Funny stories in under 500 words.

Carol’s Beautiful Back

Her apartment door opened and there she was in a red dress with long sleeves, a hem well below the knees, and a snug lace collar. From throat to ankles, no visible skin.

“You’ve got a lot of nerve sending me twelve sexual organs on our first date! Why don’t you just ask me to strip naked and lie down?”

That was her response, and I’ll never forget it, to the dozen pink roses I spent fifty hard-earned bucks on to show her I was a man who respected traditional courtship etiquette. Her pretty blue eyes were dead serious. I was dumb with shock. Was this the knock out I had met the previous night at Louie’s All You Can Eat Meatballs and Pasta Palace? I don’t think so. Moistening with sweat, I theorized my next move.

“Should I run?”

Then her irate gaze suddenly softened and she broke a huge clean healthy teeth smile and said, “Get in here you Italian poet.”

She grabbed my tie and pulled me into her place and locked the door.

“Unzip me,” she said as she turned her beautifully curved spine towards me.

As the zipper traveled its long route down the seeming acreage of red fabric, she looked over her shoulder and said, “The flowers are beautiful; you’re old school sweet.”

She smelled unbelievably good. Under her red costume was a tight white T-Shirt and tighter black jeans.

“Now this is my Pasta Palace girl,” I thought. Or was she? What I soon realized about Carol was that she loved to grind gears; it was rare to see more than a dozen smooth shifts per date. You could never predict her transmission. It was her way of testing a man.

After a couple months of struggling to get traction with her, I asked her in the candlelight one night at Lorenzo’s if she’d ever been to a Catholic church and attended mass. In response, she grabbed her purse and pulled out a GLOCK 45 ACP with a compensated barrel and shot me twice in each leg, right there in the restaurant with at least forty witnesses. I spasmed towards the floor like a curved bolt of lightning, and burned into my memory forever is the V-shaped upwards flames at the tip of her GLOCK’s barrel as the bullets exited. As you can imagine, I never called her after that. The physiotherapy has helped a lot, and I can walk with just one cane now. But I’ve learned my lesson about unzipping beautifully curved spines in red dresses.

Vic Cavalli’s poetry, short fiction, photography, and visual art have been published in literary journals in Canada, the United States, England, North Africa, and Australia. He is currently living in British Columbia, Canada. A list of his literary publications and selections from his visual art portfolio can be viewed at

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