“Pig! Pig!” Pigtunia’s Vacation, a humorous short romance

“Pig, Pig!”
(romance writer invents a new genre: Pig Romances!)

Janelle Meraz Hooper
Note: I use my blog for fun. Please see my serious books at the link below:
See my literary and romance books here!

‘Tis the season for silly. I found this in my files; it was written after a writer-friend sent me a photo of a pig jumping out of a truck of pigs headed for market in the middle of a busy intersection. The top of the truck was very high off the ground and the pig sailed right over the railing and landed safely on the ground. I wanted to post the photo, but I don’t have permission to use it; I’m sure it’s copyrighted!

“Pig, Pig!” Pigtunia shouted as she stood on the corner of a busy street in downtown Santa Monica. In between shouts for help, she squealed. Squealed until she literally stopped traffic at the busy intersection. Passersby, drivers, kids on bicycles, motorcycles driven by hairy black-jacketed men wearing black goggles—all looked around to see if they could figure out what the pig’s problem was.

Nothing looked amiss. Well, granted, there was a very upset pig on the corner of Cork and Vine, but no one could figure out why. The noise persisted until a businessman carrying a briefcase cautiously approached the angry pig and asked, “What’s the problem, Miss Piggie?”

“What kind of a town is this?” answered Pigtunia. “I’ve been calling for the cops for over twenty-minutes and there’s not a pig in sight!”

“Oh, you want the police? We don’t use the pig-word here unless we’re talking to an actual pig, like you. Here, you have to dial 911 if you need help.”

“Dial? Dial how?”

“Why, on your cell phone.”

“Do you see any pockets here?” Pigtunia asked as she looked down at her legs.

Just then, a news crew and cameraman from a nearby television station ran up and started filming. Sticking her microphone in the pig’s face, the newsperson began to interview the distressed pig. With no prodding, Pigtunia launched into her rant:

I signed up for a road cruise that was supposed to take me along the coast for a 6-day vacation. I was promised fresh mud every day, good food, and luxurious sleeping quarters. What I got was the back end of a crowded truck, “mud” that was far from fresh, sloppy slop, and it was so crowded I had to sleep standing up!” hardly pausing for a breath, she continued, “And as for the ocean views, the darn truck headed east on the freeway toward some place called Kansas. To make matters worse, some bimbo riding with the driver was carrying a purse made from a sow’s ear and she had some kind of a Spam cookbook in it that looked suspicious to me. That’s when I jumped out.”

“You jumped out of a moving truck over twelve feet off the ground?”

“I did. Who needs it? I’m going to insist on a refund.”

The interview of the distraught pig was picked up on YouTube and got millions of views. In a Kansas meat-packing plant, the owner watched the video and called his attorney. “This is bad publicity. If this keeps up, no one will ever eat pig again. Call the legal department! Send that pig a contract and get her over here. Fly her out here first-class and bring her to me.”

And that was how Pigtunia flew cross-country in a first-class seat with a window view and swilled champagne all the way to Kansas.

But wait. It gets better. When she arrived, the owner of the packing plant took a close look at her and knew she was a very special pig. All of her parts were prime pig. In fact, she was much too good to butcher. The meat packer made her an offer she couldn’t refuse and Pigtunia found herself in a luxury pin with cable TV and 24/7 gourmet food service.

But wait. It gets even better. Pigtunia was visited once a year by the most handsome pig in the yard. He romanced her for days while she squealed with delight. Each year, when the time was right, Pigtunia gave birth to at least ten piglets, making her much more valuable than she would have ever been in the bacon department…

And, thus, a new romance genre for books was born: Mail Order Jumping Pig Brides.

The end

P.S. : At least every 13th word of this story is true, I swear!

(Illustration–such as it is–by author)

Sleeping on Peanuts, a short story

Peanuts illus 2

Sleeping on Peanuts
Janelle Meraz Hooper
My website: Janelle Meraz Hooper

This hasn’t been published yet. I wrote it just for this blog.

