Thursday, January 31, 2008

Cooking for Romance

This is my first writing game! Happy to play ... Signed Capitolady

Guidelines:

Ideas:
A cooking contest that goes awry
Two out of shape hikers who dared each other to make it to the top of a (doable) mountainAn NRA convention

Characters:
Betsy Boolean - Betsy is a third grade teacher. She's 32 years old and has never been married and desperately wants to get married. Her biological clock is ticking so loudly it could be mistaken for a time bomb

Arnold Drescher - an ex-con who used to seduce little old ladies on cruise ships and steal money from them. He wants to turn his life around. He hasn't been in jail yet, and he had a life-changing experience that helped him to see the error of his ways. But not enough to go back and give the money he bilked back to the old ladies.

Ellen Draper - Ellen is a hard-boiled journalist who does the crime beat for a big city newspaper. She's been at this game for at least fifteen years and she's seen it all and done it all.

Conflict:A desire for instant celebrity on the part of one of the players.

And now… Drum roll…Cooking for Romance -----------------------------------------



Channel 12-action news is reporting today from the sunny city of Everdale. Everdale has a population of 200 people. It is within about an hour drive of the big city of Landburg. Everyone knows each other and their family history in Everdale. Things don’t often change in Everdale and the only time there is news is when the local government comes to town a yearly even that sends Everdale into a metropolis for a few weeks.

Ellen has been covering the news for many years but as a crime beat reporter for a newspaper. She loves being the field reporter, but to have to cover a cooking show is so beneath her but she suffers through. Ellen was often compared to Lois Lane. She found her superman and settled in this suburbia. She is stuck reporting at the dinky local TV station. To say her talents are under used at a cooking show is an understatement. She draws in a deep breath and picks up her mike.

Betsy Boolean walks up to the mike. Ellen has known Betsy for the past 10 years. Betsy was Ellen’s daughter Pam’s third grade teacher. It was Betsy’s first year teaching at Roosevelt Elementary when she taught Pam.

“To think, Pam will be graduating college this year.” Betsy remarked to Ellen. “My, my how time does fly. I can’t believe my favorite student is getting married, and I am still single. At least I still have my career.” The last part of the statement was stinging with a twang of disappointment.

Ellen signals for the interview to start…

“So I hear congratulations are in order Betsy. You were honored with teacher of the year for the entire state!”

“Yes, thank you. I love kids. It has always been a joy working with those young eager faces. In third grade they have such a thirst for knowledge. They still enjoy going to school in the morning. I like making a difference in young lives.” Betsy remarks with a glow about her.

Ellen makes the hand wave across her neck to signal the TV crew to stop filming. She pulls Betsy aside.

“Betsy, I hear there are going to be a ton of good looking men in this contest! Maybe Mr. Right is here” Betsy makes a sour face. “Don’t give me that look we have been friends for a long time. It is time you come out of that shell and talk to people… More importantly men. I know how you love kids, and you aren’t getting any younger. I know how much you want your own.”

“Come on now! I know my biological clock is ticking like a time bomb but I am not going to just settle. Like you did, we aren’t all that lucky.”

Ellen picks up her mike again and motions to the crew. She glances back at Betsy … “Well maybe you’ll win more than a contest tonight.”

Ellen continues over to do another interview. She silently thinks to herself “I settled into a beautiful community where my kids grew up safe and sound. I spent 15 years at that newspaper working the crime beat and all I got was fear for my kids’ safety. At least now I feel safe. But I can sniff a criminal a mile away. Something about Mr. Drescher doesn’t seem right.”

“Mr. Drescher, Welcome … What dish will you be cooking tonight?”

“You can call me Arnold. Well, my dear I have been cooking, in more ways than one for many years now. My specialty is Italian Lasagna. My grandmother was from Italy. She taught me this wonderful dish. All my ladies love it. Making Lasagna is like making love. You do it slow and right.”

“Well Mr. Dresher… Arnold, we look forward to sampling your fair.”

After several interviews the contest is finally started. A battle of words breaks out as Arnold gets angry at the judge who suggests he forgot to put cottage cheese in his lasagna.

Carol who thinks that her age and longevity working in a medical clinic makes her an expert at everything. “After all,” she states “all the finer Italian restaurants make it that way. I have been all over the county that is how I know.”

“A woman of such beauty and intelligence must realize that a person who is only 2 generations removed from the boat would know how to make lasagna the ITALIAN way.” Arnold states as his handle bar mustache swaggers at the thought.

“Well maybe YOUR family didn’t like cottage cheese.” Carol states emphatically

“My apologies madam, surely you must be right! Someone as well traveled as you would know better.”

Betsy as well as the other ladies are impressed by Arnold’s composure when he was insulted. Surly the good looks and that accent are worth further investigation. She walks up to talk to him.

“Mr. Dresher, that was so nice the way you handled that woman. I am quite impressed.”

“well my dear, I don’t have to wear ignorance on my sleeve! I know she was wrong to argue the point would make me look foolish. What are you doing after the show my dear?”

Betsy giggles. She is truly taken by his looks and accent.

When the camera turns back on we see Carol playing to the camera. She minces words with the other judges. Secretly her desire for Arnold is growing. After all he is the first man in a long time that came that close to standing up to her.

As the contest starts the cameras pan the room. Each time they do Carol tries her best to get the focus on her. At one point Carol accidentally pops a button on her blouse primping herself for the camera. The button shoots across the room and lands in Sarah’s pan causing the sauce to fall on to her silk blouse.

She screams as she the sauce starts to burn her and runs off out of the room. Before getting totally out of the room, she slams into another contestant’s table causing a chain reaction that gets all the food on the floor.

The shocked looks pour around the room. Then one long minute later laughter erupts.

Arnold is amazed by Betsy’s composure and decides to ask her out.

8 comments:

Thalia's Child said...

Cute story!

Jenn in Holland said...

Oh! A hint toward a happy ending... What fun.

cablegirl said...

cute. I'm left wondering what Ellen felt was wrong about Arnold....

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Well, it was fun to see my ideas come to life! Very nice job. And I laughed out line at the cottage cheese line - I know where *that* came from. ROFL, Capitol Lady! I'm so glad you joined us!

I hope you had as much fun writing as I have reading all these wonderful tales!

anno said...

Interesting characters. And I, too, like the way you simply hinted at the happy ending to come...

Luisa Perkins said...

"Slow and right": giggle! Very fun!

Wholly Burble said...

You dished up quite a messy turn of events there at the end--and yet it helped create a possible "lovely" ending for two of the contestants anyway.

Now if we had a little more story, we'd see if our reporter really could sniff out the truth about our chef Arnold!

You cooked up some fun, glad you decided to join in on the game.

Darcy said...

This was a fun story. I especially liked Arnold's oh-so-suave slow and right line. I thought the chain reaction mess at the end was an excellent idea too. Sorry to be so late in commenting -- the days get away from sometimes.