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FF – Cutbacks

Here is my contribution to Friday Fictioneers, hosted by Rochelle. This week’s photo was contributed by Ted Strutz.

Copyright Ted Strutz


“So. Judgement Day.”

“Yeah. So this is death. I was expecting a bright light rather than an escalator.”

“Cutbacks, I guess.”

“I haven’t always been the best person. There was that speeding ticket. I swore at that little old lady…”

“I’m sure that won’t count against you.”

“…and then there’s all those people I murdered in the 70’s.”

“Whaaa… you’ll be on the way back down, mate. Here we are. Ooh, a questionnaire. No judgement by angels?”

“More cutbacks? A-ha! ‘Question 7: Did you murder anyone in the 70’s?’ I’ll tick ‘no’. And I’m in! Gotta love the cutbacks!”


  1. February 5, 2020 at 8:24 pm

    I’m sure there’s a huge database and an algorithm. It will fail to correctly identify people of colour

    Liked by 1 person

    • February 6, 2020 at 7:34 am

      I fear you’re right. Why should it be any different up there?


  2. February 5, 2020 at 8:31 pm

    Reminds me of the Visa questionnaires you get ‘Are you, or have you ever been, a Communist?’ – I mean does anyone really tick ‘yes’ to admit to these things? Still, expected better standards from the Almighty!

    Liked by 1 person

    • February 6, 2020 at 7:38 am

      I think he delegated the whole thing to that fool Gabriel…

      Liked by 2 people

  3. February 5, 2020 at 8:41 pm

    This is hilarious! I guess background checks have gone by the wayside as well. 😀


    • February 6, 2020 at 7:43 am

      Who has the time and money for that? I’m sure the majority were upstanding citizens 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. February 5, 2020 at 8:57 pm

    I think these days all they have to do is check your Twitter/Instagram/Facebook/etc… feed.


  5. February 5, 2020 at 9:31 pm

    Love your take on the prompt. Lot of truth in that too. A friend took this photo and I liked it knowing some good stories would come. You can see her work here… https://instaology.com/


    • February 6, 2020 at 7:52 am

      So much automation – cheaper than manpower but not always as efficient despite what “they” say…


  6. February 5, 2020 at 10:20 pm

    I’ve just read that they are ceasing the escalator service next year. More cut backs!


  7. February 5, 2020 at 11:23 pm

    i guess he’s ok for now until they find out later. 🙂


  8. February 6, 2020 at 5:05 am

    Lol love it!


  9. February 6, 2020 at 2:29 pm

    Cutbacks – is no institution safe? Fun take and I’m thinking he might eventually be found out…. or not.


    • February 7, 2020 at 7:24 am

      Maybe he’ll run into one of his victims and they’ll shop him 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  10. February 6, 2020 at 2:33 pm

    Dear Ali,

    Something tells me the angels already have his number. They might be giving him a chance to fess up. 😉




    • February 7, 2020 at 7:29 am

      Dear Rochelle,
      You could be right. I’m sure there’s some sort of overwatch going on!


  11. February 6, 2020 at 2:33 pm

    Haha! A funny story with a nugget of truth at its heart.


    • February 7, 2020 at 7:30 am

      Let’s hope it’s not really like that when we arrive. Or maybe… 😉


  12. February 6, 2020 at 3:13 pm

    Reminds me of the questionnaires that are so prevalent now to weed out “unqualified” applicants. Why shouldn’t Heaven take a leaf from our book?


    • February 7, 2020 at 7:33 am

      Why not indeed? After all, no-one ever “stretches the truth” on these things 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. February 6, 2020 at 9:51 pm

    Just wait until he finds out the cutbacks have affected heaven as well. His eternal reward will be a small hotel room with lumpy bed and a tiny, tiny bathroom. Check out time…. never,


  14. February 7, 2020 at 6:49 am

    Haha just like life! Made me chuckle.


    • February 7, 2020 at 7:42 am

      At least everything up there will be somewhat familiar 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  15. February 7, 2020 at 11:29 am

    I’ll remember this when I’m on the way up! Nice one.


  16. February 7, 2020 at 2:18 pm

    I enjoyed this immensely, Ali, it seems that even I might have a chance!


    • February 8, 2020 at 8:35 am

      As long as we all remember to tick the right boxes we’re all in!


  17. February 7, 2020 at 6:21 pm

    MOL…I think it’s funny, Draliman😸Pawkisses for a Happy Weekend🐾😽💞


  18. Merbear74
    February 7, 2020 at 7:44 pm

    Thankfully I was just a kid back in the 70’s! The 90’s…well, I still didn’t do it! Innocent!


    • February 8, 2020 at 8:35 am

      It wasn’t me either, honest guv!


  19. February 7, 2020 at 8:23 pm

    The inevitable tick in the box auto selection.


    • February 8, 2020 at 8:36 am

      Life’s just a box-ticking exercise and it doesn’t stop at death, apparently.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. February 8, 2020 at 9:23 am

    I love the casual way they talk about heaven and the day of reckoning. The cut back theme made me laugh, very topical.


    • February 8, 2020 at 4:22 pm

      One would hope it would be different up there, but apparently not 🙂


  21. February 8, 2020 at 12:13 pm

    Great take on the photo. Damn those cutbacks, completely the wrong sort getting into heaven these days.


    • February 8, 2020 at 4:23 pm

      The screening process has all gone to pot. Very disheartening!


  22. February 8, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    I also think somewhere there’s a database that handles entry. It could also be a trick to see if you lie. It’s probably run like the airports and you get pulled out and taken to a room for a more thorough interrogation. 😀 — Suzanne


    • February 8, 2020 at 4:24 pm

      Presumably, after the interrogation there’s a handy trapdoor to help them get to their ultimate destination without delay 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • February 9, 2020 at 9:11 am

        I think I’d prefer a ladder to a trap door. One goes up and the other goes down. —- Suzanne

        Liked by 1 person

  23. February 8, 2020 at 10:44 pm

    I think the question implies the all knowing. I think he’s goin’ back down, cutbacks or no. Entertaining as always, Ali!


  24. Mike
    February 9, 2020 at 12:24 pm

    Creative story unlike the tick boxes which are miserable things,


  25. February 9, 2020 at 9:06 pm

    Even heaven is not safe from cutbacks… or murderers! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  26. February 10, 2020 at 1:40 pm

    When you think of it, world population has increased explosively the latest decades. Hard to keep track of all the sins for sure. Stay low and you’ll be safe.


    • February 12, 2020 at 8:29 pm

      There’s just too many to properly screen these days.


  27. February 11, 2020 at 3:18 pm

    Well the 70’s were a different time, they might overlook it. Best of luck! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • February 12, 2020 at 8:30 pm

      Anything goes in the 70’s!


      • February 13, 2020 at 3:45 am

        I was just watching some old commercials from the 70’s on youtube…wow…what a different time!

        Liked by 1 person

  28. May 13, 2020 at 2:28 pm

    With all the fear taught about judgement day, it was nice to see something whimsical. Thanks for the post.


    • May 13, 2020 at 7:04 pm

      Yes, possibly not as bad as we think, though it does look like they’ll let anyone in these days. I’m glad you liked it!

      Liked by 1 person

    July 14, 2021 at 7:56 am
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