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Potential

In 100, by Lara on November 27, 2018 at 10:53 am

“A real renaissance man,” the local paper wrote when highlighting him as the valedictorian of his graduating high school class. On the eve of his fiftieth birthday, he peered at that very paper that his parents had frame. He went to a top university, got a job at a prestigious firm that he loved. The whiskey in his glass right now was a rare 1932 Glenfidditch. He had a loving husband, four bright kids, and two dogs. He did yoga, swam in the ocean twice a week, and took painting classes.  Then why am I so goddamn bored, he thought.

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mirror

In 100, by Lara on November 27, 2018 at 10:44 am

How much have you had to drink?[swig]

Four and a half glasses. [swig]

Whoa. [eyeroll]

[swig] The fuck you care?

[swig] Nothing really. But I bet she’d care. [points with lips]

[glance over the shoulder] She knows already.

[swig] She still thinks you’re drinking grape juice.

No one [swig] is under that illusion. Not even her.

[glass down] Hey, Mom.

[chug] [whispers] Fuck you, Jo.

[Mom looks over] What?

Oh never mind. I thought I lost my phone charger. Found it.

[Mom furrows brow] Okay.

Thanks. [swig]

You really gotta get clean.

[looks in mirror] Only when you do. [smile]

Modern warfare

In 100, by Lara on November 26, 2018 at 10:47 am

Target. Click. Zip. Flames.

Another threat eliminated. Another shot of congratulatory whiskey. Another dose of valium. Another night out. Another bet on red. Another win. Another hand around another waist. Another drink. Another drink. Another. Drink.

Home. Not alone. But alone.

Anger again. Left alone with only the rising blood pressure to warm the bed.

The clock again.

Morning again.

Uniform again. What do the stars mean.

Look in the mirror. Punch the mirror. Take it down.

Wrap knuckles. Ice and salt.

Coffee. And whiskey. And valium.

Target. Click. Zip. Flames.

Someone’s father. Someone’s mother. Someone’s child. Alone. Alone. Alone.

Charming on application day, A Con on move-in day

In 100, by Lara on November 25, 2018 at 7:50 pm

Britt slammed the gate. Maybe she got ripped off with this place. Charming on application day, a con on move-in day.
The diner across the street looked just fine for a late breakfast. She looked at her watch. 11:51 A.M. 24 hours since she took off that wedding dress. And the ring.
Diners are all the same. She ordered two eggs sunny side up and a piece of sausage.
“What kinda sausage you want, guy?” Despite the gray skies and rolling fog, this waiter was golden brown just like the poster children of sunny California.
“Um, pork?”
“You got it.

Explaining what a lemon looks like to a blind man

In 100, by Lara on November 25, 2018 at 7:46 pm

It’s round, which means that you can cup it in your hand and the shape will sit in your palm nicely. But it’s roundness tapers at two ends, and you’ll find stubby points as if the ends are puckered — the very position your lips might make when you sip from a straw. The surface has lots pores, you can feel them with your finger like you might brush over an older person’s nose after a facial (or before). But the surface has a sheen to it, or rather a slipperiness from oil that you can extract with a fingernail.

The guest list

In 100, by Lara on November 22, 2018 at 9:30 am

It’s eleven o’clock on Thanksgiving morning. You’ve already been up for four hours prepping. Your sister texted saying she’ll be on time for dinner, she promises. Your uncle called asking if he can bring his new girlfriend. She’s an actress and has a little dog that’s on prozac so will need to be away from people. Your two teenage boys asked if they could have some pie, like, right now. Your husband is running errands dutifully, braving the holiday supermarket scene, all to avoid having to tell you that he met someone and won’t be here for Christmas. Happy Thanksgiving.

Stock up and good luck

In 100, by Lara on November 22, 2018 at 9:17 am

She arrived at the airport two hours early. She breezed through security, and started her routine. Fill up water bottle, pee, find coffee, sit somewhere with a power outlet.

As she neared the water fountain, she found a crowd building around it. That’s when she noticed that everyone was somehow rushing or fighting their way somewhere.

Starbucks was overrun — baristas panicking and trying to hold their stations. One of the news stand shops was furiously trying to close up.

She checked her phone.

New York Times Alert: Impending plague threatens all natural water resources. Stock up and good luck.

