agree, and that is ok.

                Like

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