Dear friends of the unreal — Our Spring hiatus is over! Storytime Sunday returns with two small strange tales.
1. A Sunday with the Relatives – for Barry Yourgrau
My father appears in a shot glass. My mother appears in a cup of chocolate milk. The cheddar cheese descends from the bullet holes in the ceiling, Cracker Barrel. The apartment floods with liquor, Campbell’s’ chicken soup, coffee cake, and instant coffee. We are kidnapped by pirates, we are kidnapped by cowboys. The sheriff arrives. He is an alien. We don’t care, we just want some breakfast. The lamb chops have been thrown behind the stove, the canned sardines have slid under the refrigerator. Snow falls, lightening strikes us. I knit and my grandmother knits, and we sit in the thunderstorm, while my mother watches from inside, because she hates the out of doors. She is a critic and she doesn’t make anything, as befits her role. My grandfather has a sewing machine that he has placed in a garden that he refuses to tend, and he is going hunting for voodoo dolls in the grocery stores of Southampton, before Puff Daddy moves there, wearing Martha Stewart’s head. They are all dead and I die too, of a broken leg that I got in a poorly considered advanced Pilates maneuver. But I am forgiven and go to a heaven filled with Bloomingdales bags. They are in a purgatory of melancholy borzois and snappish poodles with the Saks logo imprinted on them. Over priced. Where are Bonwit Teller and Best and Co? The department stores of yesteryear. We don’t have slides, and I’m sorry about that. Just a few pictures. No soap bubbles, but a lot of washing machines.
Once there was a chair. The chair sat waiting for the body. The body did not come. The chair felt itself expand becoming its own body sitting on is own surface. Then that got boring. Then the chair thought to peel its paint; no paint; its varnish; too strong. It waited for the sun to shine and crack its innards but this was not a sunny place and so the chair realized it would have to survive, it would have to be happy with nothing on top of it, no foreign thing bending its frame breaking it down, and suddenly or perhaps not so suddenly it felt a kind of pleasure. It felt a kind of joy.