Old Movies, New Ideas

Jillian and Charles had planned date night for three weeks and was not about to let their teenage daughter ruin it. They bribed her a trip to the mall before hitting the old movie theater on Third.

As they rounded the corner, Stephanie saw the movie poster. Her eyes bulged as pulled her face down. “Oh my gawd! Seriously!”

Jillian sighed. Why couldn’t Steph love old time love stories like she did? “Don’t be that way. It’s an unrequited love story staring –“

“Some old fart and a lady showing more skin than I’m allowed to,” Stephanie interrupted.

Charles chuckled. She had a point but he wasn’t about to get involved in this one.

“That old fart happens to be a heartthrob of his day,” Jillian said. “And still is, if I’m being honest.”

Stephanie turned bright red, flapped her arms around, groaned loudly. People waiting in line turned to watch. Jillian sighed and shook her head.

“Don’t be so melodramatic,” she said. The theater doors opened and the line began to move. “Perfect timing,” she whispered to Charles.

Stephanie was not happy about spending two hours in a seat watching an old black and white movie, but only agreed to not make a scene after Charles bought more snacks than she could eat. Although he thought she only kept ordering so that she could keep looking at the young man behind the counter.

The movie started and everything went well until near the halfway mark.

“Oh, Rebecca,” Vincent said, grabbing her shoulders, “don’t go like that. I love you!”

Rebecca turned her face away from him. “You love bullfighting more. I … I thought I could wait -“

“After I win tonight, I’ll retire. Champion. Then I’ll never be a matador again.”

She looked longingly into his eyes. She wanted to believe him. She loved him. “You promise?”

“With all my heart, my love.”

“Kiss me, Vincent. Like you mean it. Kiss me like you used to under the olive tree.”

Stephanie’s hand stalled on its way from the popcorn tub and her mouth hung open. Charles inhaled deeply and stared at the screen not wanting to say what he was thinking.

“What kind of sap is that!”

Charles and Stephanie looked at Jillian and exhaled. At least someone said what they were all thinking.

She looked at her family’s expression and laughed. “Anyone up for Predator VI?”


You Met How?

Thank you, but I don’t think I can do that.” Alice looked at the couple and smiled. “Would you like something else?”

Greg smiled, nodded, and looked back at the menu before Gloria’s pointed toe struck his shin. She huffed and gave him her perfected death stare. One glance and he knew he was in trouble – and not just because he complimented Alice.

“Um, actually,” Gloria said, condescendingly, “we’d like to get what we ordered.”

Alice flashed her routine smile that masked her growing rage about all the pompous, spoiled brats that came into the diner. “I’m sorry, but –“

“Excuse me!” Gloria interrupted her, “don’t you say no to me. No one tells Gloria Mary Elizabeth Young no! Now toddle off to the kitchen and make our order, maid.”

“Waitress,” Greg muttered. He whimpered as Gloria’s shoe found its newest target.

Alice felt bad for him. He wasn’t a bad guy. She had spent the last year in Senior English with him. Rather than argue, she smiled and curtsied, then went into the kitchen and recruited the chef to help teach Gloria a lesson.

Sam couldn’t keep a straight face as he prepared her special. He watched as Alice took it to the table. He burst into laughter as Gloria screamed. He cringed as the order landed on Greg’s head.

Gloria stomped out of the diner. Everyone applauded.

Every year, Greg and Alice return to the diner with their children to relive the day they got together.

Family Reunion

Sara and Sarah were identical twins. Physically, they were mirror images of each other. They even hit the same developmental milestones on the same day – the same hour – the same event. It wasn’t until they turned three that their differences were so pronounced. They could not be more opposite.

Sara was gregarious and loved being the center of attention. At preschool, she was the first to greet the teacher and other students with hugs each morning. She was class president, head cheerleader, and homecoming queen.

Sarah was introverted and borderline antisocial. Any human remotely near her personal space drove her further into her shell. For twelve years, her teachers wondered if she even spoke, but the family knew she did. She lived on the computer and had several online pals, so her parents didn’t worry too much about her.

After graduation, the sisters went they separate ways and seldom spoke. On their thirtieth birthday, Sara attempted to bridge the gap between them and invited Sarah and her family to a special birthday celebration.

No one believed their eyes when Sarah introduced her wife and two gregarious children who clung to their mother’s skirt. Her wife, Heather, was a professional cheerleader for a national football team. Sarah was her usual quiet, introverted self and even brought a book to read during the party.

When Sara and her family walked in, everyone gasped – even Sarah. Sara’s husband, Franklin, had his nose glued to his kindle and their two children eyed everyone with suspicion. Franklin and the children staked their claim at a small table in the corner of the room by the emergency exit knowing that few would enter their space.

“Hi, sis!” Sara said, throwing her arms around Sarah.

Sarah smiled. “Hi. So that’s Franklin, huh?”

Sara looked at her family staring at their devices and chuckled. “Yeah. Is that Heather?”

Heather and her kids were leading other guests through a hardy round of the macarena. Sarah blushed and nodded. Suddenly Sarah and Sara burst into laughter. “Guess opposites really do attract,” Sara said.

The Diner

There is a road outside of town that leads everywhere and nowhere. Some spend a few minutes on the road before turning off, but most people spend years traveling up or down the road.

We get all kinds of diners in here from the road. Jack’s been here so long waiting for traffic to die down, I think he’s fused with the striped cushions. Betty’s waiting for William to join her.

Lonny and I have served folks from the road for thousands of years. Our menu is simple: you name it – we make it. Be sure to stop in and say hi. We’re always open.