Short Story – Coming Home, Part 3

Posted on 12 min read

The city is quiet, no one is out, and most of the stores are dark. I go to a gas station, because it’s open, and buy a cup of coffee and a breakfast burrito. It’s terrible and delicious, and I remember that there are good reasons to be here. The boy working behind the counter is young, maybe sixteen, and he stands attentive at the edge of the counter even though I’m the only person walking through the aisles. He wishes me ‘Merry Christmas’ as I walk out and I smile without showing teeth. When I get home my mom is already beginning to prepare dinner. She has the nice …

Short Story – Coming Home, Part 2

Posted on 21 min read

We ride the light rail as it silently moves through the city at night. The girl from this morning meets us downtown; she has combed her hair out in long wavy strands and looks very cute, and I feel a sense of pride for my brother.   We walk through the city and I’m alive, and with the cold everything is cutting and distinct. The streets are full of people, but I don’t notice them, except for the occasional girl in a skirt that braves the weather for the sake of her fashion. Sometimes I will have to step aside for groups of boys that move headlong. Occasionally they will clip …

Short Story – Coming Home, Part 1

Posted on 19 min read

(Written 2007) I wake to the sight of white. Lines cut across the white. Most of them are perfect squares but some bend and twist, searching for a destination. On these lines there will be things, things too small for me to see, but I know they are there and go about their lives in the same way that I left them.   “Welcome home, Mr. Scott.” The woman hands me my passport. “Thank you.” In the taxi the driver is quiet, which I’m grateful for, and I fall asleep with my head against the window. The taxi stops in front of a large brick house enclosed by a black …

Ultimate Sex Survey

Posted on 1 min read

In line for a coffee, I notice a free local Boulder magazine called Rooster sitting on a rack near the barista. On the cover is a wide-eyed drawing of a girl in a small referee outfit, cradling a baby that appears to be wrapped in a burqa. In the heading is written, “Ultimate Sex Survey”. The entire cover is weirdly sexual, and concerning, because I find it concerning. I can’t tell when this type of thing started to make me squeamish. When did sex start to make me awkward? It pours out of everything now, much as it did when I was young, but it seems so disheartening. A familiar …

Fucked Up Long-Distance Relationships

Posted on 1 min read

I’m drawn to relationships with people that live in different cities. To quote True Detective, “You know how it is. You want a wife, but only half the time.” And for me the distance provides me with everything that I want in a relationship: intimacy, without the commitment. Yet beginning a relationship in a different city is a doomed proposition. It leaves only two exists: too fast or too slow. You’re flying all over to meet up, and it’s all fun-drunk-good-time sex filled weekends. But that’s too much work for hotel sex, and the inconvenience of the situation causes it to suffocate. Or it develops rapidly; in which case you …

A Happy Day, Then You’ll Pay

Posted on 1 min read

What is it about alcohol that leaves me in a dire mood the next day? I never used to feel the depletion of dopamine, but now Elliot Smith lyrics pound in my head next to a dehydrated hangover. ”A happy day, and then you’ll pay.” There is positivity in the recovery. A creativity in the dark mood that infects the day after. Is this what it means to get older? I feel better at 31 than I did at 30. And I felt better at 30 than I did at 29. But now there are intrinsic changes happening, even while the core muddles on in the same way it has …

Dream

Posted on 1 min read

She holds my face. Looks at me. Kisses me on the cheek. And then kisses me on the other check. She repeats this a dozen times. I wake. It’s a memory that has infected my dreams. As I lie in bed I imagine that moment, think of it over and over again. Then my thoughts leave my daughter, only for another memory to bring her back. And I feel regret that my thoughts ever left her at all. …

Sundance 2016

Posted on 2 min read

Sundance is one of the few constants in my life. Every year I go with the same friends, to the same condo, and watch a relentless amount of movies. And despite the hundreds of movies over the years, the luster of sitting in a cramped theater and leaving the left side of my brain for the right, has never worn off. And yet this year I’ve seen the other side of the film festival: a commercialism and cynicism that underpins everything. It’s not Sundance’s fault. It’s not a slow creeping change. It’s the reason these festivals exist in the first place. Over the years I’ve accumulated a number of friends …

Like Prague in it’s Heyday

Posted on 1 min read

I come home alone, by choice. We kissed as we said goodbye in the parking lot. She asked me to come back with her. Her brother watched from the window of her car as we stood out in the cold. I sit in the driver’s seat for a long pause, watch her car drive away, and then finally check my phone. There’s a line of text messages that I scroll through. A multitude of people, mostly women, had written. I had resisted the urge to check my phone during the concert. But she stood pressed against me, and felt the texts vibrate in my pocket with the same frequency that …

Realization on a Saturday

Posted on 1 min read

The early mornings on a Saturday. This is the time when I should be able to concentrate. Instead, I feel the creeping of my approaching birthday, and the lingering effects of a five day bender that lead up to New Years. The radio doesn’t help either, it’s playing music that I can’t recognize, but is eerily similar to the Omaha based record labels I used to listen to in the early 2000’s. I need to dry out for a month. It’s not a New Year’s resolution, but an actual need. What will dating be like without alcohol? When was the last time I spent the night with someone, without at …