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The Other Woman

Courtesy: Redbubble.com

Courtesy: Redbubble.com

[Flash Fiction writing prompt, time = 30 minutes]

Didn’t expect to be here again.

Then again, didn’t expect it to be me standing before her, she, crumpled against the ground, crying. From my position at the height of the stairs I’m looking down at her, legs splayed, black dog on leash to one side, dressed in all black, hair wrapped back tightly. From her vantage I must look menacing.

I wasn’t expecting to be here, like this.

I expected her to be larger.

She continued to wail with her dog in her lap. He didn’t have to introduce me, but I think he did it more for his validation of the moment than everyday cordialities.

This is Karen. Karen, this is Sam.”

That was my cue to descend stairs and leave. I had a fleeting thought to tell him to call me, but of course he can call me. We just made up a week ago. Tonight was our first night together since the fight.

I tightened Bob’s leash and circled around the pile of woman and her dog, both of them too immersed in their drama to notice or care of my leaving. Leaving I was doing, freeing myself of any incident.

The hardest part was bringing myself back to consciousness. I had two bowls of his stew and rice in my stomach, I was high, I was well on my way to 4th stage sleep when he woke me. I pressed the heels of my hands into my eyes, coaxing moisture from the reserves, switching to my purse to get the eye drops. Fuck I hate driving like this.

Perhaps I wasn’t moving fast enough. I heard his voice approaching the car, but it was his typical admonishment of the dog. Her dog that lived with him while she was “finding herself,” the same dog I’ve grown fond of and enjoyed caring for. She had broken loose and ran towards my car. Does she think this is another one of our car rides? I felt him pacing. He needed me to leave. I needed to wake up. Finally, I twisted the headlamps on. I’m going, I’m going.

My last sight was of he and she entering the courtyard with the dog.

I eased the car up Roosevelt, down the boulevard, across Hempstead, down Chester, over onto my street, and back to the house. Bob was confused. He was used to staying the night. He was happy to be asleep on top of him. Why are we here?

I wasn’t expecting to be there when this day came, but I’m glad he wasn’t alone when she appeared. That’s the heaviest strike one woman can lay upon another without touching; face-to-face with the physical embodiment of his moving on.

Feelin’ Like A Struck Match

 

Me staring at the screen with my good eye.

Me staring at the screen with my good eye. The other one burned out.

The back of my eyeballs hurt.

This is the un-fun part of authorship. The point right before publication, raking through each chapter one mo’ gen, making sure there’s no escaping extra spaces, or errant commas, or misspelled names. Yes, I’ve managed to misspell my own characters’ names in several places.

These are the tasks put upon me by my editing team. This dynamic duo (and thankfully, came as a two-fer) are cleaning through I Blew Up Juarez with katana-like precision. But like respectful editors, they let me have last glance and last say.

So yesterday I spent the better part of twelve hours adding literary putty to fill in cracks in the plot, confirmed changes by chapter, and committed to the spelling of Maclaggan as Maclaggan, not McLaggan, not MaClaggan, no, these fuckers are called Maclaggan!! And to prepare you for your reading engagement, it’s pronounced mack-lag-gun. You British Empire folk can throw in your customary lilt where it’s right for you, I ain’t stoppin’ ya.

I’ve hit Send on the processed file, and now it’s in the hands of The Dynamic Duo. I need to rest my eyeballs, so I’m spending the rest of the day putting together the world’s best stew for tomorrow’s get-together at the demigoddess’s house. I’ll be reading a chapter from the book, not any that are already posted. If you’re attending, awesome, if not, indulge in some escapism, courtesy of yo gurl.

Happy Thursday! It’s Thursday, right??

Finals Schminals!

The Pennsylvania State University

The Pennsylvania State University

It’s finals week at ye olde alma mater (see what I did there?). Remember finals? FINALS. Mind, body, and spirit just wigging out to appease the professor.

Take a break, Sojourner of The Optimal Grade Point Average. I invite you to indulge in a bit of escapism. Enjoy my top 3 popular posts of the last week:

FOOD PORN: This British Divorce Party Ain’t Over!

FLASH FICTION: Eviction Number Four

FEATURED BLOGGER: How To Lead Infantrywomen in Combat

GOOD LUCK WITH FINALS!!!

How to Lead Infantrywomen in Combat

Von Simeon:

This is so common sense, it amazes me how this topic continues to be a polemic. Why can’t everyone think like a soldier?

Originally posted on Carrying the Gun:

One of the author's soldiers, 'Karina,' during a deployment to Afghanistan in 2009.

