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Offices to which I apparently have been elected and now serve

Peyton PriceI win elections all the time. Most of the time I don’t even know I’m in the running until I end up with the job. Then I’m like, “What the…? I don’t even remember a primary.” But democracy is the best and always rewards people with wisdom and good judgment by pressing them into positions of service. It’s that venerable tradition that makes our nation great. Consider this list of offices to which I apparently have been elected:

Landline Designate, Special Envoy To The Unknown Caller And Dentist’s Receptionist

Official Taster Of Restaurant Cokes That Might Be Diet Or Possibly Pepsi

Dictator Of Email Responses To Relatives Requesting A Multi-Day Visit

Peacekeeper With Regard To All Disputes That Can Be Resolved With IMDB

Chief Collector Of Empty Cups, Dirty Socks And Pens That Were Free But Don’t Really Write

Recorder of Food Establishments Banned Following A Family Member’s Visit and Subsequent ‟Hard Times”

Executive In Charge Of Batteries, Replacement And Dead, Sizes AAA Through D (Not The Watch Ones)

Border Patrol And Customs Inspections Following Incursions by Dog-Walking Neighbors Who Carry A Baggie For Show Only

Commissioner Of Art Made By My Own Children (PTA Sham Delegate)

Supreme Leader Of People Around Here Really Needing to Go To Bed At Some Point So I Can Watch Game of Thrones

— Peyton Price

Peyton Price is the author of Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches From Behind the Picket Fence. You can find her at suburbanhaiku.com.

Menu at the college campus ice creamery

All Flavors Homemade from Momma’s Recipes

Freshman Freedom Swirl—Sprinkled with our hot salted tears.

Fudge Shui—Two scoops guarantee you’ll keep your dorm room clean.

Rum Raisin—You might be drinking, but are you pooping?

Virgin Vanilla Bean—Comes with a single cherry.

Ebony and Ivory—The yinyang since you’ve been gone. Are we happy for you? Are we sad?

Ginger-vite Ice with Candy Floss—So delicious in your mouth, where your teeth are. Speaking of which, did you brush?

Orange You Forgetting to Call Your Mother?—Special delivery at parent’s request, live streamed for proof of life.

Additional Toppings

Butterscotch kisses

M&M—Better on your ice cream than on your iPod!

Mixed Nuts—This best not describe your choice of new friends, thank you.

Peanut Butter Chips—Ha! Only a test, is your epi-pen with you?

— Peyton Price and Alexandra Rosas

Peyton Price is the author of Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches From Behind the Picket Fence. You can find her at suburbanhaiku.com. Alexandra Rosas is a storyteller for the nationally acclaimed The Moth, as well as a contributor to several anthologies and weekly columns. You can follow her on twitter @gdrpempress and on her blog.

O Caftan! My Caftan!

Peyton PriceO Caftan! My Caftan!

My fearful search is done.

I pawed through every discount rack,

the prize I sought is won.

I hate my rear, my belly’s queer,

my thighs are just revolting,

while follow eyes across the beach,

string bikinis baring.

O my heart! Ignore those tarts

in flowing yards of zen.

What underneath my caftan lies

they’ll never see again.

— Peyton Price, with apologies to Walt Whitman and everyone, really.

Peyton Price is the author of Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches From Behind the Picket Fence. You can find her tripping over her caftan at suburbanhaiku.com.

Unappreciated benefits of breastfeeding:
A highly scientific and totally real list

Peyton PriceMany benefits of breastfeeding have been recognized in the literature, although some benefits are not well known. For example, according to undocumented anecdotal reports from unidentified and highly questionable sources with top-secret conspiracy agendas, infants who are breastfed are:

• 48% more likely to appear in The New York Times (news pages, 17% for Sunday Magazine).

• 22% more likely to be supertasters.

• 31% more likely to use French phrases in conversation unnecessarily.

• 19% more likely to volunteer for interplanetary travel.

• 70% more likely to star in eponymous reality shows.

• 36% more likely to summit Mount Everest (1.9% without the assistance of Sherpa).

• 81% more likely to acquire impressive looking home libraries.

• 15% more likely to gain, then lose, incredible fortunes (12% more than once).

• 97% more likely to become Olympic competitors for hard-to-spell countries.

• 29% less likely to become Internet humorists.

— Peyton Price

Peyton Price is the author of Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches From Behind The Picket Fence, even though she was bottle fed. You can find the poor thing failing to live up to her potential on Facebook and at suburbanhaiku.com.

Suburban haiku: wrap up

Peyton PriceThis time of the year
don’t forget what’s important:
Scotch tape and scissors.

We do not bag gifts.
We wrap our gifts with gift wrap
‘cause that’s how we roll.

Won’t this be charming?
Gift wrap made by my children.
(“Keep stamping. No breaks.”)

Here, let me show you
how to cut out a snowflake.
“We YouTubed it, Mom.”

One more gift to wrap.
Oh wait! One more gift to buy.
One more gift to wrap.

Bless them, every one.
I’m praying for those poor souls
pinning “Gifts to Make.”

— Peyton Price

Peyton Price is the author of Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches from Behind the Picket Fence. You can find her on TwitterFacebook, or looking for the Scotch tape.

Suburban haiku: pet peeves

Peyton PriceCAT NIPS

When company’s here
we shoo Kitty off tables
like she’s not allowed.

