February 7, 2011

Except for the first few paragraphs of each chapter, I took Dead Ginny off the net in 2005 but if you want to read and/or listen to the sucker for free, click this. Thanks. G.


Gerard Jones

Chapter Five
San Mateo

Elliot's parents lived in a custom built turquoise and white ranch style house at the end of a cul-de-sac up in the hills above the southern part of San Mateo. I liked going up there. The living room had plush, pearl gray carpet that smelled like it had just been installed and soft cream-colored love seats and a soft cream-colored couch, all with matching end tables and table lamps with three-way bulbs. The furniture in the living room was centered around a combination television and high fidelity record player. Outside some sliding glass doors there was a redwood deck with a panoramic view up past the airport to San Bruno Mountain, down almost to San Jose and across the bay to Oakland and Hayward and Mt. Diablo. Beyond the deck there was a path of flagstones leading over to some jasmine bushes and a Cost-Plus waterfall by the back fence. In the kitchen there was a huge new two-door refrigerator full of all sorts of things I'd never seen outside a grocery store.

My own parents, by way of contrast, had bought a house in San Mateo Village. It had the same floor plan as all the other houses in San Mateo Village, the same hard grass yards, with short, newly planted trees, and, as for carpet, all we had were rugs. Nothing matched. Nothing was new. The only thing in the refrigerator was maybe a bowl of browned potatoes left over from a pot roast. Usually we just ate skinny noodles, creamed with canned milk and Velveeta, or fried egg sandwiches and hot chocolate, but my mother got ambitious once a month or so and cooked a pot roast. Other than creamed noodles and egg sandwiches, all she really knew how to cook was pot roast. Which was fine with my father. The pot roast, itself, was all well and good, but the left over potatoes made life truly worth living. There was nothing my father liked better in the world than browned potatoes left over from one of my mother's pot roasts, sliced razor thin and fried with his bacon and eggs for breakfast. I adore my father. He'd dead. As I've said.

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Gerard Jones
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