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Five 100 Word Stories
by Samuel Cole



Body Weight

Power arms. Measured biceps. Hands bigger than caffeine. Muscle shirt. Ass sweatpants. Sneakers slicker than the floor. From behind, his shoulders threaten the rest. A gorilla walk, hairy fingers flicking the air before he wraps aboard a metal bar and holds his weight with interlocked feet and sideburns trailing down a convexo-chin. Descend. Ascend. Eleven more dips. Shake it all out. Veins bulging like purple rope. Punch the punching bag. Squat. Water. Jacks. Sweat turning gray darker gray, he stares at the mirror like an adversary, smile both wildly mad and a candid shot of teeth-clung lips curling upward.




As Was I


His cell phone kept ringing during the movie, six times back to back. I grew livid, uber close to yelling something crass, a bit obsessed with having, needing, and losing control. Like film noir or hanging with my father’s best friend, Ned, the Mercator-map expert and heroine-head.

But he was sitting alone, as was I, and I wondered if he was alone because he felt lonely, as was I, and I thought perhaps he was waiting to hear from some unapologetic lover, as was I, and I hoped he was ignoring the seventh ring on purpose, as was I.




There Will Always Be Lines


I know her face but forget her name. She runs, too. Hair down, she’s almost attractive. She’s in the longer line, those with cash.

“So you crossed to the dark side,” she says.

I laugh. “I didn’t want to but I had to.”

“We miss you.”

“I miss you guys, too.”

“Think you’ll ever come back?”

“Maybe. It’s price dependent.”

“Forty dollars a month is a lot these days.”

“It really is.”

The lady in front of me turns around and asks, “What’s the dark side?”

“Anything you want it to be.”

She nods, and for a moment I’m free.




Winkie’s Bar & Grille

She chews salad greens with teethy disdain, craving her husband’s cheeseburger and fries with coleslaw, the meal sitting before him like temptation's muse. Her husband, Big Al, manhandles the greasy sesame seed bun with affinity and ease while she sticks a fork in the middle of her salad and waves to the waiter, their son, to tell the kitchen she wants a double cheeseburger, fries, and coleslaw. “Just like Big Al’s here. And I want a real coke too,” she says. “No more of that diet shit.” She’s in no mood for weight lose today. Although her son begs, please.




This Is How She Talks


Dinner table:

“Those lazy volunteers didn’t ask me how to use the oven so I told them it was broken.”

Wedding reception:

“The flowers are icky pink which compliments her dress which is way too petite for her body type.”

Principal’s office:

“Would you agree if I wrote a check?”

A family secret:

“You’re too fat to puke.”

To a cop:

“You smell like curry. No wonder thugs want to murder you.”

Hospital waiting room:

“Two jacks are missing from the sticky deck of cards, FYI.”

Major sporting event:

“Everyone shut the hell up.”

To me:

“I despise you, faggot.”





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