Nov 272014

Happy Thanksgiving! Our friends in the U.S. are celebrating today, so let’s join them.

The Thanksgiving Day holiday traces its origins back to 1621, where at the Plymouth Plantation 53 Pilgrims and 90 Native Americans sat down to a harvest feast after a successful growing season. It became a federal holiday in 1863 when President Lincoln proclaimed a national day of:

Thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.

Today, as well as giving thanks, the holiday is celebrated by spending time with family, enjoying foods of the season (especially turkey), charitable giving, watching and playing football, and watching the parade. Let’s join in the celebrations with this week’s photo prompt:

Public Domain Image

Public Domain Image.

The Judge

Judging this week’s contest is Marie McKay, winner of MB1.07. Read her winning story here, and what she has to say about flash fiction here.


A story of between 90 and 110 words starting with THANKS and ending with GIVING and incorporating the photo prompt.


Anyone, but especially you!


Why not! Because it’s fun. Because it’s a challenge. Because the winner will receive their own winner’s page, their story on the winning stories list, a ‘who is the the author’ feature to be posted next week, entry into the ‘Micro Bookend of the Year’ competition, and a copy of this year’s winning stories compilation.


Now! Get your entry in BEFORE 5:00 am Friday (UK time:




Post your story in the comments section. Include the word count and your Twitter username (if you’re Twitterized). Don’t forget to read the full rules before submitting your story.

Anything else?

Please give your story a title. It will not be included in the word count.

Please try to leave comments on a couple of other stories. It’s all part of the fun, and everyone likes feedback!

Remember, only stories that use the bookends exactly as supplied (punctuation is allowed) will be eligible to win.

  69 Responses to “Micro Bookends 1.08 – THANKS [micro] GIVING”

  1. Traditions

    “Thanks to your crummy patchwork the float’s gone to hell, 88,” 10 said.

    “Who gives a damn,” 88 said. “Why do we even bother with these archaic traditions?”

    “Why? Our ancestors worked—”

    88 shoved 10 into the pungent, pink plastic. “Our ancestors had stupid names like John, Jim, etc.”

    “Damn you’re ignorant. Our ancestors floated pigskins on the day of Macy to appease the corporations. Then when the sky blackened on Friday, corporations supplied them with essential items. If it wasn’t for the corporations’ compassion, our forefathers would have perished, and we wouldn’t exist.”

    “There’s a difference between then and now. Now, corporations are more into taking than giving.”

    110 words

    • Wow another great story Carlos… you are awesome!

    • Fantastic, honest story. Also, I’m pretty sure that this is going to actually happen.

      P.s. Jim is an awesome name

    • ‘Our ancestors floated pigskins on the day of Macy to appease the corporations.’ – great line

    • So much story in so few words! Brilliant.

    • Great timing with your ‘sky blackened on Friday’. I like the irony of the ‘corporations compassion’.

    • So perfectly timely, with the appropriate attendant cynicism. I love when our present time period is interpreted from the POV of a future generation. And I can imagine the paleoanthropologists of that future interpreting Black Friday in just this way. You pull it off deliciously.

  2. Avalina Kreska

    Thursday’s Child

    ‘Thanks for nothing!’ That’s what it said on the 50ft blow-up God that sailed overhead (probably the last spurt of human endeavor I was ever likely to witness).

    I was born on a Thursday and so was the tsunami that was heading for us.

    Turning the syringe in my hand, I double-dared the needle tip, stroked Nessy (who purred obliviously) and listened to the roar of the only God that would visit us today, blessing all with his huge green, merciless hand.

    I threw the needle out of the window, after all, doesn’t the rhyme say, ‘Thursday’s child has far to go?’ and awaited God’s last act of giving.

    (110 words)

  3. Title : Not me- not today
    107 words
    John Cassidy

    Thanks a bunch Uncle Sam. Two sweltering summers and frost bitten winters and this is what it’s come to – inflating a pink elephant. Reward for a vet who’s lost an eye.

    These guys don’t get it. Don‘t get my mood today.

    A pink elephant. OK for a ball game, I guess, with wide eyed kids hunting their heroes between hot dogs.
    Today, no.
    Nothing to be grateful for. Neither me nor those cowering widows with frightened stares as I ‘liberated’ them.

