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December 26, 2007


So, what'd you get for Christmas?

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Jim: I'm Sure I Have An Excuse For Writing This

Inside the warm bar, over an inversion layer of cigarette smoke, Christmas lights twinkle amid vines of cheap plastic holly. But my attention is fixed on the stunned crowd as I lift the karaoke mike and belt out the final refrain:

“On the twelfth season of Gunsmoke, the writers gave to me:
Twelve crusty sidekicks,
Eleven levered carbines,
Ten mules a braying,
Nine saloon doors swinging,
Eight vultures swooping,
Seven horses rustled,
Six guns a blazing,
Five card hold-em,
Four tumbleweeds,
Three French whores,
Two broken stirrups,
And a cartridge in a bear’s knee.”

I drop the mike and flee.

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Stacy: Citizen's Divorce

She arose early, careful not to wake him. She dressed quickly, then crept downstairs to retrieve the suitcase hidden under the stairwell. She pulled on her coat and…the brightly wrapped present sitting on the hall table drew her up short. They hadn’t bothered to decorate for Christmas. What was the point, really…they had no kids, thank god.

He came downstairs a while later to find the body in the hallway, her face set in a rictus of agony, bloody furrows gouged in the parquet flooring. He’d have to call the floor guys tomorrow. Oh, and that snake guy, whatsisname.

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