Tom Flanders World

Writer of Fiction

Tom Week – Storm Crud

sewer crud

2/6/20 – Storm Prep

A big storm is coming. It’s been very windy all day. I put away everything and battened down the hatches. It’s supposed to hit between midnight and 2AM. The TV keeps popping up tornado warnings for counties I’ve never heard of. Such fun.

2/12/20 – The Crud

Been very sick. Stayed in a beautiful state park that we were totally unable to enjoy. The next one had animals.

I’m feeling a little better today. Walked a mile to pick up the rental car. Wound up with a GMC Canyon pickup truck. So yes, I picked up the pickup.

Then I found that out sewer was leaking a bit. Fortunately, I noticed that the seals were cracked a while ago and had replacement parts ready to go. Took only twenty minutes.

I’ll let the pictures tell the rest of the story.


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Tags: ,, | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: February 12, 2020

Tom Week – At The Outpost

BYT at the outpost

1/31/20 – Shower and Laundry Day at the Outpost

Some days you just have to set aside time to clean your clothes and yourself. This park, The Outpost, has expanded greatly over the last year. In that time they’ve doubled the number of washers and driers. Yes, these things become important when you live on the road.

Got in a bike ride this morning and was only run off the road once.

2/1/20 – Rainy Day

We had all kinds of plans today. Farmer’s Market in the morning. Classic car show in the afternoon. Car races in the evening. All canceled by nasty windy rain.

2/2/20 – Palindrome Day

Big wind today. Not able to ride my bike. Tonight is the Super Bowl but we don’t get that channel here. I’m going to try to watch the last quarter on the web. That’s about all the interest I can muster, even though San Francisco is playing. I was always more of a Raiders fan.

2/3/20 – Stalking the UPS guy

Expecting a package today. At 5:30 is still hadn’t arrived. I went out to pick up food and saw the UPS truck pulling out of the RV park. I had to swing the car around but was able to catch him after a couple stops. He had our package but said he was unable to find space 15.

Also had a good bike ride today. Went to the Auburndale Trail. It was smooth and mostly flat. I got carried away and instead of going 15 miles I went 23.

2/4/20 – Back with the manatees

We are back at the Marina on the St. John river. It’s half marina, half RV park. One of the big attractions are the manatees in the river. I haven’t seen one, but Pat has.

2/5/20 – Shopping by bike

Did twelve miles on the bike today, stopping at Walgreens and Winn-Dixie on the way. Apparently, I need bigger saddle bags on the bike.


The rental car had disturbing mileage
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Tags: | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: February 5, 2020

100 Words – Customer Service

customer service worker

The directions for the hot rollers were intentionally confusing because Carl, the head of customer service, loved talking to frustrated women. The more irrational the better. There were many theories on the origin of this weird quirk, mostly involving his mother.

Then came Morris. Yes, he was named for the cat. He spoiled Carl’s sweet setup because he could explain anything to anyone. With Morris in place Carl’s parade of frustrated women ceased.

Carl tried to get Morris fired, but he was too well-liked. Morris talked the company out of firing Carl because that’s the kind of guy he was. Facebook LogoTwitter Logo

Tags: , | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: February 1, 2020

Short Story – The Phone Will Ring

the phone

Another sunrise. Another day of waiting. Sitting on the back deck with a line in the water drinking too many beers. It might help if I had bait or hooks or stuff like that, but I find that fishing is much more relaxing without all that catching fish business.

The phone will ring soon. Or later. Or never. Well, so far it has never not rang, but that is always a possibility. It will happen one day. The phone will never ring again and I’ll be stuck here pretending to fish and drinking beer for the rest of my life.

What if the phone doesn’t ring? I can’t just fish for the rest of my life. I’ll need a hobby. I could collect things. That sounds boring enough to kill me. Maybe I could watch every movie ever made. Maybe I could build things, as long as they’re not too hard to build.

I have a friend who builds paper cars. Most of them are pretty easy. A color printer, some scissors and some tape are all you need. When he first showed me his collection I assumed he was insane. Though when faced with the idea of never working again, I can almost see his point.

The problem with paper cars is that while they look cool and are easy to build they are ultimately worthless. My friend is zen enough, or zenough, to think that having a worthless hobby is a good thing. I’d prefer to do something of value I could pass on to the young ones.

Unfortunately, I don’t have any young ones. Nobody to carry on my legacy, which I also don’t have. I guess getting one of them wife people would have helped, but I never got the hang of those relationship things. Maybe paper cars wouldn’t be so bad.

So this is where the mid-life crisis is supposed to happen. Only it doesn’t, happen. Every time I get close to having one I’m overwhelmed with contentment. Then the phone will ring and I’m off on another job and become too busy to think about such things.

The problem is that I have no reason to worry, so I tend to be not very good at it. My brain doesn’t stick like other people’s. My brother has a wife, kids, a dog and a paid-for house, but he worries all the time. Me, I analyze things, decide on an action, then let it go.

Boy, I can spew some bullshit when I get rolling. If I didn’t worry, I wouldn’t be babbling on about not worrying. I’m not ready for this. Let the phone ring just one more time. I’ll prepare for next time. If it doesn’t ring, I’ll be ready.

Then the phone rang. A job. A long job. I won’t have to worry about the phone ringing for at least a year. Then what? I’ve been checking out paper car web sites, but haven’t mustered any interest. Maybe stamps. Maybe travel. Maybe hookers.


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Tags: , | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: January 31, 2020


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