    Don’t tell me “cheer up, buddy.” You don’t know what a buddy is.

    Let’s get this done. You guys go home and gorge yourselves.

    I’m done with giving.

  4. Thanks Taking

    Thanks Taking was first celebrated in 2210 in memory of the decade long world war, which brought upon starvation and the destruction of many resources. People had lost hope things would become better. To survive, people only thought of themselves.

    The people who knew a life before the war, tried to celebrate thanksgiving with parades and floats, only to have them destroyed by men wearing jerseys.

    “Stop wasting our precious resources with this damn parade!” one of them shouted.

    In a world where everyday was a struggle to live, Thanks Taking was a reminder that there was no room for love, no room for celebrations, and no room for giving.

    (110 Words)

  5. When Turkeys Fly
    106 words

    “Thanks, Bill.” Corey Morales smiled at the cameras in her elegant wool coat. “We’re live from the Thanksgiving Parade.” She straightened her  hat. “Let’s talk to some of the people behind the scenes.”  
    She turned to one of the men inflating the balloons. “What are you thankful for?”

    “I’m thankful I have a job.” he smiled and waved to the camera. “Hi, Mom.”

    The balloon, in the form of a giant turkey, rose up behind them.

    “No!” someone shouted.  The turkey exploded, showering everyone with bits and pieces.

    Corey brushed off her coat. “Wow, Bill, who knew turkeys could fly? This parade just keeps on giving.”

  6. Pinky the Pig
    110 words

    Thanks to Frederic’s iron-clad routine, Jesse was late to the scene.

    “I can’t go that way, Jesse, I never go that way,” Jesse said, in a nasal imitation of Frederic’s voice.

    “You talking to yourself?”

    “Never mind that. What happened here?” Jesse asked.

    “Murder, first degree,” Max said.

    Jesse eyed the deflated float. It hardly classified as murder. Vanadlism, maybe.

    “Who’d puncture the pig, Jesse? Pinky is our most important Thanksgiving tradition.”

    Jesse could think of a host of other Thanksgiving traditions he preferred (for example, Frederic’s award-winning gravy).

    “Don’t worry. I’ll patch him up.”

    “See that you do,” Max said. “Our Pinky is the gift that keeps on giving.”

  7. Birthday Celebrations

    “Thanks a birthday balloon ride over the village, fabulous” twittered Marjorie

    Smiling through clenched teeth I watched the men inflating the giant pig. He’d chosen well I had a predilection for swine. After all I had married one!

    Marjorie looked especially childish in skinny legged jeans and a fluffy jumper. For God’s sake she was fifty not fifteen. Her bleached blonde hair in pigtails, so the wind wouldn’t whip it across her face she simpered. Mine was covered by a beanie hat!

    Falling to her death, Marjorie landed conveniently in the graveyard. My husband was distraught. Her husband winked, a way out for both of us. He was very giving.

    110 words

  8. Love it. Brilliant story, Stella!!

  9. (*Terms and Conditions Apply*)

    Thanks to the Voima Transference Technique, galactic vacationing has never been better!

    Your consciousness uploads to a unique avatar, and with our trademark sensory interface, you will taste, feel and live life on Proxima IV.

    Ride the rapids!

    Bask in the triple sunrise!

    Browse the native markets!

    And for that truly special experience, try Flooflar hunting! Once roped and netted, these majestic beasts exude a liquid prized by Prox mystics. Our expert handlers will help you catch and milk your Flooflar, and once you drink, you will share it’s life and memories forever.

    Even back home!

    A Voimacation is no ordinary holiday…

    It’s an experience that keeps on giving!

    110 words

  10. Ada

    107 words

    Thanks. A single word. Not much to ask for was it? One simple acknowledgement for all her effort?

    Ada oozed silent fury as her husband gorged himself on the meal she had spent hours slaving over. Watched as fingers ripped meat from bone, teeth tore at drumsticks, juices dribbled down an ungrateful chin, mouth churning a wash-cycle of gluttony.

    She wished she could stick a pin in that mountain of flesh, watch him deflate to nothing but every day he seemed to balloon up that little bit more. Yet she smiled as he attacked the dessert. This year it contained something extra, something she didn’t mind giving.

