Sunday, March 15, 2015

A Murder Mystery

It wasn’t until late Friday evening that we became aware of the outbreak, and by then it was too late. The window for containment – the containment of whatever it was that we were dealing with – was closed, but still we went through the motions of containing it.

Zero Zero was the first to go. He was a gorgeous arboreal avicularia versicolor we’d had for four years and oh, he was my pride and joy, so much so I’d had his name tattooed across my back.

We found him Friday just after the evening news, with his legs curled up beneath him and largely unresponsive, looking like the new Goliath looked when she’d arrived.

Madame Guillotine was next, and then Soma Bath, and then Astrid and Poppy Day. And Lucifer Landed, well, she was still twitching as I laid her out on copy paper to poke and to prod for mites or fleas – for anything that might explain what was killing all the spiders.

Friday, March 13, 2015

All Sizes Vaguely Disinterested

I was talking to my friend, the Jesuit, when he asked me, “What do you believe?”  Then he took back his flask and he took a long drink.

I said, “Father, some days I believe in nothing; some days I believe in everything.”

My friend, the Jesuit, said, “Me too.”

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Enemies List

Omaha. January. Under a gray gauze winter sky. Antony Anders steps out of a gas station near 42nd and Harrison.

He is wearing blue jeans, leather boots, a hooded sweat shirt much too thin for the weather, and a Catcher in the Rye winter hat – the kind with those ear flaps, you know? In his left hand is a 12-pack of Coors. In his right hand is a plastic grocery bag with some potato chips, a roll of paper towels, and a frozen burrito inside.

He walks through the slush of the parking lot. Unlocks the door of a black 1991 Ford Ranger. Tosses in the things he bought and then climbs in after them.

He gets the truck started on his fourth try.