The rugged tradesman with the salt & pepper hair joked about bringing his grandson-to-be to the pub for a beer and some footy.  Even at 26, the young designer couldn’t help but wonder if his dad was still wishing for a son who would grow up to be just like him.

. . .

She never knew how to control herself at buffets.  Mom always scolded her for wearing low cut blouses and skirts that were too short.  She always bragged about who she knew and what celebrities she’d met.  Her stories were entertaining.  People always believed her.  But her sister knew she was a liar.

. . .

They travelled all over the world to hand out tracts.  For years, they warned people about Judgement Day, May 21.  It even got in the news.  Billboards popped up all over America.  A few even reached Australia.  The day before May 21st came, they spoke with their kids.  The  next morning, their kids were awakened by a fire alarm.  But the firetrucks came and there was no fire.  Some days later, the couple emailed their kids explaining there was more research to be done.  They could expect to hear from them again before June 12.  But on June 27, there was still no email.  The kids stopped waiting.

. . .

She used to write down her favourite names for boys and girls.  She kept the list in her diary so no one would steal them.  She also wrote down phrases that all the “cool surfer kids” would say.  She and her friends would practice and learn them so she’d know how to talk and fit in.

. . .

She rarely spoke, but when she would finally choose to open her mouth it was always overflowing with empty gossip, self-righteous opinions, and harsh criticism. On the outside, she seemed friendly enough but it was always her words–they were silly and sometimes even harsh. It was so obvious to everyone that she’d never really taken the time to actually think before speaking. Perhaps she really was a blank book. But no one ever is. She had simply locked herself up and thrown away the key.

. . .

She grew up in a bilingual home.  But at school, all the kids spoke only English.  She was the only brown girl.  Her friend Jason was the only brown boy.  He thought he was white until she broke the news to him one day.  Jason, you’re Chinese, she said.  Other kids had neatly cut sandwiches wrapped in plastic.  She had tupperware filled with rice and some fried egg potato cake.  The other girls played four square.  She played tetherball with R.J. and Kristin.  During recess, she and her naughty friend Kathryn would draw on the brick wall with chalk rocks.  They were caught and received three swats each.  She played the clarinet but was always only second best.  Kathryn was first chair.  Her favourite subject was grammar.  She loved to diagram sentences.  She was smart, but never as smart as Ellie.


Your thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s