Today, in my memoir class, we were given a writing prompt that I’d like to share with you.
Part I: Write five non-human things that appear in your memoir.
3. Stupid ranch dressing for fries
4. Martini glasses
5. Eye rolls
Part II: Circle one of these things, and introduce it in an unconventional way.
I remove the black leather, that I hope contains my whale for the evening, from the table and sigh deeply as I whip out my phone and begin calculating the five card split. These bitches have been talking about how excited they’ve been for this dinner and yet not one of them could hit an ATM?
I wrap the receipts around the corresponding plastic, don the fake smile I’ve come to wear so well, and bid them thank you and good night.
As I make my way through the phased dining room, I see Amy and Ryan doing rollups, Justin is gathering the salt and pepper shakers, and Bill is covered in ketchup. I cross the threshold to the line and see Sam restocking the to-go station, Mary is taking down the soda station and I know – I know the night is far from over.
“Looks like you’ve got the double C tonight, Lauren!”
“Fuck you, Shawn.”
I make my way to the condiment cooler, begging the restaurant gods to take pity on my tired soul. I pull open the cooler and find it surprisingly clean – just a few quick wipes and I can probably leave and head over to the bar with everyone else.
I remove the bottom row – mustard, chipotle, balsamic – and lift the metal rack in an effort to relieve it of the gunk solidifying on its once stainless steel surface when I see it. In the far corner, I can see a white, peppered blob. And if I can see it, Christie can see it…and there’s no way she’s letting me out of here until this thing is spotless.
I inhale deeply, and stretch my arm…but I can’t reach. So I lunge forward and as my right shoulder hits the second row rack, I feel it – cold, wet, clumpy…the fucking condiment makes its way through my hair, along my neck, and down the back of my shirt leaving me no choice but to rise, wipe the dressing from my eyes, and figure out how I’m going to remove the smell of ranch from my person.