#500WED - Day 3

Writing Prompt

Cecily Kellogg:

How is everyone doing so far? And here is tomorrow's prompt! "FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE"

This should be fun. Have you ever written a press release or an Associated Press type article? Regardless, I think you will find this easy and fun to write.

I want you to write an article about something that outrages you, and quote yourself in the article – in other words, as if a reporter interviewed you, but in this case, you are both reporter and interviewee.

Here are a couple of examples: (warning: politics are mentioned in both of these, and in my piece, plenty of foul language):

http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/2014/02/press-release-blogger-loses-will-to.html

http://uppercasewoman.com/2014/06/27/abortion-clinic-buffer-zone-decision-by-supreme-court-causes-blogger-to-lose-her-fucking-mind/

Have fun with it! You can make it funny or serious or silly.


500 Words

LONDON, England, 7:02PM - Westminster Bridge, a critical crossing point on the River Thames, was closed to foot traffic today by the Metropolitan Police.  A police spokesman cited "safety reasons" during a press briefing about the closure.

Ian Smith, an IT consultant who escaped from the bridge recounted his experience.

"It is madness out there.  The footpaths across the bridge are completely jammed with visitors who have stopped in the middle of the pavement to take selfies of themselves with the Palace of Westminster and Mother of Parliaments in the background.  It's taken me three and a half hours to get across, and I suspect that I now feature heavily in more people's selfies than I care to think about."

Mr Smith added "It's crazy.  Some people have got their phones mounted on sticks so that they are no longer limited by the length of their arms. They can use them to get more people or more backdrop in their selfie. These 'selfie sticks', as I heard people calling them, are lethal. I had a few narrow escapes involving them, I can tell you."

The visitors to the city are occupying the bridge, and have been observed to go to extreme lengths to obtain the desired photographs.  One group was observed to form a human pyramid in the middle of the bridge. A middle aged man was seen teetering at the top, attempting trying to align his camera phone to capture both his face and the clock on the Elizabeth Tower (known, after the great bell, as Big Ben) while the latter was showing exactly 6pm.

One anonymous commuter was heard to complain "I just want to get home! I walk across the bridge to get from Westminster station to Waterloo - but they won't even let me onto it today.  I don't understand what they are all up to.  In my day, phones were used to make telephone calls, and we never ever put them on sticks.  My Nokia is great for phone calls. In fact, I sent an SMS with it once, too."

The mobile phone companies have reported congestion on their networks in the area, as people have uploaded gigabytes of  selfies to Facebook and Twitter, and then downloaded gigabytes of their friends' selfies. A spokesman for one mobile company commented, "WTF OMG LOL!".

During the closure, several members of the public were rescued from Westminster Bridge by the emergency services.  A spokesman for St Thomas' Hospital reported that a 25 year old man was recovering from his injuries following the removal of a selfie stick from his person.  Three other people are recovering from minor cameraphone related injuries.

The crowd rapidly dispersed when rumours spread that Her Majesty the Queen had been sighted taking a walk in Parliament Square.  Of course, nobody can resist the idea of a selfie with Her Majesty.  A police spokesman denied reports that the commander on the ground had started the rumour, so that she could go home for her tea. Buckingham Palace made no comment.

Reflection

This was hard too. I feel as though I'm always on my soapbox about something, but I felt as though I was unable to tackle any of the topics that I actually care about.  This is something that is based on my experience of the London crowds, but is basically made up.  Hopefully it's at least slightly funny.  I hope I can actually write about things that I care about!

Also, like yesterday, I finished after midnight.  I appear to wait until I am up against the deadline before I finally make the decisions on what to write about, and get going.  There has to be a way to make the decisions before arriving at this point. I do need *some* sleep!