A Short Story – Hiding In Time

Hiding In Time
A Short Story
Written by  -M. Taggart
11/24/18

 

Hiding In Time

 

“Who’s this?” He tapped his pointer finger on the photograph.

I knew who it was, but didn’t answer. I studied his large, red, bulbous nose. It was crooked. I wondered how long it took to create a nose like that.

He slid another image over the metal table. The photograph was of a 1968 Mustang Fastback GT. I scanned the description. It had an S-Code 390, just like mine. “You know, I once rode in one of those. That was a long time ago and you probably don’t even know what it is. A Heavy beast. With more torque than you could handle.”

I felt the same dull sensation I always feel when a man talking to me tells me about what I know rather than asks. “Does the sun rise differently for you than me?” I replied. The man shook his head. “There’s no need of that. Really.” He then placed another clipping on top of the photo of the Mustang. “Do you know who this is?”

“Neil Armstrong.”

“Right. I remember watching him step onto the moon. I wasn’t sure if what I was seeing was real. I’m still not sure if it was. You can’t believe anything is real unless you can touch it and you certainly can’t believe what another man says is real unless you’re with him and can justify his accuracy.”

“Do you believe he was in space?”

“I do.”

The old man dug through more clippings and placed another on top of Neil. “Were you alive when this happened?”

“I was. We watched it on TV in our classroom. We all saw it blow up just after it lifted. Our teacher cried and shut the TV off. I remember it was an old TV and they wheeled it in on a metal cart.”

“It was a shame to me that she never got to walk on the moon. I think everyone was watching because of her. It’s funny to me how close we can be to having everything we want and then it can be taken away. Either by our own choice, or by another way.”

What he said made sense to me. Much like knowing when something bad is about to happen and for some reason you didn’t change direction and then the bad thing happens and you know it could have been avoided.

“This, everyone knows what this is. I’ve been there and I can tell you when I stood on the edge I realized just how small I was. That canyon wasn’t a simple thing for me to understand, it changed me. Much like being here changes a person. It can be for the better, or worse. I guess it’s up to the individual.”

The mixed accents came back, along with the setting down of food trays and the slow shuffling of feet.

“See,” the old man leaned in and lowered his voice, “The thing is to not think of it by thinking of other things.”

 

**

-M. Taggart
Copyright 2018

Published Work: https://mtaggartwriter.wordpress.com/my-book/

Contact:  https://mtaggartwriter.wordpress.com/contact/

 

Men, We’ve Been Deceived

-M. Taggart
Micro Non-Fiction
Written 10/11/18

 

Men, We’ve Been deceived.

 

I was severely ill and shook in front of an electric heater while wearing only briefs. I remember turning the heater dial to high. She came home and stepped over me.

I was in college at the time. It was her idea to get our apartment before we were ready. Just as it was her idea to have sex before I was ready. She pushed wanting sex with leverage of breaking up until I relented.

When she stepped over me the second time, to leave, I had realized what I needed to do.

My fever was so high that I was seeing things that weren’t there.

I knew Megan was the right one when she drove, from two states away, to bring to me a family remedy to help alleviate a massive canker sore located on my tongue. I had only just mentioned I had one. And she was there.

-M. Taggart
Copyright 2018

 

My Life

The rain was pounding down while I was driving back to Western, MA.
Easily a place to be considered as a non-destination within the construct
of my current mindset. I’d rather not drive in the pouring rain; to a town
I dislike to visit, to then park on the street, within feet of the very courthouse
that put me in jail twenty years ago. I’m a realist however. I was in a fist fight.
I won. He lost. He got what he deserved. I got what I deserved. End of story.

It’s simple really. I applied for an electricians helper license in the state of Maine.
One of the online questions was this, “Have you ever been convicted of anything
in any court of law.” I have. I was, and I wasn’t about to lie. Lying is the weakness
laying in the corners of every mind and only the simplest of people lean in that direction
on purpose or very often as to prove to themselves that only fake can control their outcome.

I answered, “Yes.”

