Snippet Sunday: Ghost of Christmas Past

Posted 19 January, 2014 by DLWhite in Snips&Shorts, Writers Write 0 Comments

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“Day” by arztsamui

I’m attempting to bring back this semi-regular occurrence on my blog, where I share a snip of something I’ve written, whether it’s old or new, from a finished piece or a work in progress. Writers tend to be solitary individuals and keep to ourselves. At the same time, we enjoy hearing that people like or can relate to our work. I would so appreciate it, if you enjoyed this snippet, if you’d drop a comment below and come back next Sunday for another snip!

Below the jump, you’ll find a snip of a recent piece I wrote for a holiday story exchange entitled Ghost of Christmas Past.  You ca read the entire story here.

“See, in a lot of ways, we’re the same,” JC was saying, dipping something called a Conch Roll in sauce. “We creative types, I mean. We’re stimulated by different things than normal people.”

“You’re saying we’re not normal?” She paused before popping a crispy tuna roll into her mouth.

“Well,” he started, but decided to chew more before he continued. He swallowed and then said, “I’m not normal. I know that. I mean, I’m not a serial killer or anything-”

“Thank God.”

“But I knew a long time ago that my mind works differently than, say, the guy that sells things all day. You know what I mean?”

She nodded. “I do. And it’s something I’ve had to learn to embrace and not try to change about myself.”

“Do you get people telling you that you have to change that?”

“Oh, all the time. ‘You’ve gotta start thinking more inside the box, Elizabeth. These far-fetched ideas of yours’… and then they laugh and walk off like they said something brilliant and mind bending when all they did was tell me to conform.”

“Well, don’t. The world has enough conformists and if it wasn’t for people who think outside the box, we’d never have some of the world’s greatest art, for example.”

She smiled, waving her chopsticks around the massive plate of sushi they were sharing. “What should I try next?”

“Try that,” he said, pointing to a neatly packed roll topped with seaweed salad and sesame vinaigrette. “It’s good, a little spicy, but not too much and the salad on top is a nice palate cleanser.” He watched as she picked two rolls and set them on her plate. “So what brought you back to Orlando?”

“My mom.”

“Sick?” He asked, pausing out of respect before stuffing his mouth with fish.

“Broke. Crazy. Literally, crazy. She’s in a home now.”

“Oh. I’m sorry about that.”

“Don’t be. It’s the best place for her and she’s getting great care. I’m here to give my brothers a break. They’ve been dealing with her for a long time.”

“And how much older are they?”

“Younger,” she answered, her mouth full of spicy sashimi. “I’m the oldest.”

“Me too. Well, you know that.” He shrugged, mentally kicking himself. He knew what she knew, but he didn’t have to keep reminding her. “Anyway she’s got to be a lot to deal with.”

“Easier now. I channel all my angst into my job.” She chewed and smiled. “So now it’s my turn to make you uncomfortable.”

“Oh, here we go.”

“So are you dating out there?”

“No,” he said, plainly.

“Just no? Not kind of, not sort of, not I have this girl I’ve known forever and we sometimes have sex…”

“Nope.”

She gave him a bewildered stare. “I don’t believe that, JC.”

“Really. Nothing right now. I mean…” He sighed, set down his chopsticks and leaned an elbow on the table. “I uh… I had a girl. And she was great. And she… I should be engaged by now…”

“Don’t tell me you told her you were going to call her and left her hanging for like 20 years.”

He laughed, sensing the mood lighten. “No. But I did fuck around on her.”

“Why? Do you know why?”

“Now you sound like my therapist.” He picked up one stick and poked at a grain of rice with it. “I don’t know. I hate that answer. So did she. But I don’t know.”

“She was really serious about you and that freaked you the out?” He nodded. Reluctantly.

“And then you start talking yourself out of something really good, telling yourself you don’t deserve that or don’t want that, or it’s not for you. And then make her walk away so you don’t have to.”

He cleared his throat, obviously uncomfortable. “You sound like you’ve been through it.”

She let out a haughty chuckle. “Hell. I am you with boobs.”


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