Archive for the ‘Plinky Prompts’ Category

10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends With A Snowman: Plinky Prompts Thursday

This week’s prompt comes straight from Mama Kat, who runs an awesome website over at www.mamakatslosinit.com.  Every Thursday, she hosts a Writer’s Workshop and offers weekly prompts to inspire creativity.  She then asks her readers to stop back at her site, post a link to your prompt-inspired article, and show some “comment love,” as she would call it.  It’s a wonderful contribution to the Blog-O-Sphere, and it has certainly caught on like wildfire.  You’ll be hearing more about Mama Kat later in the week in my What the #FF?!? Friday feature.

So, without further delay, I present to you the original prompt from Mama’s website…

10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends With…(fill in the blank)

…AND, my answer….


10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends with A Snowman

10.) I’m all for originality and non-conformity, but I could never be a nudist. Snowmen brazenly stand in public, with nothing but a corn cob pipe and some coal buttons to cover their naughty parts.  At least Frosty sported a hat, but his “igloo” at the “South Pole” was still in plain sight, for all to see.

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Photo from Terry Hart

9.) I refuse to go through any type of plastic surgery, while snowmen deem vegetables to be superior upgrades to their own noses.  Really, if you can’t love who you are, who can you love?

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Photo from Ian Baker

8.) And speaking of loving who you are, snowmen are always losing/gaining weight!  They’re never satisfied of their appearance, and are always struggling to change it.  Sure, I’m all for staying healthy through exercise and proper nutrition, but you don’t need to change your appearance to appease someone!  Come February, they all start to look a little thinner…I say they’re just trying to shape up for bikini season.

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Photo from Cartoon Stock

Keep reading my reasons!

How to Be an Outstanding Teacher: Plinky Prompts Thursday

Welcome back to another round of Plinky Prompts Thursday! If you’re just tuning in for the first time, each week I will select a writing prompt from www.plinky.com and post it every Thursday for your viewing pleasure.

This week’s prompt, however, is surprisingly not from Plinky.

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THAT'S not a Plinky Prompt!

Yes, Denny…that’s right.  This week’s prompt is from another source, outside of Plinky.  It’s short, it’s brief, and it’s to the point.  Please don’t keep me from watching reruns of Boston Legal, okay?

I’m currently in the process of applying for substitute teaching jobs in the area.   With any application process, there will inevitably be a few questions which require writing samples from the applicants.  My teaching application is no different.  The paperwork requires three different “essays” to be answered, and I completed one yesterday, just in time for Plinky Prompts Thursday.  So, with no further delay, I present to you…the prompt:


Describe the skills or attributes you believe are necessary to be an outstanding teacher.

In life, when you are passionate about an endeavor, you pursue a course of action which directly leads you closer to that interest. To become a professional in any type of venture, constant practice is required to hone your skills and become a master at your craft. To excel, you must be willing to accept advice and constantly yearn to learn more. One cannot be a source of inspiration to others without experience and true passion.

Teachers, like any other skilled artists, must combine their experiences with passion to foster an outstanding classroom environment. They must serve as eager encyclopedias to their students, willing to share knowledge on a specific content area with enthusiasm and spirit. They must act as optimistic fortune tellers, constantly encouraging students onward to success through realization their own potential.

Educators must also be active practitioners in their field of study. Students are extremely accurate esteem barometers; they offer respect when respect is due. Young mind are more inspired to learn when their instructors exude a professional work ethic, constantly sharpen their skills, and continue to cultivate their talents.

To teach, you must inspire…but to inspire, you must teach with enthusiasm, which is an attribute all outstanding educators must possess. Students thrive off of ardent mentors who embody excitement and zest. Of all the hats a teacher must wear, the role of “inspiration advocate” is one of the most important. You must be willing to proudly share your love of learning with your students, who will undoubtedly recognize a teacher with true passion and devotion for what they do.


Well, what do you think?  I’m very open to suggestions on how to improve my response, since this will be my official “Hi-there-and-hello” to my perspective employers.  What could I add?  What could I subtract?  And should I insert a portfolio of my Stick Figure Movie Reviews along with it?!?  What say you, William Shatner?

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DENNY CRANE!

That’s what I thought you’d say…

Stick Figure Movie Review: “Black Swan”

It’s a new year, and a new blog.  2011 has so far ushered in Plinky Prompts Thursday, What the #FF?!? Friday, and now, a new feature to Miracle on 32nd Street…the Stick Figure Movie Review!

Although these posts will not be day-specific, I hope to incorporate them into my blog as regular features.  I’ll be scoping out the latest and greatest movies to hit the silver screen, and fastidiously analyzing them through the use of an ensemble cast of faithful stick figures (they can be paid embarrassingly low salaries…like banana chips and YooHoo).

