The Strangely Normal Instance of the Twelve Missing Socks

A short story, fresh from the second row of the aimlessly extravagant corn field.

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Priscilla Lemonluck could feel a stranger sitting on her face. Its name, Consternation. The usually smooth swath between her black feathery eyebrows was puckery, too tight, and strained; her thick lips — voluntarily distorted to bespeak the emotions she harbored — hung heavy to the left. At the back of her two front teeth is where she rested her tongue, sliding it in and out of the sizable crevice she’d opted not to correct with the suggested four years of braces. It wasn’t the pain she feared (although Cooper Lyons, her best friend and three-houses-down-next-door neighbor, had mentioned more than once after a tightening that it was like having an angry barracuda, a chain-link fence, and a rubber slingshot living in your mouth all at once). Dreadful as all that sounded, Priscilla wouldn’t have minded the gruesome reconstruction of her mouth if what she wanted was to have teeth that looked like everyone else’s. She didn’t want that, though. Not even a little. And so, at the age of nine and three-quarters, Priscilla determined with arbitrary zeal that her teeth were off the table (at the tim she didn’t quite know what that meant, but on enough occasions had heard her father, Judge Lemonluck, use the phrase — this usually accompanied by an austere scowl or impassive hand — to understand it meant strictly and formidably NO) once and for all. These teeth of hers had personality and character — something that would surely be mitigated with reparative orthodontics.

This is neither here nor there, however. Priscilla fancied a real problem: missing socks.

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Now, that’s a head-scratcher . . .

Take a walk with me, will you?

. . . perhaps you are wondering why I have just shown you these quite uninteresting pictures. Rest assured, it will all make sense in about three to four paragraphs.

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Pity’s Party — Table For Zero, Please.

It came down to a decision. When does it ever not, right? In a single year, you will make over three point seven billion decisions. Did you know that? No – I completely made that up, but the figure sounded feasible.

Everything from waking up in the morning and deciding whether or not to make your bed now, later or never, to stopping to pet the dog on the way into the kitchen, is a decision you do or do not make. Life: a sequence of choices and decisions.

I thought seriously about shaving my head this morning.

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