Archive for May 20th, 2011

20th May
written by amber

Andrew’s Face

As I was shaving this morning, I was stewing about a guy that I work with, who is causing a lot of difficulties for everyone in the office, and a thought popped into my head, “I should knock his block off.” This is not the way I normally think, but there it was in the mirror, my father’s face.  It was his type of thought.

My mouth was becoming his mouth, always gnawing away at some perceived insult, the lips thinned out, lower teeth thrust forward bringing the jaw with them.  The face of someone spoiling for a fight. Deep grooves carved down from either side of my nose to that angry mouth.  And my nose! What has happened to my nose? It’s cratered with pores and as red as the nose of some old lush. My father was the old lush, not me. Did we all misjudge him? “Only one or two, just to take the edge off, you don’t know what it’s like underground, you try it sometime.” Well, we boys were determined not to try it, if that’s what it did to a man. And do I say things like that sometimes? – “Rough day at work. One more won’t hurt. Isn’t this fine Scotch?”

I wiped the shaving cream away, not even checking for spots I might have missed. I was about to meet my own eyes, and I did not want to do that. I knew what I would see. The eyes of a man who has met more personal defeat than victory, a man who rises each morning with optimism and lies down knowing he has betrayed himself and others at every turn, who has consistently chosen the easy path, who has justified the sacrifice of his fine ideals with flimsy self-serving excuses, who washes awareness away with booze every night and tells himself, “Tomorrow is another day.”

My dad.

And me.

The Story 365 project is a year-long marathon of short story writing, with a new story posted every day on this website from May 1, 2011 – April 30, 2012.  Stories must be a minimum of 200 words.  Please help me by adding first line suggestions in the Comment section.

Today’s story is the assignment given at last Sunday’s writing class – to write a story told by the appearance of a face.