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Noodles And Voices

NoodlesI have to thank my friend Mary Crocco very kindly for this post, and for agreeing to let me use her writing as a way to look at voice in writing. When Mary first sent me the following short story to post on The Vandal, we exchanged ideas on how to improve it, and then after a number of exchanges, ended up with two versions of the story. One in the first person, and one in the third. I know which one I prefer, but maybe those of you reading this post will have a different opinion. So here we are. One story, two voices.

Noodles At 1 a.m.

Mary hadn’t touched her noodles in a couple of days and she missed them, but it was 1 a.m. What was a gal to do? The way they sometimes stuck to her fingers, and when they hit the water at an ideal 86 degrees; they slid right off into the anticipating liquid.

Lately, Mary woke up between four-thirty and six-thirty in the evening and it became an unwelcomed pattern. She wasn’t exercising at the athletic club, which took its toll. Her dilemma needed to be corrected.
Mary’s sleep pattern had always been unpredictable and a work in progress. However, she always managed to get things done and slept when needed. But whenever it affected going to the pool, it presented a problem. The club was open 24/7, but she hesitated to go out in the middle of the night. She overcame this tonight.
Dressed for the pool she walked out to her truck, and half expected to see a thug hanging around the parking lot. That wasn’t the case, but she quickly locked her door. Pulling into the main road she started to laugh out loud at how easy it was to drive with no traffic. With butterflies in her stomach she wondered who would be exercising in the pool at 1 a.m.

Turning into the parking lot, Mary counted the number of vehicles on both hands. She experienced mixed feelings – nervous to be alone, yet ecstatic to get her favorite parking spot. Being able to park anywhere in the front lot was always a delusion. The handicapped spaces were always taken, forcing her to drive around the side of the building to be able to make the walk. Laughing out loud again she thought – what other crazy person would be out at this hour to exercise? This is crazy!

Treadmills enjoyed the rest, as she walked past hundreds of vacant machines, along with lifeless Karate and Zumba rooms. Again – mixed feelings – eerie to be alone, yet her loner personality roused. She glanced at the pool through a window and it looked like a Zamboni just left. Without question she relished her 1 a.m. decision as the isolation and freedom to exercise without sharing was irresistible.

Dead silence filled the locker room and the lockers stood vacant. Following a routine of fitting her ear plugs and stepping on the scale, she walked out to the pool. A young woman in the spa and two guys enjoying the steam room was pool life at 1 a.m. Talk about liquid paradise . . . pure delight.

One of the club employees came to open the equipment room to get Mary’s noodles. He handed her two noodles and her fingers stuck to them – she smiled and dropped them in water at an ideal 86 degrees; they slid right off into the anticipating liquid.

Noodles At 1 a.m.

I haven’t touched my noodles in a couple of days and I missed them, but it’s 1 a.m. What’s a gal to do? The way they sometimes stuck to my fingers, and when hitting the water at an ideal 86 degrees; they slid right off into the anticipating liquid.

Lately, waking up between four-thirty and six-thirty in the evening was becoming an unwelcomed pattern. There was no exercising happening at the athletic club, which took its toll. This dilemma needed to be corrected.

My sleep pattern had always been unpredictable and a work in progress. However, I always managed to get things done and slept when needed. But whenever it affected going to the pool, it presented a problem. The club is open 24/7, but to be honest, there was hesitation to go out in the middle of the night. This was overcome tonight.

Dressed for the pool and walking out to my truck, half expecting to see a thug hanging around the parking lot. That wasn’t the case, but I quickly locked my door behind me. Pulling into the main road and starting to laugh out loud at how easy it was to drive with no traffic was amusing. Then butterflies took over – who would be exercising in the pool at 1 a.m.?

Turning into the parking lot, I counted the number of vehicles on both hands. Experiencing mixed feelings – nervousness to be alone, yet ecstatic to get my favorite parking spot. Being able to park anywhere in the front lot was always a delusion. The handicapped spaces were always taken, forcing a long drive around the side of the building to be able to make the walk. Laughing out loud again and I thought – what other crazy person would be out at this hour to exercise? This is crazy!

Treadmills enjoyed the rest, as I walked past hundreds of vacant machines, along with lifeless Karate and Zumba rooms. Again – mixed feelings – eerie to be alone, yet my loner personality roused. I glanced at the pool through a window and it looked like a Zamboni just left. Without question and relishing my 1 a.m. decision as the isolation and freedom to exercise without sharing was irresistible.

Dead silence filled the locker room and the lockers stood vacant. Following a routine of fitting my ear plugs and stepping on the scale, I walked out to the pool. A young woman in the spa and two guys enjoying the steam room was pool life at 1 a.m. Talk about liquid paradise . . . pure delight.

One of the club employees came to open the equipment room to get my noodles. He handed me two and my fingers stuck to them – I smiled and dropped them in water at an ideal 86 degrees; they slid right off into the anticipating liquid.

Which one do you prefer?

Find out more about Mary Crocco

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2 comments

  1. Mimi

    For this one, definately third person. I found the one written in third person more… I cant find the right word, shall I say entertaining, I actually wanted to know more of what happened. The first person one, was boring to me. It was like a random stranger telling me about their late night escapades, whilst I’m trying to watch a really, really interesting movie.

  2. MRC

    Thank you so much for your opinion and comment! Much appreciated. :)

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