Freedom & Restraint
Featuring stories by writers Blair Hurley, Tara Lindis, Katherine Jamieson, and Kate Scarpetta; read by actors Tim Farley, Ginny Bartolone, Cathie Boruch, and Rudi Utter. Hosted by Andrew Lloyd-Jones at KGB Bar on 5th June 2019.
When is it alright to look? It’s my iPhone that I’m staring at. You obviously want someone to see these, but how do I know if I’m that someone? I guess if I don’t know you that well, then I shouldn’t be looking at pictures of you and your friends (also people I only know by a name or a face) at a party, or you and your family at Disneyworld, or you and someone (an ex-girlfriend? a current girlfriend?) kissing against some wall in Paris, trying to look cinematic. If I am not the intended viewer, and I consent that in most cases I am not, what is wrong with just looking?
They returned from the dinner as if it were any other evening with people they loved to detest. Carrie immediately stepped out of her heels and Jack thumbed through the mail on the hall table he hadn’t had time to look at before they’d hurried out for dinner. Now it was late and he was tired. He felt forty. He’d kept checking in this month before his actual birthday. Feeling forty yet? Not yet.
My mother took me to that New Year’s Eve party at the Nolts’ because my eighteenth birthday had been the day before, and my own friends were still away for the holidays. She said I could pretend this party was all for me, that it could be my secret. I liked secrets, didn’t I? My mother and I often played these types of games since my father had left. They were private games, for the two of us, where no one else would bother with the rules, which changed often. Playing and pretending were often more the point of these games, and mostly, no-one won.
Dot drifted from room to room, listening to her footfalls echo against the Mexican tile, soften over the wooden decks, and disappear altogether on the plush shag rugs. Rosita had just been in for the weekly cleaning and everything was immaculate. Sunlight streamed in through the bay windows, illuminating the décor of solid, Easter egg colors. Her decorator, had pushed her to “go rainbow” with the place to match the beach setting and the dramatic sunsets. Together they had spent months searching for just the right rugs and couches, everything down to the fuschia flyswatter. A year later, the colors struck her as rather gaudy, but, of course, it was much too late.