July, at 36
“Why does the Fourth of July always make me sad?” she asked. At the end of the sentence, she passed a French fry from one hand to the next, like a baton in a relay race.
“I haven’t the foggiest idea,” Servi answered, turning over. He could feel the sun burning his back, but he was too drunk to care. Then, the impulse to rise seized him, and he stood up, turning toward the churning waves.
“Because for a teacher,” his wife answered for him, “July 4th means that summer is almost over.”
“Ridiculous,” Servi answered the sky, gazing up at its milky haze. “You have so much time off, and you piss it away worrying that you are pissing it away. Then you worry about worrying that you are pissing it away…”
“Calm the fuck down, Aaron,” she answered pertly. “Overreaction is what is placing this marriage in… I was only making chit-chat.”
“Placing it where? Where is our marriage placed, Diane?”
“On the rocks, damn you,” she hissed. “Every time I say something there is a round of useless scrutiny. I can’t just express a feeling without an inquisition… where are you going?”
Servi began to walk toward the little
. village of
“Where the hell are you going?” his wife asked, screaming.
“I need a drink,” Servi made a tipping motion with his hand, and made slow progress through the soft sand.