Jack Benson, if asked, would say he felt pretty good about himself. Had never much bothered about money. Though looking back, he might have. But he hadn’t and that was that. His wife, if she were alive, would differ with him on that point. Continue reading The Coin Machine
You’re going to forget people. You think you never will. But, trust me, you will. You’ll lose track of them and then you’ll forget them. You’ll forget things too, like how many ounces are in a pound of cottage cheese or if you’ve had breakfast. But, like I said, you think it won’t happen…
Revson and I went to a lecture together at the Y on 92nd St. I had suggested it to him and I bought the tickets, as he had recently fallen on hard times.
We took our seats in the front row of the lecture hall. The subject was The Periodic Table, Primo Levi’s memoir as an Auschwitz survivor. And, since Levi had recently been found dead at the bottom of a long stone staircase, under very uncertain circumstances, the room was overflowing with anticipation. Continue reading The Periodic Table
Benson was awakened by the sounds of the woman next door leaving for work. It was cold and the rain had turned to wet snow, at least it had at 3 a.m., when he’d gotten up to pee.
Their apartments were close. They shared a thin gypsum-board wall between them. He knew she could hear him during the night as he fumbled for the light in the dark and then flushed the toilet. The intimacy of this embarrassed him though there was nothing else he could do.
When Harry met Irene he was living in a state of blissful bachelor squalor. Irene as much as told him so. She was a woman of simple, straightforward, unabashed, and colorful candor. Continue reading When Harry Met Irene
Phil Shumpeter, in Minneapolis for a sales meeting for High and Dry Camping Gear, Inc., takes a seat at the bar at the Kit Kat Klub off of Hennepin Avenue. He orders a beer and fries.
On his way home from work each evening, Wilson Fortunato picked up take-out and a copy of the Post-Standard. He’d eat and read it at the kitchen table under the anemic light of a small florescent fixture he had long planned to replace. Continue reading The Genie
Milton Silverman’s Last Thought
When Milton sensed the end was near he told Magda he loved her. “Magda, I love you,” he said. And then he asked her to tell Vincenza, their daughter, to turn down the television set. He was adamant that the last thing he would hear would not be an Arby’s ‘We’ve got the meat’ commercial. Continue reading Milton Silverman’s Last Thought
Mr. Pindar Takes the Train
Peter Pindar, silver-grey hair, notched-lapel, two-button, double-vented, indigo blue Armani, white flare collar and a four-in-hand green tie, takes his usual seat on the 7:28 Metro North train at Croton-Harmon. Continue reading Mr. Pindar Takes the Train