Sunday, April 09, 2006
Mr. and Mrs. Sprat
Ben, a soldier home from Iraq, met Kate on the Long Island Railroad. He was heading to a pain management clinic in the city. She was returning from a beach outing at Fire Island. When Ben got up nerve to talk to Kate, he fell for her. His current girlfriend, Gretchen, the nurse at the clinic, would be an easy commitment to shake. Kate made it clear she just wanted to have fun, but when Ben proposed she didn’t say no. After they were married, he picked up the habit of forgetting his wallet. He also turned paranoid and belligerent when he heard unfamiliar noises, especially pips and squeaks that came from children’s squeeze toys. “We won’t have children.” Kate agreed. Ben’s pain got worse. Kate never grew fat. Ben would eat no gristle. Kate would eat no lean. Kate flew off the handle when they told her to quit caffeine. She boarded the LIRR and never came home again.