page 26

by beginningstoendings

“I try to.”

“Just try?”

“I do, write that is.  Nothing publishable yet.”

“How old are you?”


“In school?

“Unfortunately yes.  Hence the insatiable desire to get something published and drop out.”

“I see.”  The man is sipping his now crema-free coffee (he drinks it black I see, how mysterious) and squints into the sunless streets.  The drizzle exchanges itself with a much heavier rain and the traffic is now picking up.  Scurry scurry little Vancouverites, scurry.  Eat your organic veggies, get to your spinning classes, your pottery lectures and your galleries.  “What’s your name?”  It was the man again, somehow I had forgotten that we were mid-conversation.

“Kate…therine.”  I extend my hand for a shake as I trip a little over my words.  He takes my hand in his, the back of which is covered in freckles.

“Pleased to meet you Kate-therine, I’m Patrick Jamus.”  I couldn’t decide whether I thought his sardonic tone was charming or rude but I decided to follow up the hesitation I had about my name anyway in an effort to not sound like a total idiot.

“I normally prefer Katharine.  Kate is very casual and I hardly know you, and Katie is what you call a rag-doll or a redheaded six-year-old.  Or if I went the Kathy route I’d be an obese lesbian or a politician’s wife with big round hair and I’d have to be addicted to prescription meds.”  This makes him smile and he sips from his coffee as though he was whispering the mug’s brim a question.