John Had a Headache



Some days, the smell of fresh-cut grass is the best smell in the world. It is better than every inch of a candle wall, better than night-washed sand, than the ocean after–and before–a storm; thanksgiving dinner, even when you’re really hungry.

I sat in my driveway, on a day like this. I was reading H.G. Wells, The Time Machine; listening to Alanis Morrissett. I looked up from my book, down the driveway.

If time travel is ever invented, I thought, I’ll come back to this moment right here, just at the end of the driveway and wave.

I waited.

“IT’S NOTHING LIKE GOLF!” My Mother’s voice.

The front door slammed. I turned. My step-father, grumbling, strode past. He was big, smelled like pancakes. He stopped and frowned down at me. His face went a little softer.

“What’re you reading?” he asked. I held up my book. He shrugged. He began…

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