April 14, 2011 by markstani
This is a story from Amelia Gray’s inspired micro-fiction collection, AM:PM. It’s published by the frankly brilliant Featherproof Books, from whom it’s available in print or download. It’s also available on Amazon. The story below, my favourite, is reproduced by kind permission of the author. A full review will follow.
Imagine if you could call up all your exes, and bring them together on a basketball court to play a pickup game. Maybe you could also call all the girls you’ve ever loved, split them into the Girls You Had a Chance With and the Girls You Never Had a Chance With. Have them play shirts and skins. It won’t be for your honor, though you’ll be the only one watching. You will promise pizza and beer to the winners. The girls you never had a chance with will spit and glare, and the girls you still may have a chance with will snivel and look at you when they make jump shots.
The winners will take your wallet and invite the losers out. Everyone will forget to give you directions, and you’ll be left sitting in the gym parking lot.
You’ll go home and watch basketball movies. You’ll build a makeshift court from scrap lumber in your backyard, and leave messages on all of their answering machines, inviting them back. You’ll go out back every night and play H-O-R-S-E, waiting for them to return. You will wear your shirt when you are shirts, and you will remove your shirt when you are skins.