Why thank you, Kitty
for trotting right up to me
to vomit. Both times.

Ooh, look at the cat!
She’s got something in the hall.
That’s one dead oak leaf.

When the new couch comes
things are gonna be different.
I mean it, Kitty!

The cat licks her paw
and rubs it on my son’s head.
Can she pack his lunch?

He burps in my face
but says “God Bless you, Kitty”
at each tiny sneeze.

DOG HOUSE

When the dog’s pooping
the kids stop calling her name.
Unlike when I am.

Our dog is well trained
to stay off of the sofa
when I’m in the room.

In misty weather
trying to find the short leash
for toads’ protection.

The dog’s locked away
howling that the cable guy
might want to pet her.

I blurted out “S%*^!”
but the dog thought I said “SIT!”
quite fortunately.

I must stop the dog
from barking at that new kid.
He’ll think we’re racist!

The dog’s ears and mine
perk up at every car door
until he comes home.

— Peyton Price

Peyton Price is the author of Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches from Behind the Picket Fence. You can find her on Twitter, Facebook or in the living room attempting to remove pet stains from the new rug.

17-syllable catharsis

Suburban Haiku

In the suburbs, highly educated and ambitious parents funnel their professional training and personal desires into managing every aspect of their lives — and their children’s — with zeal. At first, Peyton Price was shocked and appalled. But now, her indoctrination is complete. In Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches From Behind the Picket Fence, Price reveals that, try as she might, she has succumbed to the reality of having an SUV, a stint as PTA president, kids on the honor roll and thousands of dollars in travel team fees. As it turns out, in the ticky tacky world of the suburbs, resistance is futile.

Newton to toss 500 footballs at Super Bowl

Sammy SportfaceCam Newton will toss 500 footballs into the Levi’s Stadium grandstands during next week’s Super Bowl.

While his Carolina Panthers teammates play defense, the team’s quarterback will heave the official NFL footballs, priced at $500 each, into the stadium crowd.

The balls will be housed along the Panthers sideline in a yellow moon bounce. So throughout the game fans can watch the 500 footballs bounce up and down like popcorn in a popcorn popper, view Newton sticking his head into the bounce, grab one ball at a time, and throw them short and low and far and high into the night. He will toss about half into the lower deck and attempt to rifle the rest into the upper deck, though that may be unrealistic because NFL football stadiums are big.

“I figure during those defensive possessions I have time to spin about 25 balls into the stands,” he said this morning while flying to San Francisco, the site of this year’s annual Freak Show. “With all the commercials during the Super Bowl taking up much more time than action on the field, I figure I can get most of them out of the moon bounce and into fans’ hands by halftime.”

The novel idea was hatched this week in the NFL’s headquarters office, which sits atop Manhattan’s skyline. Newton has been handing a football to one person in the stands after every touchdown he has scored this season and it’s being well received by the public at large.

“We figure the Super Bowl is going to be a snore so wanted to do something different to make the fan experience worth the $25,000 we charge per ticket,” the league said in a prepared statement.

On conference calls this week with Newton and NFL suits, there has been quite a bit of discussion about where Newton should throw the balls so that as many fans throughout the stadium can have a chance to catch one.

They settled on this scenario. From the Panthers sideline he will throw a hundred or so to fans on that side of the field.

But this is where it gets tricky. From the sideline while the Panthers are hitting Peyton Manning as he heaves fluttering ducks, Newton plans to chuck the ball across the field, over the heads of the Broncos players and, if he has enough arm power, into the lower deck of fans behind their bench.

There are two challenges with this that have yet to be resolved. The first is that receivers and defensive backs may get distracted by two balls flying through the air at the same time in perpendicular directions. This will create confusion in the passing game.

The second challenge is that if Cam doesn’t throw the ball far enough he may hit Broncos players — or even coaches — standing on the sideline. Or his throws might be so short they would hit Peyton Manning in the head or back or something like that.

However this gets resolved, Newton’s goal of 500 passes will be achieved because the league and Newton have committed to do this and don’t want to stain their credibility. They have an overwhelming desire to bring novelty and less boredom to the Super Bowl.

Being fair to everyone, Newton will save the last 100 balls for special purposes. He will show respect to fans in the end zones by firing 25 at each of the two sides of the field.

The end zone hurls will be timed either for when the action is taking place on the opposite side of the field so as:

a) not disrupt action;

b) to give fans something to watch besides commercials and dull and disruptive football; or

c) during extra point kicks that are made 93 percent of the time so lack dramatic tension.

During the half-time show, Newton will fire 50 at the featured band, “Cold Play.” At least half of them will be aimed at the drummer’s biggest drum because he may be able to puncture it and mess up the concert.

“It will be a cold play on my part,” Newton admits.

Priced at $500 each, the total outlays to buy the 500 balls will be something like $50,000. The NFL insists Newton pay for the balls because it is a dictatorship more focused on gauging prices of this upcoming event’s 30-second ads, upping the price today from the usual $5 million to $10 million.

As long as it can display its logo, the NFL did agree to pay for the moon bounce rental cost of $100.

— Sammy Sportface

Sammy Sportface is possibly America’s best blogger. He is only mildly interested in the truth. To read his new book, Wipe That Smile Off Sammy Sportface, go to Amazon.com.

Reflections of Erma