Now Playing: The One that Got Away
Author’s note: this is a very short story written in a style called stream of consciousness. It may call for some increased attention but I do think the reader will find it very amusing nonetheless.
Rated: mature for content and some strong language.
The One that Got Away
Of course the first one tottering in on heels you could use for a shish kabob is Janice Ritmore-always called her Rigor Mortis -under a pile of hair I wouldn’t put on a poodle-wearing an old hanging skin of a dress-the flowers look like faded tattoos-smiles puffy eyed and has to hug me to her bag of bones-I’m half afraid I’ll stick to her-Oh Sharon the service was beautiful she has to tell me and then Peter comes in stomach first-the man is so red he’s a walking advertisement for a stroke-Sharon Sharon Sharon as if I’d forgotten my name but I’m seventy for Christ’s sake not a hundred and seven-can’t believe he’s gone she has to go on-hell he’d better be gone he’s dead isn’t he? One day she says he’s right here working one of his puzzles and the next day-he’s gone I finish for her-godallmighty is that perfume she has on or sugar water and bug spray? Oh I can see Herb my deceased embalmed buried dead as a doornail hubby working one of his puzzles or wrapping his face with newspaper so he won’t hear a peep out of me the bastard was as useless as condoms on a dildo-and now the whole mob with their canes and walkers their scooters and wheelchairs all of them gray and clammy god it looks like one of those zombie movies Herb used to like while he wasn’t gawking at teenagers in bikinis on the soft porn channel-the smell of cemetery sod and aftershave wafts in-Jackie and then Frankie with her grandson pad out of the kitchen wiping their hands-we’ve been cooking all goddamn night and day is what I bet they want to say-you want coffee tea a soda beer or bourbon-why not drink the whole house dry while you’re at it? Get something to eat make yourself a sandwich-fine with me I didn’t buy or cook any of that crap-and my son comes jiggling downstairs smelling food no doubt-hey Mom-peck on the cheek for all to see-you okay? Oh fine fine I say-here for three days and my brain is about to boil over him with his Italian inner tube for a wife who could for god’s sake wax her lip just once in her life-oh yes that’s my boy my forty three year old son two kids of his own but he floats and bobs around young girls like a poisonous jellyfish I mean I swear the kid was born with a hardon it’s the only thing about him that ever made me laugh-to think it took twenty three years before he finally oozed out of the house-quit school why don’t you it’s time to fail in the real world-sells cars and actually makes a living at it would you believe it? Probably been in his old room jerking off-I can just see him and his wife Sofia scarfing down lasagna while the kids upstairs watch slasher movies-food? Oh not for me not now-truth is I’m too sick with hunger to eat which is weird because last night I was too tired to sleep-my son waddles away and I know why we women call our kids little shits it’s because both have to be pushed out-hi Mary I force myself to say how’s Jerry and Terry and Barry-the family is a nursery rhyme-oh I know it was such a weird and stupid accident but then how many of us get up in the middle of the night and fall down the stairs in the dark? Happens all the time but you never think it’ll happen to your own husband-and now I gotta daub my dry eyes-I told him a million times to be careful going down those stairs-what I want to say to scream is that the pig asshole was creeping downstairs to piss the last of our money away on online poker-no officers I was in bed when I heard him fall and then I ran out to turn on the light and there he was his legs and arms all twisted wrong and I knew he was dead can we can we talk later I think I think I’m in a state of shock-only one twenty five in the afternoon the end of the universe seems closer but I have to be comforted by these clowns-give me a drink I just want to celebrate and then take a nap the clinking of glasses shivers along my teeth and a headache fattens in my temples-oh sweetie I say it is such a terrible thing but he isn’t suffering and I know he’s looking down at us and he’s happy-roasting in hell I hope-when I think of how many women he screwed for the first twenty years of our marriage before I finally lost it and sliced a nice thin line above both his nipples with a paring knife and said next time it’ll be your nuts you scumbag-but for now I’m the queen of grief which is like getting married but better everyone brings food instead of useless crap for presents-Bob that was so nice what you said at the service and so funny you and Herb out in the sticks getting lost and a moose almost runs you over-they’re all looking at me poor poor Sharon hubby go fall down boom broked his neck well shit happens-wait what the wait what’s that gring gring gring sound what is that kid Jason playing with on the floor it isn’t a toy car or marble oh hell no it’s but it can’t be but it is the kid found it damn-spent hours on hands and knees looking for the one that got away and the kid that kid who could have found anything finds it-excuse me I say slithering around everyone as I slowly make my way to the other end of the room-the kid is on the floor rolling it back and forth gring gring gring it makes my head pound but have to stay calm-close closer closer have to time it just right-turn around make it look like an accident I’m good at that-then I wait and glance around then one teeny step back and the kid’s hand feels like soft chicken bones underfoot then the screaming and gram scoops him up and I go scooping too-oh Frankie I’m so sorry I didn’t see him there-then I slip the ball bearing into my pocket-I hope I didn’t hurt him I say-but then getting hurt is not always such a bad thing if one has insurance