A House Disconnected, Re/Coded, a Little Fiction | Big Truths nonfiction anthology, April 2016: In between leaving my last Chicago apartment and moving to Portland, I lived with a friend for three months—in a house without Wi-Fi. It was a beautiful home that my friend, Christina, had purchased in 2009 in what was then an up-and-coming neighborhood. She gutted and renovated it, and was proudest of the kitchen. This area boasted a bar, custom kitchen cabinets to accommodate her lean 5’9” stature, and stainless steel appliances. Elsewhere in the house she diligently picked paint colors and wood trim and, in the master bath, installed the biggest bathtub I’d ever seen. It was the perfect amenity-filled modern Chicago home in every way, aside from the fact that it lacked the one thing even a barely-housed gutter punk in an empty Wicker Park apartment requires.
The Cab Driver, Story Club Magazine, November 2015: It’s December. A cab driver picks me up on my way home from a friend’s Christmas party. The driver of Yellow Cab medallion number 4520 spends the next several miles trying to coerce me to sleep with him after his shift ends at midnight, in just 20 minutes. I tell him no and change the subject, again and again. He persists.
Housekeeping, Oregon Humanities, Spring 2016: The summer after my freshman year of college, I got a job as a hotel maid in a neighboring town in southeastern Ohio. I learned early on that the preferred industry term is “housekeeper,” and I also learned that while housekeepers make minimum wage, they sometimes get tips. I saved up all of my tips that summer and used them to buy an iPod. It was 2005 and I was tired of listening to library books on cassette tape while I cleaned rooms.