Lost In Translation

It said Want someone glamorous, dazzling and beautiful?  Click here.

So he did.

The package arrived from Russia three weeks later. Horrified, then disappointed, he returned to the web page.  Mistakes were everywhere.  He should have been more careful.  He’d lost his savings, and his deposit at the reception hall.


Flash Friday FIctioneers is brought to you by Madison Woods.  Her story and links to the many other fictioneers can be found here.

  1. Jessica said:

    Heck, I’d have clicked, too.

    I wonder if it would have been more effective if, after he returned to the webpage, there was a quasi-description of the image he’d been tempted by, and the suggestion of what it really was that he hadn’t noticed the first time because he didn’t look closely enough? The strongest part here, other than ‘glamourous’… etc, is the horrified part, and I like to have a bit more information about that. Not so much as to give it away, but to play up the confused expectations.

    Am I making any sense?

    • Janet said:

      Yes, great suggestions (but I don’t expect anything less 🙂 ).


    • Janet said:

      Well, I guess you don’t always get what you pay for.

    • Janet said:

      Yes, definately. I wasn’t sure if I should put that in my story. Maybe I should have. Thanks for stopping by. I’ll be over to read yours.

  2. An interesting story idea here, Janet. I think it’s one of those cases where 100 words would have served you better than 50 to get the point across – I’m left not feeling quite whether I root for this guy or not. Buying “someone” is hardly anything I can condone!

    But it was a good lesson too, so well done.

    I’m over here: http://elmowrites.wordpress.com/2012/03/02/friday-fiction-15

    • Janet said:

      Well, I was struggling a bit with this one. I think I could have gone longer to but I feel a bit addicted to my 50 word limit. I’m a bit OCD that way, I’m afraid.

  3. crubin said:

    Wow, same thing happened to me once. I clicked on “Want someone strong who can carry a heavy load?” Next day I found a donkey on my doorstep. That’s the last time I shop for people online…

    As always, Janet, I enjoy your work. 🙂

    • Janet said:

      Is it possible to “Like” a comment?

      • crubin said:

        Haha! I actually have a “like” button on my forehead. So now I can switch it on. Thanks!

    • Hilarious! Think I’d rather had the donkey than the “shaft” in postcardfiction’s story, though. 🙂

      • crubin said:

        Thanks! And you know I could take your comment to the next level, but out of respect for Janet’s lovely blog, I won’t. It’s perfectly legitimate on my own site, however. 🙂

    • Janet said:

      Oh yes, they were definately fakes.

  4. Mike said:

    Another great 50 word tale.
    …… and I thought everyone on the Internet could be trusted.

  5. Jeannie said:

    Good story! A twist on the mail-order bride 😉

    • Janet said:

      Thanks. Poor guy, alone and broke!

    • Janet said:

      Yes, sometimes you never can tell. I’ve made stupid mistakes by not reading the small print before signing – my husband wont let me live them down – so I can relate to how easily it is to make a mistake like that.

      • Jessica said:

        Sorry, Janet. Laughing again about that… love you, and the hubby, of course.

  6. Russell said:

    So he ordered an eBride? I’m not surprised she didn’t look like the picture on the web. Great idea for flash fiction though.

    here’s mine http://russellgayer.blogspot.com/

    • Janet said:

      Thanks Russell. No, he certainly didn’t get what he expected. Maybe that was just as well.

  7. niiko47 said:

    I always tend to go for the fantasy-type stories, so it’s great to see something a little more grounded in reality like this one.
    Just goes to show that you always need to read the smallprint.

    • Janet said:

      You’re right. As I just noted above to susielindau, I’ve made some stupid mistakes by not reading the fine print. I can only hope I’ve learned my lesson

    • Janet said:

      A big concern in planning a wedding – at least he didn’t have to return any gifts (imagine the explanation!)

  8. Tragic comedy. Good work, Janet. Poor guy.

    • Janet said:

      Well, I’m not sure he deserves much sympathy though.

      • I wondered about that. Maybe my hope is that he was sincere and naive — as opposed to sinister and cynical, or maybe just as opposed to aware of the truly unethical nature of the action… haha. In any case, you did the situation beautifully. And in less words, too. It would be interesting to take this story and make him both sinister and naive. Don’t know many villains like that, but could see something in it -?

        • Janet said:

          Yes, there could definately be an interesting character there somewhere.

    • Janet said:

      Thanks Doug. I was thinking about your comments from last week when I wrote this one and I was wondering if this one was too short.

    • Janet said:

      thanks. I try to keep my fiction here to fifty words but I did struggle with this one.

  9. Hi Janet,
    Well, at least he has the gems and he can still have a big party and drown his sorrows at the reception hall. The heart is a lonely hunter, at least that’s what I heard. Fun story!

    • Janet said:

      I think he’ll definately need to drown his sorrows!

    • Janet said:

      Not exactly. He thought the ad was describing a mail order bride,. when it was really describing the jewels. Just a mistake by an online translator. Thanks for coming by.

  10. Kourtney Heintz said:

    Very cool story for that picture. Intrigued me.

    • Janet said:

      I’m glad. Thanks for coming by.

    • Janet said:

      Exactly, he shoud have known better…hopefully he leaned his lesson.

    • Janet said:

      Yeah, you need to be desprate to buy a wife. Glad you found it funny.

    • Janet said:

      Thank you. I was wondering if this one was a bit short, but fortunately, it seems that everyone understood it. Phew!

    • Janet said:

      Thanks. Usually I go for darker outcomes, but I went for a walk on the lighter side this week.

  11. Madison Woods said:

    I find it a bit humorous and serves him right for thinking it’s that easy to find a wife. Enjoyed your perspective.

  12. Very cool. An effective cautionary tale which left me wondering exactly what he thought he was getting, why he was horrified and the ‘mistakes were everywhere’ line is quite mysterious. I can’t quite say why but I suspect this story is not as simple as it may seem at first. 🙂

    • Janet said:

      Thanks Andy, I always enjoy your takes on my stories.

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