Tuesday, April 15, 2008

One born every minute.

3:AM Magazine has published an excerpt from Michael DeCapite's second novel, RUINED FOR LIFE!; here is an excerpt from that excerpt:

Cooper started out as my drinking buddy in New York and became my closest friend there. Or the one I spent the most time with. The first Friday after Flo threw me out was his birthday. I was driving the van, I decided to get him a book. I looked for it all over town and wound up on 18th Street. I walked into a used bookstore. The place was crowded with old books: they were falling off the shelves, they were stacked on the floor.

The clerk said “Can I help you?”

“I’m looking for Struggles and Triumphs, the autobiography of P.T. Barnum.”

He pointed to a woman who was working in the stacks. “Ask her. She’s our circus expert.”

So I walked up——“’Scuse me, are you the circus expert?”

She stopped what she was doing.

Slowly, she came down a stepladder she was standing on. I hadn’t noticed that part. She was a midget. Her eyes were burning up at me.

Back at the counter, the guy was covering his face. He couldn’t believe I’d repeated this. What could I say? “He told me to say it”? She had to work with the guy. I told her what I was looking for. Without a word she led me to the back of the store, I followed her. She pulled Barnum off the shelf and handed it to me.

The clerk was shaking his head as he rang it up, we couldn’t even look at each other, we were too embarrassed.




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