Things Happen

December 12, 2008
By Renee Jones, Centreville, VA

These things happen. In my defense, he really shouldn’t have been running so fast, should’ve looked where he was going. If he had, he probably wouldn’t have run into my fist. Or my elbow. Or my foot. Actually, the foot was intentional. But yanno, these things happen.

My best friend, he’s her boyfriend, this fist-runner-into-guy. Well, was until recently anyway. She’s pretty shy I guess, pretty cute, pretty new to the whole relationship thing. He was her first, special, and all that. Well, anyway, she came to me, a Tuesday I think it was, said she was sorry…so, so sorry. We’re teenagers, she said, just teenagers. Well, yeah, we are, and these things happen.

He stayed with her, two months, three, nine, all the way up. Through the doctor’s visits and everything. Then she had the baby. Seven pounds solid, cutest little cheeks you’ve ever seen. He had His eyes, big with long lashes, and sunlight punching through the brown. My friend’s mom, well, she was busy she said. Couldn’t come to the hospital she said, so I did. He wouldn’t go either, so I did. It was prom night, he was at school, couldn’t make it to the hospital, obligations and all that. These things happen, he said.

Wouldn’t speak to her after all that. Don’t know what he was thinking. Nine months and the baby pops out, no assembly required. Those things don’t happen. Mom kicked her out, so I took her in. All of us, me and her and the screaming baby in my apartment. Baby’s hungry, work, college, work, baby’s tired, work, hungry, sleep, baby’s cold, work. These sorts of things shouldn’t happen.

So then I saw him at the park, another Tuesday I think. A girl and him jogging down the asphalt with some giant slobbering dog keeping pace. The girl smiled, flipped her hair, pretty blonde. Didn’t see me I guess, well, I wasn’t running. I think then, well, Officer, I think I froze. Well yeah, that’s when my fist hit him anyway. Or really, his face hit my fist, physics and all. Equal and opposite force and all that. Didn’t mean to. Didn’t mean to hit him twice. Oh, right, three times, sorry Officer. Four times you say? Well, yanno, these things happen.

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