Posts Tagged ‘purposelessness’

STORY – “Man, boy, truck, eighteen months”

Friday, February 5th, 2010

truck, story, fiction, death, mourning

The father stared down at his boy who sat there in a comfy over-stuffed chair, eyes fixed on the television screen, playing some game, doing this for hours, and the father wondered, What am I going to do with this boy?

He got in his truck and drove downtown and almost ran a red light, thinking what he was going to do about his boy.

His wife, the boy’s mother, dead eighteen months and she might have known what to do with the boy.

He met his new lady friend and they held hands going into her bedroom and they went crazy for a while and he forgot everything, but afterward he stared up at the ceiling while she pushed his penis left, then right, checking if there was any fun left in it for the day, but he was thinking about his boy.

He had coffee in a bad coffee place where everyone sat on stools or alone in booths or on chairs, thinking over their own private matters concerning what to do about something or whether there was anything to do about any of it.

He moved off from his chair and the half-bad coffee, paid and stood outside on the pavement in the sun and felt his cheeks and chin that were beginning to need a shave pretty badly, and he had to watch out, not let himself go, wondering and staring off and thinking and even thinking about chin and cheek hair like variations of staring at games on a screen, exercising the thumbs, endless testing between television images and thumb reactions.

He got in his truck and sat there and thought about his boy. The day was getting hotter.

He started the engine, put it in gear, but, still thinking, he took it out of gear, turned off his engine, and sat there for a long time.

Thinking was like his new job. Mostly he sat still, staring at the dark inside his head, wondering what to do about his boy, sometimes even thinking what to do about himself, but not as much.

Finally he started his truck again and drove back home to sit a ways off in the living room and watch his boy play his game and then watch some more, waiting for both of them to get involved with the next part of their separate lives.