Monday March 13th, 2017

The exercise:

Write about: the gong show.

And to think, the inspiration for this has nothing to do with:

- the play yesterday
- Miles turning 11 months yesterday
- me falling asleep before finishing the blog post yesterday
- Miles getting his first haircut today
- Max refusing to sit on his own for his haircut (and therefore not getting his haircut today)

Instead, it has everything to do with how my night ended at work at the community centre this evening...


Drop-in basketball (officially) runs from 7 until 8:30 on Monday nights at the community centre. By 7:02 this evening I think there were probably already 20 guys in the gym. Likely maxed out around 25 by 8 o'clock.

I believe I have mentioned previously how much I dislike getting those guys out of the building at the end of the night, so I'll just say I was already not looking forward to that nonsense.

Then around 8:15, just as I was about to start my cash out (the only way I get out of there by 9 is if I start that process before doing the locking up rounds), the only person using the weight room comes by the front desk to tell me that the water fountain is running and won't stop and is creating a puddle on the floor.

Run over there, can't figure out how to make it stop. Run back to the desk, start calling people. Finally get a hold of the building custodian, who tells me how to shut it off. Run back and... it's stopped on its own. Mop up the mess as the woman who told me about it is leaving. I decide to close up and alarm the weight room, yelling at the basketball players that they have five more minutes before they have to get out.

They'd already gone five minutes past their supposed playing time at that point.

Finish mopping up, alarm the weight room, yell at the basketball players on my way back to the front desk that it's closing time.

Get back to the front desk... just in time for the weight room alarm to go off. Walk back (because I'm done with running at this point), shut off the alarm, wait for the kid to have his drink of water, make sure the fountain doesn't continue running on its own again, re-alarm the weight room, head back to the front desk. Yell at remaining ten or so basketball players that we're closed now, so please wrap it up.

Get back to the front desk. Alarm company is calling. Tell them what happened. Dig through my notes to find the password to confirm for them that they are, indeed, talking to a town employee and not some bumbling thief. Make sure everybody is out of the building. Finish my locking up rounds. Get back to the front desk. Start doing my cash out. Check the clock.

It is now five minutes past nine.

I decide that I need a drink.

Actually, now that I'm sitting here typing this all up... that drink sounds like a fine idea. Time to hit publish!


morganna said...

Circus master started us out serious
Renee swinging high on the
Acro bar, a beautiful sight, but
ZeZe the clown spilled all the
Yellow paint -- it flew in the air and coated Renee.

Greg said...

@Morganna: The acronym really works for me today, as does your word choice -- Yellow really stands out for some reason. The imagery is excellent, but I'd expect nothing less from you :)

@Marc: that sounds like quite the evening! I can quite see where the prompt inspiration came from after all that back and forth. The only thing missing really is the revelation that when you decided you needed a drink you also went to the water fountain, both setting off the alarm again and then being unable to turn it off at all! However, my recommendation is that you get an Alsatian -- not only will Max love you, but you can set it on the basketball players to get them out on time :-D

The gong show
The Weasel Room in Gorillamumps, school for the magically gifted and afflicted, was famous. First year students were brought in to see and admire the room, usually fifteen minutes before their ordeal with the Sorting Cap (a New York Knicks baseball cap that was enchanted to sort through its wearer's thoughts and memories, sorting and re-ordering them in an attempt to make them smarter. It cooked students's brains an acceptable 0.2% of the time; the unlucky remains were dispatched to the cafeteria for the Young Mummies and Twilight Werewolves). At five to midnight Ronnie Weasel and his "friends" Harry and Hermione were stood quietly in the middle of the room, waiting.
The room was bigger on the inside than the outside and was a set of concentric wooden cabinets each the size of a Welsh dresser, each holding trophies, gongs, medals, plaques and awards that had been given to members of the Weasel family since they'd started attending Gorillamumps. There was enough enchanted gold in the room that it justified three full time security guards and its loss would cause ripples on the Stock Exchange where precious metals were traded. Right now all three guards were smoking and eyeing the children with suspicion.
"What are we waiting for?" asked Harry, scuffing the floor with his shoe. His left arm was bandaged from where he'd poured Stickyroot Juice accidentally over it in Potions and it was itching.
"Midnight," said Ronnie sepulchrally. "I have to be here, it's a family cur- tradition."
"Just... because."
"Shut up, Harry," said Hermione. Her hand slipped automatically to her wand, and she had to make an effort to move it away again. "Just be supportive."
As midnight arrived the room was suffused with a rich golden glow and ghost-like apparitions of the Weasel family appeared in the room. In turn each picked up their awards, some struggling to hold the vast collection of them, and then they showed them, one at a time, to Ronnie Weasel.
"This was for being the best at everything," said a voice. "You haven't got one of these."
"This was being better than anyone else in the school at magic. You haven't got one of these."
"This was breathing more sexily than anyone, ever. You haven't got one of these...."

Marc said...

Morganna - hah, a perfect little acrostic for this prompt, really capturing that gong show atmosphere!

Greg - I think setting a dog on them would be the best way to get them out. Thank you for that idea!

Ah, another delightful visit to your version of the world of Harry Potter. Always appreciated :D