Story Go Round 12/14/2002, round 1, #1


"Silly goose!" she expostulated madly. "What gives me the most pleasure is scrubbing vegetables, ... not that it isn't also worthwhile eating them. You clearly haven't been paying attention."

The hulky biker hung back from the sink's spray. He hated the way she dug her fingernails in, scraping the brown goo from the beets. Road rage kicking in, a sort of delayed reaction, he cranked his Poison to the max, yelling obscenities in French and grabbing her by the thumbs till she squealed like a cage full wiener dogs in heat. "I am, Sheila, I know you're hurting, but give up the yams! [high pitched guitar solo] Aren't I enough, baby?" One biker tear slid into his grizzled mustache, joining small bits of deep-fried potatoes.
"You are? I ..."

A kiss quieted them both. Water overflowed from the sink and the yams , simultaneously. It was a timeless, timeless, timeless moment. They missed the cake-alarm when ACDC came on stage, finally! The yams were their opening band (and what a band)> , Sheila was its founder. Without her, they'd've foundered; it gave her purpose.

The biker wanted more. More than sweet potatoes , taro, or burdock-root. Fruit-and-vegetable love. "Beet it!" during lovemaking a favorite. "My spud" she would cry.

They planned a garden. They planned for kids. 'Plucot' they named their first girl, 'Mung' the boy. When they divorced, the jars of canned goods shattered, organic produce crated off to the dock coolies, pearls before swine, and the romance died like a great sputtering amp with a blown fuse. Caustic notes replaced new recipes on the fridge. A torrid short reprisal of their former, evanescent sprouting budding spring, but it sprung too soon. They were my friends. I trusted them. But their parting made difficulties for everyone but me. I got the garden, but not the orchard. I and the lawnmower-girl trusted them. But the repetitive pattern of days numbed our minds and haunted our sleepless nights with images of biker bars. Gasoline. Sheila and Hank. Together. Apart. Def Leppard soundtrack. And vinyl, awful vinyl, ghastly, precious, horrible, gorgeous - above all, nondescript. I began stalking Hank , hiring dock coolies to flatten his tires, spike his drinks and steal his hairgel. That pissed him off.

Mung grew up fast - no longer a sprout, full of generational pain, living on the streets, living out of a dumpster, eating out of hubcaps, laughing at death, crying at life.

Striking a deal with the French police, Mung finally ratted on his mum. "She's growing illegal yams!" he growled. Thus the intergenerational retaliation of a lifetime sprung.

Amber is purple; John is pink; Alan is blue; Terry is orange; Habeeb is green