Stream of Consciousness Saturday – Prompt “First/Last”


Happy New Year. It is Stream of Consciousness Saturday time again. This week’s prompt is “first/last.”  Linda Hill says we can use the two words or definition for the words. There is an extra credit possibility by beginning the post with “First/Beginning/Start etc. and ending the post with “Last/End etc. If you would like to try this kind of thing go to Linda’s post and read the rules. Here is the link

First/Last by John W. Howell © 2016

“First, as a beginning, I want to start this lecture with a story.”

“Excuse me, professor.”

“Yes, Mr. uh.”

“Tompkins sir.”

“Yes, Mr. Tompkins what can I do for you.”

“Well, sir I’m a little confused on your opening statement.”


“Yes, sir. You began your lecture saying the same thing three times.”

“I did now. Well please illuminate for the rest of the class and me as to your meaning.”

“Uh you said ‘first as a beginning, I want to start this lecture with a story.”‘

“I believe you are quoting me correctly, Mr. Tompkins. What is your question?”

“Is it not true that First, beginning, and start have the same meaning?”

“In the context of my statement absolutely not.”

“Can I ask for an explanation then.”

“Yes, my son I am happy to explain. By first I meant the number one thing to accomplish. Beginning in my statement meant to prioritize. Finally, the word start said where the priority would begin. So as you can see, they are not the same.”

“I have to beg to differ, sir.”

“But young man. I hold the keys to your success in this class.”

“But professor—”

“I think the discussion is over for now.”

“Can I add one more point?”

“I don’t see how the time spent on this is significant.”

“I need to understand.”

“See me when I have said my last and the lecture is at an end.”





  1. Sooo funny, John. I love the opening line…I’m putting it on a post-it just to humor me throughout the day. Then when the sun sets and my work is finished, I’ll end the laughter by saving your line for another day. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Gwen. Your comment makes it all worthwhile. 🙂

  2. First I’d like to say that I always envy your gift for dialogue, and lastly Happy New Year John!

    1. Thank you so much, Phil. Happy New Year to you and yours. I pray 2017 is the best year for your family, yet.

  3. I agree with the professor. Words have multiple meanings. My guess is Tompkins forgot his homework and is trying to delay things. Classic college tactics . . . At least from what I remember. Happy New Year.

    1. I like that explanation since it happens all the time. Drawing attention to oneself is not the way to go in that case. Happy New Year, Charles. (I know I said that before)

      1. Good point. Hiding in the back is wisest.

  4. Bonus points John – way to go! I think I’ve been in class with Mr. Tompkins, there’s one in every class. Have a happy and safe evening tonight!

    1. Thank you, Dan. Tompkins reminds me of the person who would ask, “Will this be on the test?” We will be safe unless a seagull decides to launch a “Birds” kind of assault. Have a very Happy New Year, Dan. See you on the other side.

  5. Pesky kids – that’s the way to deal with ’em! 😀

    1. I know right? Happy New Year, Jan

  6. My consciousness is stronger for your input, John.

    1. Ha ha ha. Great comment. Happy New Year, Hook

  7. Nice boundary setting, Professor. Quite assertive!

    1. Thanks, JoAnna. The professor is tenured so he doesn’t give a hoot about complaints. Happy New Year. 🙂

  8. Started off being a problem, huh? I think the professor is in for headaches from that guy, right up to the end of term. 😉 Well done again, John. I hope you have a sensational New Year’s Eve. Mega hugs.

    1. Thank you, Teagan. I hope you have a good one as well. 🙂

  9. Always a joy to read, John! Happy New Year to you and yours. 🎉

    1. Thank you, Natalie. Happy New Year to you and yours.

  10. First of all, you did a great job with this, John, I love the closing line! Last, wishing you and yours a safe and peaceful new year!

    1. Happy and safe New Year to you, Jill. Thank you.

    1. Thanks, John. Happy New Year to you

  11. A wonderful post to end the year, good sir! Happy New Year!

    1. Thank you, John Happy New Year to you and yours.

  12. 🙂 Oh how the mind of John Howell works! Entertaining. Happy New Year, John!

    1. It is fortunate I’m on the side of good. Thank you, Jan

  13. Great micro story. Hope you have a great 2017.

    1. Happy New Year, Craig. The best to you in 2017.

  14. Love it! It reminds me of an anecdote about Gertrude Stein and repeating herself. I must check this prompt, although I’m not much of an off-the-cuff writer. Happy 2017, John!

    1. Thanks, Olga. It is fun to let the mind wander all over the paper. 🙂

  15. Ah yes Sheriff, words are thorny little critters. What is a pleasing scent for one may stick another. Oops, didn’t mean to lecture. 🙂

    Happy 2017!

    1. Loved the lecture. Will this be on the test? 😀

      1. Hells bells Sheriff. If you and me are in the same classroom that happens to be giving this particular test? Things will not end well. That’s very Clint Eastwoodish, isn’t it? Good.

      2. “Excuse me but in all the excitement I can’t remember if I fired this magnum five or six times. Do ya feel lucky? huh? Do ya punk?” That is Eastwoodish too.

      3. Oh, you mean this particular kind of lucky?

      4. Yesssssss!!!!!!!!! Loved that part.

  16. Funny stuff! Bonus points too! Happy New Year John!

    1. Thank you Deborah. All the best to you for 2017

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