10.26.2013 Journal Prompt

Photo by Joseph Szabo
Photo by Joseph Szabo

October 26, 2013: He was my sister’s boyfriend.

One Reply to “10.26.2013 Journal Prompt”

  1. I’m the smart one. That’s what they say. And they have plans for me and college funds squirrelled away and they are all puffed up with pride on accoiunt of the prizes I’ve won at school. And the teachers say they have high hopes, too. And everyone says it out loud, that I’m the smart one, and I smile and make believe that’s all ok with me.

    And Karen, she’s the pretty one. They don’t say that exactly, but they have pet names for her like ‘Beautiful’ and ‘Sweetie’. And they talk boyfriends with Karen and there’s a job waiting for her at the ‘Kiss and Curl Beauty Parlour’. She works there Saturdays and they do her hair for free, colour and style it. And she is pretty, I know that. I don’t need to see the way the boys look at her, following her with their eyes; I do the same.

    And Keith is her boyfriend and he’s crazy about her and maybe he’s just a bit crazy with or without her. I like Keith. He doesn’t call me ‘Brains’ or ‘Smartie Pants’ or ‘Karen’s Clvere sister’. He calls me Em or Emmy and he winks at me and he says he thinks I’m cute and he says if he wasn’t with Karen, then he’d be chasing after me. I know he’s just messing about, but it’s nice when he says it.

    Karen and Keith, like they are made for each other. The prettiest girl and boy in the school and everybody says they deserve one another. But I think Keith deserves better. Karen, she’s not that interested, see, not really. It’s Keith that makes all the moves and Karen keeps talking about Mr Debrett at the Beauty Parlour and she says he has the softest hands and he’s real respectful and he smells sweet as flowers and when he smiles he lights up a room and his name is Arty, Mr Arty Debrett.

    So, one late afternoon when Keith calls, I tell him that Karen’s out and he can take a seat on our front porch if he wants to wait and I fix him a fresh lemonade with just a shot of vodka in it. I don’t tell him about the vodka. And I sit with him, space between us, and I ask him stuff and we get to talking. And the afternoon easy gives way to evening and the sun goes from the sky and it is dark and I don’t put the porch light on and I sit a little closer to Keith and he sits a little closer to me.

    No one can see us, I tell him. It’s perfectly dark. And he laughs and he takes my hand or I take his and we just sit looking out onto the street. We don’t say a word and we don’t need to. It’s the perfect moment and for once I am not the smart one and Karen is not the pretty one. Afterwards it’s like it never happened, except I write about it in my diary. I write it in code so only I know. And the next time I see Keith and he’s with Karen I notice he drops her hand and he says ‘hi’ and his voice is all soft and sorry. And I like that.

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