Poetic Justice?

It was 4:30 a.m. in San Francisco. Lenny had been working all night on the layouts for today’s big, make-it-or-break-it meeting. Finally satisfied, he shut down his computer.

In Tel Aviv Mischa was doing what she always did before a presentation. Going over her notes for the umpteenth time and rehearsing in front of a mirror. She’d been at it for the last two hours, since about 9:30 in the morning.

Even though the client wouldn’t be there for an hour and a half, a very jumpy Annabelle was already at the Agency’s offices on 6th Avenue in Manhattan.

This was a huge account. The relationship was great. Or it was until Lenny’s wife got her dream job in San Francisco.

The client loved his creative team and he was pissed. Which was only exacerbated when he found out that Mischa was taking off for three weeks to visit her family, in Israel. So he flexed his muscle. He called Annabelle and told her he was putting the account up for review. They’d have one chance to prove they were still worthy.

Lenny was onboard instantly. Mischa took some convincing. She’d been working like a dog. The unstable economy meant no-raises; and no hiring. She worked nights and weekends, with no time off. When her mother needed surgery, she put her foot down and went home. So she was resentful when she got the urgent plea for help.

When Annabelle told her she could stay on an extra week and expense her flight she grudgingly agreed.

Today was the moment of truth.

Annabelle pulled out all the stops. When the client and his lackeys arrived a chef was making omelettes. Every square inch of the console was covered with an assortment of juices, teas, coffee, bagels, muffins and danish.

As pre-arranged, Lenny, Mischa and Annabelle turned on their computers 15 minutes ahead of the meeting. Annabelle wanted them all on Webex ahead of time.

Lenny couldn’t get on the Internet. Panicking, he packed up his laptop and ran across the street to Starbucks. No go. Mischa’s was down, too; and she was cursing. Of all times…

Trying not to panic, Annabelle went to look for their I.T. support guy. The client frowned, glanced at his watch and gave one of his colleagues a look that said, “They are so fired!”

Meanwhile, in Fort Wayne, New Jersey, Carl and his wife Sandy were in the den waiting for the Knicks game to start.

On the screen in front of them, the client picked up his Blackberry so he could check his emails. He couldn’t get on the Internet either. Looking up he said: “What the…”

As he was talking the screen turned to black.

VOICE OVER: When it absolutely, positively has to get there


SUPER: Call 1-800-GoFedex

Back in Fort Wayne, Carl turned to his wife and said: “What a stupid commercial.”

Just as all their power went off.

This is the second story from flash fiction week II. Tomorrow: Leanne Yong.

Fransi Weinstein is a former ad agency writer/creative director, turned freelance writer of anything and everything. When she just can’t seem to shut down her computer and relax she works on her book. Or on her blogs: three hundred sixty five and fransi weinstein et al.


18 thoughts on “Poetic Justice?

  1. You don’t know how many times I wish this would’ve really happened! πŸ™‚ Great scene, I think I’ve been there (I spent too much of time doing online “demo” type of things and despise webex and the like) and this reminds me of what’s really important haha So what happens next, zombies I hope!

        1. Thanks, I liked it! Love to see you do more of it, not sure why you’re shy about it, unless it’s because it’s just not the type of writing you’re used to doing. Love the pace of it, different locales and I relate to the situation. And LOVE the ending! πŸ™‚

        2. Okay, now you’re spoiling me! Thanks for the encouragement. I think you’ve hit it on the head. I’m shy about it because this was my first attempt. Never done any flash fiction before. Would never have occurred to me to try. I’m glad you like it, get it and relate to it. That’s the whole point, after all. I’m not surprised you love the ending. You’re as warped as I am πŸ™‚ Maybe I’ll try again in the New Year.

        1. Absolutely! I’m just being cheeky. Having a very, very strange day. Trying to lighten up with a little sardonic humour. In all seriousness you are totally right. Whether it’s short stories or poems or flash fiction or books. Or shows on TV or movies. I hate ‘predictable’. What’s the point of reading or watching if you know the outcome. Total waste of time.

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