One of the author’s soldiers, ‘Karina,’ during a deployment to Afghanistan in 2009.

This is a guest post from friend of the blog Soren Sjogren, a Danish Army Officer who has led a mixed-gender infantry unit in combat.

Leading women in combat

Whether women are eligible to serve in combat units in the US is no longer a discussion. The first women have already passed basic infantry training and American junior officers will soon face the challenges of leading mixed units.

As a Danish army officer I have led mixed platoon-size combat units in Iraq and Afghanistan. Here is what I have learned about leading women in combat.

Do not focus on gender

Gender is not important. Ethnicity is not important either. What is important, however, is this simple question: Does this person deliver the results expected as a part of the team? The only standards to measure are…

View original 466 more words

‘The number of times I’ve puked in the Walgreens bathroom is becoming way too much for my pride.’

[Writing prompt courtesy of textsfromlastnight.com; time = 15 minutes]

The number of times I’ve puked in the Walgreens bathroom is becoming way too much for my pride. Whatever’s left of it anyways. That girl ripped my balls off with volition, sprinkled with determination. My fault, really. The drinking is, well, a problem. The intersection of bars, liqour stores, this Walgreen’s and her house is too convenient. But you know what? Fuck her. We met on a bar crawl for fuck’s sake. She thought it was cute when I slurred my gangta words at her. She was cute too. Ahh, Kendra. With her blonde hair all long and pretty to one side, matted and sweaty to the other. She had to lean against the wall just to maintain eye contact.

Fine. I’m the irresponsible one. Maybe I shouldn’t have lit that cat on fire. Maybe I shouldn’t have cussed out the bouncer as he was throwing me out of the bar. But she’s no angel! Oh no, what about that one time, she took her shoes off, ran across the street and hit that random girl in the head with the heel of her pump, just because she didn’t say ‘Excuse me’ when she passed her from the washroom? There was blood involved, Kendra! But oh no, I’m the asshole. Oh oh, another round into the Porcelain King.

28 days. We’ve known each other for 28 days. Wasn’t that a zombie apocalypse movie? Yeah, same shit. She ripped my heart out and made me watch her eat it. I need help, she says. I have a problem, she says. You know what? You didn’t have a problem with me buying you drinks, buying all your whore girlfriends drinks, buying all their fuck buddies’ drinks! I went the extra mile to fit in. What does she do? NOTHING. I have to hang out with her friends, go to the bar she likes. I bought two silk shirts for her. For. HER. I even know what she likes to drink and how she likes it made. I know her drink.

I know she’s just like me. She’s probably in the women’s room right now barfing up a lung. Lemme check. Whoa! Sorry Miss. Have you seen a tall, hot, blonde chick? No? Hey, YOU fuck off. Meanie.

You know what? I’m gonna tell her about herself, right now. Her apartment is right over there. Hold on, think we’ve got one more contribution coming up. Wait. Nope. Alright, all clear. No, YOU watch where you’re going, you cocksucker! Fuck your mother! Kiss MY ass! You know what, I don’t have time for this, I’ma go. No, YOU’RE the pussy.

“WATCH OUT!”

 

“Do you know that guy?”

“No! He’s some drunk talking shit. Oh fuck, his head’s bleeding. Whoa! That dude just took off! Hey man, you alright? You alright?”

“Bro. He ain’t movin’. He’s dead.”

Shake My Hand Like A Man

Yesterday Bobby and I walked over to the path we usually take around the lake. Sitting on a stoop, presumably waiting on the omnipresent Fred, was an unfamiliar person. I, always quick to assess my environs and collect information on hangers about, approached him, letting Bobby sniff him up. The man was not fighting off Bobby, but he also wasn’t too excited to be bomb-sniffed by a cocker spaniel. We entered into the three Southern Black American exchanges:

FIRST: How you doin’? I’m doin’ alright.

SECOND: My name’s Von, what’s your name? Miller.

I extended my hand towards Miller, clasped his, and shook it, expecting reciprocal pressure and shake. Instead, I flicked a limp, seemingly boneless arm, feeling much like flicking a water hose to detangle. In my head I thought, you call that a handshake?

Just as I thought it, Miller commented, “You got an arm on ya, now!”

And then, THIRD: You got a man?

I decided upon that weak ass handshake of Miller’s to expand on his question. Are you asking me if I got a man, or if I AM a man?

He really did offer a look of complete uncertainty.

Come on, Bobby. Miller, nice to meet you. Tell Fred I said hello.

Miller called after me, something about putting Bobby on a leash. I shrugged my shoulders, ‘Why?’ and kept it moving.

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