Archive for the ‘Not so true’ Category

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Priorities

April 24, 2017

They summoned productivity experts, asked them how to achieve their goals. We have 100 days, they said. We have promised big things.

One expert suggested one day a week with no meetings, and another suggested picking one big thing to accomplish each day before breakfast. Another recommended a clear, calm mind, and they all had a good laugh around the conference table.

What are your priorities? one expert asked, and a senior staff member slid across a contract, sold like any campaign half-truth.

These are specific, measurable and time-bound, the expert said. But they certainly aren’t achievable or realistic.

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No good choices

April 23, 2017

She had dreamed of learning to play the flute, of writing a sonata, or maybe even a symphony. But then the coughing began, and every day, her lungs grow more raw, and she knew she needed medical care, but it would cost more than she had saved.

She waited, and felt her pants slip around her hips, felt the gap between her skin and the billowy shirts that had once been fitted.

Why didn’t you come sooner? said the doctor with the saddest eyes.

There are no good choices, she said. I lost them all along the way.

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Something rotten

April 21, 2017

When she was a child, spring brought warm breezes and dry days, blooming flowers and opportunities to play outside without fear. Then, she grew up and learned everything is not always what it seems.

It has grown cold in America, she said. Summer is coming, but I don’t feel any of the warmth I remember.

Perhaps things had been as good as they appeared, or perhaps she just grew up and had more information at her disposal. Regardless, now the perfume of flowers had given way to the stench of something rotten, and the weather was all wrong.

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The guarantee

April 18, 2017

When they met, she saw him as a guarantee—no matter what happened to her later, she would always be taken care of. Even though so little love passed between them, she would never be scared of poverty again.

She read all the things people said about her. She winced at the half-truths, the blatant lies, the guesses that hit far too close to home. She knew he would never be the kind of man to whisper to her in the dark. She didn’t need someone on the Internet to remind her she chose to never be an equal.

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Racing

April 17, 2017

She sprinted through the woods, skimming over roots and rocks and slats of small bridges, racing from the world, racing from the news, racing from herself.

The night before, he had played a song of peace on his guitar, and she had been able to forget, but when dawn broke, she looked out the window at the smoke rising from tiny fires that never seemed to go out and remembered again.

So, every day, she tried to outrun every story of suffering like each life depended on it. Every day, she fell further and further behind.

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Coal-hearted

April 16, 2017

The signs they carried read the same as if they’d saved them from a march in 1953. All these years later, there has been no dissipation of that same bright, hot anger. Why does that hate never go stale? she asked her friend.

They’re afraid of losing something they never had the right to take in the first place, her friend replied.

So many of the marchers’ faces glowed as if on fire. She stared at each one as they passed, reading their statements of hate, imagining the coals smoldering at the very heart of each one of them.

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Despite it all

April 14, 2017

She pushed through a curtain of beads into the room, leaving a swirling clatter in her wake. It’s Friday, she announced. Let’s find a way to forget all of this.

She had something outrageous in her purse, she whispered, and she didn’t care what they did with it. He found that confusing, but he also liked her style. He liked a woman who could look in the face of disaster and laugh.

There’s nothing left for us to do, she said. We’re going to have to have fun despite it all. Come on. Let’s go.