Wednesday, September 15, 2010

3WW: Big Dreams


Three Word Wednesday has come around again, and thank you to ThomG for this fabulous community.

*

Big Dreams

If I couldn't be a waitress, what else could I be? I walked home, apron jingling and heavy with coins, and stared at the sidewalk. Check-out girl at the supermarket. They might make me bag groceries first. I could do that. Work my way up. I'd been hinting -- incredibly subtly, for sure -- to the guy who ran the used book store that I could work there. I'd keep the books in order. I could add numbers in my head real well, and count back change like a pro. And then there was the ad I'd seen in the paper, for someone with good conversation skills to talk on the phone. Females only. It paid good. I could sit and talk on the phone -- they'd let you sit, wouldn't they? I wouldn't have to stand? Well, I was used to standing anyway. It wouldn't make a difference.

Yellow and green leaves fell next to me. The first falling leaves of September. I don't know why they fell; they were still soft-looking, not dried and crumbly. If I found another job soon, I'd have money for Christmas. Last Christmas, money had been tight. I had a feeling that Mandy and Lissa were still offended by my homemade gifts. I'd tried to make them sound charming and heartfelt, but they were married with babies and already had two-story homes with decks and garages. Mandy had given me a gift card for fifty dollars to Macy's. I'd tried to demure, like, "Oh, no, I can't take this, it's too much," but secretly, I was already thinking about some nice long johns and maybe even a pair of earrings. Lissa gave me a sweater from Express that I'd seen before; it cost eighty bucks. Maybe she got it on sale. It didn't matter. It was chunky and long and expensive, and I wore it every chance I got that winter, except when I was seeing them. I didn't want them to know I treasured it that much. I wanted them to think that I had other nice sweaters, from Express and Macy's and, I'd half-sort-of-pretended, Ann Taylor.

I could probably get a job at Ann Taylor. Except I kind of thought you needed the right wardrobe to work there. By the time I'd mentally gone through my closet and discarded all my options, I was home.

"Hey," Chris said when I walked in. I put my coin-filled apron on the counter. "How was work?"

I didn't dare tell him I'd been fired. His personality was... volatile under the best of circumstances. Instead, I said, "I think I'm gonna look for another job."

"Good. You're better than a waitress." He turned back to his TV Guide, circling possibilities for the day. He used pencil, so he could change his schedule. He was smart and organized like that. "How about some lunch?"

I put a pan on the stove and got out the bread. I'd make grilled cheese. My feet were killing me, but I was used to it. Standing. Walking. I thought about the change in my apron, how good I was at money. And I'd done pretty well in school. I was a good reader. I had a lot of skills. I'd just need to make them work for me. Soon. Real soon.

Macy and Lissa weren't going to be the only ones with babies.

*

Thank you for stopping by. During the course of writing this, I dropped my toast with Nutella. Nutella-side down, of course. On my flash drive. You should know that I pulled it out of the laptop and licked it off. This is the kind of writer I am. One who licks food off her laptop.

Thanks again. Happy Wednesday. *lick*

18 comments:

  1. Wow you got a lot out of that. I vote for the phone sex job, tap into the creative sh=kill set and get off her feet.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ummmmm. This is very well written. And truth be told I especially enjoy the Nutella follow up. Love and Light, Sender

    ReplyDelete
  3. I hope she gets to sit down at least and stop the constant walking and standing..very touching story (and thanks for your visit) Jae

    ReplyDelete
  4. Quite a slice of life from this character. The reader is taken through her thought process and actions fluently.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Oh, the poor dear! Couldn't he have made the lunch instead of wasting time with the TV guide? She should probably dump his ass first.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I really enjoyed your story...and loved that you licked food off your laptop LOL - you sound like my type of a gal! (I'd have done that too, I'm sure :-) )

    Nice writing.

    My 3WW

    ReplyDelete
  7. Smooth and well crafted, but I like the reality twist at the end with your flash drive the best.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Is it just me or did anyone else get aroused by the juxtaposition of the words "lick", "lap"top, and "Nut"ella? And then of course, there's "flash" drive.

    Jesus, Becky... even when you're not writing erotica, it's erotic....

    ReplyDelete
  9. Mimi, what can I say. Life is one long erotic experience.

    I should've got the word "nipple" in there somehow. Hmm...

    Thanks to everyone for reading and commenting! You guys are swell. Writing buds. :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. This piece is so sumptuous, so tightly woven. I didn’t expect the ending, and what an ending. You’ve got the great ability to wave details in the reader’s face, then smack them upside the head with one line at the end that makes them stand back and marvel.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I hope she finds a job she loves.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Last line was voila:)
    liked it.And to carry things in such a controlled way is real nice.
    Well comments have been pulling me to read your other work too.

    ~Harsha

    ReplyDelete
  13. Thanks, Thom! You know how much I enjoy your writing as well. I can't thank you enough for this wonderful community.

    Angel, I hope we all do. (er, I have, it just doesn't pay that well, LOL!)

    Thank you, Harsha! Happy reading.

    ReplyDelete
  14. A wonderfully written piece with masterful detail -- you pulled me right in with your character and her world.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I'm with Christopher; I really enjoyed and related to the story, including the sardonic piece about being smart with the TV Guide. But that ending: just perfect!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Loved the story ... and Nutella should never be wasted! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Great writing, as always. Even though the piece is very short, you manage to make me feel for the character (and hate Mandy and Lissa. It´s the Mandies and the Lissas of the world that hold us back, that make us believe we can´t do things if we´re not able to do them ”properly”- aaargh, hate!). But, oh, I have a feeling this poor girl is going to be stuck and never find the strength to make those changes!

    Love the Nutella story. I once accidentally threw a piece of chocolate cake in the bin. Yes, you know what I did next =)

    ReplyDelete