Feel Free To Turn This Challenge Inside Out and Backwards

Road trip!  Road trip!

51 responses to “Feel Free To Turn This Challenge Inside Out and Backwards

  1. Michelangelo chiseled
    Carrara marble and
    David escaped. Free at last from the rock
    which held him captive, he took a road trip, and
    we haven’t seen him since.

    • Wonderful!

    • You really turned this on its head. Gotta love this sort of flight of imagination. So unexpected!

    • Amazing! I’d love to know what inspires your unexpected flights of imagination. And how do I get on one of those flights.

    • Thank you — Ann, Gullible, Lisa, Peanut, Parrot, L.J. — Very kind of all of you. This is a fun blog.

      Ann — Could you please tell me which is correct? (“It was he.” OR “It was him.”)? I’ve been looking for the anwer on the Internet and becoming more and more confused with uncertain answers. Initially, I thought it was “it was he.” Because “he” would be used instead of “him” when answering the telephone: “this is he.” Am I right? I think I will sign up for your refresher course next round. — Thank you, Pamela

      • “It was he” is correct according to my researches.

      • It’s simple. The verb ‘to be’ uniquely has no object, because no verbal action/effect occurs when it is used. Thus, ‘I am me’ is wrong, and should be ‘I am I’, because ‘me’, ‘him’, ‘her’, ‘them’, ‘us’, are object pronouns, the object of a transitive verb’s action.

      • Fig, this is exactly what’s insufficient in American education. I have a profound respect for grammarians, though I tend to look at them askance. I do not recall ever hearing the words “transitive” and “intransitive, ” and I was a pretty fair student.

      • Fig — Thank you! I plan to refresh my grammar in Ann’s class that starts again on Feb. 15th. Back to basics — again.

      • Ultimately, of course, ‘proper’ grammar can get in the way. As a copywriter trying to make my message as accessible as possible to readers or listeners, I was often faced with compromising ‘properness’ for smoothness of communication. For example, the subjunctive: rather than something like ‘if your car were to stop…’ I’d grit my teeth and say ‘if your car was to stop…’. And frankly, ‘it was him’ is less of a speed bump to most readers than ‘it was he’. When in Rome, don’t speak Latin.

      • Or even better (I’m quite enjoying this): the subjunctive with grammatically correct object pronouns – ‘If it were he, it couldn’t have been I.’ Yike! I’ll stop now.

    • Ann — Thank you.

    • Pamela the idear is great. I love it what a thought.
      Marion L

  2. Agree with gullible and peanutberanski–wonderful and inspired. Great job, Pamela. ~LJ

  3. Brilliant, Pamela!

  4. A road trip sounds better
    Than a cruise to me
    Cause you might just get wetter
    Than you‘d planned to be.

    Guess trains are okay
    They can be sublime
    If you don’t mind the sway
    And you’ve got the time.

    Planes make me queasy
    They’re too high off the ground
    Spend the whole time uneasy
    Cause it’s a long way down.

    Haven’t ridden a bus
    In a long, long time
    Can’t think of a plus
    ‘Cept to save a dime.

    I’d prefer a road trip
    In our 32 Ford
    Brings a smile to my lips
    Cause I’m never bored.

    Stopping on a whim
    At a diner or store
    Or a pause for a swim
    When the temperatures soar.

    Yes, I’d prefer a road trip
    Wind ruffling my hair
    Driving at our own clip
    No time constraints there.

  5. Hope this is okay to post here. The story I wrote for one of my grandsons after a trip to the beach was selected as Story Star’s Children’s Story of the year! You can check the site at http://www.StoryStar.com, or double click on my name to go to my blog- its posted there too! I’m pretty excited. The other 7 Grandkids now want to know when their story will be written.

  6. Road Trip

    To drive, or not to drive, that is the question:
    Whether ‘tis cheaper on the pocket to suffer
    The stops and starts of outrageous traffic,
    Or take flight in steerage class,
    And by flying, get there faster: to starve, to sit
    With knees close to ears, and pay baggage fees
    That flying is heir to? ‘Tis a problem
    Devoutly to be answered. To go by train,
    To sleep, perchance to dream; Ay, there’s the rub,
    For in that dream of sleep, what fees may come,
    For food and baggage on this journey,
    Must give us pause.

  7. I should take a trip On The Road,
    And do it like Kerouac showed,
    When Sal went with Dean, Marylou in between,
    Going somewhere I haven’t yet goed.

    • Thanks for the laugh out loud of the day.

    • Love this!

    • I’ve had this running through my mind all day, just so I could keep saying, “goed.” I enjoyed it the most when I goed to the grocery store this afternoon.

