Survivor X, Challenge 3: Half a Conversation

We were given half of a conversation this week and told to turn it into a short story.  The half we got was this:

A: You missed a call.
B:
A: Yeah. There’s no reason not to.
B:
A: No. She never did. Neither did I, for that matter.
B:
A: At the Fall Festival?
B:
A: Yeah, that would have been a disaster.
B:
A: It wasn’t personal. They don’t see things the same way you do.
B:
A: You’re not the only one.
B:
A: Absolutely not.
B:
A: So what are you going to do about it?
B:

I had very little time to work on it this week, and by the time I got around to it, I was so tired I just didn’t care.  The following is awful, but I’ll explain it afterwards when you don’t get it.

A: You missed a call.
B: No, you missed a call. I’m supposed to hang up, remember? Anyway, do you really think we should call Dad back? He’s just going to try and “save” us.
A: Yeah. There’s no reason not to.
B: Ugh, you’re a glutton. He’s incorrigible, just like your ex. She never did learn to use a map, did she?
A: No. She never did. Neither did I, for that matter.
B: Now I can tell why we never got anywhere. At least my right-hand lady never pretended to have any function. Remember where we met?
A: At the Fall Festival?
B: Yeah, I selected her there. Wasn’t until the meteorite hit town that I realized she was useless. She left me that night, too. It’s a good thing she didn’t get with Pokey.
A: Yeah, that would have been a disaster.
B: It was still embarrassing. Elle and Arnie kept ringing everybody in town and blabbing about it.
A: It wasn’t personal. They don’t see things the same way you do.
B: They don’t even see the same things as each other. They’re on completely opposite sides. And now I sit here worrying about my status.
A: You’re not the only one.
B: Oh don’t start. You’re always the one in command. Better equipped. Dad even gave you the ATM card. You’re his favorite, aren’t you?
A: Absolutely not.
B: That’s it. If I have to spend another minute on Earth with you, I’m bound to go crazy.
A: So what are you going to do about it?
B: I’m getting a hamburger and going home. Going to talk to mother, too.

Confused?  No problem.  Since I was lazy, I decided to try and see what a conversation would be like between the A and B buttons on a Super Nintendo controller.  But I had to pick a game that had a telephone in it.  I could only think of one, and that was EarthBound.  If you’ve played the game, go ahead and reread it now and see if it makes slightly more sense.

Okay, now for all the extremely subtle clues no judge should ever be expected to pick up on:

–the A button would answer a phone call in the game, while the B button would hang up
–In the game, you call Dad in order to save the game
–You use the button X to call up the map
–The B buttons “right-hand lady” is the button Y (yeah, a reach, even for this).  The Y button has no function in Earthbound
–The meteorite and the name Pokey are perhaps the biggest giveaways, but that doesn’t say much.  There is no fall festival in Earthbound, so I pretended it started before the game.  That line threw me more than anything.
–Elle and Arnie are stupid references to the “L” and “R” turbo buttons.  You use L to cycle through conversations, and R to ring the bell while on the motorcycle.
–The B button calls up the status screen, and thus he’s worried about his status.
–The A button calls all commands, equips items, and pays for things.  Your Dad literally supplies and replenishes your ATM card in the game.
–I threw the words ‘select’ and ‘start’ in there just to force two more unhelpful clues
–then, I use the words Earth and Bound close together
–then I end it with “mother, too.”  The name of the game in Japan is Mother 2.  Oh, and the primary source of energy in the game is hamburgers.

It’s quite obvious neither judge picked up on any of that (and I don’t blame them). Here were their comments:

Spooky: It doesn’t have the punch with the jokes like the others, it’s just a clean little story that’s not fleshed out enough. Maybe I’m tired, because I can’t think of anything more specific to write on this one. 2

DK: There’s not a lot I can grab onto here – I can’t get a sense of the characters, and it never quite gets off the ground. 2

Okay, they’re both being really nice here.  But they were tired and I had one of the last stories they judged.  So thanks for not being mean, guys.  I really think if I was the only person who had kept the letters “A” and “B” for my people talking I may have had a chance.  But even had I been way more obvious about my intent, scores of 2/2 are just fine.  Anyway, our team still advances, because my teammates didn’t suck like this.

I promise to write something better next week.

3 thoughts on “Survivor X, Challenge 3: Half a Conversation”

  1. ‘Pokey’ obviously gave it away for me. I only got a little ways into Earthbound (though I did love the little that I played… sort of a long story), so I didn’t remember all the stuff with the A button calling and whatnot. Until I read it over again, I thought the conversation was between somebody and Ness, though I couldn’t possibly figure out a character who would act like either voice.

    If you hadn’t included Pokey, I’d have been even more lost.

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