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Exercise #27: Evasion

Jeremy woke up one morning, sat up in bed, looked at Boot—perched on the pile of Newsweeks under the window—and said out loud, “Today is the day.” He swung his legs off the side of the bed, careful to place his feet in the narrow path that led to the bathroom.

He said it again, louder this time: “Today is the day.” At the sound of Jeremy’s voice, Boot sprang from the stack of magazines to the bed. Some papers fluttered to the floor.

He thought about picking them up, but he didn’t want to get distracted by the small task. Today was going to be about big progress.

He followed the path to the bathroom. On his left were columns of newspapers. On the right, pages printed from the Internet, stapled in the upper-left corners, and sorted into dozens of manila folders. A sheaf of recipes caught his eye. Maybe he would cook something later. He carried the folder to the bathroom and placed it on top of the overflowing basket of news magazines between the toilet and the bathtub. He let the tub fill while he brushed his teeth and shaved.

As soon as he was dry and dressed, Jeremy navigated to the front hallway. A good place to start. He surveyed the stacks of boxes lining the walls. A silverfish crawled out from between two cartons, but by the time he’d fetched a tissue from the bathroom, it had disappeared again. He would need to clean and dust as he cleared away some of this mess, so he made his way to the kitchen.

He opened the cabinets under the sink and contemplated the crusty rags and dozens of open bottles of cleaning products. He picked up an empty Windex bottle, then put it back down.

Maybe he should fix himself something to eat. Then he would be ready to work.


Note: The prompt was to write about a character who is evading something.

© 2010 Edward F. Gumnick

This post is an exercise that I wrote as part of the Fall 2008 50/50 Workshop, on which I began work in September 2008. (I’m still—again—working on it as of August 2010.) Read a description of the 50/50 workshop, or view all of the Fall 2008 50/50 posts.

1 comment to Exercise #27: Evasion

  • Gayle Goddard

    You have been paying attention at the Meetups! This is a great walk through the mind of someone who is hoarding. I’d love to read the end of this story…great job!

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