This morning, two new stars emerged on breakfast radio, they were the winners of Sam & Duncan’s Very Short Story Competition that inspired listeners to write their best radio drama effort during isolation.
From 189 entries — and the quality was high, each story that came in blew away the Breakfast team and renowned Sydney author Tim Harris, who judged the scripts — an under 13 years winner and an over 13 years winner was announced. Congratulations to:
Under 13 Years Winner
Fartface on a Plane by Patrick Gittani
Over 13 Years Winner
A Dog’s Breakfast by Nicole Mannyx
All entrants were asked to submit a radio play of no more than 750 words and include the word “breakfast”. Young Patrick and Nicole both received a radio production of their story, a set of signed Exploding Endings books by Tim Harris and 40 points each on the Sam & Duncan Masters of the Hopeland Universe Leaderboard. If you’re not yet on the Leaderboard, tune into Breakfast with Sam & Duncan weekday mornings for fun opportunities to grab yourself some points.
Fartface on a Plane by Patrick Gittani (Under 13 Years Winner)
Listen: Breakfast with Sam & Duncan perform the radio drama, Fartface, by Under 13 Years Winner Patrick Gittani
“Always be true to who you are.”
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Jeremy Bishop can’t remember the last time someone called him by his real name. He has almost convinced himself that it doesn’t matter anyway. “What’s a name anyway, right? I don’t care,” he often repeated. But only fools believe that.
I sometimes forget his real name too. I try to call him Jeremy but the F word kind of just comes out. He tells me it’s OK but what kind of friend am I if I call my best friend Fartface?!
There you go. I said it: “Fartface!” But allow me to explain.
Jeremy Bishop, aka Fartface, has a medical condition known as gastroplarethraflatuliatitis. It is a rare condition that causes gas to accumulate in the the intestinal tract.
When Fartface was little, kids used to laugh at his farts as it was cute. In kindy, kids stopped laughing and by Year One the teasing and bullying started. It wasn’t long before Jeremy would seek isolated areas of the playground, mainly near the bathrooms, so he can hide, or shall we say, disguise the smell. This is also where he met his two best friends, Joshua and me, Oliver.
Jeremy made two promises to himself: To accept the nickname Fartface and not let it get to him. He also promised to never, ever EVER take the lift, even if it’s a 10-storey building. He shudders at the memory of Mrs Humphreys and that dreaded day. Oh, the horror!!
There is something about being stuck in a confined space that gives Fartface extreme anxiety. Today is one of those days as he boards a Qantas flight to San Francisco. He promised himself he would not have gas. He was wrong.
The curry smelt divine and the beans looked amazing for breakfast. The movie on the small screen was beginning and Fartface was so engrossed in the movie that he devoured his meal without thinking about consequences. The movie continued and his stomach started to growl. He couldn’t hear it at first because he had headphones in his ears. It didn’t take long before the rumbling and the noises from the rising pressure inside his stomach was too much. Fartface had to move FAST!
He leapt out of seat 242 and headed towards the toilet thinking surely he will make it. However, there was a line. Four people were patiently waiting.
Then it happened. His worst nightmare. The captain announced, “Everyone, you must go back to your seats immediately and put your seatbelts on.”
Fartface started to panic. He went to the back of the plane and curled up into a ball. Suddenly the oxygen masks came down and the plane started to shake. People were screaming while a man next to him just slept not knowing what is going on.
The plane was going down. He looked out of the window and he could see through the clouds the ocean far, far below. It was only a matter of time before certain death.
He looked up again and everyone was hugging. He could barely contain the gas inside. He then spotted his mum and dad looking around screaming. He could see his twin sisters hugging, and thought: Oh, they’re not bickering for once!
Everyone was silent, then all of a sudden the engine roared loudly and the plane shot back up into the sky again through the clouds and the engine was working again. People started screaming in joy and asking: “Could this be real?”, “What the???”, “What happened???”, “How could this be? Is this a miracle?”
Then the smell hit their noses and they realised! They all looked to the back of the plane to find Fartface. He was red in the face, super embarrassed, ashamed and they knew what they had heard was not the engine but his loud fart. The force of his fart towards the bottom end of the plane had pushed the plane back up towards the sky. Just as he was about to start to cry, everyone began cheering for him. Two men picked him up on their shoulders and the passengers and crew clapped. He saved 284 people with one fart.
