The Alternative

Paul and I were driving south down California's glorious coast in our rented yellow Camaro. We were on our way back to Redondo Beach from a night camping in Big Sur. I was exhausted. The night had been freezing, with a hazy mist that I hadn't expected in sunny California. We didn't bring an inflatable…

The Fountain

The summer between elementary and high school, my best friend Chloe and I spent most of our Saturdays at Amuseland, the theme park conveniently located down the street from our neighborhood. My mom would drop us off on her way to work in the mornings and then pick us up on her way home. We…

The Parking Spot

She pulled into the parking lot behind the building hoping to find a spot, but all three visitor spots were taken. She texted him, "hey, there's nowhere to park, what should I do?" A few seconds later, her phone lit up with his reply, "pull up to the front of the building, I'll come down."…

The Cheats

I sat at the back of the class entranced in my work. I was halfway through writing Eminem's second verse in Renegade diagonally across the plastic cover of my red history binder. I blew the glittery black gel lightly to dry the words before starting the next line. "Do you always write with your face…

The Celebrity

"Set up tables 31-35 in the dining room for a party of 14," James, the general manager at The Tap, said to another hostess. She disappeared into the dining room to arrange the tables. I frowned. We didn't typically take reservations on Saturday nights, even if it was 9:30pm. James explained, "it's for Mario Lopez."…

The Lunch Program

"You ate all your food today," my mom announced as she emptied out my lunch bag, soaking the empty Tupperware containers in the sink. She sounded impressed. "No, I didn't," I shook my head. I sat at the kitchen table behind her colouring in my homework. "I gave my apple and my fruit roll-up to…

The Internship

"That's the girl," I whispered to Ant, using my chin to point at an event tent across the harbourfront. "And that guy behind her is the manager, the one who interviewed me." "Really? I didn't picture him to look like that at all." "I told you, he's all tall and spindly. Kind of looks like…

The Uninvited

We didn’t plan ahead. We’d decided to drive as far as we possibly could, until Paul was good and tired, and that’s when we’d find a hotel to stay in.  That’s how we ended up in Borowinns, South Carolina, an extra hour after Paul had said he was too tired to keep driving. We’d been…

The Chickens

"Paul got chickens???" My best friend Cynthia texted me one afternoon. "Chickens?" I texted back. I had absolutely no idea what she was talking about. "Like, as pets?" She sent me a screen shot of Paul's instagram, the latest picture featuring five chickens outside on grass beside my estranged cat, Zart. "Chickens!" I texted back.…

The Knock

I was curled under a blanket on the couch watching Friends and marking essays. My boyfriend Ant had long gone to bed, but I had at least another hours’ worth of work before I could join him.  “I’ll be there for you..” played on my television as the next episode began.  Then there was a…