This is my first guest post on "All Write By Me." This short piece STAINS was written by my friend Jessica Lynne Garrett. She is an amazing photographer, performer and writer. I hope you enjoy.
It happened while I was making Jake grilled cheese sandwiches. He was sitting there on the couch with his feet propped up watching CNN, his blue work shirt stained with diesel fuel and sweat. All I see are those stains, they’re a bitch to get out.
"Hey Babe, damn it was a long day today, I bet I must have worked on ten trucks myself," Jake grumbles.
He goes to work every day and works on transfer trucks for twelve hours. I wash grease and diesel stained clothes, make our bed with blue striped sheets, bake peanut butter cookies, balance the checkbook, and scrub the toilet, among other things. The list goes on and on.
"Angel Eyes, will you make me a grilled cheese sandwich?" he asks as he plops down on the couch to take off his work boots.
He calls me "Angel Eyes" when he wants me to make him a sandwich, give him a back rub, make a beer run for him, or a million other things. I fall for it every time. I can’t say no when he calls me "Angel Eyes," it makes me feel special and wanted in my simple little world.
"Sure, Baby. Do you just want grilled cheese? You want me to make you some grits or something else to go with it?"
"Nah, just make me three grilled cheese sandwiches."
I walk into our small kitchen with the faded yellow rose wallpaper. I get the cheese and butter out of the refrigerator. I notice he only has one beer left. That means a beer run for me later. I put four slices of bread in the skillet. It hisses as they hit the hot butter.
"What the hell is this?" Jake yells.
He’s holding up one of my sketches. I must have left it on the coffee table. I like to sketch when I have free time. Today I sketched the goddess Aphrodite from a picture in a library card. Jake doesn’t know I have a library card.
"Oh, it’s nothing, just something I did earlier today," I yell back.
"Don’t you have anything better to do while I’m at work?"
I stand there looking at those cheese sandwiches in the skillet. The butter makes the cheese bubble around the edges. I use a spatula to move the sandwiches from the skillet to a plate. I walk to the living room and place the sandwiches on the coffee table in front of him.
"Aren’t you forgetting something?" he asks.
"What am I forgetting?"
He glances at the empty coaster sitting by the plate on the coffee table.
"You want a beer?" I ask.
"Don’t I every day? What is wrong with you, Molly? Drawing some uppity shit and forgetting my beer, you need to get it together."
Something inside me overflows, it feels like when I put too much Dr. Pepper in a glass and it foams up and runs down the sides of the glass onto my yellow counter top. I walk into the kitchen and stand there, holding the counter top.
"Hurry up with my beer! My sandwiches are getting cold."
I walk from the kitchen and go into our bedroom. I find my old red suitcase. I open the closet and start to remove my things. I don’t have that many, a few old pairs of jeans, a few shirts from the Goodwill, two pairs of shoes, and way in the back of the closet - a sketch book and a set of charcoal pencils.
"What the hell are you doing? I don’t know what’s gotten into you!" he yells as he flings the door open.
"Don’t even think about touching me," I say softly. "I’ve had enough."
Jake laughs and starts moving toward me.
I see Jake’s aluminum baseball bat propped inside the closet door. I grab it, and swing with as much force as I can. The bat makes a hollow twanging sound as it strikes his head. He falls to the blue carpeted floor. Blood runs out both of his ears and his nose.
The blood makes new stains on his shirt, more stains, deeper stains, so many stains it seems I will never get out.
Click the title or here for a cool video, "It Gets Better" (go)
Copyright © 2011 by Jessica Lynn Garrett. Photo by RudyK model Simon Czapnkski . Images and links are not those of this blogger or blog.