The captain made another announcement: “The engine had something stuck in it so it stopped working but it’s dislodged and fixed by a gigantic fart force”.
Fartface sat next to his parents who said to him: “We are so proud of you Jeremy”.
A Dog’s Breakfast by Nicole Mannyx (Over 13 Years Winner)
Listen: Breakfast with Sam & Duncan perform the radio drama, A Dog’s Breakfast, by Over 13 Years Winner Nicole Mannyx
“Clean your room! It’s like a dog’s breakfast!”
Oh boy. Was this how I was going to have to spend my weekend? I mean, I guess mum had a point, but I could think of one or two things I’d rather be doing.
‘Better get to it’, I thought. ‘If I work quickly, maybe I can salvage some of my Saturday.’
I set to work, picking up dirty clothes, packing away the sprawl of textas on my desk, tossing out the million papers that seem to have accumulated. I work hard and soon it’s looking pretty good. Job done! I emerge from my room, whistle for my dog and start heading for the back door — still time for a quick run around the park, at least. Suddenly a looming figure blocks the doorway.
“Where do you think you’re going? I told you to tidy your room,” says mum, glaring at me with an accusatory eye.
“It’s done!” I protest.
“Really? All done?”
“All done,” I declare confidently.
“Even the mess under your bed? Don’t think I haven’t noticed that,” replies mum.
Defeat. Shoulders drooping, I trudge back to my bedroom.
Lying on my tummy, I start pulling things out from under my bed. Clothes. Books. Something in a lunch bag I don’t even want to know about. As I crawl further under, suddenly my hand drops and I feel a painful whack on my chin. A loose floorboard! I carefully feel the next one. It’s loose too. Hmm. Never noticed that before. My imagination starts to run wild. Was the previous owner of this house hiding something under there? Stolen gold? A treasure map? A tiny elf civilisation? (OK, maybe that last one is pushing it).
I crawl out from under the bed and grab my torch, then dive back under and carefully pull up the boards, expectantly waiting to uncover…dirt. Just plain old dirt? Well that was disappointing. Nothing to see here but the ground.
I sweep the torch around one more time, just to be sure, when I spot something white jutting out of the ground. I reach in and brush away the dirt around it. As more of the shape emerges I realise, with horror, it’s a bone! Oh no! Have I uncovered some kind of horrible crime? But then I realise, this bone seems awfully big. I keep digging, ignoring the pain in my back and neck as I squirm around, squished under the bed. Eventually, I manage to pull the bone loose…and it’s the biggest bone I’ve ever seen! I shimmy out from under the bed, dragging the enormous bone.
“Mum! Dad! Come look what I found” I yell excitedly.
Mum and dad come at the sound of my yelling. “I shudder to think what you might have found in that m…” mum starts, but her jaw drops and her eyes widen when she sees the bone. Dad, on the other hand, goes straight to excitement level 100.
“Call the police! Call the museum! Call the newspapers!”
Eventually he calms down enough to decide on the museum. We make the call, and within the hour our house is swarming with archaeologists and surrounded by media vans. My bedroom is turned into a dig site as more and more bones are uncovered. I wonder if my bedroom will ever look the same! I’m interviewed by the paper and the news — I feel like a local hero!
Soon all the bones are carefully wrapped and loaded in to a truck to head back to the museum. We follow along, eager to find out exactly what it is I’ve discovered. The museum staff work furiously, and soon they’ve assembled a giant dinosaur skeleton.
“This is an amazing discovery” gushes the museum director. “Our very own local dinosaur! We seem to have the entire skeleton but one missing toe bone. Would you mind if we headed back to your house and dig a little further?”
We all head back home and the digging begins again. Exhausted from all the excitement, I head out to the backyard for a bit of fresh air. As I step outside a smile widens on my face.
“I think I’ve found your missing bone!” I call, pointing at my dog who is sitting in the middle of the yard, happily chewing on the biggest bone he’s ever seen. As everyone comes running, I turn to mum with a smile and say “I guess you were right. My room really was a dog’s breakfast!”