The One That Got Away

“I’ll never forget the day I met her.  It’s a day that I’d like to forget, and a piece of my soul tries to forget, but some people take residence in your heart.  And like a clogged artery, it only gets worse before it gets better…”

That’s the biggest crock of shit I ever heard spill from your light beer soaked lips.

Hank was unusually cordial with me the day I recounted how Ashleigh and I came to be an item.  It was the last day of the month that wasn’t a weekend or holiday, so he had drank just about half of his pension in one sitting.

What do you know about clogged arteries?  If you think it’s anything near constipation, well, you’d be a little right.  An uptight, pinched-ass wad like you has probably had more than your share of backlogging.  And how did you say she spelled her name again?

So I spelled it out.  Again.  The first time, I clarified each letter because he didn’t hear her name right.  Or so I thought.

Too many letters.  Too many issues.

Kilgore was unusually quiet, and H.L.was playing MegaTouch at the end of the bar.  He pestered Santiago for quarters so often, that Santiago busted a roll of quarters across the floor.  Play that game, he said.  H.L. barely frowned and swiveled his padded seat to stare at the random arrangement of silver disks.

Fish, how would you spell a name like Ashleigh?  Hank kept things simple.  Kilgore’s a Trout.  A Trout’s a fish.  H.L. was a Fat.  And on occasion, I was… well, he liked to call me a certain name, too.

Fat Fish Pussy over here tried correcting me.  You hear that?

Kilgore heard, but he was drawing what he thought an Ashleigh would look like.

Hank, truth be told,” I started.  He didn’t let me finish.

Truth should always be told.  That way you’re never caught with your pants down.

Like your friend Ryan.  This was the input Kilgore waited to share.

Ryan’s no friend of his.  No man cheats with another man’s girl.  No way, no how.

He wasn’t my friend in the first place.  He was my friend, Steve’s, older brother. That became one of our teachers.  That stole Ashleigh.

H.L. scurried about the stained and buckling linoleum tiles.  The quarters are spread out in such a way that they represent a giant copper-nickel rectum.

Like I said…  Hank – ever the poet.  She’s an Ash-hole.

Kilgore's napkin

Kilgore's napkin

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