The prompt over at Sunday Scribblings is junk.
My mother’s in the front yard, sitting as delicately as she can in one of those canvas folding chairs (two mesh cup holders) while wearing a lemon chiffon-colored sundress.
There’s blanket spread in front of her, piled with junk.
Plastic Little League trophies, a stuffed tiger plush toy, Snoopy fishing rod and reel, stamp collection, buffalo head nickel collection, volcano science project from sixth grade, a box of tattered comics, one-man rubber raft (one oar missing), remote-controlled Porsche, slightly glue-gummied space shuttle plastic model.
Important artifacts from my childhood through late adolescence.
“Hey, what gives?” I protest.
“Oh, hi, honey,” she says as she absently smooths out crumpled $1 bills against the red, white and blue canvas stripes of the chair. “Clearance sale. Everything must go. No reasonable offer refused.”
She takes off her sunglasses and smiles.
“You have no right,” I stammer. “No goddamned right whatsoever.”
I clench my fists for effect.
“Oh, dear, but I do,” she says.
And produces a slip of yellow paper from her cleavage and hands it to me.
It’s a bill, a tally of charges across the years, in my mother’s tight, swoopy handwriting.
And I realize that I’m in hock. Up to my eyebrows.
“You don’t really have the best selection here,” I say. “Let me refresh your inventory.”