Inner Champion

In 100, by Lara on November 20, 2018 at 1:28 pm

She strikes the perfect balance of empathetic, logical, inquisitive, and goofy. She’s timeless in the sense that she’s the best person to party until 4am with, but goes to bed at 9pm on the regular. If she were to interact with my inner critic, she would probably listen to all the mean things, and then she would say, “I respectfully disagree, and you can go to hell.” And she’d just walk away because she would determine he was not actually that cool or worth her time. And then she would nod to me and say, “you’re fine. you’ve got this.”

My inner critic

In 100, by Lara on November 19, 2018 at 8:29 pm

If my inner critic were a film character, he would be charismatic, witty, and laconic. I imagine him as someone who drapes himself on chairs or leans on walls really casually. Probably wearing jeans and white t-shirt. He’s effortlessly cool — someone you wouldn’t question because they seem to know how the world works. He’s probably eating an apple or smoking a cigarette, some benign activity that signals that he’s not putting effort or thought into what he’s saying because it’s just so obvious. He seems neither friendly or unfriendly, which is why his messages are that much more insidious.

A Story Our Colombian Tour Guide Once Told Us

In 100, by Lara on November 18, 2018 at 11:32 am

A white woman is speaking with a black man. She tells him, I only date white guys. I don’t go out with colored dudes.

The black man laughs at her.

What are you talking about? You people are the most colored folks out there. When white people are born, you’re pink. When you go to the beach, you turn red like a lobster. When you get sick, you turn green. And when you are dying, you turn blue.

She does not laugh.

We are on an air-conditioned bus listening to our Colombian Tour Guide as we drive around Medellin.

Hopes for Thanksgiving Day

In 100, by Lara on November 18, 2018 at 11:17 am

I hope that…

The smell of roasting turkey pervades the house for as long as possible

People come over early (so we can get some real talk in while we cook together)

No one suggest we “go for a run”

Someone else will join me in drinking before 12

Mom feels like a gracious and capable host

Dad likes the apple pie

The dog doesn’t get overwhelmed by the number of people

People enjoy who they end up sitting next to at dinner

Someone else carves the turkey

There’s intergenerational conversation

I get to take the leftover mashed potatoes home

a long awaited letter

In 100, by Lara on November 18, 2018 at 11:09 am

She had sat down to write this letter many times before, and each time given up before putting pen to paper. This time, she decided to write before she could think.

The feelings flooded out effortlessly. Anger, sadness, pride, and relief. She was on her thirds page when she realized she was crying.

Three tears fell in big fat drops successively on the words “like family,” distorting the hastily scribbled letters into watery tendrils. Though her hand starting aching, she continued on.

Finally, she signed her name, put the letter in an envelope, and threw it in the recycling bin.

my feet at the edge of the path

In 100, by Lara on November 16, 2018 at 9:21 am

my feet at the edge of the path
toes scraping the soles of my shoes
on the edge of the start
but not firmly planted still

many others beckon to me
but ultimately walk on
leaving a vague impression
of confusion and resolve

but when I peer behind (twisting my head,
still not moving my feet)
there’s more path to see
do I remember walking it?

my gaze returns forward
the path bends into the horizon
I cannot see the steps I would take
and the others’ footsteps have disappeared

my arches ache
we haven’t moved in years
they say

diagnosis

In 100, by Lara on November 14, 2018 at 10:18 am

Doctor who identifies as a woman: We got your test results back.

Patient who identifies as a man: [pause] Alright, tell me.

Doctor who identifies as a woman: It’s misogyny.

Patient who identifies as a man: What? Oh my god. Is it treatable?

Doctor who identifies as a woman: It’s hard to say right now. There’s a couple of things we can try–

Patient who identifies as a man: Wait! What’s going on? I just came in to get a flu shot! Can I see a different doctor?

