Not that there still couldn't be gems to be found for free, of course. Over the past few years of hosting Short Story Mondays I've found many wonderful and free short stories online, by well known and lesser known authors. I can't say, however, that I'm particularly
"Family Thanksgiving" begins with the author describing how at family gatherings he finds himself taking mental vacations. The sky here, he muses, could be the sky over the Bahamas, and thus, with his mind elsewhere, he can cope with familial stress. Though I disagree that the skies are the same wherever you go (it's been my experience they are shockingly different), I can relate at least to the sentiment.
But that's where my attachment to the story ended. I found the narrator, to be honest, too annoying. With a little more humility, this story about an extended family thanksgiving could easily have been a Stuart McLean tale. With more crotchetiness, it could have been a Mordecai Richler story. But somewhere in between doesn't work and many of the jokes just aren't funny.
I suspect others at this shindig don't particularly enjoy being near Uncle Jack any more than he enjoys being near them. I picture the family sitting on a beach, sipping pina colladas, and soaking up the sun, when suddenly they look up to see Uncle Jack staring down out them-- they all look at one another and scream, and suddenly they're all back in an autumn leaf strewn backyard, having to face reality that they're stuck having Thanksgiving together.
I, on the other hand, am quite thankful for my small family of four this year. No offense to uncle Jack.
(Did you write a story for Short Story Monday? If so, please leave a link in the comments below.)