  11. 2 22 28 46 10

    110 wordses

    “Thanks for those words. Carol; take us back to the field- What’s happened during the break?”

    “Well John, 28 is down. Anyone hoping to call lines including 28 is very disappointed right now.”

    “Thanks Carol. Arnold, as a previous Number yourself, tell us what they’re thinking down there.”

    “Well John, they’re certainly thinking about the great, natural taste of Perchals Diet!”

    “That IS some fantastic tasting cereal Arnold.”

    “Seriously though John, hallucinations from the escaping mustard gas are pretty bad at the halfway point, you know you’re dying…”

    “Have to stop you there Arnold. New number is 80, Gandhi’s Breakfast… Extreme Bingo! That’s a thumbs up the judge is giving.”

  12. For The Treatment Of Others
    108 words

    “Thanks, Will. It means a lot to me, what with poor Dad.”

    “Sorry it’s taken me so long.” He rummages in the drawer. “Is there a pen in this house that actually works?”

    Will ticks all the boxes and, with a flourish, signs the donor card.

    “I’m gonna flash this to Ali later, try and get money off my kebab.”

    Louise laughs and engulfs him in a hug.

    “You take care tonight, you hear?”

    He pats his back pocket.

    “I’ll be fine. But if there is a freak accident and I’m crushed by a giant flying pig, well, it is the season for giving!”

    • I enjoyed the naturalness of the conversation and the last line was just perfect! (the title was pretty excellent too)

    • Feels like a true conversation, so much so you can almost feel the character’s subtext.

      My favourite line; “Is there a pen in this house that actually works?”, I say this twice a day.

  13. Giving Thanks
    108 words

    Thanks of all shapes and sizes are on display around the hall.

    My own Thank is still being inflated. It’s definitely the best Thank here. I’ve looked at all the other exhibits and there is no Thank with appendages as big as mine.

    A man is watching my Thank being assembled. Seeing me, he smiles, and fishes something from his pocket.

    “What are they? I say, looking down at the small, dull stones in his outstretched palm.

    “They’re Thanks, of course!” he says, with a chuckle. “But these are the best kind. These ones are not for display”- he presses one into my hand – “they’re for giving.”

  14. They Always Boast

    110 wordses

    “Thanks. Two ice cubes. It has to be two. Y’know?”

    He plays with a cocktail umbrella, he wins it open, then loses it. I let him speak.

    “Jeremy, he don’t gotta system y’now? That’s why the Cashino got him. I gotta system. Remember rolls. The cards, y’know?”

    He scratches the memory chip implant scar below his ear. Brown eyes red. I let him speak

    “Gotta get someplace, y’know? I see the cards like jumpers with balloons, y’know? I just see the jumpers. Black is yellow. Numbers is numbers.”

    Slots ching and pour somewhere. Celebration alarms. I nod to the pit boss. He nods back.

    “I gotta parade system. Thanks Giving.”

  15. The Deal

    “Thanks be to God!” cried Lizzie. Tears yielded to joyous sobs.

    She and Frank had mortgaged their future to achieve their desire. But Prof. Boghosian told them how they could undergo another IVF for free! They jumped at the chance.

    Unbearable tension, suppressed elation at each stage. They transferred two embryos, they implanted… Lizzie was pregnant! Week after week, her belly expanded like an inflatable pig at a Thanksgiving parade.

    Finally, labour… delivery.

    Boghosian told Lizzie she’d given birth to a healthy boy; his sister was stillborn.

    “Can I see him?” Lizzie whimpered.

    “Not possible.”

    Someone offers you something for free, remember what you’ll be giving…

    Word Count: 108

  16. Carnival in the After
    110 words
    by Nancy Chenier

    Thanks to the storm warning, we had to take down the floats. Fortunately for us, tornadoes don’t discourage the locals from attending Pig Fest. Pops jokes it’s the Bacon Beacon, but it’s not.

    I wasn’t born in the Before, so the only thing I can compare with is the cache of albums in Gram’s trunk. There used to be more animals than guests. Fat ones, too—both animals and guests.

    The pared-down people navigate the dust and wind, pay their barter, linger at the exhibits (three stalls). Their hungry gazes rake over the animals.

    The After doesn’t offer much. They’ll come from miles around to take whatever we’re giving.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.