Doctor who identifies as a woman: I’ll get the electroshock therapy ready.

the only acceptable way to use the word chick in 2018 is for a young bird

In 100, by Lara on November 13, 2018 at 1:52 pm

Man 1: Hey man, how are you?
Man 2: I’m good. You know, pretty busy.
Man 1: [sighs] Same. Recruiting?
Man 2: You know it.
Man 1 and Man 2: It’s exhausting.
Man 1: [chuckles] Tell me about it. Last week, I went to a consulting interview and this chick shows up—
Man 2: Wait, wait, what? An actual chick?
Man 1: Yeah. It was super weird. Feathers and everything. Really threw me off.
Man 2: I mean, yeah of course it would. That’s bizarre. Since when are chicks allowed to do business?
Man 1: [shrugs] I guess it’s 2018.

concerts

In 100, by Lara on November 12, 2018 at 3:38 pm

Trish loves to dance. Anywhere, anytime.

But unfortunately, there’s one major thing that impedes that lovely proclivity in public settings. And that’s when other people are taking up so much space that she can’t really move.

Trish knows about psychology. It’s not because they’re bad people, it’s because of their circumstances and environment. #fundamentalattributionerror

The concert is just that popular and crowded.  If you want to see the musician, you have to accept your decision to exist in this sea of bodies.

But Trish is also human. Goddamn #personalspace am I right?

She looks around. If they elbow, I’ll elbow.

お土産

In 100, by Lara on November 11, 2018 at 10:34 am

Omiage means souvenir and she knew she couldn’t return without one.

She had been living in Tokyo for three months, all the while ignoring the inevitable departure. But today was her last day.

She wandered around the mall, looking for objects that could encapsulate the experiences she had made over the last three months. Would a ceramic sake set communicate that well? What about a handmade hanten? Some cute stickers?

She sighed in frustration. You could get all of these things back in the states.  The only difference would be the story, and none of them quite had that.

dinner menu brainstorm

In 100, by Lara on November 11, 2018 at 8:30 am

brown butter and sage gnocchi, marinated kale salad with pecorino and almonds, lemon tart

cold peanut sesame noodles with scallions and soft tofu, pickled cucumbers and radishes, pineapple cake

coconut milk eggplant adobo and garlic rice, broccolini with fried shallots, dark chocolate bars and roasted hazelnuts

whole roasted cauliflower with capers and lemon, roasted beet and orange salad with goat cheese, olive oil ice cream sundaes with pistachios

tomato and white bean stew with chive garlic oil and parmesan croutons, lemon and radicchio salad, pear frangipane tart

chawanmushi, salmon with fresh shiitakes and ginger, spinach with sesame sauce, ginger cookies

Roots

In 100, by Lara on November 9, 2018 at 7:40 am

At 4:32am, lightning struck the tree.

It wasn’t a particularly remarkable tree. It was tall enough and leafy enough, but it was by no means the type of tree you could take a nap under or pick delicious fruit from. This tree was planted in 1865 by a farmer’s son. The boy had found a sapling shriveled and dying at the edge of his family’s land. He dug it up with his hands and carried it to his play shed by the barn.

Many decades later, the land was taken over by an industrial soybean company, but the tree remained.

Options for how to support a friend going through a tough time (some good, some bad)

In 100, by Lara on November 8, 2018 at 9:19 am

Listening.
Assuring them it will be alright.
Telling them about the silver lining.
Suggesting solutions.
Distracting them with humor.
Distracting yourself with humor.
Hugging them for longer than normal.
Putting your hand on their hand.
Asking them about how they are feeling.
Listening to sad music.
Listening to happy music.
Cleaning their apartment.
Reading a book aloud.
Laughing together.
Watching a movie.
Going to counseling.
Psychoanalyzing.
Villifying the cause of the badness.
Smashing things.
Being there.
Bringing food.
Drinking.
Offering to sleep over.
Texting them about random facts.
Connecting them with someone going through something similar.
Talking a lot.
Dancing.

Thanksgiving Alignment

In 100, by Lara on November 7, 2018 at 7:20 pm

Lawful Good: Green beans with bacon bits
The bacon elevates the humble bean to a competitive level amidst the feast

Neutral Good: Brussel Sprouts
They smell bad, but we’d miss em if they weren’t there.

Chaotic Good: Gravy
Meat juices. Butter. Wine.

Lawful Neutral: Apple Pie
The crowdpleaser you can count on.

Neutral Neutral: The Turkey
It’s iconic, yet benign.

Chaotic Neutral: Roasted duckfat potatoes
Mom has been reading the blogs.

