Minutes (Chicago)

July 22, 2009

posted by Caroline Picard



Trials of the Snuggie

  • Two woman sat at a table talking. Through their body language they belied a close friendship, though as is often the case with women and girls, it was not clear whether they had been friends for a long time (during which their friendship had grown deep and rich and strong) or, whether they had only been friends a few days (during which their friendship grew as a clinging vine and without the integrity of years insisted upon an arduous intimacy). While it is of no matter in this account, it would predict whether or not they were still friends today (for those friendships of the fast sort most often explode). The one I will call GEMMA. The other IRENE.

GEMMA: He sent me a snuggie for Christmas. It was late. He didn’t send it until February, but he sent me a snuggie. Isn’t that so wrong?

IRENE: A snuggie?

GEMMA: Yes. A snuggie. Because that’s like what we would have been into if we were still together. So he broke up with me and then he sent me a snuggie a couple months later. And I just didn’t want to deal with it. So I didn’t say anything. We hardly spoke anyway so it didn’t matter but then he started sending me all these links to snuggie activities. Like he sent me a link to a snuggie pub crawl in Wrigleyville and then he sent me a link to an article about how awesome snuggies were and whatever. He kept trying to talk about the snuggie.

IRENE: And nothing else? Not even like, sorry we broke up?

GEMMA: Nothing else. Just stuff about snuggies. Finally he sent me an email, one line, that just said: “You hate the snuggie don’t you.”

Pantry Kitchen Recluse

  • A soon-to-be mother told me this story, which I’ll retell here as though it wasn’t overheard at all. Because I think it’s that funny. Basically Maria is the soon-to-be mom. She isn’t due until next November, but still. She lives with her boyfriend, Franco, and they both seem pretty excited, though kind of worried about the different midwives that seemed to be fighting for their business. Anyway. It’s summer. It’s hot. Franco was at work all day and he came home as usual, around six o’clock. He couldn’t find Maria. Their apartment was pretty small, so he wasn’t too worried about it, he took a little stroll through all of the different rooms, fed thier little terrier and sat down on the couch to watch tv, assuming (as anyone might) that Maria had gone for a walk. After about thirty minutes, however, he started to doubt himself. He decided to call her. He heard her phone go off in the bedroom and that seemed suspicious enough since she always carried her phone. He checked the back yard and then noticed her wallet on the kitchen table. For some reason he decided to call her name, “Maria?” he called. Their apartment, a two bedroom single-story train car apartment was quite small, so he didn’t have to call out very loud. He called again, “Maria?’ He thought he heard a rustling sound but he couldn’t be sure. The hair on his arms was standing on end.  A third time, he called out, “MARIA!” He heard a sound coming from the kitchen, and then a very small “yes?” came, though he could not determine where it came from. “WHERE ARE YOU?” he called out, feeling oddly excited. “I’m in the pantry,” she said, her voice still muffled from behind the wooden pantry door. “WHY ARE YOU IN THE PANTRY?” he called out, opening the pantry door and standing inside with her. It was indeed quite cool. Their dry goods seemed settled and calm in the cool shadows. “I found the coldest room in the house,” Maria said. They were silent for a while, breathing together in the dark of the pantry. Franco heard the dog scratch at the door. He could feel Maria getting angry though he didn’t know how or, more importantly, why. As though to broach her mood he asked, “The pantry is the coldest room in the house?” “Well it was,” she snapped. “Until you came.” She opened the pantry door, walked out and slammed it behind her.

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