“We emailed back and forth” by Julia on the 99

Monday November 20, 2017
10:50pm
5 minutes
overheard at JJ Bean

There was an email I sent him once. We were still in high school. I can’t remember if this was before or after Natalie locked us in Denise’s storage room, hoping that we’d have nothing to do in there but make out. I was hoping the same thing. You’d think that after he told me he would do it, but it would mean more to me than it would to him, that I’d get the message and move on to another emotionally unavailable 16 year old, but no. I took it as a sign that he was noble or decent or protective of me even, because he loved me. I have had some serious let downs from thinking I was all that before. The fall is always harder from the great height of delusion.
But this email I sent him was a survey. It was designed for teenagers to flirt with each other, confessing their secrets, disguised as “everybody is doing it so here you go.” He answered my survey. He wrote down what song made him think of me. He said “I was born in a small town”. I thought at the time it was cute. Look how well he knows me. But he didn’t know me. I was born in a bigger city than he was.

“see discuss contemplate” by Julia at her desk


Saturday, October 17, 2015
10:55pm
5 minutes
A Toronto Public Library card

Can I ask you something?
I say this to you right in the middle of a long and delicious make out.
Right now?
You ask, eyes still closed and hands still wandering.
No, I’ll wait a couple weeks, as you were.
I keep kissing you, a little more preoccupied than before.
What? What? You have to say it now.
You are no longer kissing me. Your hands have found a stagnant position on each side of my face.
Nah, forget I said anything. It was stupid! Where were we?
I shove my tongue down your throat and you reel away from me like I just tried to lick your eyeball or something.
Hey, hey, what are you doing? What’s going on with you?
You’re still holding my face, searching deep into my eyes, hoping to find something better than what I’m giving you right now.
I just wanted to ask you….If you…I wanted to ask you if you ever…fuck…just if you…
I am looking anywhere but your face. It’s harder than I thought it’d be.

“adapted for use” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Tuesday, April 9, 2013
11:12pm
5 minutes
101 More Drama Games for Children
Paul Rooyackers


“With a name like that, you’re just asking for it!” He says, this dumb guy with the dumb haircut that all guys seem to have, with that dumb smile that’s really a “I’m coooooool.” “I didn’t choose my name, asshole,” I say, turning around, hoping that Jo will save me. She doesn’t. She’d gone to the bathroom, or out for a cigarette, or is in the alley behind the bar making out with Joaquin, her flavour of the month, sexy but rude, tall but skinny. “Damn,” I whisper. I face forward, face the wall of scotch, bourbon, whiskey, rye. I look down. I think about stealing the few loonies that are there, meant for the bartender, but she was a bitch so who cares. I do. I steal them. Dumb Guy notices and says, “Oh, so you’re that kinda girl.” I pause. I want to hit him but I don’t want to get kicked out so I pause, instead. “What kind is that?” “The stealing kind.” “NO way,” I say, sliding off the stool. “I saw that,” he whispers. “Those dollars don’t belong to you.” “Whatever.” I walk away. I go into the bathroom, graffitied and smelling of Comet and pee. “Jo?!” “Nope – ” says a voice, in a stall. I don’t apologize. Most people would. I’m trying to break that habit. I walk through the bar, a long and lean room, towards the door. Dumb Guy grabs my hand, “Baby, let’s dance.”