Lawful Evil: Marshmallow-Topped Sweet potatoes
Just the worst. Everyone knows it.

Neutral Evil: Cranberry sauce
From stove to trash.

Chaotic Evil: Shrimp Chow Mein
There’s always that one person.

shameless product brainstorm (pls vote)

In 100, by Lara on November 6, 2018 at 6:54 am

a candle where, when it melts, it reveals a fun object (like a cat)
a candle holder that has a funnel built in to remold the melted wax into a new candle
a candle holder that has a funnel to build a fun shape out of the melted wax
wine-scented candles
candles that smell like your hometown
candles that have different words with each later of wax melting off
a candle holder that shines an image or pattern on the wall when lit
a candle in the form of someone you hate and when the wax melts, it deforms them

Irish Twins

In 100, by Lara on November 5, 2018 at 1:54 pm

“I’ll go if you go.”

This was how it was between Marley and her sister. In order for either of them to overcome the slightest inertia, one needed the validation of the other.  Even when they were babies, Marley wouldn’t feed unless her sister was hungry, too.

But this time, she felt the need to resist.

“I don’t want you to go with me.”

The words felt like marbles, each syllable toppling over the other in a slippery cascade. She immediately sought her sister’s eyes, begging for approval – a reflex that couldn’t be helped even in the face of conflict.

A Sunday in Santa Monica

In 100, by Lara on November 4, 2018 at 5:31 pm

Smoky fog clinging to my skin
as it mists off the ocean surface
I lick the salt off of the freshly
roasted pumpkin seeds

Perching, cross-legged
over a terracotta balcony, I see
a man walking shirtless
two others trading sunglasses

The street signs have a certain flatness
static amidst the palm trees
I can only make out their silhouette
rendered monochrome in the haze

And not too much later, it starts to clear
the water still blending into the sky
but the boardwalk comes into view
and all this time, people have been there

such places exist without me watching

VC Pitch

In 100, by Lara on November 3, 2018 at 2:07 pm

Millions of Americans every day drive their vehicles. While some think we’re trending to an electric future, the reality is, when it comes to the real world, oil is still and will always be king. Combine this with the millennial trends in awareness of production and distribution of consumables. We present: snake oil.

Small batch, organic, hyperlocal oil, sourced and drilled from your neighbor in Ojai, California. All natural, all American.

We expect to establish our first base of customers in areas that have the perfect overlap of pick up truck drivers, pet project picklers, and mason jar coffee drinkers.

Ants

In 100, by Lara on November 2, 2018 at 2:18 pm

After checking his inbox for the fifth time that hour, he had to admit to himself that he probably didn’t get in. He expected to feel deflated and empty, like there would be a definite hole where reward, validation, and excitement should be. But instead, he felt mostly numb except for a tingling feeling. Like little ants of defeat were crawling all over his arms, face, and torso. Annoying in the moment, harmless in the long run. Well maybe.

“Anything?” his roommate said, standing by the coffeemaker.

“Nope.”

His roommate nodded. And somehow, that was helpful. The ants went away.

Grocery Lists

In by Lara on November 1, 2018 at 6:02 am

Jean, the responsible one:
Dishwasher detergent
Tomatoes
All purpose flour
Packing tape
Milk from cows
Milk from soybeans

Prerna, the crafty one:
Macaroni
Chili
Twine
Colored pencils

Alex, the social one:
White wine
Red wine
Ginger beer
Hummus (everyone loves hummus)

Fabio, the one with feelings:
Mint chocolate chip ice cream
Raspberry sorbet
Hot cheetos
A large bottle of sparkling water

Parker, the healthy one:
Kale
Turmeric
Kombucha
Organic Soil

Lee, the one with a plan:
Pizza dough
Tomato sauce
Mozzarella cheese
Loose leaf basil
A triple washed bag of greens

Helena, the neurotic one:
Peanuts
A pack of forks

Fried Rice

In by Lara on February 15, 2016 at 8:53 am

It doesn’t matter what kind of rice you use, as long as it’s a day old. You can get away with two, but never more than that. Chop some garlic and fry it in some fat. Pretty much everything flies except for olive oil maybe, the flavor is too strong. This morning, I ran out of oil, so I used chicken fat. Yes, I have chicken fat. Once the garlic is cooked and smelling fragrant, add the rice and simmer until done. Serve with a fried egg. There’s something weird about leftovers being more delicious than the prepared meal itself.