As a warning, I will strongly caution all readers about a big Spoiler Alert before each comic strip, as I may hit on key plot points and spoil the ending (unless we’re talking about Titanic, here…the ship will still sink regardless of how far you read).

So, without further Ado-be Acrobat Reader, I present to you…the Stick Figure Movie Review of…

BLACK SWAN

Nina Padme Sayers, an aspiring ballerina, yearns to make it big in the dance world by performing the role of the Swan Queen in Swan Lake.  Her over-protective mother, a former dancer, is just plain nuts..think like Mrs. Bates in Psycho.

Black Swan 1

Nina trains hard, day in and day out, to become the next prima ballerina.  She admires and respects the reigning ballet queen, Beth, who happens to be aging past her prime…and who also happens to be played by Ms. Winona “I Steal Things” Ryder.

Black Swan 2

To dance the role, Nina must embody both the innocent Swan Queen, AND her doppleganger evil twin, the Black Swan.  Nina believes she deserve the part of the Swan Queen, but her snooty French director doesn’t believe she can dance seductively enough.

Black Swan 3

Keep on reading…

"If I had one hour in a time machine…":Plinky Prompts Thursday

If you could change an event in your life, WOULD you?

Captain’s Log: March, 1990. I’ve traveled back in time 21 years to a moment which altered my world and changed the course of my life forever. I’ve climbed aboard this state-of-the-art Chronos Transport Hover Craft today in hopes that I might turn the tide on an event which severely impacted my entire childhood. I can only hope that I’m not too late.

The CT Hover Craft landed gently on a lush, green lawn, a mere 10 seconds after making the jump to light speed. So far, so good. I could only hope that I had maneuvered my ship to the exact coordinates of 28 Peterson Street, at exactly 3:58 PM, on March the 17th. I had no time to lose.

I quickly deplaned, wearing my silver Time Traveler Couture jump suit (made from sequins, glitter, and the tears of angels), and made off for the house which stood directly in front of me. Ah, I thought. I know this place well. I had spent many days of my youth at this location, and its familiar aroma of chocolate chip cookies and freshly brewed coffee excited the nostalgia in my brain. I couldn’t linger on sentimental memories, however. I had work to do.

I stealthily entered the first room I saw: an older woman stood around a kitchen island, quietly mixing ingredients into a large, yellow bowl, faded with use. Behind her, a small television loudly broadcasted some program which featured angry women throwing chairs at their equally angry husbands. I couldn’t make out exactly what caused their distress, but I’m willing to bet it was due to pregnancy results or infidelity…possibly both.

I couldn’t allow myself to linger and get wrapped up in their drama. Leaving the woman churning batter in the kitchen, I quickly made my way to the other side of the house, where I found a large, carpeted living room, complete with a massive fireplace, awaiting me. Inside, a small girl of no more than 5 or 6 sat, absent-mindedly watching David the Gnome on TV while playing with a Fisher Price set of make-believe items….combs, brushes, empty plastic bottles of shampoo: she was playing hair dresser.

She carried on a lively dialogue between herself and an imaginary customer, while the soft tones of the TV played in the background. Her little hands were abuzz with motion, flitting from this brush to that. She pantomimed shampooing her customer’s hair, rinsing it, brushing it out. Suddenly, in the blink of an eye, her hands were upon an object that was not fake…an object that was not a part of the play set. An actual pair of real scissors.

This was it, I thought. This was the moment that changed everything. A twinge of terror rose through my veins. She has no idea what is coming next, I mused. Years and years of shame and regret would plague her every step, and she knows nothing of it. But, I do.

I alone know what happens in the ensuing five minutes. The child will next take the pair of scissors, which she snatched unknowingly from her grandmother, place them in her small, innocent hands, and turn them on her own soft, brown locks. She will think nothing of it, shearing bits and pieces of her hair into uneven strands and Alfalfa-like sculptures. And why? Because she’s playing hair dresser, and it was time for her hair cut.

Minutes later, her grandmother will come into the room, turn 10 shades of pale, and scream out in horror, as her granddaughter stands before her with an impish smile on her face. Tears will ensue, but not from the child…weeping at the stylistic catastrophe before her, the grandmother will place a telephone call to the girl’s mother, who will rush in from work to confront her own sobbing mother and her now-confused daughter.

The mother will then make a decision for her daughter which will then echo throughout the early years of her life. In order to rectify the salon disaster, the young child will be taken to a real hair stylist, who will, in turn, give her an unbelievably cute but immensely dull bowl cut…a hair style she will subsequently keep for years to come.

