Law Review: Bulwer-Lytton 2019 winners – Part 2 | SierraSun.com
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Law Review: Bulwer-Lytton 2019 winners – Part 2

Jim Porter
Law Review
Jim Porter

As you few readers know, we annually present a handful of our favorite Bulwer-Lytton winners.

The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest is named after novelist Edward Bulwer-Lytton. The contest is to write a bad opening sentence to an imaginary novel like his: “It was a dark and stormy night.”

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Stephen Douglas, that’s the “Little Giant” to you, had tried everything he could think of to stop Mr. Lincoln from arriving at their senatorial debates: giving him the wrong time and place, sleeping pills disguised as Republican muffins, kidnapping, and even some light arson but the man always turned up, like a bad penny.

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When the tall dark, handsome, buff, and wealthy cowboy moseyed into my “Blazin’ Six-guns” novelty shop, I felt a wave of heat flood through me, as if I had accidentally swallowed my sub-lingual nicotinic acid lozenge, causing the niacin to be released instantaneously, rather than in a more controlled, extended, low-potency dose, for which means the prescription had been written.

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The Eyelash Palm Viper of Central America, only about the size of a bungee cord—the kind of bungee cord you use to secure your bike on the back of the car or to keep your patio furniture chairs together or to make sure that raccoons are unable to remove your plastic trash can lids—was both deadly and beautiful.

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The snow scattered like fair parmesan from God’s own shaker, drifting down lightly to cling to our squirming spaghetti skin beneath robes of tomato puree, making no distinction between the whole wheat and white or tagliatelle and bucatini among us.

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Gregory was falling in love with the doe-eyed Nora, not knowing that she could be an infuriating, complicated woman at times, like one of those self-service checkout machines at the grocery store where you can never figure out where to insert the money or get your change, plus the scanner never recognizes your jar of Vlasic sweet pickles so you have to call the attendant.

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Zajaxian Planetary Law required that war, if it must be fought, be fought not with bombs, bullets and blood, as on our own primitive Earth, but with serried banks of immensely powerful mainframe computers, even though they were bulky to carry and unwieldy to throw.

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Fed up with Parisian hipsters using fancy foreign words to describe French food, Pierre decided un oeuf was un oeuf.

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His hot, fetid breath on the back of her neck pulled her from her sleep and she felt fear grip her as she recognized his presence and scrambled quickly to untangle herself from the sheets and exit the bed before Felix could hack up the forthcoming hairball.

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As he left the cemetery after his grandmother’s funeral, Victor wondered if Hollywood screen legend Robert Taylor had been interred under his real name, Spangler Arlington Brugh, and if so, how had they managed to fit all the letters onto his gravestone—an inappropriate thought on this sad family occasion, particularly so because his grandma’s favourite movie actor had been Spencer Tracy.

Jim Porter is an attorney with Porter Simon licensed in California and Nevada, with offices in Truckee and Tahoe City, California, and Reno, Nevada. Jim’s practice areas include: real estate, development, construction, business, HOA’s, contracts, personal injury, accidents, mediation and other transactional matters. He may be reached at porter@portersimon.com or http://www.portersimon.com.


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