Happy Valentine’s Day

In by Lara on February 14, 2016 at 12:07 pm

A few cliches, after all it’s Valentine’s day
but first a review:

Past dates have included
sneaking into movies,
picnics by the beach,
winding trips to wine country.

Today was adventurous in its own right
A lovely morning
late, by design

with a more causal exchange of vows
(not pictured here)
and an equally casual
review of momentous occasions

The eighth or the first
we don’t care for semantics
only for moments
and this one rose to the occasion

Now on to some tea and toast
and I’m now imagining
how we’ll be doing this
every morning
like we promised

Some ideas for getting out of bed in the morning, in no particular order

In by Lara on February 3, 2016 at 8:25 pm

Some ideas for getting out of bed in the morning, in no particular order
1) Timed bacon fryer
2) Timed coffee maker
3) An alarm clock you have to chase around the room to turn off
4) A bucket of water hanging above your bed that splashes you if you don’t get up within ten seconds of your alarm
5) Going to sleep at 6PM
6) Your boss’s voice yelling at you about what’s due today
7) A new item delivered to your doorstep but expires after 5 minutes
8) Your bed flips over and deposits you onto the floor

Waiting at a bar

In by Lara on February 3, 2016 at 8:17 pm

I’m sitting at the bar waiting for my friends to arrive, which is a predicament I often find myself in — sometimes up to 45 minutes early for a meet up. I’m always a little anxious as a single woman alone at a bar. I’m not looking to get hit on, but I also don’t want to be a nerdy loser looking at email on my phone. I settle for something in between, open for conversation, usually with bartender, but phone on table just in case. The man to my left is playing solitaire on his iPad. I order a beer.

Welcome back

In by Lara on February 1, 2016 at 11:29 pm

Your brain has been on vacation for approximately thirty-seven days. Welcome back to the real world, sir. Can’t say we’ve missed you. We miss no one, and sources tell me no one misses us, either (those that would never actually leave). You’ll have a seven day grace period, after which, it will no longer be acceptable to walk around with the facial expression equivalent of a satiated squirrel. Don’t worry, it’s not as bad as it sounds. On average, it takes seventeen days for your brain to return to normal levels. If you experience a delay, we’ll let you know.

Thank you, GI System

In by Lara on February 7, 2014 at 1:11 pm

I’m not religious, so I’m definitely not one for a mealtime prayer, but I in light of recent events, I have decided to say thank you to my steadfast digestive system, the organ that has taken whatever I’ve decided to stuff down it without complaint or really even a gurgle. Fried food, pints upon pints of beer, shots of whisky, spicy concoctions made in a dingy food cart at 2am. I salute you, GI tract, for bearing with me this long. It doesn’t mean I’ll stop eating those things, but in saying thank you, I might at least think twice.

 

Cocoa puffs on milk on metal

In by Lara on January 15, 2014 at 4:44 pm

He eats teeth for breakfast.
Literally.
He crunches them up, teeth on teeth. The sound is not not reminiscent of my daughter, 10-years-old and almost braces-free, eating her cereal every morning before school. Stale cocoa puffs on milk on metal.
“Most go for the young ones, but I know better. The older ones are softer, more pliable.”
I’m afraid, obviously. But the feeling fades and is replaced by urgency. It’s a rollercoaster of terror’s panic and survival’s adrenaline. I’m wondering how long I can keep this up before I pass out.
Focus, I think. Cocoa puffs on milk on metal.

Things I like to do when I’m home alone

In by Lara on August 27, 2013 at 11:31 am

Things I like to do when I’m home alone:

Watch my guilty pleasures television shows in bed (invariably with atrocious posture) preferably at the same time as playing some sort of game on my phone such as tetris.

Blast some of my less trendy music choices while I try to slice cucumber pieces as thinly as possible.

Get lost in the wormhole that is the internet. Frequently browsed topics include a capella performances, restauranteurs, recipes, and obviously Facebook stalking.

Light candles, draw myself a bath, pour myself a glass of wine, and prepare a chicken apple sausage on a fork.

