Chris Bell was named most likely to become a clown in a circus by his high-school graduating class. After 4 years in the Army he attended Western Illinois University. In 2005 he had his non-fiction essay “Seeing the Elephant: My War Story” published in Western Voices and was awarded 1st prize for the non-fiction category. In 2009 Chris earned 3rd prize for his short story “Entering Audrain County” in a contest sponsored by the Galesburg, Illinois Public Library. His twin muses are his 9 year-old daughter Lauren and a 23 year old book jacket photograph of Ann Patchett.
Doesn’t Facebook Well With Others
Congratulations! Your herculean effort in making dinner, which is obviously tantamount to splitting the atom, has elicited joy in the hungered masses that must be jealous of your culinary acumen. Meanwhile, I shall dine on a bologna sandwich sans condiments and wash it down with a lukewarm glass of tap water from a suspect plastic cup, yearning for the days of rotary telephones and frontal lobotomies.
Scalded Dog’s Blues
Don’t call me Chief. I’m not in charge of anything. I don’t call you George—he’s not in charge of anything either. And don’t attempt to expiate your collective guilt at our expense—you already wear our hearts on your sleeve. Just keep pumping the silver handled whore til she comes gold coins as worthless as a politician’s promise and buy me an occasional shot.
My father, who was half-Cherokee and half-crazy, would tell me, on those nights when the whiskey warmed his breath and loosened his fists, that our tears added inches to the mighty rivers and our bones layer Mother Earth with harsh wisdom. Then he would hug me or hit me and tell me that bullets are nothing to fear compared to broken promises.
Although rare, there are instances where our system of inane questions, shit-house quantitative analysis and nonsensical compatibility schema are unable to find a suitable match for people like you.
Regardless of the opinions of your parole officer, psychiatrist or mother who all think it’s time for you to become an active member of society again once your ankle bracelet comes off and you move out of the basement, we do wish you all the best in your fruitless endeavor in your search for a soulmate.