Not all of us were born with a silver spoon in our mouths…

Oklahoma, 1950…The old converted green garden shed at the back of Hal’s lot looked like most of the others in the neighborhood except that his was the only one that had a big picture window on the front. Inside, the unfinished walls exposed two by four framing. The floor was cement. A fine coating of sawdust from the artisan’s fiddle-making settled on the glass and sparkled in the sun. Dust motes suspended in the air moved softly with the air currents; they seemed to dance to the country music from Hal’s old radio with a vintage wood casing. Other than a little sawdust on the window and work bench, the inside of the workspace was clean and uncluttered.

Hal’s masterpieces started out as fine spruce and maple woods that had been aged for ten years. Fiddles in various stages of completion were hung, clothesline fashion, across the width of the glass window. Each section of the instruments was carved and sanded on a workbench underneath the window and assembled with the love and care of a master.

The rest of the shop was equally as simple as the workbench. There were a few tools on a shelf, a stool, and a big burlap sack of green peanuts sat on the floor in the corner of the room. Hal kept the peanuts for the grandchildren and their friends to snack on during their regular visits to his shop. On their way out to feed the ducks in the pond, they filled their pockets with the goober peas to eat on their way.

On school days, Hal filled his coffee cup and walked across the yard to his little workshop by six o’clock each morning in case the troubled teenager in the neighborhood had spent the night in his shed. This morning was like too many others. The fiddle-maker found the boy sound asleep, curled up on top of the peanut sack, covered with an old afghan.

Hal gently shook the young man to wake him. “Time to get up, Tom,” he said softly. Take Whistle and go on up to the house and get a hot waffle, clean up, and do your homework. When you’re ready, I’ll drop you off at school.”

“Thanks, Mr. Phillips.”

Tom turned to go out the door, carrying the cat over his shoulder. Hal noticed Tom’s face and said, “Looks like you might be getting a shiner on that eye. Ask Mrs. P. if she has some ice to put on it. Might help some.”

Tom nodded. He knew Mrs. P would also have a clean change of clothes for him to put on after his shower. His alcoholic father kept his own family in such an uproar no one even noticed Tom seldom dressed at home. They didn’t even notice he didn’t sleep there many nights. He didn’t know why his father was always so angry with him but he was grateful that his anger never spilled onto his little sisters. Clueless in their little beds, they slept soundly through their dad’s drunken rages. He never knew where his mother was during those nights. He only knew she wasn’t there protecting him. He guessed she was cowering in his sisters’ room.

Taking refuge with the Phillips wasn’t the best solution to Tom’s problem but it was his choice to avoid a legal confrontation that could end up separating him from his lifelong friends and insert him into a strange family where he might not fit in. Worse, he might have to change schools.

Most nights, Tom slept on the Phillip’s couch. But if his father became abusive late at night he didn’t wake them; he went to the shed and crawled on top of the peanuts to sleep next to Whistle. The night’s sleep he sometimes got on top of the bag of peanuts wasn’t fancy, but it was safe. No one in his family seemed to care or wonder where he went.

Just a few more months. Then he’d graduate and be on his way. He didn’t know exactly where yet, but he and Mr. P had been talking about it in the afternoons after school. His grades were good and Mr. P. had promised to help him get started. The only thing they’d decided for sure was that—as long as his father was around—he needed to go far, far away from his hometown. Wherever he went, it would be better than where he was now. And once he left home for good, he’d never go back. But for now he wouldn’t think about it…he had homework to do…and he and Whistle had waffles waiting for them in Mrs. Phillip’s kitchen…

Several years later, Tom, his school’s valedictorian, would stand in front of his college graduation class and explain how he was standing where he was because of a fiddle, a cat named Whistle, and a burlap sack full of green peanuts. Mr. and Mrs. Phillips were in the front row.

The end

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Note: All of the characters in this story are fictional. The fiddles and green peanuts (goober peas) were real. I grew up near peanut farms and many of us had a taste for green peanuts. I admit it’s a developed taste, but they are healthy: no oil, no salt! (Please be aware that some people are allergic to peanuts in any form.) JMH