Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Artist

"Oh! My feet are killing me," Myrtle moaned.

"You ought to kick off those old sling-backs and stuff them in your handbag." Gertrude responded.

"I can't stand here in just my stocking feet," Myrtle whispered. "No doubt Penelope would see me and share that scandalous tidbit with everyone and I'd never be able to show my face here again. Ever since she told Betty about the terrible crush I had on Betty's oldest brother, I don't trust her."

"That was well over 40 years ago, Myrtle. You really must let bygones by bygones." Myrtle dabbed at her forehead with a lace handkerchief and ignored Gertrude's comment, trying to wriggle her cramped toes. "Truly, Murt, nobody gives a hoot what Penelope Hatfield says. Ever since she showed up at the Fireman's Ball in that atrocious pink getup, wearing her white peep-toe heels, before Labor Day, mind you, she hasn't had a leg to stand on. Just take them off or stop whining. I'm trying to hear the speaker."

Myrtle shuffled her sore feet and craned her neck to see over the sea of perfectly coiffed buns and pillbox hats, peering toward the gentleman at the front. Thanks to the ancient sound system, it was almost as difficult to hear him as it was to see him. "Why on earth didn't they think to put him up on a stage? No one past the front row can see a single thing."

"Shush. At the very least, I'd like to hear him. He's been on TV, you know."

Myrtle rolled her eyes. "Maybe we should have stayed home and watched him from the comfort of your love seat, Gertie. Then we wouldn't be standing in this crowd, suffering this humidity..."

Gertrude shushed her again, "Pipe down, Murt. He'll be finished soon and then we can go home. Okay?"

Myrtle nodded, then she slipped off her heels and cringed, feeling the cold linoleum under her feet. Oh, heavens. When was the last time this floor was cleaned? I'll have to throw these stockings away as soon as I get home. And they were brand new, too. On top of it all, now I'm too short to see through all these blue-haired ladies. All she could see between the ladies in front of her was the curly brown hair of the guest artist. She elbowed Gertrude, "What's he doing now?"

"Listen...it's amazing! He makes it look so simple."

Over the crackle of the speakers, Myrtle heard the painter's mellow voice. "Now, let's add some little trees right over here. Some happy little trees. Just soft, gentle brush strokes. There. Now, aren't they lovely?"

A pitter pattering of gloved-applause filled the room followed by a chorus of "ooh's" and "aah's".

Gertrude beamed. "What a treat! Do think he would give an autograph? Come on, Murt, put your shoes back on and hobble along with me."

With a sigh, Myrtle eased her toes back into her shoes. Standing upright, however, she spied Penelope hanging on the arm of Bob Ross, gushing over his masterpiece. "I think I'll wait for you in the car," she mumbled and tottered away.

Linking up (just a bit late) this week with Writings and Ruminations. 526 words inspired by the pictures above.


  1. I like the humour in this piece, well done.

    1. Thank you...I don't know why my mind went that direction, but it was fun to see it through.


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