Friday, November 20, 2009

Waaaah Waaaah

Okay. I'm back. I decided to scroll through some other blogs to get an idea of what people post. I usually end up thinking about it too much and then don't end up posting figuring no one wants to read about my frusteration with stupid drivers anyway, but if that's the case then I'm out of luck (or you are) because guess what- I don't have children! Nope. None. I scrolled through, and I kid you not(no pun intended), *26* blogs and was greeted by the smiling faces of 2 year old twins Brian and Brianna, little Jaden dressed as a banana for Halloween, Katie taking her first steps, Samantha smacking the dog in the head with her plastic phone, and on and on...I finally came across a blog that said "Ahh Fall is here" and thought, great! I found a blog that is baby-free! But then the page finished loading and a homely picture of a family surrounded by trees and falling leaves popped up. I even checked my settings to make sure I wasn't on the families only version of Blogger. So without further adieu, I give you one my family members. Just to be one of the cool crowd, you know.

Benji

Boxes lined the hallway. The setting sun shone on the cobwebs in the corners that had managed to hide from the broom. Silence settled in as the dog scurried away to the empty kitchen.

Amy brushed her hands on her jeans as she stood up from packing the last of her books into an egg crate. She looked around, proud of her accomplishment. Her dad would be here any minute with the rental truck. She was on her way to find the dog in the vacant house when something stopped her. The beige shag rug stood rolled up in the dining room next to the oak chest. Amy walked over to it and scraped the rough underside with her palm. It sent shivers down her body. She let the strands of fiber slip between her fingers, and grabbed a fistful. She closed her eyes and swore she could hear his voice.

“Amy, baby! Come look at this one!”

“Brandon, really? It’s so old-fashioned looking.”

“It’s exquisite. Let’s get it!”

“How about we walk around and get our other stuff before making such an expensive decision?”

Amy knew they would be leaving the store with the gigantic carpet at that moment. How could she shut down her fiancĂ©’s request when such a simple thing like a rug prompted that wide toothy grin she so loved?

As soon as they got it home, Brandon unrolled the fluffy mass and sprawled out on it.

“Now this- this is perfection,” he let out a relaxed sigh and pretended to snore.

Amy giggled and jumped on him. They playfully wrestled, cuddled, and ended up falling asleep for the night there on the floor.

From then on, when they were home, they did most everything on the shag rug. Ate, played games, read, napped. Baby Jane took her first steps there. The beige rug became a part of the family, affectionately known as “Benji.”

When Brandon went off to Iraq, Amy had cut off an end piece of Benji and thrown it in with his clothes, a surprise to be found when he unpacked. His next letter expressed his extreme love and gratitude. There was nothing that could symbolize “home” more accurately than Benji.

The sound of the moving truck horn startled Amy back to her empty apartment, still holding onto the carpet. She wiped her tear-stained cheeks and went out to meet her dad.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

4 words: nickel, football, boxers, combat

“Well lookie here, Rhonda Sue, a shiny ol’ nickel just a’ waitin for me!” Billy said with glee as he shifted his weight to pick it up and almost toppled over.

“Oh, we sure is rich now. Maybe yeh can buy yerself some new suspenders. I sure is sick of seein’ your full moon, boy.”

Billy mumbled under his breath to his wife about needing new boxers, as a matter of fact, and set off to find a suitable pair.

“These here sure are nifty!” Billy moved his toothpick to the other side of his mouth. Rhonda Sue eyes the Bart Simpson underwear.

“I do not think so. I ain’t payin’ 5.99 for that crap! Rollin back prices my –“

“Rhondaaaa!”

Billy had wandered into the electronic department.

“How’s about we get this game? Sure does look neat!”

“We ain’t getting no combat games! You want little Jimmy Dean and Bobbi Sue to grow up violent? What’s wrong with you boy?” Rhonda Sue murmed something about fighting games and growing children as she pushed the cart towards the blenders.

“Let’s go. You think we got all day to mosey around? I hafta drop the kids off at Mawmaws so I can go to Smithie’s party. Come on!”

Billy put the game back on the shelf and shuffled behind his wife. Into the pickup. Rhonda Sue puffed on her cigarette and smoothed back her wiry hair as she drove. “Now get out and send the kids. Hurry up- I’m waiting, boy!”

Billy slammed the door to the truck. The kids ran out the door past him without so much as a word.

He soaked up the silence in the house. Letting out a breath, he popped open a can of beer. The sun began to sink as he settled into his burnt orange recliner to watch football.

Silence

The beach ball skimmed along the top of the clear, warm water.
“Get that!” the chubby, red-headed boy shrieked, as he flailed his arms and splashed the water into Sandra’s face, racing for the weightless ball bobbing in the water. Sandra swirled around, her wet hair slapping her cheek, her toes lifting up from the bottom of the pool. She flopped herself back, floating into the safety of the shallow end. The summer air was still and stifling and the earsplitting screams of the children echoed in her young ears as she squinted to see where they were coming from.
Her baby sister was having a screaming contest with the neighborhood children while their mothers blabbered to each other. Sandra, a soft-spoken, mellow child felt the madness envelop her. Her muscles tensed up and she longed to be alone. Another toy flew past her face hitting the cement on the side of the pool with a loud thud.
Sandra drifted over into the deep end, squeezed her eyes shut and used her arms to force her lithe body under the water. She opened her eyes and let her arms and legs whirl to keep herself down. She succumbed to relaxation. Her heart beat thudded in her ears. Bodies moved in slow motion and sunlight danced in the water. Her thick, dark hair billowed out around her; she tried to touch it, but it was so soft it slipped through her fingers. Time stood still. The need for air was increasing. Her heart rate sped up. The joy in solitude was fast being replaced by her need to breathe. She was reluctant, and slid back up to the chaos.