Sun Lakes Writers’ Group

Little Sam

F David Rolf

Little Sam was fleet of foot

but stood just four feet tall

He heard a team was being formed—

he really loved baseball

He found the man, who was in charge

and tried to join the team

The response he got was not so nice

In fact, it was downright mean

“Don’t bother me with foolish talk

my men are big and strong.

There’s no place for a tiny man

your size is just all wrong”

“My size should not be mentioned here

it’s true, I’m short indeed

But I have something others don’t

I have amazing speed”

He told the coach they’d win with him

then paused for his reply

The coach took time to listen well

then said, “You’ll get a try

Get out there now and run to first

then steal another base.

My catcher’s arm, is strong and true

we’ll see who wins this race.”

So little Sam, with a burst of speed

jumped right off to the base

A cloud of dust, and there he stood—

a big smile on his face

The coach jumped up, the catcher cussed,

they’d never seen such speed

Sam stood on second base, untouched

an awesome feat indeed

“Third base won’t be so easy, son

let’s see what you can do”

The batter swung and Sam was gone

it seemed as though he flew

The catcher made a perfect throw

it hit the mark indeed

But little Sam stood there on third

He proved again his speed

The coach ran out to Little Sam

and looked at him aghast

“In all my years I’ve never seen

a player run so fast”

“If you come now and join my team

A Super Star you’ll be

The Champ-i-ons we will become.

Please join us, you will see.”

So Little Sam became a Star

his talent he displayed

He’d steal a base—the other teams—

were suddenly dismayed

The stands were full at every game

the tickets were all sold

To just see Sam’s amazing speed

was something to behold

So Little Sam played many years

his fame just grew and grew

The coach was happy as could be

And Little Sam was too

The coach was heard to say one day

“I think I now surmise,

what matters most, is talent here

and not just someone’s size.”

The Madness of March

Lee Murray

Each year at this time, the NCAA men’s basketball tournament takes place and commands huge numbers of viewers. In 2022, over 10 million people tuned in to watch the 68-team single game elimination contest known affectionately to fans as March Madness during which impossible shots are made leading to game outcomes no one could have predicted.

The fan appeal is legendary, particularly for those with an interest in a school that happens to be one of the 68 teams. Since the games begin on weekdays during work hours, watching the contests are often in conflict with work obligations.

Such was the case of three telemarketers, Michigan State fans who were dying to see their team compete in the opening round scheduled for Thursday morning at 11:30. There was a TV in the office but their supervisor, Warren Eberly insisted it remain tuned in to the financial channels even during the tournament.

Warren was a micro manager of his people and had zero personality. He rarely had anything to say to his people other than berating them if they were only a minute late from their breaks. And of course, if any of his people were under their sales quotas even for a day, reminding them how easily they could be replaced.

That kind of boss causes dissension in the ranks and lots of grumbling between workers. Beyond being a jerk, Eberly was almost completely bald and his team of telemarketers behind his back referred to their fearless leader as cue ball or chrome dome.

Since Eberly would not yield to their pleas to watch the game in the office, they had to figure out a way to get him out of there during game time.

It turns out old Warren had an eye for the ladies, especially a striking blond telemarketer named Lisa to whom he lavished an inordinate amount of time flirting with her at her booth. The three basketball fans conspired with Lisa to take Warren out to lunch on the day of the game and keep him away until it was over.

The ruse was all set for game day. Lisa showed up wearing a very sexy outfit with heels and asked Warren if he’d like to go with her to lunch. Normally this dullard brown bagged his lunch that he ate at his desk. But how could he refuse this offer from gorgeous Lisa? He couldn’t and didn’t and just before game time, the two made their way out the door while the three telemarketers searched furiously for the TV remote.

Everything worked perfectly almost. The three guys got to watch the game and Michigan State was winning until the last minute when the game was tied and now going into overtime. They just had to see the end but couldn’t get caught by Eberly so one of the fellas texted Lisa begging her to keep the boss out longer so they could see the end. Lisa was exasperated! She texted back that this guy was about as much fun as watching grass grow. Now they wanted her to keep this tedious conversation going even longer? They promised her the moon.

Just a little while longer! Please!

Fortunately, Lisa was a good sport and agreed to bite the bullet enduring another 20 minutes with Mr. Boring who was quite taken with charming Lisa but eventually looked at his watch and gasped.

“We’ve been gone for almost two hours,” he shrieked. “We need to get back!” Lisa texted her co-workers letting them know that Eberly was on the way back.

“Oh no!” one of them said. “Chrome dome is almost here!”

Panicked, the three M. State fans had to see the end even if it meant enduring a torrent of abuse from Eberly.

“Quick, hide the remote!” one said.

