WINNER of the Weekly Hilarity Contest 5/22/2020

“…[T]here really is no valid excuse for an able-bodied person going out of his head from being bewildered in the big woods so long as he has a gun and ammunition, or even a few dry matches and a jackknife,” says Horace Kephart, a man who left his wife and six children to live off the land very unlike Thoreau.

Who took this quote and this spirit and made me laugh the most?

Untitled piece

by Ian Kay

The big woods can play with your mind. It’s extraordinary how exponentially larger a bear’s mass increases when it’s charging your way. But keeping a cool head, knowing we were adequately equipped: I have a good gun; what’s more, I have the ammo! As backup, I have the good sense to hand the wife the jack-knife and a box of matches; there were the potatoes to peel and she might get a fire going for the pot, and I don’t think she’s noticed the bear yet. You can’t outrun a bear, they said, but you can always get remarried.

Congratulations, Ian! You are the funniest writer of the week!

I’ll admit I didn’t crack up as much as I did for the last two contests, but that’s more a result of Kephart and his writing than the talent of those who entered. I did a bit of eenie-meenie-miney with my favorites and decided Ian’s won for best answering the prompt and best making the reader laugh guiltily.

And here are the other well-prepared entrants:

Bodied, yes. Able, not so much

by Doug Jacquier

When I jack-knifed my camper trailer in a place where even the most desperate dingo has never ventured, my first instinct was to adopt the foetal position.
Cramp eventually encouraged me to survey the damage. Alas my trusty Beetle and my 6 metre fully loaded camper had merged as one, never the twain to separate.
Recalling the immortal words of Horace, I rummaged through the wreckage until I found my only ‘gun’, complete with ammunition, and felt comforted by the fact that I had a staple diet at hand.
I also found dry matches and after I’d assembled enough twigs and branches, I looked around for somewhere to strike a match on. I decided the rough canvas on the trailer would be perfect and proceeded to experiment. Unfortunately, I had failed to note that the jack-knifing had ruptured my fuel tank.
When the Country Fire Service issued me with a coat that tied at the back to keep me warm and choppered me out to answer some pointed questions about the loss of some million hectares of virgin state forest, I couldn’t help but think of those poor souls in quarantine who would give anything to be me right now.

—–

Untitled piece

by Debbie Whittam

Martin was a savvy bloke,
He worked hard and drank much beer.
He didn’t talk too much,
And rather liked Shakespeare.
One warm day he decided,
To go into the woods for a walk.
He didn’t get to far though
For a voice began to talk.
It told him to survive,
He would require many things.
A gun, ammunition, matches and a jackknife,
Was what he should bring.
Dutifully Martin did comply,
And set out singing his merry song,
Unfortunately the noise drowned out the sound,
Of the bear which just happened to come rushing along.

—–

Dumber Jack

by Obbverse

Jack the Lad could barely wait to turn twenty-one,
To cast his vote, to drive, drink (legal-like) and tote a gun,
To pick the biggest baddest gun you’ve ever seen,
To fill the part, just like in that Soldier of Fortune magazine.

Off out to the woods he went to bag him a bear,
Or a boar, a duck, a deer, doe or buck, Jack didn’t care ,
Through thicket underbrush and bosk Jack barged,
In his blundering search only his smart phone would be discharged.

As the hot autumnal sun started to wane
Our huntsman looked for any game, in vain,
In his ceaseless aim he wouldn’t couldn’t stop-
Still as graceless as a bull in a china shop.

There wasn’t a critter to be found for miles around
As he trampled his way through his unhappy hunting ground,
Finding fording a stream’s done at a hunter’s peril-
A cruel cool baptism resulting in splintered stock and bent barrel.

So, cold, wet, lost in the woods as it grows dark,
Sat nav and phone flat, but Jack’s quite the bright spark,
His safety match strikes, the dry leaves catch fire!
Remains to be seen if anyone finds Jacks funeral pyre.

—–

Survival

by Gary

A mouse took a stroll through a deep dark wood
Unfortunately Bear Grylls was in the neighbourhood

Eating a mouse is great television, so watch for the trap
The mouse is caught, consumed in one, the scene is a wrap

Now time for Bear to light a fire with only a wet leaf and knife
Then tell a story about how he is missing a comfy bed and wife
Time to build a shelter from just some twigs and his underpants
Now Bear shows how to clean his teeth using some angry army ants
Look to camera and announce its time to hunker down for the cold night
Then jump in the car, head to the warm hotel and really satisfy that appetite.

—–

Recluse

by The Bag Lady

“…[T]here really is no valid excuse for an able-bodied person going out
of his head from being bewildered in the big woods so long as he has a
gun and ammunition, or even a few dry matches and a jackknife.” This was the daily stated philosophy of Junior Beets, a devil may care recluse in the backwoods of Utopia.

Junior was getting tired of the backpackers traveling more frequently around his self proclaimed property.

Of course Junior had no rights concerning the surroundings of his area which was a world designed park in 2025.

Utopia was designed by the desperate survivors of the corona virus that wiped out ninety percent of the world population by 2023.

Junior Beets decided guns would ensure his privacy and started hoarding them in 2020.

—–

A Bash on the Noggin

by Kristian

I am a rather impulsive chap,

Unfortunately, it has to be said.

The other day, I got in a flap

and totally lost my head.

I thought I’d got an Intruder

so I bashed them on the noggin,

With my hand-knitted draught excluder

I gave them one hell of a floggin’

You can imagine my total dismay

when they rolled over and I Saw

the Postman with his letter’s in disarray

and a parcel that was meant for next door.

I’m sorry for the postman’s headache

and I couldn’t be more distraught

It was a totally honest mistake

I just hope that he’ll settle out of court.

—–

Thank you for your responses! Come around tomorrow at 10 a.m. MDT for next week’s prompt.

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Ian: Here’s a new badge as proof of your hilarious skills:

HilarityContestBadge

©2020 The writers, and their respective works.

 

The Weekly Hilarity Contest 5/16 – 5/22/2020

Welcome to the Weekly Hilarity Contest!

Charli Mills, of the free writing community Carrot Ranch, has been posting three-sentence story prompts on the Ranch’s Facebook page using Story Cubes. This last Friday, she used Story Sticks. I have something like that, I thought, recalling a writing prompts book I picked up on discount.

…Hours later, I emerged from my library without the book but with a new idea: a random sentence from an interesting (seemingly random) book from my collection.

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Horace Kephart (1862-1931) is the survivalist savvy of Robinson Crusoe, the precise details of an Aspie, and the tact of Donald Trump (or, closer to his time, Andrew Jackson).

Your writing prompt?

  • “…[T]here really is no valid excuse for an able-bodied person going out of his head from being bewildered in the big woods so long as he has a gun and ammunition, or even a few dry matches and a jackknife.”
  • Use it or be inspired by it to write a funny SHORT story.
  • Please keep your response to 200 words or fewer.
  • Remember: make me laugh. I can’t see how you’d go this route, but please also keep things clean.

You have till 8:00 a.m. MDT next Friday (May 22) to enter.

Use the form below if you want. For a more social experience, include your entry or a link to it in the comments. Please let me know if your pingback or entry do not show up within a day.

Put on your laughing cap and get writing!

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Photo credits: ©2020 Chelsea Owens

Book quote and section original ©1906 by Horace Kephart