Taffy drooled over the lavaliere offered by her Greek god of a boyfriend, who was passionate if a bit of an amorist, because if she hadn't—even though she had a 3.8 and was going somewhere and shouldn't have to put up with this—the Zeta Beta Tau's gold letters, a pearl wedged between the Z and the B and hanging from 14 carat gold between her breasts, would have gone to one of those upwardly mobile sorority girls since aside from being beautiful her man was also a chem major, so even though these things didn't matter to her and she didn't believe in being owned, she
My cousin, depressed her whole life, sought happiness via a sweet tooth that craved such deadly nectars that she was constantly sucking on the lids of canned pears, licking frosting off the electric egg beater, swallowing elixirs kept in rusted tins so far back in the refrigerator that she didn't know what they were anymore—which lead to her getting a tetanus shot, and that didn't cure everything, though flirting with the nurse practitioner didn't hurt.
She was a rocket scientist, though no one believed her, who'd gotten where she was through no nonsense and hard work. She preferred comics to the headlines until she met a blind man wearing a fedora in a crosswalk in Palm Springs. They nearly fell over each other, neither seeing anything ahead, and he apologized, which encouraged her to apologize, and they took each other out to coffee.
People don't wear hats, she said.
You'd be cute in a cloche, maybe a springy feather on the side, he said, when she allowed him to feel her face so he'd understand what she looked like.
Subsequently the hard news she read through his eyes out loud at the breakfast table softened and became human interest.
Bonnie ZoBell has received an NEA Creative Writing Fellowship, a PEN Syndicated Fiction Award, and the Capricorn Novel Award. Recently included on Wigleaf's 2009 Top 50 list for very short fiction, she has work included or forthcoming in The Los Angeles Review, Night Train, Storyglossia, American Fiction,The Greensboro Review, dcomP, Rumble, and NOÖ Journal. She received an MFA from Columbia, teaches at San Diego Mesa College, and can be reached at www.bonniezobell.com.