Sunday, September 4, 2011

Writers' Platform Building Campaign First Challenge

Okay, it's not technically Monday yet, but this is counting as my Monday post.

Rules for Challenge #1:

Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, including a poem. Begin the story with the words, “The door swung open” These four words will be included in the word count.

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), use the same beginning words and end with the words: "the door swung shut." (also included in the word count)

For those who want an even greater challenge, make your story 200 words EXACTLY!


So, for mine, I managed to make it exactly 200 words :)

By the way, this is loosely inspired by Haruki Murakami's short story On seeing the 100% perfect girl one beautiful April morning.

(Oh, and because no one commented on it, yes, I did intentionally write this in 2nd person perspective 
just to make it a little harder/different.)

The Girl You Like
The door swung open, and you see her, the girl you like. And you realize you’re staring, so you look away before she notices. It could be on a bus, at school, or in the park. The first time you see her, or the fiftieth. Something about her just catches your eye, the way she laughs, her hair skipping over her shoulder, or her hands fumbling with the knotted scarf around her neck. It’s never big. No flash of lightning. Just something small that you connect with. That makes you smile. But the girl you like looks past you, through you.
You’re so nervous when the girl you like is finally on your bed. She’s so perfect, so soft, but she’s crying and pushing and struggling against your hands, and all you want is for her to say your name. Say she loves you, but she can’t. You want to kiss her lips and hear her voice, but if you peel the tape from her mouth, she won’t say your name or say she loves you. She’ll scream. 
There’ll be other times, other loves, but in this moment, it’s just the two of you. Together with the girl you like.

123 comments:

  1. Cool, I like, I like very much. I ummed and I arrd and finally posted...lol.

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  2. Wow. That took me by surprise! (As you knew it would.) Well done!

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  3. OOh chilling and a great twist to the tale. I enjoyed the style of voice and the leading the readers into the creepy denoument.

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  4. Nicely done! I am going to post mine soon!

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  5. Nice. Mine is very different. I can't wait to see what everyone else has come up with.

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  6. Oh... wow. One paragraph is so sweet and the other is so horrid. Well done.

    If you'd like, see my entry at "Substitute Teacher's Saga".

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  7. That was a zinger! I had to go back and re-read. I like when that happens as a reader.

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  8. Very nice. I like the creepy twist. Well played. I'm with K.M. I went back and re-read it again.

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  9. sweet. those first moments are so precious and difficult!

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  10. I thought your post was going to be about young love and all that. What a twist! It gives me the shivers...(in a way that says it's good :) ~ Nadja

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  11. The mental shift I felt was absolutely priceless! I felt a "sixth sense" begin to creep up into my heart after starting the second paragraph, knowing that the waters I was treading were not of their seeming nature.
    That was a wonderful twist. As I got to the end, I had that feeling where something drastic was about to happen, immediately right before it actually happened!
    That was very good.

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  12. Yipes, good scary writing. Love it. It reminds me of The Collector by John Fowles, which I re-read this summer for a course I'm proposing. CREEP factor to the max. Geez, I'm a campaigner too, so now I have to come up with a short fiction.

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  13. Great contrast between the first two paragraphs. Then you leave us in suspense - great stuff.

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  14. This was definitely a good one. I really like it and yes, it creeped me out...but in a good way.

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  15. Whoa! That was unexpected. Great job!

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  16. Very unexpected and creepy...good job!

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  17. At first I was identifying her as "Anne of Greene Gables" then it got kind of creepy. Lol! ; )

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  18. ewww on the ending - unexpected and dark. Sort of like a double drabble.... and again you used those little mannerisms that you are so good at. Well done!

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  19. Interesting read with a bit of irony at the end. Good job.

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  20. ...I've mentioned before I don't have a romantic cell in my body... things most people view as romantic, I generally see as creepy/stalker-ish. Which is why I don't bother reading paranormal/romance novels... while the main character is thinking, 'aw he loves me enough to show up everywhere I go', I'm thinking, 'RUN AWAY!'

    ...since I was the first poster, I hope I didn't influence the other Campaigners... since so many of the others also had a certain undertone of creepiness...

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  21. Nice contrast between paragraphs - way to twist it. Creepy though!

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  22. Wow! I wasn't expecting that at all. Amazing what you can do with 200 words! Very nice!

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  23. creeps! didnt see that coming! great job...hi from another campaigner, number 62 in the list

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  24. Oh wow, tht was a good twist ending. Really great!

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  25. zowie, you really roped me in! super frightening and believable!

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  26. *shudder* Super creepy. Gave me chills.

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  27. Really well done - you surprised me with that twist. OMG, I will keep thinking about this story. So creepy. Great job.

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  28. I agree with the other comments. That did NOT go where I expected it to. Congrats!

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  29. Ohhh, that was disturbing. Great job.

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  30. Ooooh - casual and creepy at the same time ... the unexpected twist at the end just sealed it !

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  31. Oooo -I certainly was not expecting that end; a great twist and a delightful voice, it really swept me in; quite alluring. An unexpected delight! :)

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  32. Yikes! I definitely did not expect that twist! Fantastic!

