Chinese Food

Michael lay in his bed with his extra pillow covering his eyes, but leaving his nose in the open air, a delicate balance. He was trying not to wake up, but his stomach growled like a caged beast. He was so hungry that it hurt. He’d been dreaming of eating Chinese food, usually his least favorite thing, and he’d woken up ravenous.

He lay listening to his stomach and plotted out the day. He contemplated lunch at the Chinese food restaurant around the corner. He hoped his wife wouldn’t find out. She was always after him to eat there, but he re-directed the conversation to Italian food. He added a stop at the ATM to his list of destinations. No harm in paying by cash!

He wondered if there were anything else he should add to the list. Vacuum repair? Oil change? Dry cleaning pick up? He turned onto his side to squint at the clock and realized the whole plan was simply a way to get out of writing.

“Oh hell,” he said, rolling himself out of bed and walked across the hall.

“I suppose this project will write itself. Is that the plan, Michael?” he asked the bathroom mirror.

He padded to the kitchen and put the coffee water on the stove. He clicked the burner on and caused a small gas explosion. Every day explosions, he thought. How nice.

He looked up to see a raven perched on the garage roof outside the kitchen window. The feathers around its neck were puffed up and tinged with orange. The bird looked into the kitchen, clucking and gurgling as if it were trying to speak.

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