    • FigMince,
      I wanted to put this reply under the thread about grammar, but there isn’t a way to do it. What kind of copywriting do you do? Any copyediting? It occurs to me that there are many writers here who may be looking for a copyeditor who would read over something they hoped to submit, checking for the mistakes we often make unconsciously or out of ignorance. Are you looking for that kind of work? You might share a website or blog site here if you are. I, for one, would copy it down. Anybody who can use the word “intransitive” with confidence makes my eyes go wide.

      • Brilliant idea, Ann. Not to big note, but here’s the dinky-di: The Fig doesn’t speak American. He turns tall poppy when he speaks the King’s (or should that be Queen’s?) English, except perhaps when he goes to the grocery store and asks for a tinner of Vegemite.

        I will, however, second Ann’s idea.

      • Hi Ann. I was an advertising copywriter for far too long and am now retired. I’m flattered by your copyediting suggestion, but apart from having commitments in other areas, it’s not something I’d feel particularly comfortable doing. Fact is, I’m just a grumpy old pedant who doesn’t play well with others and would probably wind up wanting to rewrite the entire work and rename the characters. But thank you anyway.

      • Huh? I just found Gully’s comment above. Australia being sent up by some old backwoods chick whose country is hosting the GOP presidential primaries? Talk about glass houses.

      • Got cha, FigMince. And listen, it isn’t MY country (Alaska) that’s hosting that circus. We have threatened often to secede. Just wait until those Donkey Democrats begin in earnest!

      • FigMince thinks he’s thrown the gauntlet, but little does he know that ’round these pats “old backwoods chick” is a compliment.

        Ann writes: I think I’m going to have to come up with an enticing challenge that involves dueling–unless, of course, you wish to meet in the garrick and be warbs.

  8. Sunshine Chimera

    I stand in the afternoon sunshine, eyes closed, jacket unzipped, no hat or gloves. In my heart there dances a chimera.

    With the rays of the sun warming my face, I am almost beguiled into believing that winter is soon over, almost a season well on the way to being chased out of town by the lengthening daylight and the rising temperatures of spring.

    Reality clamors for attention in the more sensible part of my brain, but I ignore it until the loud click of the gas nozzle indicates my truck is full. That rude interruption into my fantasy brings me back to the Costco gas station in Anchorage, the reality of $3.74 a gallon gasoline, and that the day is February 7 in Alaska. February, mind you. In Alaska, I repeat.

    I replace the nozzle and the gas cap and look around the Costco parking lot. Everywhere I look Alaskans are acting like it’s spring. No one wears hats or gloves. Jackets and coats are unzipped. Chimeras can’t be seen but I’m guessing there are many hanging out in this snow covered lot today, all working their way into receptive and willing hearts and minds.

    The temperature? In the high twenties.

    We aren’t out of this yet, I remind myself as I pull the receipt out of the slot and look at the total.

    Seven more weeks in which the temperature can easily slide way below zero, seven more weeks in which several feet of snow can fall, seven more weeks of winter. April?

    April’s a crap shoot.

    One never knows what April can bring. It can be gentle; it can be ferocious. Or, as Charles Dickens wrote, “It was the best of times; it was the worse of times.” That’s April. Schizophrenia in nature. The only sure thing about April is that in thirty days it will be May, and May is much more reliable.

    The drive into Anchorage was reality itself. In the space of five miles along Turnagain Arm, there is one vehicle sideways in a snow bank, and holes where five others had been. Black ice coats the asphalt, invisible ice formed by sudden warm temperatures after weeks of below zero cold. I switch to four-wheel drive for better steering and braking.

    The chimera refuses to leave. It dances over my shoulder like a sun dog as I drive through Anchorage to the far side of town. All the errands on my long list are crossed off, all but the most important: Visiting a housebound friend, and delivering groceries and a prescription to her.

    She greets me at the door with a hug and I watch her walk back into her condo living room. She walks better than she has in more than a year. Four weeks after hip replacement surgery, four weeks after banishing horrendous pain from her body, and she walks with confidence. Her voice is free of the pain, her face is free of the pain, her body is free of the pain.

    She is a new person and one with a bright future. I leave the springtime chimera with her, where it belongs, and drive home to Moose Pass.

  9. Very beautiful literature.

  10. Well, my secret is out. I’m quick to tears. I am wiping away quite a few right now. I have lived far enough north for enough years to recognize the inner flutterings a warm winter day can generate. You show it well, and end up sharing the best of it with your recovering friend…and with us. Thank you.

  11. Hi, Gullible. I’m confident some of the springtime chimera traveled IN YOU to Moose Pass. Nicely done. ~LJ

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