D.W. lives and works in Biloxi, MS. A lifelong educator with a variety of academic publications to his credit, he taught Philosophy to college students for nearly a decade; for the past five years he has served as Education Consultant to a number of not-for-profit educational organizations. In the same time, he has directed most of his creative energies towards the writing of short stories, plays, and dialogues— most with an undeniable educational bent. His latest project is a book-length account of his recent travels through the U.S.A. with the working title, In and Out of Distance: An Educator’s 6-month Journey through the ‘Real World.
Labor Day: Too Much Work
On Labor Day morning, 10:30 a.m. to be precise, it seemed a good time to have “the talk,” maybe even a grown-up time.
For the first hour, everything went, well, it was hardly like working. The sun beamed, blue skies smiled, white clouds winked, surf chortled, winds caressed. With the hatch on the Jeep raised, sitting closely, we began our relationship work in shade-covered steps.
Earlier that morning, I’d envisioned success. The cooler full of food and drink, the Frisbee, the towels and beach chairs, her favorite shirt; all of this attested to success. Putting vodka in the clever disguise of my travel-mug did so too; surely just as much as my confidently scribbled notes laying out a reformed understanding of Saturday night’s fight, along with several clever steps towards reconciliation. It does take work to be a grown-up, after all.
The next hour brought sharp winds, merciless heat, sullen skies. The surf mocked, as did she. Still sitting, I protested. Now standing, she glared as hot as the sun.
Still more boats pulled up then pulled away. The minutes labored over each second. That sun, oh, that horrid sun! I wiped the sweat from my forehead. She didn’t move an inch.
I protested and I pleaded. “But I’ve been honest!” “No, I do not need to be in control!” “You haven’t even let me finish!” “My feelings go beyond all that!”
Two empty Tupperware containers, a book of poems, three wrinkled sheets of paper (each bearing a story I’d shared), three dvd cases (my favorite comedies), and me. In the front seat of the car.
I resolved that doing work on Labor Day is way too much work, indeed—especially when it’s grown-up work.
It would really be helpful if you would send D. W. your comments about the work. As writers, we all welcome critiques so we can learn and grow. Let him know if you understood the theme of the story and what worked especially well in it.
And if you have any prompt ideas for November, send them along too.