Monday, October 01, 2007

Past times

He could tell by the way she slammed the pots down on the burners that she was irritated with him.

"I didn't think anybody read those things."

She didn't turn around, kept pulling cans and condiments out of the cupboard. "You read them. Every month. With glee." The pop and crank of the can opener.

"I'll get another job." Lee had the newspaper open on the table in front of him, but with Jen's assault on dinner the paper's quiet rustlings couldn't get past her turned, rigid back. "Everybody's hiring. The Chron had an article yesterday—"

One more pot set down a little too firmly for normalcy. "Lee." She turned around. "We are getting married in almost exactly two months, and you got fired from your job. How are you going to look for a new job and plan a wedding? How are we going to pay for it?" She wiped her hands, grabbed a tomato off the counter and half-turned away. "My dad is going to have a shit-fit."

"Since when do you care what your dad thinks?"

Oh-oh. She was facing him again, leaning forward. "Oooh, I could just stab you"—and she wasn't menacing him with the tomato—sometimes. Sometimes, Lee, you could you say that in a company newsletter? What were you thinking?" Now she was crying. "Your hobby is 'pocket pool'?"

"Nobody reads those! It was a joke!" Jesus, lighten up! "Baby, I will get another job." He stroked her shoulders, gently, oh so carefully. Is this how the spider feels? Poor fucking spiders! "Dad won't know, I'll be here to help you plan, it'll be what you want." She wasn't crying anymore, wasn't staring at him with maniac eyes, was looking at the cracking linoleum. "C'mon, let me give you a hand with dinner. Gimme the salad stuff."

Sniff. Jen started stirring the bubbling sauce in the pot. "I could still stab you, you know."

"I know."

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