Flat-Out

Evander Baker, Robyn Couch, and Marion Walker

I walked out of church after Wednesday night prayer meeting and saw that somebody had slashed the tires on my Corvette. I'd parked it off a ways under the bare branches of a ragged water oak, out near the road, safely away from the other cars. When the prayer service was done, I stepped out on the landing to have a cigarette. That's when I saw the 'vette all hunkered down on the ground, moon shadows falling across the car like a hungry spider clutching and sucking the life from it. I wanted to kill somebody.

The next day, I called my sister Maurine and told her about the tires. Her TV was up, and I could tell by her end of the conversation that she wasn't paying me any mind. At one point, I just listened to her TV. Neither of us spoke for what must have been five minutes. Then she started crying and I hung up.

After I reported the crime to my boss at HAPPY VIDEO, I went outside and sat on the trailer steps with a glass of tea. There wasn't a cloud in the sky. It would have been a good day for riding around. I slid my fat ass over to the corner of the steps out of the wind and leaned back into the light and fell asleep.

Everything was gray when I woke. My face was cold and the step I'd been laying against had left a deep cleft in the small of my back. I grabbed the rail to raise myself up. Before I could get to my feet, my sister pulled into the drive. She brought chocolate chip cookies, and we buried them in the backyard.