Next page please. However, instead of a new set of questions,
I read a pop-up informing me that the state of Maine Electricians Board will need documentation from the court concerning the conviction. along with a letter written by
me explaining the circumstances. Oh, how I enjoyed the writing of that letter! I may have mentioned that the judge who sentenced me can be found on YouTube slapping a police officer while intoxicated in the town of Northampton, MA, and has since been removed of duty. Funny how things like that happen. Funny too, that as part of my sentence handed down by this incredible being of life, was that I was to NEVER step foot in the premises of said ‘Burger King’ again. And, funny too, that I decided to drive to this fine establishment after having visited the courthouse, documents in hand, to find that this particular Burger King has failed. The windows are boarded up and the Burger King sign is dismantled/falling down. The building is in decay. Apparently I won this one, too.

I’ve never been ashamed of my jail sentence. I believe my time there was important, and is as important to me as having put myself through college and graduating with a BA from the Isenberg School of Management, UMASS, Amherst.

My helpers license is in my wallet. Let’s see what else I can do.

Work for it

Tomorrow I’ll work twelve hours. Maybe more. I took a second job. We need money. The build is going over budget. As they do, and I am happy to do what I need to do. Pulling wire isn’t what some wish to do, but I am among the few that will know how to do it. My company is functioning, too. Always. It’s been fifteen years of slathering my mind all over what to make it. I’ve made it tick long enough. If it can’t continue without me holding its hand I’ll see it when it wakes up, dust out its corners and revive what’s worth caring for. So here I sit, yet again with a beer, looking out our condo window thinking of the build. The great build. Or, so it is for us. Our tiny family- our house on the hill. Our second story windows face north and happens to be where my office is going to be. I’ll watch blizzards from my office window while reading a good book. It’s worth the hours of work. Twelve hour days with sweat running down my back is a gift to feel while knowing we’ll have what we’ve always wanted after the sweat has dried; receding into the same stillness that helped create it.

-M. Taggart

poem-

It hurt to try and open it.
So, I did what I’ve always done
and went to a pub to read a book.
Only this time, I was in the book.
The bar was full so I stood in the corner
and ordered a dark beer.
The noise from the many conversations
faded, as they always do when I read,
but when I touched the book it felt electric.
“Here I am,” I thought. “About to read my own story.”
But I couldn’t do it. I opened the book to page 62.
Hell, I even took a picture.
But I couldn’t read my short story.
I couldn’t even get beyond the second line.
I’m not sure why. I don’t know what happened.
I’ll most likely read all the others and never read mine.

-M. Taggart

 

book view

A Short Story – No Thanks, Lady

Short Story
Non Fiction
Written by -M. Taggart
7/8/18

 

No Thanks, Lady

 

Yesterday evening I went to the pub to have a beer, relax, and read Hemingway. Kim, the bartender, asked how Megan and Gavin were doing. I told her they are good and happy. After she brought the beer I dove into my book.

I needed a moment to clear my head.

A woman zeroed in on me. She sat on the stool next to me. She put her hand on my back and called me baby. I tried to ignore her.

Kim saw that I was annoyed. She came over and asked what I was reading. I told her which short story and that it was Hemingway. I told her that his sentence structure and delivery of words seems to calm me.

The woman sitting next to me told me I was a man of depth. She put her hand on my left arm, near the bend in my elbow and squeezed while leaning closer to me. She told me she would know because she’s a therapist.

Kim looked concerned for me and again asked how Megan and Gavin were doing. I quickly replied they were doing good while flashing my ring in the woman’s face. I told Kim that the building of our house was in full motion.

My thoughts raced. I wanted to scream at this disgusting being. I wanted to tell her to get her fucking hands off of me. I’m not a piece of meat. I would never do this to another person. But I didn’t. I had fought enough earlier in the day. I didn’t want to again.

I had purposefully chosen the bar stool closest to the wall. Hell, I had waited for it to open while standing in the corner. I wanted to be alone, with my book, around people without being touched. I dislike being touched. But I calmed myself and listened to her tell me about addiction. About how bad the town was suffering. She told me about all of this while licking her lips constantly. She even removed her glasses and tried her best attempt to show me her younger self.

