I Want You to Be Honest about Something

The man has three distinct scenes in mind before this conversation with Lucia. At age eight, she hit her five-year mark with the local dance company, which meant that she was to receive a five-year award at the spring dance recital. They issued these awards partway through the recital. Each kid’s name was called, andContinue reading “I Want You to Be Honest about Something”

Wicked-Old Boomers

For years, Graham has watched Minecraft videos on YouTube, particularly by Stampie, who has etched out a following in the millions. Graham is eleven now and has begun experimenting with his own content on YouTube. Lauren and the man are working together on dinner in the kitchen. Graham comes in and announces, “There’s a guyContinue reading “Wicked-Old Boomers”

Hostage Rescue

The man’s oldest son has turned twelve, and today is his birthday party. Their new house has more than one hundred acres of woods behind them. They have allowed him to invite a bunch of friends for a party, and Lauren has turned over the activities to the man while she handles food. “Don’t worry,”Continue reading “Hostage Rescue”

The Primary Program

The boy has the biggest part of any kid in the primary sacrament meeting program. The primary president gives him the script weeks ahead of time, and he spends hours each week memorizing his lines and learning his cues. They have two Sundays of rehearsals, and he delivers all of his dialogue without looking atContinue reading “The Primary Program”

Fifteen Bucks for a Joy Ride

They have retrieved Peanut again from one of his neighborhood escapades, covered his new hole with a rock, and come back inside. It’s dusk on a warm, humid evening. Their mother is playing Super Mario Brothers. After Kevin showed her on his system, he gave her a turn, and she took them out that dayContinue reading “Fifteen Bucks for a Joy Ride”

Take the Trash Out, Please

Graham is sitting on the couch watching a Minecraft video on an iPad. “Hey, bud, could you take the trash out?” the man says. “No,” he says without looking up. The man sighs. “Let me rephrase that. Take the trash out.” “Uggghhh. Why?” “Because it’s full and it’s your job.” “Why can’t Lindsay do it?”Continue reading “Take the Trash Out, Please”

Peanut

Their mother parks the minivan in front of a drab building in downtown Corpus Christi. “All right, everyone out. You have to come in and help decide.” “Decide what?” Ruthanne says. “This is animal control. We’re going to see if we can find a new dog.” “Really?!” they all yell. They have two cats. TheyContinue reading “Peanut”

Damn Tacos

Each year on December 24, the boy’s father takes Stephen and him shopping. All three of them have usually bought almost all their gifts, but Dad likes to be out in the crowds, get lunch, browse a bookstore, and spend time together before heading home for Christmas Eve traditions. The boy is twelve and aContinue reading “Damn Tacos”

A Comprehensive Guide to Potty Training

She is not like Grant. She plays quietly with dolls, cuddles easily, and hates being dirty. She has transitioned out of diapers and pees easily on the potty. The man walks through the kitchen into the hall. A noise from the half bathroom at the end causes him to turn. She is sitting on theContinue reading “A Comprehensive Guide to Potty Training”

Most Teams Celebrate When They Win

The man’s oldest son started football for Silver Lake when he was ten. They went 0-8 that year. That same group of kids has never won a varsity game since mighty mites. The man and his friend are the new the Silver Lake seventh and eighth grade coaches this season. They have dumped the oldContinue reading “Most Teams Celebrate When They Win”