Complaint Department #StoryADayMay

Our Story A Day May challenge today was to begin every sentence of our story with a word of an aphorism, so that reading the first word of every sentence recreates the aphorism.

I used two aphorisms: my mottoes in life. Long-time readers of this blog (if any) probably already know them. I know Tammy B does.

“There Is Nothing Substatially Wrong With This Unit”

To which Eleanor replied strenuously. “Hell! With what I paid for it, there ought to be nothing whatsoever in the slightest degree wrong with the damn unit! Anything you have to pay for in whacking huge installments ought to be perfect!” Unrefined, she might be, but she could certainly press a point, although the clerk resisted with a stiff show of fine print on the contract she had signed upon purchase.

Never at fault. Give no refunds. A half-dozen paragraphs in miniscule type boiled down to pretty much that. Sucker!, they might as well have added.

An experienced complainer of strong will and endless vocal stamina, Eleanor enlarged on her outrage at a volume carefully calculated to draw attention but not to rise to the level of actionable nuisance.

Even as he insisted on the store and the manufacturer’s lack of accountability for her dissatisfaction, the clerk found himself offering to tweak the unit’s pre-sets, if she didn’t mind voiding her warranty.

“Break it, and you’ll hear from my lawyer,” was Eleanor’s response, softened by a wink and a smile. “Or else I’ll take it out of your hide.”

“Smarten Labs discourages this,” the clerk said, “and I have to tell you that and get your signature before I do the tweaks.”

“Up Smarten Labs’ nose with a rubber hose,” said Eleanor, and signed. A fingertip scrawl on an electronic page, and she had waived all legal recourse.

Chump, one might have called her, but the contract’s barely readable fine print had pretty well denied her legal recourse, anyway, and Eleanor left the store with her Smarten Labs Earworm (TM) translating all languages–including, most importantly for a high-school teacher, teenage mumble-slur–into intelligible English.

MY PROMPTS TODAY: Aphorism(s), earworm



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Complaint Department #StoryADayMay

    • Author
      • pm laberge

        May 18, 2019 at 1:32pm

        Call Holly. Maybe HP could design it! Inform William Shatner!
        We are almost there, tech wise.

        Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  1. pm laberge

    May 18, 2019 at 3:44am

    Must be one of Steffie’s relatives.
    Or…. One of Holly’s.
    (I’ll just shuffle off, now.)

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author
      • pm laberge

        May 18, 2019 at 1:30pm

        After all my semi witty comments, I may have to shuffle off to someplace where I can seek asylum! LOL!
        “The honorable member thinks himself witty. He is half right.” MP John Rodriguez, in the House, during the short lived Clark govet.

        Permalink  ⋅ Reply

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