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  33. You totally fooled me! Great job- oh so creepy, I love it!

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  34. Wow, unexpected and chilling. Great!

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  35. Congrats on being no 1 for this challenge. I could have been no 3 but I fiddled and faddled for awhile and ended up being no 100 ish. No one gets to the bottom much, ha ha.

    Loved your story. Great set up and ending. D

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  36. Loved the sudden shift from dreamy stalker to, uhm, dreamy rapist o_O Good work!

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  37. Holy crap - this was intense, dramatic. I can actually picture this as a scene from a movie. Yech, creepy!

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  38. I started reading thinking "not a sappy love story," and it was most definitely not a sappy love story. It was so creepy, thank you!
    -Aaron

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  39. Really love how this got creepy! I was surpised. Great job!

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  40. That was fabulous! The tension is powerful and I love how you went from normal to psychotic so smoothly in such a short piece.

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  41. Yes what Christine just said and creepier!

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  42. Finally! Someone else wrote something dark. Loved it!

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  43. Ooooh, that was definitely a bone chilling story! Well done! AND you were #1 :D

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  44. Wow, so beautifully written and so creepy! Good job!

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  45. Holy frijoles, was that gripping! Very well done!

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  46. Great work! Didn't see that coming! Very well done!

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  47. Ooh, I loved how creepy this was! I never expected that twist at the end. Great job!

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  48. When I first read this I stopped in the middle. All those yous threw me off and it seemed like a lot of interior monologue when a scene could have been developed. But now I've actually read through it, and I enjoyed the surprise at the end. It promises at something more. Plus, I like a story told from someone who isn't the good guy.

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  49. That's terrifying. Very evocative.

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  50. Holy crapola that's twisted! Great voice.

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  51. Shocking, sick and surprising. At first I was thinking, this is nice, then you pulled the carpet from under me. Good job!

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  52. Wow! That was great! So happy in the first paragraph and so twisted in the second. Seriously. Great job. :)

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  53. Blimey this gave me goose-bumps! Beautifully written and a wicked twist that took me (and seemingly everyone else!) completely by surprise! Well done :)

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  54. Well written from start, to devilish twist at the end!

    Emotional and chilling - and all within 200 words - great job!

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  55. Wow, clever! I didn't expect the second paragraph.
    p.s. I grew up on the West Coast of B.C.

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  56. Big change in perspective from first paragraph to second. At first it threw me but it's growing on me.

    :)

    Twisty. Good.

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  57. What a creepy entry. That's what I call great fiction. Didn't even see it coming. I "like" this entry a lot!

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  58. Wow. Started out beautiful then became something very different. Great stuff indeed.

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  59. wow with a creepy unexpected twist

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  60. Well, that's a different kind of unrequited love story... very eeeerie. Scary stuff. It started off so sweet and ended so twisted. Well done!

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  61. Very solid voice in this. I am a fan of Murakami also.

    Thanks for sharing it.

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  62. The pushing and struggling part made me pause. By the end I was completely alarmed. Frightening and unexpected. Brilliantly written!

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  63. Okay, I did not see that ending coming. Good!

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  64. I remember reading your story first along with a bunch of others. I thought I had responded. Wow, totally unexpected ending. I like it a lot. Well done!

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  65. Heart-breaking and terrifying all at once. Nice work!

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  66. Very intense and interesting. I enjoyed it.

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  67. Great job! I finally got mine up today on my campaign tab. :)

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  68. Totally unexpected, and chilling! Great work.

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  69. Hey there! You've been shortlisted to go on to the 2nd round of the challenge!
    Edge of Your Seat Romance

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  70. The second person viewpoint works wonders with this type of tale. It's a fab piece of fiction writing.

    (Congrats on being shortlisted - well deserved!)

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  71. Chilling! 2nd person isn't usually my thing, but you used it perfectly. *shivers*

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  72. Oh my goodness... I'm totally blown away by all the compliments, AND for being shortlisted!

    ...I have literally been outside chopping/stacking wood for the last 5 hours... so this was a fabulous surprise to find when I came inside for a glass of water.

    I'm still making my rounds of everyone else... think I'm up to #100 or so. I WILL get to everyone before the contest closes :)

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  73. That was a crazy twist! Well done and congrats on being on the short list :)

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  74. Aww, so sweet, and then so creepy! It almost drew me into the head-space of a guy who'd do something like that - which is really disturbing, but still I have to think of it as the mark of good writing! Well done!

    So hi, it's very nice to meet you, and I'm a fellow Canadian Campaigner! I'm looking forward to the Campaign trail.

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  75. Wowzers!!! What a twist. Great job! I'm 274, way at the bottom. I forced several, but this one flowed straight from the scary place in my imagination.

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  76. Good news/bad news as I've been in a situation like that and you described the tension really well. Mine is #72

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  77. Wow, that was creepy... but awesome! YOu did a great job, looking at things from the point of view of a rapist. Yeah, I totally wasn't expecting that ending. Great job! :D

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  78. That was so creepy but I LOVED IT!! Awesome job!

