Box 27, 1971-72, Important Papers, Do Not Trash

2 Mar

Habits are cables we weave a strand at a time….

Here is 100 words for the gang at Friday Fictioneers, inspired by the photo below from Beth Carter.

(With our numbers soaring into triple digits, my practice of reading and commenting on

every story has to change. Time was when we could blaze through eighteen stories and write comments and replies to comments in one sitting. Those days are gone. This is a result of the success of the format conceived by Madison Woods and ably shepherded by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, and is not a reflection on you or your writing [well, that’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.] Feel free to read my submission and move on without commenting. I won’t hold it against you because I won’t even know you tiptoed on by.)

AAABox 27

Cleaning out boxes in garage because my wife had given me two weeks to move out while she and her new boyfriend went to Cancun.

Found a long forgotten graduation gift from my penny stock loving grandfather.

Saskatoon Gold Mines Limited. One-Hundred-Thousand Shares.

Internet search, phone number, yes, still in business. Twenty-eight dollars a share.

Apartment rented, I traded her Mercedes for cash and a clunker. Parked it in her pristine garage. Called a cab, then the time service in Tokyo. Left the phone off the hook. Walked away.

Compulsive hoarder, she’d called me. And that’s a bad thing?

36 Responses to “Box 27, 1971-72, Important Papers, Do Not Trash”

  1. boomiebol March 2, 2013 at 1:18 pm #

    I bet she will regret her asking you to move out… Sometimes hoarding is not a bad thing lol. Very well done

    • dmmacilroy March 2, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

      Dear Boomie,

      Thank you for saying so and taking the time to read Box 27…
      I appreciate it.



  2. yarnspinnerr March 2, 2013 at 1:47 pm #

    LOL 🙂

  3. Cara Thereon March 2, 2013 at 2:39 pm #

    Can I say I enjoy your tags? Because I do. Story made me guffaw. One can appreciate hoarding in a moment like this.

  4. sustainabilitea March 2, 2013 at 3:09 pm #

    I prefer to call it “collecting” rather than hoarding. Collecting implies possible value and is something I’ve used our attic for over these many years. I’m now culling my collections!

    As the song says:

    You got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em,
    Know when to walk away, know when to run.
    You never count your money when you’re sittin’ at the table,
    There’ll be time enough for countin’ when the dealin’s done.

    I think he got it all just right as did the author.

    “Penny stock-loving” needs a hyphen. 🙂

    Nice to C. you again in your original incarnation. Love the new picture, too. You look pretty cool (or downright cold!)

    Enough joshing. I’m off for breakfast and the start of the weekend. Enjoy the heck out of yours.


  5. train-whistle March 2, 2013 at 3:26 pm #

    I always look forward to your posts. Love the comeuppance in the ending of this one.

  6. Lindaura Glamoura March 2, 2013 at 3:30 pm #

    Your story made me wish I had a garage to clear out! I am back, as you may notice, but in a very underwhelming condition due to life throwing me some overwhelming debris.
    I am planning to use flash fiction as part of my recovery program – and writing to writers like yourself brightens my horizon a bit.
    Be well,

  7. Bee March 2, 2013 at 3:31 pm #

    Great story! Kind of hard to leave the phone off the hook now, though. Well, unless you still have a land line, that is.

  8. Beth Carter March 2, 2013 at 3:37 pm #

    Nice find on the stock, thanks to good old Grandpa. Love that he traded his cheating wife’s Mercedes for a clunker while she’s enjoying Cancun in every which way. Great story, Doug.

  9. tedstrutz March 2, 2013 at 4:27 pm #

    Love a good love story!

  10. elmowrites March 2, 2013 at 4:51 pm #

    I was tiptoeing by as requested but I stubbed my toe on this box of stuff. Penny stock shares? Meh, might as well burn them. *flicks open lighter* That OK with you?!

  11. vb holmes March 2, 2013 at 5:14 pm #

    Best not to let her know about the windfall or she’ll be after you to pay that phone bill.

  12. JKBradley March 2, 2013 at 6:27 pm #

    Nice return on gifted investment.

    I agree with you on the challenges of interacting with the friday friends we’ve made. It’s good, tho, I think, and in some ways sad. Like a child about to leave off for college.


  13. billgncs March 2, 2013 at 7:26 pm #

    Hi Doug — we never know when we will need that one of a kind phillips screw driver that only works on acme bed frames.

  14. writeondude March 2, 2013 at 7:37 pm #

    See! Now that’s perfect ammunition. That’s why I keep telling her we can’t empty out all those boxes in the roof, you just never know … Thank you.

    • Anne Orchard March 2, 2013 at 8:07 pm #

      Well the Rupert annuals may have to pay for our retirement so mayhap you’re right dear.

