Birds of Paradise

Writing Exercise Instructions: Try writing a short scene in the form of some explicit written communication: an exchange of letters or emails (or even tweets). You could also try the transcription of a phone conversation. Later, look over what you wrote. Write it again as fictional dialog with tags and gestures and descriptions. Which way do you like it best?

doghouseguy not sure how else to say I’m sorry.
dramadiva like you mean it
doghouseguy it was a mistake
dramadiva a HUGE mistake
doghouseguy it was the florist’s fault
dramadiva oh really? whatever!
doghouseguy I swear
girl quite a coincidence isn’t it?
doghouseguy it’s a common name
dramadiva I’m allergic to roses
doghouseguy they were supposed to be the ones you like
dramadiva you don’t even know what they’re called
doghouseguy those bird ones
dramadiva awww, you DO love me
doghouseguy was someone just at the door?
dramadiva yes

“Not sure how else to say I’m sorry.” Joel knew it was going to take an awful lot to get out of this one but this time it really wasn’t his fault.
“Like you mean it!” Angie yelled angrily. How could he be doing this to her? Today of all days.
“It was a mistake.” He thought back to the day it all happened. It was last Tuesday, he was so proud that he remembered and was planning ahead. She would be so surprised.
“A HUGE mistake.” She couldn’t fathom how he could just called it a mistake. This was far beyond just a typographical accident.
“It was the florist’s fault.” His head is racing as he tries to remember every detail from last Tuesday.
“Oh really? whatever!” She throws the bouquet had him so hard the thorns scratched up the side of his arm.
“I swear.” Joel can’t believe that Angie would get violent like that. Watching the blood dripping down his wrist he wonders if this is really going to be the end. Just because of a simple mistake? But he knows it’s more than that. She has every reason not to believe it was so innocent a thing. He has given her every right not to trust him. But this time it really isn’t his fault.
“Quite a coincidence isn’t it?” Her insides sting when she looks back at the card to see that name. How could he think she’s going to believe this one?
“It’s a common name.” Joel knows this has to sound weak. He even starts to doubt himself. I didn’t give them the wrong name did I? He had just bumped into her a few days earlier. It took him a few hours to shake it off but was sure he was over it by the then. What if this was his fault? He cringed at the thought that he may have caused Angie this much pain on a day that was going to be so special.
“I’m allergic to roses.” Angie regretted the way she threw them at Joel when she saw the blood. She wanted so much to reach out to him and clean the tiny wounds but she felt like she had been hollowed out. She was numb.
“They were supposed to be the ones you like.” Joel pleaded with her. He thought the choice of flowers would actually help to show her that it wasn’t his mistake. She had to know he would never send her roses. Then like a lightning bolt it struck him; she didn’t think he put the wrong name on her anniversary gift; she thought he put the wrong addresses on flowers meant for someone else completely. Joel’s heart sank to the pit of his stomach which was at this moment getting queasy.
“You don’t even know what they’re called.” She was now more certain than ever that he didn’t ever intend for any flowers to come to her that day. How could he have ordered her favorite flowers if he didn’t even know their name?
“Those bird ones.” Joel felt slightly vindicated . He could see that she was now looking at him a little differently. She was studying him a bit more closely. He even thought maybe some of the hurt was slowly leaving her face. A single drop of blood landed on the card that had brought this hell to him. Joel stared at it until the image blurred and decided to go clean himself up and give them both a minute to think.

Joel looked at himself in the bathroom mirror. He was getting more and more angry with that stupid florist. He was going to go down there and grab that guy by the throat and make him come back here and explain the whole thing to Angie. Just then he heard the click of the front door. She left. How could she just walk out like that? Joel couldn’t control the tears; tears of frustration and hurt.
“Awww, you DO love me.” Joel jumped back to life. Angie stood behind him holding a big bouquet of flowers and reading the accompanying card.
Joel smiled, “Was someone just at the door?” He asked in realization. Of course, she’d never leave.
“Yes.” Angie beamed back.

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