Before, During and After the Landslide*

In Current reading, Drafts, Tea on March 14, 2014 at 7:26 am

* hint: this is after.

Blame it on whatever you like. The weather? Holidays? Genes, temperament, general disposition? Instead of being on a collision course, the character and the writer seem to be colluding. I repeat: colluding. Avoiding confrontations. Yes. Behaving in cowardly ways, such as snapping photos of flowering trees and bedsheets drying in the pleasant scent of plum blossoms. If you can believe.

Before the landslide: the phone conversation centered on the question of two brothers coached by a friend. No, not those desperate, heart-wrenching cases of mental and physical abuse where the coaching turns into a do-or-die adventure. The daddy is a general practitioner. The mommy…I haven’t met her but the description suggests a woman attempting to perform as Wife and Mother, period, nothing else allowed. The house brims with books (papa is a history nut). The boys take riding lessons and piano lessons too. They loathe both. They also loathe reading and writing.

Only clue to the loathing: the twelve-year old’s comment about hating history. Take it from there.

While we were talking, I noticed a gap between the back panel and the sides of an el-cheapo shelving unit – one overloaded with school files and manuals. The landslide happened as I was raising the cup to my lips for a second sip of tea. As mentioned, this is now the morning after the landslide. Dealing with it? Yes, of course. By closing the door and working in the living room, parts of which are orderly beyond belief.

Meanwhile, Part III of the draft meanders. So does the character. So does the writer. Blame it on the weather? Holidays? Genes, temperament, general disposition?


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