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Showing posts from September, 2011


You've never been a soccer mom. More like a library mom.

But the gingerbread boy had taken up cross-country. He stays after school for practices, takes the bus to meets, and is in possession of a jersey.

So, you, de facto, become one of the sideline moms, cheering loudly. You love it. In fact, you love cross-country more than the gingerbread boy does, whose enthusiasm has waned with each footfall, each mile run.

The home meets are at an apple orchard, where the team races through paths in the forest, around ponds, past the orchard where bees drunkenly buzz circles around the runners.

You, with your childhood in the city, can only imagine the magic of running a race through a forest, through an apple orchard, past bridges and streams, past hundred-year old graveyards, in the New England autumn.


You're at the drug store searching for an alarm clock that the gingerbread boy saw on the clearance table two days ago. You realized after the fact that you really should have bought it for him. It would have been $10 toward responsibility and independence, things you can't put a price tag on.

But you didn't.

So now you're back, pawing through the heaps of staplers, car oil, extension cords, and other ephemera, hoping to find that clock. You're vaguely aware of another shopper at the next clearance table.

"Well, look at that cute red hair poking out from under that hat!" she says.

You turn to face her. You know she's referring to you, as you fit the bill: you're the only other person in that section of the store, you're wearing a baseball cap, and you've got auburn hair. But you don't know her, and you're not feeling even remotely cute. You've been canning all day, and your hair is a frizzy mess; that's why you're weari…