Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Quiet. Maybe a Little Too Quiet.

Sometimes, I think, it’s better not to write anything on the blog when you’re at a period in your life when some calls and asks, “What’s new?” and you say, “Not much” and then fall silent. It’s mostly been a month of story starters with no dramatic endings.

For instance, last weekend, Caleb was outside playing and it was time for us to head out to dinner. I went out on the porch and called his name. Nothing. I called louder. Still no response. On the next block, the ice cream truck made its way down the street. The Doppler effect distorted its tinny music, changing the key and making it creepy and sad. “Caleb!” I called. Then another little boy came out from between the houses and told me where Caleb was. I found him. He washed his hands and we went out to dinner.

Or, earlier this month, it was storming. Brandon had the day off and we had plans to drive to another city forty-five minutes away. As soon as we slammed the car doors, the rain came out in earnest. Seriously, cats and dogs. My stomach twisted a little as we took the on-ramp to the interstate. People still were flying at 70 miles per hour. Semi trucks passed us, leaving our windshield drowned in their wakes. We turned down the music so Brandon could better concentrate. Then the rain let up. The fog wasn't as bad as we'd expected. We got haircuts. I was very pleased with mine.

Today, I was in line at the post office. A woman walked up next to me, and I smiled and let her pass. Instead of passing, though, she cut in line in front of me. Just me. She didn’t try to cut in front of anyone else. Normally, I’d say something, but some bit of intuition told me there was something off about her, something I didn’t want to entangle myself in. Just before it was her turn to walk up to the counter, she offered her spot to a college guy. He declined. She insisted. He declined again. She left. I took my spot at the counter and mailed my package. The end.


Hairline Fracture said...

This is what happens when I try to write short stories lately. No dramatic arc.

Jamie said...

I loathe that question, "What's new?" It's such a lazy conversational gambit. Why does anything have to be new?

Mrs. Romero said...

You're back! Blogging is tough business... being all funny, smart and quick can leave a girl, well, worm out.

I have a problem with injustice and cutters (not the movie with guy who ride the bike, but people who cut) really irk me. Big time.

jessica said...

You're having one of those phases where the universe feels slightly off?

O said...

There is an excellent Roz Chast cartoon (I know, "excellent" doesn't narrow it down much) that is essentially an illustrated version of this post. I must find it and send it to you.

Some months are less thrilling than others. Let us all be grateful for them.

Jennifer said...

Glad to know I'm not the only one. It's not that anything's wrong, at all. It's just...regular.

Did you see that Roz Chast cartoon in some recent NYer? Vlad the Implier? Oh, my.

jessica said...

I loved that one! I love almost all of them.