Funny stories in under 500 words.

Missed Connections – Craigslist, USA

There’s a better chance I’ll be struck by lightning than you seeing this, but I’d walk through a storm in a suit of armor if it’d better the odds.

We met last Thursday at O’Malley’s. You were shooting pool, all elbows and angles—gigging and embarrassed after another scratched shot, a big drink of ale from the fishbowl. You were with a guy and a girl. Was that your boyfriend? Girlfriend? Are you into that kind of thing?

Through the course of the night I spied you like a P.I. on stakeout. You had curves like an archer’s bow and a tattoo on your hip. A red rose. You wore low-cut jeans even lower. When you bent over the table to knock around a 6-ball, I could see your underwear—lacy and painted-on tight.

We met later—sometime after midnight. I’m not totally sure of the time. I’d been doing tequila shooters with my cousin Danny. He’s going to jail next week, so this was a kind of last hurrah for him. I went out to the parking lot, clear my head with a smoke. Then you came out—raven-haired and unearthly in the spider-black night—and asked if you could get a drag on my Marlboro Red. I tried to give you a cigarette, but you said were quitting. I remember the air was a carousel of smoke and liquor and insect buzz. I think you said your name was Leah or Ashley.

I couldn’t say how long the conversation went on after that—the tequila, at last, had upset the balance of my conscious mind. I think I got my phone out. Was it to get your number? Take a selfie?

You must have left before we exchanged information. Or maybe we got interrupted. Danny said we had to haul ass out of there. I guess he got into some kind of argument over a game of nine-ball. Someone insulted his mother. He’s always getting into fights. Broke a pool cue over some guy’s head. I think a jukebox got damaged, too. I hope your friends weren’t part of it.

I wish I could remember more. You really remind me of a girl I knew one time, some other time. Anyway, if you see this, send me a message. Tell me the color of the underwear so I know it’s you. I’d love to get to know you better.

This story was written by S.A. Volz, who lives in southern Indiana. He enjoys old movies, professional wrestling, and watching sloth videos on YouTube. His writing has appeared in the Gravel Literary Journal, Twisted Vine Literary Arts Journal, and the Route 7 Review.


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