The child will continue into grade and middle school with such a haircut, unlike many of her female peers, who treasured and adored their long locks. The child will never know braided hair, or pigtails, or head bands. She will never be dubbed as one of the “pretty girls,” and will tote an appearance more of a tom boy than of a Barbie girl. She will struggle to attract the focus of the male gender, turning more to humor and spunk than feminine wiles and attraction.

I stood there, replaying the scenario in my head, and knew that my time was limited. I had to act now. The child stood before me, scissors in hand, and just as I was about to warn her of a childhood full of awkward school pictures and teasing criticisms from friends, my voice faltered.

I suddenly realized that I couldn’t tell her what was about to happen. I couldn’t change the course her life would take from that moment on, because, in the end, we become who we are by the struggles we endure. No, she wouldn’t be thought of as a pretty little girl. No, she wouldn’t attract the attention of the male gender until she was 25. And no, she would still have to endure a very long awkward phase which lasted—nay, is lasting—well into her 20’s. But I wasn’t about to change the course of events that led me where I am today.

Yes, I was a tomboy. Yes, I played with Power Rangers. Instead of being the pretty girl, I played sports, told gross jokes, and spent my summers in front of a Nintendo. I encouraged a sense of humor before a sense of fashion, and I was forced to focus more on personality than looks. In a way, my short hair defined me even before I knew how to define myself. It was my first step at becoming an individual, if even done accidentally.

Slowly and quietly backing away from the child, I walked back out through the front door, hearing several rising shrieks emanating from the house. The grandmother had no doubt stumbled on the scene of the crime, and it took all the power in me to not chuckle. Don’t worry, I thought. Even though she’ll endure a hideous haircut, years of playing with the boys, and an awkward phase which puts all other awkward phases to shame, she’ll be just fine.

Powered by Plinky


For some reason, the original thread got deleted, along with a few of the original comments from some awesome posters…so I wanted to re-comment them!

Merillion:  Nicely done!  Kept me very interested.  I had an experience at a very young age which sure might have changed MY hair forever!  Was alone in our Brooklyn apt; wanted to plug something into a wall outlet; but one of the metal prongs was bent outwards, so I held the prongs together while I plugged it into the outlet.  I remember the shock; remember waking up maybe minutes later, lying on the floor.  Never told my mother and father about this.  But I’ve always wondered whether it affected my brain in any way.  Many people I know would say "Oh YEAH!!" 🙂
It didn’t do anything to help my hair stick out, though; always been fine, straight, and flat.

Tori:  Awesome. I was fortunate in that I only got the Sears Salon Bowl Cut for a year or two before my mom opted to just give me "Curly Bangs" at home. I, too, was not considered the girly girl by peers, but there is something to be said for having a sense of humor and being comfortable playing Mario Cart in a room of boys!

Someone Who Deserves More Credit: Plinky Prompts Thursday

For nearly 30 years, one man has tirelessly struggled and fought against the evils of the world, often receiving no appreciation or gratitude in return. His quest for justice has often brought him up against incredible foes, as well as steadfast friends. He has traveled the world in the face of incredible odds, all for the love of one woman. He is a champion of the weak and mistreated, and rarely receives the recognition he deserves. The man, the warrior, the legend…is none other than Super Mario.

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It may come as a surprise to some, but our unlikely hero rose to greatness out of very humble beginnings. Mario originally hailed from New York City, where he worked as a landlord and a free-lance plumber. His brother and roommate, Luigi, often accompanied him on his plumbing endeavors, but spent most of his time serving as a food critic for Italian-American restaurants.

Mario was hailed for his plumbing prowess all throughout Little Italy, earning the nickname “Jumpman” from close friends and family, but his reputation rose to national attention in 1983 when the sewers of New York City were invaded by dangerous creatures of an unknown origin. When riding the 1 Train on the NYC Metro Transit one summer afternoon, Mario debarked at the Houston Street stop, on his way to an emergency plumbing call. As he was leaving the train car, however, he spied an unusual four-legged turtle scurrying about the tracks. A set of red, beady eyes stared back at him…and then two sets, and three, and ten. The entire subway stop was filled with vermin, who looked intent on overtaking the subway platform and the citizens who lingered there. With only seconds to act and turtles encroaching on his position, Mario sent a flying kick to the nearest creature, which surprisingly flattened the monster on its back…rendering it incapacitated.

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The other turtles looked at each other in alarm: how had the plumber guessed their weakness? The remaining nine creatures cowered in fear…how had their well-guarded secret become exposed? Only their clan knew that falling prostrate onto their shells would leave them powerless. A second kick would knock them out completely. They could not risk an encounter with such a worthy foe. The turtles immediately retreated further into the sewer, leaving Mario as a confused and lauded hero.

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