Seen on the Red Line to 95th at about 7 p.m., September 4th, 2012
"Excuse me, miss, is this a southbound train?"
She lifted her eyes from her Kindle. "Yes."
Before she could go back to reading, Gail continued: "Um, sorry. Then why do the signs say 'Howard'?"
"They don't." She nodded towards the window, and Gail realized she was right. The signs all said "95th," just as they should. He plopped himself down with a sheepish smile of apology.
Gail had been seeing lots of strange things lately. The other night he could have sworn he bought chicken breasts to grill for dinner. But when he returned to his apartment and opened the plastic grocery bag, all he found were pre-made hamburger patties. On Saturday night a pretty girl gave Gail her number--or so he thought. When he pulled the piece of paper from his pocket and unfolded it the next morning, the only thing written on it was somebody's game of hangman. The phrase was LOVE IS BLIND, but too many wrong letters had been guessed; a stick figure man dangled from a stick figure gallows.
Last week Gail went to visit his mother's grave, but her plot wasn't where he thought it was. He meandered up and down the grassy rows, searching for her name. It began to rain, and he suddenly realized he was in the wrong cemetery altogether.
Gail rubbed his eyes vigorously until his lids were red. He fixed his gaze on the sign and repeated to himself: "It says 95th. 95th. 95th...."
Thanks to Gena for helping me finish this story. Also, I was the girl with the Kindle.
In other news, my sister's band, Bittersweet Drive, is releasing their first EP on Friday! Watch this teaser video of their song "Duet," and like them on Facebook for more info.