The narrative in my head when I try and write a personal statement or update my resume

In by Lara on August 26, 2013 at 3:13 pm

God I sound like a pretentious douchebag. No one cares about that shit? Oh great, you worked with a

bigwig at that place back when it mattered? Great! You still suck. Ugh. Okay, let’s be less critical about this.

Start over.

Fuck.

Fuck you.

FUCK.

You suck, you know that? You really do. This is seriously the most cliched piece of shit that will ever

land on the admissions’ person’s desk.

Stop writing about your grandmother.

Okay, you need adversity. Like you’ve faced adversity. Wah wah wah.  Stop whining, asshole.

Maybe switching to writing by hand will be less judgmental.

Slap

In by Lara on August 26, 2013 at 3:06 pm

“What was that for!”
It’s weird how much soft skin can still sting when you come into contact with it like that. I didn’t say anything. I felt like I should apologize, but I felt like I might vomit if I did. She was still standing there with a shocked and hurt expression on her face. People turned their heads to watch us as they piled into the further morass of the club that is what we do at night.
“Well?”

There was so much that that was for, I wanted to say. Instead,

“Sorry, I was being passive aggressive.”

I learned about sufficient-necessary conditions in terms of real-world relationships

In by Lara on August 26, 2013 at 2:56 pm

The needy relationship: If B goes to the party, A will go to the party.
A is needy. B is independent. B can go to the party all by B’s self or with someone else.

That couple that goes everywhere together: If B goes to the party, A will go to the party. And vice versa. Aka if one of them goes, they both go. If one of them doesn’t go, neither of them will go.

The bad breakup one: If B goes to the party, A will not go and vice versa, cuz girllll, that was a bad breakup.

Stuck a Stake

In by Lara on August 23, 2013 at 11:45 am

I’ve stuck a stake in the sand,
which, if you’ve ever tried, is not easy to do.
I’ve stuck a stake in the sand,
and I thought my stake was true;
Or that at least it was good,
that it was the right thing to do.

My hope, my logic, my reasoning was:
That once the water came,
it would do what it does
The stake would stick,
the sand withdraws.

But perhaps it’s the water,
or maybe the stake,
but if I’m to be honest
that stake, I did make,
with careful consideration,
I doubt it would break.

It’s always worth it

In by Lara on January 26, 2013 at 4:41 pm

Two men walked down the sidewalk, bundled in scarves and hats, long jackets, and boots. It may be the West coast, but no matter what anyone said, San Francisco was fucking cold.

“Well, say something, man.”

The sidewalk was peppered with dark grey, a light drizzle beginning to form. They kept walking. A homeless woman asked them for money, anything, change, even. They shook their heads, said sorry, and passed on.

“Was it worth it?” he finally said.

The other man fingered the business card he had been keeping in pocket for the past few weeks.

“It’s always worth it.”

Corny porny love scene

In by Lara on October 17, 2012 at 4:35 pm

This poem is a corny porny love scene It involves steam and lips, satin and dare we say, nips? There are gratuitous close ups of skin. Limbs so entangled and intertwined that you, the viewer, don’t know which is which. There’s an abundance of rouge, though at this point, none on lips. There are also some jeweled velvet underpants that get slowly and delicately get removed by lace-gloved fingers. This is no ordinary film, the fingernails are even manicured. No dirt there. But don’t worry — plenty in the scene. If you know what I mean. All puns very intended.

Jargon

In by Lara on October 2, 2012 at 4:44 pm

Could we circle back tomorrow? I’m feeling a bit drained from all of these syngeries we’ve been mulling over regarding the economic viability of our client’s value proposition. I’m not even sure that any of this is actionable content.  Think about the core competency of this value-add. I mean, we should probably stop talking about componentizing positions since, I mean, let’s face it, that would just be boiling the ocean. Going forward, we need to gain traction and definitely instantiate the granularity of the thing. Get at the low hanging fruit and all. Alright, good. So let’s circle back tomorrow.

Oakland is the ish.

In by Lara on September 24, 2012 at 1:04 pm

Oakland is the ish.
It gets YOU, it gets ME, and it still doesn’t give a damn that you don’t get IT.
It keeps it real around the edges, and sometimes, it blasts a rough image ‘cuz it can.
It’s got real diversity, not just twenty-year-old techies tryna find themselves, but hey — they’re welcome, too.
Here, it’s all bout fukxing with ish, with shit, with it.
You could stay beyond the water, but you’ll miss out.
‘Cuz we got Uptown, Downtown, Old Town, and Chinatown all chilling out and inviting you into that real vibrant shit.
and it’s the ish.