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  79. Wow! That was a shocking twist! I have to say I'm not usually into creepy, but that was very well done.

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  80. Oh my! Well, that turned me upside down. Excellent writing.

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  81. Ewwww. Thanks for that jolting surprise.

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  82. That was definitely a good one to start with! I've just started making the rounds now...love how it seems sweet, but is totally creepy at the end! :)

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  83. You're really gifted. Not many people can make a dark twist seem so natural. :) Greak work!

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  84. Goosebumps! Loved that twist, sweet and chilling, you perfected it to an menacing blend! Great job!

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  85. Wow! Very creepy and well done! Putting it in 2nd person added an awesome punch. :D

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  86. Fabulously horrific w/ an unexpected twist! Now that's an unreliable narrator! I it's all the more chilling when I stop reading at "she'll scream."

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  87. Holy Christmas-shit.

    I think this is one of my favorite entries so far. You wrote masterfully from a passionate and then obsessive point of view. I think I want to hug you as the writer because the character made me feel so disgusted, yet I wouldn't have wanted to spend the few minutes it took me to read that story with any other narrator!

    Fantastic and astonishing. I'm so excited to read more of your work.

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  88. Well written. He's a creep and yet at the same time you can relate to him. That takes talent!

    Stobby

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  89. Good job! Very creepy in the end, but I like the second person perspective. I've never tried that...and probably never will. It wouldn't sound right coming from me, but you nailed it :)

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  90. Well written, I like the perspective. I did see someone else warn for people who've suffered at the hands of an abuser - might want to add the same warning here.

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  91. Creepy, creepy, creepy! You lulled me into believing it was about young love and now I'm crushed LOL And to be the first to post - sooo brave. Excellent. From the coward at #347 ha ha

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  92. Wow! Didn't expect that ending. Great job.

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  93. I enjoyed your writing - you really captured the voice of the the creep. This was chilling. A great twist.

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  94. Whoa. Fabulous. Very creepy with a surpise ending. I'm love this. Great, great piece!

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  95. Very creepy, and thought provoking. Well done.

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  96. Creepy deepy! Loved it. Great job. New follower too. :)

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  97. Hi, couldn't find an email so I figured I'd just leave a comment. I wanted to let you know that your piece has been chosen to advance into the semi-finals. Congrats!

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  98. Wow, thank Lori!

    ...I was a judge for the semi-final stage too, so I know how difficult it must have been to choose since there are so many well written pieces :)

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  99. Nicely creepy! I like how it showed love leading to obsession leading to... well. You know.

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  100. Wow, I love it! This is the first time I've ever seen second-person narration used, and it worked wonders! You had me hooked from the first sentence, but not just with intrigue, with emotion - I smiled. I loved the first paragraph because I saw that girl.

    And then the second paragraph took me completely by surprise.

    Brilliant. You've got some serious talent. New follower right here.

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  101. You are one of 12 finalists (out of 384 entries!!!) and have won a prize!! Look for more info on Rachael Harrie's blog on the 19th.

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  102. Congratulations monkey. I sent an email to the queen bee Rachael to prod her to come visit soon to tell you how awesome your writing is. Top 3%.

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  103. Wow, thanks so much Steph & Michael...

    ...since I banged my entry out less than 1/2 hour after the challenge went up, I seriously wasn't expecting to get this far... I truly appreciate all the hard work everyone has put into planning and judging this contest, and I admit, I'm having a blast reading the other entries :)

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  104. Hey 1000th.monkey, I just wanted to stop by to congratulate you on being a Finalist in my First Campaigner Challenge! I was given a list of the top 12 entries, as judged by the legion of judges, and I've since decided your place (and thus your prize).

    You've come in Seventh Place out of 384 entries, so here's some massive props to you! And not only that, you've also come Third in the People's Choice Awards - how awesome is that!!! You definitely deserved it, conveying such creepiness and imagery in such a short paragraph. I certainly didn't see the twist coming, and it just made my mouth drop open with how realistically you've conveyed his emotions.

    Well done again, and make sure you pop by my blog to see what you've won ;)

    Hugs,

    Rach

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  105. Huge congratulations on both your Awards - a really creepy entry but fantastic writing.

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  106. Oh my GOSH! Was definitely not expecting that chilling second paragraph! Congratulations on your two awards. You deserve them :-)

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  107. Ah, yes. I remember how creepy this one was when I read it. Congrats on your wins! You deserve it.

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  108. Congrats on your win! Also, every story I read, you were there, commenting! Way to go in your attempts to read them all! Or if you did read them all, outstanding!

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  109. @ Candy Fite

    I got to about the 200 mark, then Safari kept quitting on me and it's been a pest ever since... argh, maybe upgrading to the new OS will help...

    Thanks everyone for congratulating me :) ...I was pretty surprised to make it that far!

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  110. Congratulations on the Campaign Challenge win!

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  111. Congrats and well done, Monkey. I will now go lock my doors.

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Type me out a line of Shakespeare or a line of nonsense. Dumb-blonde-jokes & Irish jokes will make me laugh myself silly :)