Sunday Quickie: In the Bag


Mark had promised me a birthday gift for a week, and for seven whole days I badgered him to tell me what it was. My boyfriend of too many years simply shrugged in that not-so-innocent way of his, and evaded my rapid-fire question bombing. He was the only man I knew who could withstand the barrage.

Finally, on Friday night he walked in the door, holding a small brown paper bag in one hand, slipping off his necktie with the other. I dragged him to the bedroom, ignoring the cordon bleu I had prepared earlier, and ripped half his suit off.

“Where’s my gift?” I said. Continue reading “Sunday Quickie: In the Bag”


Sunday Quickie: Interrupted

It was a Thursday afternoon, sunny out, warm enough to be pleasant and cool enough to be autumn. I’d just gotten home from my Advanced Russian Lit class at the university. Quick bite of ramen soup and cherry soda while checking email, and then I was done for the day. Time to play.

My apartment in those days was small. The kind of place a giant sized hamster would feel cramped in, but tidy and clean and it was all my own. The single room had a queen sized bed, a floor lamp, and a small kitchenette. I had enough space to cram a desk for my laptop and another table to sit the TV on. No cable. I streamed and watched DVDs while sitting upright in bed. Suited me just fine. Continue reading “Sunday Quickie: Interrupted”

Sunday Quickie: The Last Guitar Lesson

I’d been giving free guitar lessons to Helen the neighbor lady for eight weeks, in return for her housecleaning skills. My condo had never been cleaner thanks to her. And she was steadily improving as a guitarist. Not jamming Hendrix riffs yet, but eight weeks of practice helped her a ton.

This was supposed to be the end of our agreement. After this, no more guitar lessons, no more housecleaning. Continue reading “Sunday Quickie: The Last Guitar Lesson”

Sunday Quickie: The Uke Club

The Sunday story on a Monday. I get a few days off, and this is what happens. Oh well… Happy holiday to those in the States!


I belong to a ukulele club that meets every Tuesday night to jam at a local coffee shop. There’s maybe fifteen of us regulars, and we’ve been doing this for over a year. Most of us play soprano, some like me also have baritones, and a couple oddballs will bring in alto or tenor ukes now and then. Julia is the only one to play alto every week. Continue reading “Sunday Quickie: The Uke Club”

Sunday Quickie: Studying for the Exam

Most of my freshman year of college was lonely. I have no idea how I survived the first semester. Studying came naturally for me, and that’s mostly how I spent my time. I shut myself in the dorm room, turned on the radio for some noise, and hit the books. Got good grades. Didn’t meet any girls. Continue reading “Sunday Quickie: Studying for the Exam”

Sunday Quickie: The Lost Beauty of the Rest Stop

Somewhere in Missouri, south of the Iowa border but still a hell of a long ways to Hannibal (my halfway point on this trip), I stopped at a highway rest stop. The kind that were common when I was a kid, when dad packed us all in the van and traveled all over America. Seems over the last few years, they’ve shut down these roadside parks. But here was one, beautiful as I remember them being, with tall shaggy trees and well tended grass, a clean bathroom and a friendly person behind a desk full of brochures and maps.

I just wanted to get out of the car and stretch my legs, get some fresh coffee, and go pee. And then stretch my legs some more while taking in a healthy dose of sunshine.

That’s when I saw her. Continue reading “Sunday Quickie: The Lost Beauty of the Rest Stop”

Sunday Quickie: The Afternoon Coffee Run


I’m a night owl, and I’m a graphic designer by trade. Run my own company and do freelance work, that sort of thing. So I get out in the afternoon, buy a cup of joe at the local coffee shop, and then run errands before the sun goes down.

In the coffee line, every single time almost without fail, there’s always this stunning woman who comes in right after me. Cindy is her name. She wears business suits, the kind that make her look powerful and important. She prefers black or navy, and pinstripe. 

On Friday, the suit was a pencil skirt black pinstripe, with no hose, and red five-inch pumps.

“Afternoon,” I said. Continue reading “Sunday Quickie: The Afternoon Coffee Run”