Wet Towels #fridayflash

Where my towel is
Image by phil dokas via Flickr

Wet Towels

      Carla cranked her Katy Perry CD on her car stereo. These precious minutes from work to home were her only true escape. She tapped her fingers on the steering and reminisced about the days she only had to worry about herself. She loved being a parent, but sometimes keeping a home was just as tedious as work .

     The tedium could come from a multitude of things, homework, bickering children, her children’s messy rooms, but the thing that annoyed her most was wet towels on the floor. No matter how many times she said it or posted it for them, one kid always left a wet towel on the floor. Because of this a new rule was put into place. Wet towel on the floor = no towel next shower. Wet swimsuit and towel on the floor = no swimming pool. So far the new rule seemed to be working.

     Carla sighed. Katy Perry was singing about skin-tight jeans and romance. She wondered if Russel Brand left wet towels on the floor and if Katy Perry was annoyed by it. She shook her head in disgust, imagining piles of wet towels on the floor in their mansion. One thing she knew for certain, if she never had to say ‘Hang up your wet towel’ again, she’d feel like a superstar.

     Carla started to sing but stopped. Her throat was a little sore from the lengthy phone conference she had that afternoon. She needed to save what voice she had left for her family. The sight of her street brought a smile to her face. The rows of houses with kids playing in the street and parents in the yard signaled that the work day was officially over.

     Pink, purple and white flowers greeted her as she walked up their stone steps. Inside she could hear the voices of her children. She opened the door, they rushed to her side. Arms wrapped around her and kisses were planted on her checks.

“Well hello there. How was your day?”

“Mom, guess what, guess what?”

“Chicken butt.”

Giggles surrounded her. “No, not that.”


“I dove off the high dive today!”

Carla hugged her 12-year-old. “You did! That’s great.”

Carla looked at her younger child. “What about you? Did you dive off the high dive?”

“No, I was too scared.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Carla brought her 11-year-old close to her. “That’s ok, someday you will.”

     Carla set down her bag, put her cell phone away and walked into the kitchen. She poured herself a glass of wine while the kids chatted about the rest of the days events. When they’d told her everything she swirled the red liquid around her glass and breathed in the fragrant aroma. She went to take a sip, but stopped. Instead, she headed for the bathroom with her wine glass in hand. She pressed the door open with her toe. On the floor were two wet, crumpled towel. Carla squinted her eyes and gulped downed her wine. That was the night the story of the flesh-eating wet towel was told to her children at bedtime.


Flash Fiction

Read Part II Attack of the Wet Towel!

33 Comments Add yours

  1. Sonia Lal says:

    nice! LOL at the flesh eating wet towel.

  2. John Wiswell says:

    I knew they were doomed, remembering the Twitter rage. Child-eating towels are a great idea. They wipe up their own mess!

    Minor typos: sixth paragraph, second sentence – missing question mark.
    Last paragraph, second sentence, “res” for “rest”

    1. Lara Dunning says:

      Yes, my Twitter rage turned into a story to vent my annoyance. Heehee. Thanks for finding the typos.

  3. Helen says:

    I enjoyed reading this Lara, I hope the story of the flesh-eating wet towel gave them enough incentive to pick them up in the future! LOL

  4. Yes, give them the old flesh-eating wet towel story. A good lesson to learn young in life. You don’t hang them up, they bite your butt 🙂

  5. Rebecca Emin says:

    Oh what a funny ending, I love that! Having 3 little children I can relate to this story so easily. Brilliant.

  6. Icy Sedgwick says:

    I do hope your flash next week will be the story of the flesh-eating towel? I want to hear it!

    1. Lara Dunning says:

      Icy – Yes, a flesh eating towel story is definately in order. Have already been tossing around ideas in my head.

      Florence – That’s right! Saves the parent from having to sounds like a broken record.

      Rebecca – Good to know I wasn’t far off the mark. They can remember desert, but not hanging up their towels.

      Helen- We shall see! Muuhahahaha.

  7. I second Icy – I need a flesh eating towel story to instill fear into my husband who is as guilty of this as your kids!

  8. Terrific, Lara! thanks so much for the smiles this morning!

  9. adampb says:

    Wikkid idea of flesh eating towels. Going to keep that one up my sleeve for my little rug rats when they’re a bit older. Lots of fun to read and gave me a good laugh. Thanks
    Adam B @revhappiness

  10. W.G. Cambron says:

    The flesh eating wet towel… that’s cute. I should tell that one to my nephews.
    You really caught the whole parneting brain wave of thinking here. Love… but annoyance. And what a connection betweedn skintight jeans and laundtry quarrels. Though I don’t a guy like Russell Brand is even aware of the existence of a towel…
    Nicely done, Lara!

