Wednesday, April 8, 2009

FICTION: Potluck Girl

In response to Daily Writing Practice's prompt-of-the-day: potluck. Just a little drabble, but I like it, and I hope you do, too. 

Comments/feedback/criticism are always welcome. :)

Potluck Girl

She's a potluck girl, a stew of odds-and-ends deposited by the men she loved but never loved her in return. She watches Monday Night Football and still roots for the Steelers, just for Mike, who she hasn't seen in six years. Her iPod is a mishmash of genres: Richard's bluegrass, Danny's indie bands, Alex's gangster rap. She still wears kitten heels for Bobby, who always hated that she was taller than him and eventually left her for her more petite best friend.

"Get over them," her friends tell her. "Find yourself. You need to be you."

They make it sound so easy, but it's not, because they're all still inside her, churning and bubbling, their memories hot to the touch. It's too late to get rid of them; they've all melted together and are stuck to her bones.

And maybe her friends are wrong. Maybe these men make her who she is. She's Tommy's chambray work shirts, Beau's chai tea, Andrew's skinny jeans. What if all these men have made her who she is? What if that's the way it's supposed to be?

But deep down in the black, hot kettle of her heart, she knows better. She knows. Nobody should ever be just an amalgam of other people's leftovers, because when you take those chunks away, all that's left is a thin, weak broth that tastes of nothing, nothing at all -- and that thought terrifies her to the core.

So she keeps them all inside her: Jack's cheesy science fiction novels, Eric's appetite for Korean cuisine, Bart's dark fetish for handcuffs and stilettos. She lets the pot keep boiling because she can't ever forget them, even if they've already forgotten her -- and she's wise enough to know they have.

After all, who could possibly remember someone who can't even remember her own self?


Jess said...

No way they've forgotten! You're just as much a part of them as they are a part of you. However, being men, they'll never admit that ;-)

PersicaPit said...

I agree -- men never forget, even when women like poor Potluck Girl think they have. She's kind of low on self-esteem. ;-)

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