A Sincere Apology
Douglas Byrne

Dear Uncle Redmond,

I'm writing to you now, Uncle Redmond, on top of a series of books which I ordered using your credit card number late at night while I was drinking. I bought Spiderman numbers 11 through 15. I have not been able to open them without bursting into tears. The days have become noisier and warmer since spring thawed my shorts on the back fence. The chain links are rusted. I have taken a job listening to poor peoples' problems and giving them gum. I tend to lie about my age, and wear dark colored clothing. In a giddy burst, I bought a case of Coca-Cola when the temperature hit 70 degrees for the first time. There is a neighbor kid who comes over, so I give him sodas and ask him if his parents related. Kid just giggles and rides away on this skateboard. I used to be a skateboarder if you'll remember, I had a huge skateboard with a red dragon on the bottom and wheels that were really uncomfortable. I wish it was here with me now. Instead I have Rachel. She is a real monster. Rachel. Get out of my house Rachel. I hate you Rachel. I have to give her my paycheck so I won't spend it on ding-dongs and cheap wine. God I hate that woman. Rachel. The other day she threatened to call _______ and tell him where I am. I almost choked on my breakfast cereal (Captain Crunch). That crazy lady belongs in an institution. I tried to tell her, if they come for me, they're going to take all her shiny baubles. She must be bluffing. I wish I could turn her over to the authorities.

I haven't played any pool in eleven months. I have recurring dreams of chalking up my fingers and busty women in green felt catsuits. They all end the same way. South Carolina feels like eternity. No one will find me in Charleston at least. No one will ever find me here. I've kept a low profile, telling everyone my name is Charles Woodborough, and that I'm an experimental physician. I've been getting nervous though, the neighbor's kid has more questions than brains and his parents eye me like I'm going to casually walk over to their house and piss gasoline on it through my jeans. Make a good torch though.

I'm sorry about your credit card.

Yours truly, _____________

First published: May 2001
comments: knobs@iceflow.com