Spookymilk Play With The Prose — Challenge #7: Family Reunion

This week’s Play with the Prose challenge left me struggling the most so far: write a story about a family reunion, in 300 or fewer words.

Windom Arms Hotels
Dayton, OH

August 24, 2012

Here is a summary of the activities in question, as requested by Windom’s law department, regarding the two family reunions held on the weekend of Aug. 11/12, as recorded in the hotel log:

Friday:
5PM – several lobsters were found in the sauna. Medical attention was summoned for the two women who found them.

6:45PM – elevator maintenance was called after 18 people overloaded the east elevator, stopping it between 3rd and 4th floors. Service was restored after 55 minutes.

8:10PM – police notify the front desk that toilet paper rolls were unfurled and blowing from a 4th floor window. The parents in room 308 were warned.

Saturday:
3:35AM – bathtub in room 447 overflows, causing ceiling damage. Tub was unattended; drain was blocked by a condom. Guests in 347 were relocated.

8:40AM – approximately four dozen doughnuts disappeared from kitchen storeroom.

3:20PM – law officials were called after a fight broke out in the pool area. Several people in street clothes had been thrown into the pool; many others had their swimwear pulled off of them. Warnings were handed out but no citations were issued, to our knowledge.

10:55PM (at various times for roughly 5 hours) – many calls regarding noise disturbances, two handled by the hotel detective, and one in room 312 requiring animal control intervention.

Sunday:
2:00AM – bathtub in room 447 overflows, once again unattended and due to condom blocking the drain. Guests were moved to a first floor room.

8:30AM – food fight breaks out in the restaurant after waffle mix on the floor causes several falls. Eight injuries were treated.

We sincerely hope that our hotel ratings were not hurt, but we would like to add that if the Fodor or Zagat family reunions are ever held here again, we will refuse to work those days.

Terrence Range , Corrine Horle, Stan Best
Lead Shift Managers

Judging was delayed for a bit; here are the RESULTS

The judges’ comments:
K: My not-so-well-kept secret: the underplayed joke, told with a stone face, gets me every time. Certainly, hotel managers are constantly put in situations where they have to relate hilarious situations in businesslike language. Maybe this shouldn’t seem like a story to me, but in this setting, it was a blast, and managed to have a beginning, middle and end. GOLD

P: Ceiling floods. Ouch. I like the gag here. The ongoing descriptions of the mayhem are funny (and occasionally what isn’t explained ends up being almost as funny), if they don’t exactly tell a ‘story’ per se. In fact, that’s really the only reason this story gets a bit lower marks. It sort of tells a story, but it don’t actually show us a story. BRONZE

The medal streak continues, and my current position is more solidified. STANDINGS

  • After a three day stint at the Downtown DoubleTree in Omaha, this idea came to me rather quickly. I like making myself run with an early idea, but this one didn’t hold my interest well enough to get it done prior to an hour before the deadline.
  • The judging was delayed partly due to flooding from a bathroom in the apartment above Spookymilk’s. That’s, uh, pretty freaky.
  • “Windom Arms” is named as a tribute to the wonderful actor William Windom, who died just a few days ago.
  • At least two of the items in the list reflect circumstances (more-or-less) from my past. Not that I was involved, necessarily.

Onward to the next challenge…

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