• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies Sometimes I think a meteor could strike the earth and wipe out mankind with the exception of my mother’s Bridge club — Roz, Bea, Bette, Rhoda, and Jackie — five Jewish octogenarians who continue to gather for lunch and Bridge on Mondays as they have for over fifty years. When I set out to learn about the women behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, and most of all the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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Both a Little Scared, Neither One Prepared

 It’s almost dark. Leaves skittering. For a moment, I think I see a bear upright and dancing under the lamplight. Then it’s gone. I’m trying to think of the next scene in the script I’m writing. THis is new for me. I don’t usually think about what I’m going to write: I just write. I figure it out after. A man in a red jacket is walking on the other side of the street. We look at each other. He is probably trying to guess my age. I am trying to ascertain whether he is a murderer. Do I slow down or hasten my steps. I could go two ways with the script. Or twenty. It feels like there is a key, but of course there isn’t. Force it don’t force it. Fuck it don’t fuck it. Please don’t kill me. What are you afraid of?

14 Responses

  1. I might be a little afraid of you, Betsy! (But, then, we all know the other side of fear is … love.)

  2. “What are you afraid of?”

    It’s all in the mind, but I see a separation of “state.” As in physical and mental.

    Physical – heights and speed, although, I used to be fearless. Maybe all kids are. I used to climb trees all the way to the top. I used to jump off the highest point at the rock quarry, where a couple of kids broke their necks.

    I used to not care how fast the car went under the hands of a half drunk boyfriend, flying blind around curves, turning off the lights and not knowing if we would connect to a tree or a ditch.

    Plain old vanity: How do I look when I walk away? What do they think about my clothes? What’s their impression of me?

    Social woes: What should I say? Will I say the wrong thing? Maybe I just won’t say anything. To hell with them.

    Writerly angst: Did they read my shit? Is it that? Shit? Did they secretly laugh while telling me how good it was? Are they joking amongst themselves, saying with that snarky tone, “Really? REALLY?”

    I could go on.

  3. The teenage years… hurtling towards me faster than that new eye roll that confirms that I’m an irritating idiot. Sarcastic comments usually follow.

  4. That time is running out.

  5. Being abandoned, forgotten, alone, homeless, friendless, without hope, without plan, misunderstood and cast aside.

  6. Climate change, also the GOP, and my own incompetence

  7. Leaving the world without a trail behind.

  8. Not nearly as much as I used to be afraid of. Which clearly means something will bite me in the ass any day now.

  9. The comments section.

  10. A cyclops with fading vision named Justice; we no longer see eye to eye.

  11. Isn’t a man. It too is a Bear.

    Hard to tell with all the hipster beards about.

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