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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Works by the Fantastic Mikel Marton




Short Story by Robert Smith
via Brother, My Lover

I’m catering a job on the upper west side. west end btwn 88th and 89th. it is a private party for 18 people in a young white couples apartment. I’m deboning white fish with a small paring knife. I slide the blade under the spine from the botton up until it comes off clean. Then I quickly pick out the tiny ribs. I make sure to leave one in.

we are making white fish and white asparagus. per request. they are both sauteed in the exact same lemon juice, olive oil and garlic. Pinch of salt. Some fresh coarse black pepper.

i overhear a conversation between two 30 something year old white men:

-hey, you wouldn't know anybody nice to set Paula up with, would you? she's single now, but she's really nice.

-she's really nice?

-yea. She’s really nice.

and they start to brainstorm…

another guy grabs a smoked salmon hors dourves from a passing tray and eats it, then grabs for a second...
this one's for my wife, he says with a grin. As soon as the waiter leaves he discreetly pops it in his mouth, and his eyes quickly scan the room...

when i was a kid i used to make braces for my teeth out of chewing gum tin foil wrappers, because only the kids whose parents had money wore braces. i'd walk around with the uncomfortable electric taste of metal in my head and wonder what it was like to not be poor...

After work I take the train downtown then the L into Brooklyn. I get off on the seventh stop where they still open fire hydrants when it’s hot. Where I can still buy heroin at my bodega. Where whole families hang out on their stoops and play dominos on old fold away tables. The woman on the corner makes snow cones by shaving ice from a huge frozen block she keeps under a wet towel. There’s a rainbow of different syrups to choose from.

I point at a red one and say what flavor is this?

Bah-neeluh she says.

I point at a green bootle, and ask: what flavor is this?


Bah-neeeeeluh.

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