Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Writers In Chains

Mary Miller and I had lunch at Applebee's today, which reminded me that Tom Franklin and I first met at an Olive Garden, which reminded me of the Christmas Eve in Mobile, Alabama, not too many years ago when nothing was open but a TGI Friday's so Tom and I (both in town to visit our parents) had some rainbow-colored cocktails. And as Tom reminded me yesterday, we used to meet when I got off work (from a coffee shop in Bel Air Mall) at the Ruby Tuesday next door, in which we went over each other's short stories, back before either of us was published. And I also recall that an ex-girlfriend of mine waited tables there and I liked to go sit in her section and whine to her about not having a future. And one day she finally asked me why I didn't stop whining and do something. She was sick of hearing it! For example, she was leaving forever (like the next day, as I recall, though that can't be an accurate memory) to have an adventurous life in Alaska. And she did! She was gone. And I was like, "She's right!" And I quit my job and moved to Atlanta. But anyway, Mary and I split an Applebee's dessert, or such was the plan. They brought it out on a sizzling hot skillet. A blondie on a sizzling hot skillet! Why? And somehow a black plastic cup of sauce had been placed on the sizzling hot skillet, and the bottom of the plastic cup had melted, sending a frightening, violently bubbling, sizzling, burning evil pool of thin white sauce and poisonous black plastic all over the sizzling hot skillet.