Friday, November 19, 2010

These Scales Ain't Made for Measurin'.

This piece, titled "Monstrous Scales," was the result of a writing exercise where we had to combine odd phrases and develop a story around it. Mine happened to be "An old lady with monster scales" or some such. I took some creative liberty with it, though, trying to base it in realism. Enjoy.

When I married Janine, I also married her family. Her family is very ritzy, coming from a wealthy background of successful barters. Despite my middle-class caste, they were more than eager to welcome me into their enclave. Janny’s mother was especially welcoming. She is a very sophisticated woman, always wearing dresses and keeping her salad forks in order.

One weekend, we drove out to Janny’s mother’s house. She is a widow and tends to get lonely in her tiny mansion. At one point that Saturday, Janine left for a grocer to purchase some items for the dinner she was to prepare. It was just her mother and I left behind. We sat in the den to chat while we waited. We were having a lovely discussion until she crossed her legs. Her dress hiked up a tad; it was just high enough for me to see something grotesque.

Now, she is an attractive woman and I am not slandering her by any means, but I now know why she always wears long dresses (though she should be wearing pants). What I saw then was so horrific that I could hardly continue the conversation. In fact, from the expression on her face, it was evident that my own was being offensive.

It didn’t take her long to realize why my face was distorted. She promptly uncrossed her legs and straightened the hem of her skirt. She blushed a bit and became flustered. She made a remark to excuse herself and went into the kitchen to begin preparations for dinner. I, too, excused myself from the room and proceeded directly for the lavatory, wherein I got well acquainted with good old American Standard.

When I re-emerged, I tried to avoid the kitchen, lest I make eye contact with the mother-in-law and be forced to remember what she hid in her undercarriage. I wandered into the living room where she has a high definition television attached to a wall. I figured I’d watch a sports event until Janny returned. Or maybe even for the rest of the weekend, skipping dinner, especially. I wasn’t in the mood to eat anything. I could still taste my lunch.

I skimmed the channels and found nothing of interest. Figures with a satellite connection there would be nothing on anywhere in the world. I grew anxious. I grew desperate. I stopped on a cartoon channel. I did not care what was airing. It would get my mind off of that horrible image and maybe even get me laughing. I was mistaken. It was a dumb cartoon and it was unfunny. That network used to have decent programming.

After what seemed like hours of this drivel (it was actually more like eleven minutes), Janny finally returned. I dashed for the door to greet her, but was unwilling to carry anything into the kitchen.

“Why not?” she inquired, a bit confused.

“I’m afraid I’ll get sick again if I see your mother,” I replied. I had no inhibitions about it.

“Wh-what is this all of a sudden?” She placed her hands around her hips as she readjusted her stance.

“I saw it. I saw her secret.”

“Her wha—oh. Oh, my…”

I nodded. My hand clasped my mouth as I did so.

“You saw her—“

“I saw her varicose veins.”


DawnZhang said...

uh-Oh! XD Bahaha "Love it" would be an understatement! XD

Matt Dimitroff said...

Haha, glad to hear it.