Tuesday, February 5, 2013

300 Words or Less: Pale

I'm not usually one to take my shirt off for people, but when the person telling me to strip has a gun on her hip and a title on her name? I only hesitate a moment.

At least I can be proud of that moment.

We are both workers, she and I, born in the same complex. Obviously the authority of my title holds nothing against hers though. I’ve definitely not been issued a gun.

Her face is hard, like the grey stone walls around us are hard. Still, I can’t imagine she’s much older than me. None of us get much older than me without losing something important. An eye, a hand, a piece of our soul.

I wonder what she’ll do when she gets off work tonight. Will she lean on her fridge door while rummaging for something to munch? Maybe she’ll pop a lite beer, put her feet up, watch a re-run while winding down. Maybe she’ll head straight to bed. Will someone be waiting for her there?

link to original here
Her eyes scan lazy over my pale breasts, her voice monotone. “Height?”




She looks me up and down, doing her own calculations. I have no idea what she writes on her form. The questions never end.

Until they do.

The last one makes me smile.

“Are you suicidal?”

I smile because a truly suicidal person would never say yes. We all know this, right?


She scrutinizes my face, my answer, my crime. She calculates again. But then she just shrugs, throws me my shirt. She’s got a pale ale at home that’s more important than I am.

“Put her in the tank with the rest,” she says, and they push me forward.

Or perhaps I’m moving backwards.

At this point, I can’t tell. 


That's the latest story, morning glory. Let me know what you think about this or anything else you want to rant/share. Have a lovely week, lovelies, and here's a little magic from Cat Power's new album:

*Update: I'm linking with the Dude Write flash-fic competition this week, so check out this and other bloggers' work here.


  1. I love how the song just seems to fit. You have set the seen so beautifully, I am intrigued about the world you have started to paint! I am always left in awe at your writing ability!!

    1. And I at yours, Sleepy Joe. Thanks for the kuddos and the love.

  2. I too am intrigued. Very well written. Left me wanting to know more! :)

    1. Tamara! So good to hear your voice again. Thanks for the positive thoughts and energy. I'm not sure I'll keep going with this one, but you make me want to :)

  3. Mmmm. Very nice story to chew on first thing in the morning. I'm hoping there will be more of this at one of our future writing groups!
    (It made me think of the time we took our young women to the jail for a tour. When the officer explained strip searches, I wanted to throw up. I'm pretty sure it made a big impact on the girls, too.)

    1. I'm glad it seemed that real. High praise for sure -- thank you :)

      I really don't know if I'll keep going, but again, you make me recrank the wheels on this story to see if I want to flesh it out more. That's a good thing, always.

  4. I definitely want to know more. I wonder how the narrator knows so much about the other character -- because they were born in the same complex? Or is she projecting about what she thinks the authority figure's life must be like. Intriguing.

    1. Projecting and wondering, yes. Thanks for stopping by and letting me know what you think. I'm not sure I'll do anything more with this piece, but it's great to know people would like to know more. Always encouraging.

  5. Hmmm my dude write entry had a similar subject matter this week

    1. Yup, but I liked yours better. You had a more accessible, real feel and the details were awesome. The humor, the last line...loved it.

      For those of you unaware of the entry Edge is alluding to, the goods can be found here -- http://damn-edge.blogspot.ca/2013/02/ice-cream-and-speeding-tickets.html

      Read it and love it too. Thanks for stopping by, Edge.


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