Selected Stories

“The Sad Life & Miraculous Powers of Santiago” - Excerpt

The Normal School, Fall 2011, Vol. 4, Issue 2

Okay, the jury summons blindsided me, I’ll admit it. With one thing after another—the remodel, Cara being expelled from private school even as we struggled to pay that semester’s tuition, Scott’s slow sales at the gallery—I just didn’t concentrate enough on taking care of the thing.

Two months before the trial date, I sat at the kitchen counter, scratchpad in hand, generating excuses. My grandmother is sick in the hospital. Scratch. My mother is sick—scratch. I’m sick in the hospital—and writing to you from my sick bed. Who’s your doctor? Scratch. I’ve moved to another state. I want to move to another state. My car is broke. Take the bus! I’m broke. Scratch. The summons sat on the table in the entry hall while I agonized over foolproof excuses to get taken off. This after I was refused any more six-month deferments. I kept assuming life circumstances would somehow take care of the reasons. Instead life only managed a slow snowfall of other mail to bury the summons until it was too late to do anything but...go.