The Onions Were Fine.
Why are people always telling us how good we look in colors we hate or how tired we look after a full nights sleep? Why can’t they just let us pass them in the hallways or stand behind them in line at the bookstore without feeling like they owe it to us to share their impromptu opinion of us?
I drove to the farm stand on the edge of town and I parked in the dirt lot. My shoes gathered dust. My hands gathered beets, onions, red peppers, dark chocolate (shipped in from the city, $1.09). My tongue was covered in the thick fuzz that comes with a hangover.
Why aren’t I as skinny as the teenage hippie working the old-fashioned cash register? Why doesn’t she have to wear make-up? Why do I care?
I set my purchase on the wooden, beaten counter top. She picks up the chocolate first.
How did that get in there? I say. I try to look perplexed. I can feel the crows feet at the corners of my eyes. They’re scratching and clawing me raw.
I try to buff the dirt off of my shoes with the back of my legs. I am sweating and now there is mud. One red pepper has a soft-spot near the bottom that I hadn’t seen before. I say nothing and let her place it into the re-usable shopping bag with the rest. With the chocolate.
Why do we always assume we’re hated immediately by strangers simply based on how we look? Why can’t I buy $10.73 worth of farm stand goodies and why can’t she just ring them up and why isn’t that just the end?
I try to walk backwards to my car so that she doesn’t see the muddy sweat streaks on the backs of my calves. I try to smile sweetly at her while I’m doing this. She is reading a magazine.
How to get the perfect summer body.
Why can’t I tear the paper from a bar of chocolate before the car is even on the road?
Why can’t I have the perfect summer body?