She droned on and on and said, “I don’t fucking know, there’s the f word, I never say fuck, I don’t fucking know how to fix these addicts. I don’t know what to do.” All while finding any possible avenue to touch my shoulder, arm, back, and even reaching for my hand, the one with the wedding ring. “Do you know what I’m saying, baby, don’t you feel their pain. I pulled away, pushing myself into the wall the best I could. Then she made the mistake of calling me brilliant. She doesn’t know me. I’ve hardly spoken and now I’m brilliant? More like now I’m the therapist. This is nothing new to me. People latch on to me and vomit. I sit and I listen and I smile and I think. This person is a dime a dozen and when I was done listening to what I could gather for writing material I told her ever so nicely, “It’s time for me to read my book.” And I let her fade away into realizing how little I cared for her attempt at knowing me.

I ignored her when she tried to engage me again. She paid, quickly finished her drink, and left the pub.

I did want to ask her a few questions. Such as, “What are you views on sexism?” But I didn’t. I did tell her that I was a writer. She didn’t listen. But I did. I learned she isn’t capable enough to help her addicted clients to the level she wishes and she wasn’t aware enough to know I was going to use her possible sex addiction in a short story. That’s what happens when people talk too much and don’t listen.

 

-M. Taggart

 

Indoor Baseball

I play indoor baseball with Gavin
Gavin puts his binky on the T and hits it
He puts his stuffed owl on the T and hits that
He hits anything that’ll fit on the T
I don’t tell him only a ball can sit on the T
I don’t tell him it’s time to practice
I let Gavin tell me it’s time to play
Sometimes he puts the ball on the T
and hits the ball into the wall
I cheer!
It wasn’t long ago that I played indoor baseball
with ping pong balls and DVD cases
The impact makes a satisfying sound
There was beer and whiskey and friends
Two on Two, Three on Three
Stuffed into my bachelor aparment
Smashing away
We broke shit
We fixed what was broken
And played on
If you caught the ball in flight
Out
If you handled the ball cleanly
Out
If  you smashed the ball into the
far back wall
Homerun
Swing and miss twice
Out
We kept stats
And had arguments
We played
I think if Gavin wants to play baseball
Later in life
It’ll be nice
If he doesn’t
That’ll be nice too
But I’m sure as hell not getting in the way
of his indoor baseball

-M. Taggart

Gavin is 2.5 and going at life like it ought to be gone after.

My favorite snow mug

I want to write a story. A good story. Instead I’m writing this and putting the writing of the good story off until this is done. Whatever this is.
It’s my coffee mugs fault. I almost didn’t use it.
I opened the cupboard, looked at my favorite coffee mug, and the battle began. Use it, or save it for tomorrow? The dishwasher is empty. No chance it’ll be full enough to start. Then again I could wash it by hand. I wash dishes all the time.
I stood looking at the mug. I didn’t expect to see it. I don’t know why not.
It’s blue and white. It’s a winter scene mug. There’s a male snowman and female snow lady holding snow arms with white snow flakes decorated above them.
I love this mug. Hell with it. I’m using it this morning and I’ll write about.
We should use our favorite mug.

Sent from my iPhone

I’m even going to leave that. I’m literally writing this with my thumbs, leaning on the counter, drinking my coffee.

We’re not your Ken Doll

Well God. Here we are again.
The sweetness was taken away.

So fuck it.

It reminded me of when I was dating a beautifully intelligent liberal woman. Turns out she never wanted kids. Never wanted to marry. Never wanted to live in the same home. Took her two years to tell me. Her favorite saying was, you’re my man. You’re My Man.

She loved to show me off and bragged how my tie matched her outfit. Though I am color blind, she was amazed at my ability to dress. And to smile. And to make her look good.

I grew a beard. I dropped the tie.

She complained about my beard. She didn’t like it. Said it didn’t match her outfit. I said I’m not your Ken Doll. I’ll find someone who does.

And I did.

Fucking Cheers.

-M. Taggart