Comic Books

In by Lara on September 21, 2012 at 4:35 pm

You could tell summer was going to be over soon. It was only six o’clock and the sun was geting low in the sky.
She took a drag of the cigarette. It was half-smoked when she started it.
“Don’t you like comic books?” he asked.
“I like the ones where the women are wearing heels,” she said.
He put his hand on her upper thigh. Intimate, but needy. She brushed it off as if it were a tiresome fly that had lost its way around a plate of french fries.
He sighed and fidgeted with the ring on his finger.

 

Driving for work

In by Lara on August 31, 2012 at 11:56 am

He drove down the interstate with an iced coffee from McDonald’s. It was never really coffee, he thought, and now, after a couple hours in a baking car, it was lukewarm. He sipped it anyway. The heat seemed not to care that he was wearing a three-piece suit. He saw fruit stands here and there. Guys with big sombreros and long-sleeved shirts standing outside selling pineapples or peaches or something. Man, he really needed to take a piss. He cursed the not-coffee and cursed himself for ignoring that sign that said “last rest stop for forty miles,” forty miles back.

You will fall…

In by Lara on August 24, 2012 at 2:03 pm

…down after ambitiously boasting that your hoola hooping skills are much better after a couple drinks. (But they aren’t. Really.)
…apart. And more than once. But that’s why you have people, and that’s why people have you. It is part of growing, it is necessary.
… prey to a stupid boy’s paralyzing good looks and hearty chuckles. You will learn not stand for disrespect or dreadful company of that sort, for you will learn, the hard way, that it can take a part of you and never give it back.
…fall in love, with someone, with yourself, with what you’ve learned.

The next time

In by Lara on July 13, 2012 at 9:50 am

The next time I’m walking down the street, I’m going to follow that guy I find totally cute for a couple blocks and yell not-so-harmless compliments at him, like:
“Hey cutie, where you going?”
“Nice jeans, they hug your ass just right!”
“Whoever is your girlfriend is a lucky, lucky woman.”

The next time I’m at a bar or a club, I’m gonna corner a cute guy and flirt really aggressively. I’ll make sure he knows he doesn’t really have a choice in the matter and inappropriately touch him.

The next time, I’ll equal the playing field. That’s fair, right?

New Year’s Day

In by Lara on July 5, 2012 at 4:44 pm

Today is the one day I get to feel not completely hated by everyone in this city. Today is the one day I feel like I can blend in, maybe even feel normal. This is one of those rare occasions. Ever since the state banished certain holidays from mattering, I have resigned myself to the fate of my mundane existence. Day after day, I make people unhappy. And most of the time they won’t even know it was me.
Today, I don’t wear the uniform and get to agree with everyone else, “yeah, parking in the city is such a bitch sometimes.”

Welcome to the city

In by Lara on June 5, 2012 at 9:19 am

The rusty gate whined as he tried to slam it shut. He doubted it would provide much in the way of security.
He walked to the diner across the street and looked at his watch. 24 hours since he ended his college romance and moved across the country on what you could say was, a whim.
He ordered two eggs sunny side up and a piece of sausage.
“Sorry guy, we don’t do meat.” Despite the gray skies and rolling fog, this waiter was golden-brown just like a poster child of sunny California.
“Just eggs then.”
Welcome to the city, guy.

The Yellow Raincoat

In by Lara on March 7, 2012 at 8:19 pm

The way she wore that yellow raincoat, you’d think it was going to rain acid and we’d all disintegrate except for her. When she was twelve-years-old, her mother bought her that yellow raincoat. She hadn’t grown since then.
“Do you want some tea? Or a blanket?”
“No,” she paused before adding, “thank you.”
Without the coat, she looked small and bony, like a newborn bird.
“I’m sorry about your coat. I hope it’ll be alright.”
She glanced at her yellow pelt, now covered in dirty rain and street grease.
“My name is Yona.” She smiled.
“Nice to meet you, Yona.”