Thank you for writing chapter 2 of the Grammar Games. I added a couple of lines to connect your post to the complete story.

(with apologies to Gutbloom)

While the combatants saluted Emperor E, and shouted “Those of us about to write, salute you!” Gutbloom was too busy preparing his own speech, using the original Latin:

Ave Ev, morituri te salutant

Dulce et decorum est pro bloggia mori.

He shouted and then started to go over his notes.

Let me see here, I got a couple other things to say. [looks at his clipboard in the chariot] Oh, yes, once more into the breach, my friends, once more, or we’ll close the wall up with our English… terriers? Mολώη Lαβέ! Let’s fight in the shade, actually. This is no good. Ben, would you mind letting me off up here at the next turn? [dismounts from the chariot]

I know what is going on here. The equinox is upon us, and by your calculations Spring is here. You think that things should be getting started at the Mill and that we should start planning the August Solstice Party, but I tell you, it is too early.

The robins are not yet back. Pee Wee is still in Korea. There is ice on the Mill Pond. Nobody has seen Timothy J. O’Neill for a while. Don’t be anxious. We could go ask the suburban shamans to redo their calculations, but it’s not worth the effort. I can tell it is too early to start.

The state of the Bloggosphere is strong. Medium is starting to take off. It is going to be the best summer ever. The Summer Trolls (Trogloditus Auxo) are set to return, but they are not here yet…

Suddenly, the steely grey clouds hovering just above the stadium parted, and a giant blue pencil descended toward the field of battle. A thunderous voice rumbled down from the heavens while the crowd fell silent and the gladiators stopped in their tracks.

Thou shalt write 200 words… no more, no less

solemnly intoned the voice, sounding too close to James Earl Jones to be a coincidence. And the sacred blue pencil erased Gutbloom right there in his tracks. Only his boots remained, so we will never know if he resembled Obama or George Clooney. As the pencil retraced its path toward heaven, the skies cleared and a soft breeze picked up Gutbloom’s note, which ended with the eerily prophetic desire to search for ghosts:


We should gather the ghosts. I’ve already mentioned Timothy J. O’Neill, but where are Niya Marie, Deral F. Fenderson, Ruben Alexander, and bibles?

Yes, I can see that the days are getting longer. Maybe I should take the tarp off the piñata court to let it dry.

Thanks for reminding me.

Again, the skies darkened. And again a lonely image was projected in the night sky, bidding farewell to the beloved Gutbloom…

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To be continued…

(Look for part 3 whenever someone else posts a 200 word contribution. The challenge continues. To read the compiled story up to date, please go here.)

Written by

Ad agency creative director, writer & designer at Former pro tennis player and peak performance coach for professional athletes.

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