  15. rochellewisoff March 2, 2013 at 7:47 pm #

    Dear Doug,
    I echo Janet. It’s good to C. you after missing you for the past couple of weeks. Tiptoe past your blog? Nay. Not so. What would you think of me if failed to make hase without stopping for t to interject my comments?
    As always your story is well written, concise and, above all, enjoyable. Love the husband’s revenge. I hope he’s out of range when she opens the garage door.



    PS. “What’s in a name? that which we call a rose
    By any other name would smell as sweet:

  16. Anne Orchard March 2, 2013 at 8:10 pm #

    Good to see you again this week Doug, and I enjoyed your story a lot. I have never managed to visit all the stories, and when I feel bad I remember Madison’s old rules to read the ones before and after your own. Then I hop to a combination of people whose stories I’ve enjoyed before and some new faces. Depende how much time I find that week. PS I bet my hubby doesn’t have any penny shares amongst his boxes, whatever he says.

  17. valeriedavies March 2, 2013 at 9:09 pm #

    I’d been wondering where you’d got to… I have to say that few of the new stories I’ve been reading are up to your masterly standard.
    This is another beaut… grandads have their uses – wish mine had been as thoughtful!!!!

    On re-reading it, it’s masterly the way you convey such a wide ranging story in a few economical words.Love it!

  18. JackieP March 2, 2013 at 10:13 pm #

    well serves her right, missing out on all that moola while she plays footsie with new boyfriend. 🙂

  19. elappleby March 3, 2013 at 12:09 am #

    HI Doug
    I enjoyed your introduction – FF just turned into a serious commitment – i have to say I’m struggling a bit. I still read them all, but I won’t be able to if it carries on like this!
    On to your story – hmmm – I live with a hoarder, not sure I approve at all. I’m just wondering how long those shares would have sat there if she hadn’t ‘pushed him’. Having said that, I reckon she probably deserved the trade in for her car 😀

  20. Sunshine March 3, 2013 at 2:08 am #

    well, you are a good husband…& i agree with JackieP…serves her right! seize the day ♥

  21. The Bumble Files March 3, 2013 at 4:35 am #

    I’m so happy it worked out for him in the end! Sometimes it’s good to hold on to things. Sometimes pennies can turn into dollars.

    I agree it’s difficult to read all the stories…everything seems overwhelming to me lately.

  22. C. Patrick March 3, 2013 at 9:14 am #

    See? Now that’s why I only have a cell phone. Not a single land-line phone to be found in my house. Heh.

  23. Perry Block (@PerryBlock) March 3, 2013 at 11:52 am #

    Good job, fulfilling one of my long term fantasies except I think I’ve already gone through just about everything at this part in any attics I have access to. Send me a couple bucks maybe?

  24. David Stewart March 3, 2013 at 1:29 pm #

    It looks like hoarding paid off big time, in this case. As for the Mercedes, it serves her right for leaving him alone in the house for two weeks. 🙂 Very well done, as usual.

  25. rgayer55 March 3, 2013 at 2:15 pm #

    Glad it worked out for him, and good to have you back. If the boyfriend can take her to Cancun, surely he can buy her a car.

  26. rich March 3, 2013 at 3:45 pm #

    hidden treasures, just never know what’s going to show up. of course, it’s not an excuse for all kinds of hoarding, but…it worked out well.

    what is the “time service in tokyo”? they just tell you what time it is over there?

    • dmmacilroy March 3, 2013 at 5:03 pm #

      Dear Rich,

      Yes, there used to be numbers you could call from a land line and a recorded voice would tell you over and over what time it was there. Leave the phone (land line, but not enough words to detail that.) off the hook and your long distance phone bill would mount. This story dates me as being a child of the land line era, alas.

      My grandfather bought me a hundred shares of Tundra Gold Mines for my birthday one year. Those penny-stocks remained worthless, unfortunately (no pun intended.)

      I hope you are well and thank you for stopping by to read and comment .
      Going disc golfing in a hurricane now. Wish me luck. I’ll find your missive when I return.



  27. Parul March 3, 2013 at 4:07 pm #

    I wish something like that happens to me! Of course without involving any heartaches! 🙂
    Good to see you back in action Doug.

  28. newpillowbook March 3, 2013 at 6:53 pm #


  29. claireful March 4, 2013 at 1:46 pm #

    I love the note formation of this story – reads like a man in hurry, or a man of few words. Nice story.

  30. Sarah Ann March 4, 2013 at 2:42 pm #

    I’ve missed your posts and stories, Doug.
    This strikes me as cold revenge dish – loved it. If only all our hoarding could be so profitable.

  31. 40again March 5, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

    Loved this one Doug. My story was going along similar lines, but then it changed. Always appreciate people getting their ‘comeuppance’, as my grandmother used to say.
    Hope you enjoy your golf

  32. ramblingsfromamum March 6, 2013 at 11:16 am #

    Isn’t it simply …’pay-backs a …… 🙂

  33. biancarowena2013 March 6, 2013 at 11:26 pm #

    … I tiptoed by…

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