Monday, November 29, 2010

Blood: Weekly Reader

I took my seat in the back and waited to be called. A doctor, who apparently looks at medical charts for the company, stopped when she saw the book in my hands. I always bring a book. It's something to pass the time when nothing is happening and on days when "Alvin and the Chipmunks" is playing on all the big screens, a book isn't just helpful, it is a lifesaver.

"What are you reading?" She asked.

I showed her the cover, but not the passage I'd been reading. The text had gotten kind of racy and she looked to be in her early 60s. I didn't want to offend her with a sentence about a woman licking semen off a man's flaccid penis.

"It's short stories," I told her. "Some of them are horror stories. Others are kind of weird." The one I was in the middle of was mostly of the latter variety.

"Do you like to read?" She reminded me of my grandmother, if my grandmother had been born in New Delhi.

"I love to read," I said. "I read a lot." Though not always about people having sex. That's more of an occasional thing. I wouldn't say I seek it out --mostly.

"Do you work?"

I nodded and told her, "I'm a writer."

"How nice." She put her hands together. "Not enough people do creative things like that. What kind of things do you write?"

"Oh, I write for the newspaper," I told her and there was a beat, just a moment, when a flash of panic passed through her eyes.

"Really? For the newspaper?" She needed to get going. "Well, it was nice to talk to you about reading and writing."

Someone called my name. It was my turn to get hooked up to a machine.

"I will come and talk to you on the floor," she said and skittered off to look at charts, speak with a manager or maybe just locate her car keys.

The doctor never came out to talk, which was too bad. That might have been fun.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I get the same reaction as well.