Last week, just days before a submission deadline, I saw an advertisement for flash fiction stories. Since I had never written such a brief story before, I tried it. What follows is my revised attempt. There were two major flaws with my submission. One was that I missed the deadline. After I wrote the piece and got feed back from my eldest son who had taken a micro fiction class in college his last year, I simply forgot about it and ended up missing the submission deadline. And the second problem is that when I revised, the piece became longer, not shorter, in my attempts to show and not tell the reader what had happened. Since the piece is written, and now has no where to go, I thought I’d share it here.
Crissy Doll Hair Cut
“Hold still,” I told my sister. I wanted to get the cut just right. She had followed me into our bathroom after I convinced her that if I cut her hair, it would grow back, just like a Crissy Doll! These were popular dolls in the 1970’s that had a push button on their belly and a knob on their back. When pushed, the button let hair be pulled out of the crown of the head to a length that was past the doll’s waistline. Then, when you desired your doll to have a different look with shorter hair, you just turned the knob on the spine and it disappeared back inside the head! We had two dolls – Crissy and Velvet. They were “sisters” or “cousins” and we played with them a lot. My grandmother even made clothes for them.
With my sister sitting on the counter, I took my mom’s sharp sewing scissors and cut a few inches off the bottom of my sister’s very long, thick, auburn hair. There it lay on the floor in a pile. “Okay,” she said, “now I’m going to make it grow back” tugging on the freshly cut ends of her hair, only to have nothing happen.
“Mom”, she screamed, running out of the bathroom and down the hall, “Carol cut my hair off.”
My sister had quickly realized that her hair was not like a Crissy Doll’s and I had lied to her. Our hair just did not grow back with the turn of a knob or tug on a lock. Even a naïve little girl realized that after the trick was complete.
You can be sure I lost privilege’s or was sent to my room or had my Crissy Doll taken away for a time after that episode. Eventually, my sister’s hair did grow back – as hair always does! So, she was like a Crissy Doll, after all!