Your whole life, in six words

One of my assignments at work today was to write some funny fortune cookie “fortunes.” Here’s my favorite, brought to life with a little Photoshop.

While trying to come up with little narrative arcs — and unexpected endings — I remembered Ernest Hemingway’s six-word story, “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”

And that, in turn, reminded me of a long list of six-word stories I’d written on a less-busy day at the office. (Sorry in advance for all the mime jokes. I blame my friend and colleague Craig for egging me on.)

In any case, I’ll leave it up to you to guess which one is autobiographical.

True believer; then I lost faith.

Lived on six contents. Died alone.

Whoa! My toes! Damn you, chainsaw.

I truly loved him, in hindsight.

He never loved me. My mistake.

Don’t worry. Maybe it’ll grow back.

Drank beer … lost a few years.

“Potentially lethal”? Make that just “lethal.”

I swerved; tree hit me anyway.

Brilliant magician! She makes money disappear.

Missing one leg; eight lives left.

Paris: lifelong dream! Forgot my camera.

The voices made me do it.

He said he’d delete the photos.

Groom missing. The bride eloped anyway.

That? Oh, it’s just a zit.

Found: Bikini top. Looking for bottom.

“What’s this?”
“Porcupine. Put it down.”

I never said I was sorry.

An apology would have been grand.

Former mime. Now I’m a ventriloquist.

A ventriloquist, I make mimes talk.

Shot a mime. Didn’t need silencer.

Former mime seeks friend for conversation.

Laughter. Love. Loss. Lawyers. Liquor. Limbo.


    • Ha, Kathy! Thanks for your kind words. And no, it’s not the one about deleting the photos … that I’m aware of. 😉

  1. one of my favorites by richard brautigan, though it has more than six words.
    “It’s tough living in San Jose with a man learning to play the violin,” said the woman as she handed the gun to the police officer.

    • Gaaa! As someone who grew up with a student of the violin, I can totally understand the woman’s sentiment. Although if I lived in San Jose, I’d probably shoot *myself.*

  2. I think the one about the silencer is hilarious! I’m hoping that the autobiog. one isn’t about being in Paris with no camera, and I’m *really* hoping that you don’t think it’s the one about living all over and dying alone…really H, your black humour worries me sometimes…. 🙂

    But talking of cardiologists, as we weren’t, doesn’t that Hemingway story squeeze the heart. I’ve always thought it’s brilliant.

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