    1. Lara Dunning says:

      Mazzz- The story is in the works….ideas floating around including children screaming in the middle of the night.

      Paula- Your welcome!

      Adam – A little bit of fear can go a long way. LOL.

      W.G. – That is what I was aiming for- Love, but annoyance. Glad you picked up on that. You’re probably right about Russell. LOL

  11. FARfetched says:

    LOL, flesh-eating towels! I’ll have to remember that one.

    My towel-related peeve is: we have hooks on the bathroom door for towels. Mrs. Fetched still flings hers over the door, bundled up so the door won’t close. Hm. Flesh-eating towels. A hook holds them in place, otherwise they slither across the floor or off the door to grab the miscreant!

  12. clarbojahn says:

    Great story. My grand son will be staying with us for four days and he never picks up his clothes or his towel. Please give us the story for the flesh eating towel so I can tell it to him. He is eight years old and definitely needs to pick up after himself. 🙂
    The story gave me a good laugh. 🙂

  13. Steve Green says:

    Oh no, not the story of the flesh-eating wet towels, those poor kids’ll be scarred for life, mind you they’ll be tidier as well so it’s not all bad news. 🙂

  14. This concrete, real-life observation made a great story. Plenty to identify with. Wet towels are definitely ‘on the list’. You had a good feeling of connection in here. At the point where the kids mentioned the diving, I did think ‘uh, oh…’ Yay for the flesh-eating towel. St.

  15. Lara Dunning says:

    Far- That would be annoying. We have hooks and towel rods and no one seems to even know they exist. After 5 years you’d think it would sink in. LOL

    Clar – Towels creeping across the floor, children screaming in the night….I’m working on it 🙂

    Steve- That’s right!!

    Stephen – Thank you.

  16. Lynda says:

    I wasnt sure where his was going although I loved the ride’. And was utterly surpised and joyed by the ending. Moms need to be creative.
    Might uses that one if I may when the grandkids come along

  17. ~Tim says:

    I love the idea of flesh-eating towels and I’m looking forward to that story from you.

    I hope you don’t mind if I point out what I think are a couple more typos — looks like a space before the period at the end of paragraph one, “kisses were planted on her checks” right before the dialog I think you meant cheeks, and in last paragraph, “two wet, crumpled towel” should be towels.

  18. Chuck Allen says:

    Flesh eating towels? Awesome! That should scare me, though, as I have been known to be guilty of such actions myself. Maybe I’ll think twice now. 🙂

  19. Nothing like a little red wine to help with creative parenting. Creative writing too!

  20. Anthony says:

    Thankfully my wife will never see this or she might try something similar next time I leave my towel. Awesome job!

  21. Lauren Cude says:

    Love the flesh eating towels! 🙂

  22. Maria Kelly says:

    Hahahaha! Love this. I agree with the other commenters…the Story of the Flesh Eating Wet Towel simply has to be told. 🙂

  23. Aidan Fritz says:

    Flesh-eating wet towels, fun. Nice ending. I like the way she thinks. Growing up, we camped from June till September and the earwigs would hide in our damp towels. So you always remembered to hang them out and then give ’em a little shake before you left to the lake.

    1. Lara Dunning says:

      Earwigs give me the creeps. I would definately have been one of the kids hanging up their towels! How fun to spend that long camping! We would go for about a month and it never seemed long enough.

  24. In my student days I owned a flesh-eating towel. Until I washed it. Thanks fellow house mates for telling me I stank so badly. And thanks Lara for bringing those days back to me in surround-a-smell-a-scope.

  25. shirleyhs says:

    I’m glad to have found your blog, Lara. Daisy Hicks linked us together on Twitter, and I decided to check out your blog. What an engaging story and what an impressive audience response! Bravo.

  26. Nifty idea, Lara… Really enjoyed this one!

    1. Lara Dunning says:

      Thanks for commenting!

  27. KjM says:

    Great feel to this story, Lara. The warmth of home, the end of the workday, the love for her children that came through very clearly.

    And a really good solution to the “wet towel syndrome” – I bet it works!

    For a while at least – kids have short memories.

    Nice work.

    1. Lara Dunning says:

      Yes they do have short memories. Hopefully the towel does too!

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