With 30 seconds remaining in the game, Eberly came charging through the door. When he saw the basketball game on, he began ranting about how this was a place of business and NOT a sports bar.

“Where is the TV remote?” he snarled. But no one seemed to be able to know where it was until the end of the game when it mysteriously appeared.

Their boss scowled the rest of the day, realizing he’d been had by the beautiful telemarketer and the three conspirators.

But no real harm done. And as it turned out Michigan State won the game in the last 10 seconds when a point guard made an off-balance jump shot that put them over the top for good.

Grandparent’s Last Wish

Ernest D. Godor

This is a tragic story about a man who died trying to do something nice for his granddaughter.

It starts at the end of February when Joe’s only daughter came to visit with her only daughter, Josephine. Josephine loved her grandpa, who doted on her. He shamelessly catered to her every whim. Since the passing of his wife, he maintained that it was his job to spoil his only granddaughter. Joe’s daughter struggled to intercede, but upon arrival Joe and Josephine would be huddled together over Josephine’s phone or going into the den where Joe had some gadget to show off. Of course Susan was glad, but it didn’t help the feeling of being left out. She would shrug and get to the task at hand, which was usually lunch.

That fateful day Josephine was saying, “Gramps! look at these shoes,” she tilted her phone to show the picture of a black sneaker with a Tiffany blue swoosh.

“They do look fancy,” her grandfather nodded his approval.

“They’re dropping today at 6:00, but I can’t try it because I have ballet practice,” her big eyes with tears just getting ready to brim over turned to meet his.

“Don’t you worry missy. I’ll do whatever it takes!”

She favored him with a dazzling smile, “It’s about quickness, so be sure you’re ready at 6.”

After they left Joe looked up on the net what he needed. He downloaded the app and entered in his information. He read where it was recommended that he put his picture on the app, to make sure of a smooth payment and pick-up at the store. He found the shoes on the app. They were a collaboration between Nike and Tiffany, as in the jewelry store. He couldn’t imagine a stranger collaboration, but maybe that’s why he wasn’t in marketing. He was all set at 5:59. The clock changed to 6:00, he hit the screen. It asked him to put in his password. He did, without incident. It changed screens again, announced that he had successfully completed the transaction. Please wait while they checked the stock.




A blue light flashed out of the phone, scanned Joe and disappeared along with Joe into the phone. The screen on the phone said: Sorry, you didn’t get it to an empty house.

Moms in the Animal Kingdom

Carrie Bonello

I’m hooked on the Internet when it comes to viewing wild animals. What a neat way to learn about moms.

I’m guessing most of you saw the mother orangutan who didn’t know how to feed her new baby. In a stroke of genius one of the caretakers brought her own baby to work and proceeded to sit down in front of the orangutan enclosure and breast feed her own baby while orangutan sat and watched. Once the orangutan saw how it was done the little one orange bundle had lunch from his own momma.

Orangutans have the longest childhood dependence on the mother of any animal in the world, even more than elephants! The babies nurse until they are about six years of age. This little guy really needed to figure out where lunch came from.

African elephants have a gestation period of 22 months, which is the longest of any land animal. The newborn calf weighs around 260 pounds. These facts alone should award the elephant mom a star in her crown. Elephants live in a matriarchal society and a baby elephant is protected and nurtured not only by his mom, but by all the aunties in the herd.

I love when it is time to watch the bears at Brooks Falls catch salmon. It is delightful to watch the momma bears catch a fish in the air and share it with their cubs. I remember when a pair of cubs were swept downstream by the rushing water and the momma bear stopped fishing and took off running downstream to catch the little guys.

Lionesses have a big job, not only do they have to look after their cubs but they also have to do the hunting to feed the pride. The females are smaller and quicker than the bigger males and that makes them better hunters. It might have something to do with the fact that the males like to sleep almost 20 hours a day. It’s lucky there aren’t any housekeeping duties or the lionesses would be in charge of that too.

Female cubs normally stay with their family pride forever. At around two years of age male cubs are forced to leave when their family members chase them away. The young lions either find another pride or join a bachelor pride. I wonder who does the hunting in that group?

On the other hand, male killer whales are mama’s boys. A son will trail after his mother, grabbing bits of fish and other food, throughout his life, even as his sisters grow up and have calves of their own. This neediness comes at a significant cost to mom, who forgoes having additional children to look after her boy.

The researchers suggest mom’s favoritism toward her boys evolved because of the particular social structure of these pods. When a daughter reproduces, her calves stay in the same group as her and her mom and therefore compete with the rest for food and attention. By contrast, a son doesn’t bring more mouths into the group—he mates with females in passing pods who then go on to raise offspring in their own social units. His kids are thus someone else’s problem.

I’m not too crazy about the killer whale thing, I think those boys are just too spoiled. But moms will be moms.