The Normal Lives

October 4, 2007

The Normal Lives arrive in pairs, pushing their doctrine. This is the rule: do not invite them in. They speak politely at first, then begin shouting, one, then the other, no matter how neatly pressed their white shirts and dark ties. They cannot help it—if you don’t like their canons, they would have to rethink them, and that takes more time than they have.

Don’t take it personally. Just tell them to move on to the next house, the one with no fire out back, no stories being told, no drawings mapping the way to a life like stars.

(For Betsy, at 29)


  1. Genie,
    Thank you so much for one of the best, most beautiful birthday gifts ever. I want to read it over and over again. Oh, wait, I have…

  2. Aw, shucks, Betsy…you’re quite welcome! :-)

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