First We Take Manhattan

The rental had been described in the advertisement as a bungalow. It was an apt description for a small, symmetrical building that was bigger than a cabin but smaller than a house-house. One open space encompassed kitchen, dining room, and living room and there were two bedrooms, a cracked concrete back patio, and a car port.

A car port, for those not familiar, is basically an awning large enough to park your car under. Car port. Cabin. I kept thinking there was another word that started with “c” that applied, but I couldn’t think of it. Bungalow would have to do.
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A Million Miles Away

(Saturday post! Enjoy, and thank you for the contributions to the Tip Jar! -ctan)

I sometimes wonder how much research goes into what phones sound like. Remember back when phone equipment was all made by Ma Bell? Phones used to be something you had to get installed by the phone company. They were expensive and bulky and the old ones had an actual bell inside. Do you ever wonder what the phone would sound like if Alexander Graham Bell had switched lives with, say, Whistler?
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Laid So Low

Someone banging on the door very hard woke me up. I wondered if the motel was on fire. Someone was calling my name, too. I was groggy and wondered what time it was.

I sat up and then I could hear two voices. The fainter one was Claire. The other one was a man’s voice. They sounded quite urgent. I hurried to open it, not even pausing to put on pants.
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911 is a Joke

(Two bits of news hit today regarding DGC, one good, one not so good. I posted details in a public post at Patreon https://www.patreon.com/posts/bam-biz-strikes-23101115 ! -ctan)

I had left Claire’s door with the lock thrown so I could let myself back in.

She had heated up a pot of water using the in-room coffee maker and was sitting on the edge of the bed with the remote in her hand watching some kind of infomercial with the volume almost all the way down. She was wearing a bathrobe and had a scarf wrapped around her head.
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Mama, I’m Coming Home

Life doesn’t often give you a situation that is a clear fork in the road. This or that. Left or right. As Ziggy would say, no false dichotomies, please. But I really did appear to have two paths I could take if I didn’t want to drive myself slowly insane, alone in my hotel room.
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Telephone Line

(A quick note: order any T-shirt or omnibus book before December 1st and I’ll include a DGC notebook with the order, free! *AND* did I forget to mention that swag sales count toward bonus posts? Yup. Buy a shirt for $20, and $20 goes into the tip jar automatically! Check out the swag post for quantities and the “buy it now” buttons. -ctan)

If Ziggy and I had that phone argument a couple of years earlier, it would have been automatic that we wouldn’t have spoken to each other for a while—days, weeks, months. But this was not the nineteen-fucking-eighties. I did not slink away with my tail between my legs. I did take a couple of minutes to think about what he’d said, though, before I tried calling back.
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The Righteous & The Wicked

Ziggy called me back sometime around one in the morning. Or maybe it was two. It felt late, anyway. I was lying awake doing the not-sleeping thing. I wasn’t even fretting about anything specific. I was just lying there spinning my wheels.
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I Need You

Sarah called me, drunk, after Jordan’s memorial, from somewhere quite loud. A night club, probably.

“Why aren’t you here?” she shouted/cried.
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What Are We Going To Do

Time both slows down and speeds up when you’re not doing a lot. When every day is the same, they seem to take forever, and yet because they leave little impression, thinking back on it you can’t tell how much time has gone by.

Which is another way to say I don’t know how long it was after Christmas when we got news of Jordan’s memorial service. Two weeks? Three? Those are my guesses.
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Through An Open Window

(As promised, I’ve taken inventory of the T-shirts remaining, by the way. See the swag post. Every order before December 1st will get a bonus red DGC notebook! -ctan)

The night clerk’s name was Ricky, by the way, and he was still in high school, but he only did a half day and then a couple days a week went to a vocational-technical school, which somehow translated to him having a few nights a week to work at the motel. He worked some days, too, and always seemed happy to chat with me or Ziggy or both of us. I got the feeling he didn’t get too many interesting people to talk to.

Claire’s digestive tract wasn’t improving much, but the sedative/painkiller they’d given her helped to shut it down. So she wasn’t eating much, but then at least she wasn’t evacuating her system so much, either.

We still ended up in the ER a couple nights later because dehydration had made her fever spike. Sound familiar? I called Flip from the payphone at the hospital.
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