Counterperson: “I mean, I know….but-”
Woman: “You can put, I don’t know-”
Counterperson: “Maybe just for the urn.”
Woman: “Is there some kind of standard amount?”
Counterperson: “A hundred dollars.”
Woman: “That will be fine. It was a little more than that, but that’s fine.”
Woman: “She’s worth that.”
This issue looks unflinchingly at the complexity of feelings surrounding the 2015 SCOTUS decision to allow for marriage equality across the land. We begin making mistakes of memory on the Bruckner in the Bronx, travel through foot splinters and Mister Softees, and end with a question of whether we should choose every day–over a single day– to say ‘I Love You.’ We hope to salute and undergird the legions of queero-weirdo youth out there who will maybe not spend another moment reducing their power in the universe thanks to this important victory. Lookout for a big ass rainbow of paper, too.
In Crying Frodo #3.3, the reader is asked to assign a monetary value to 20 objects that are either worthless or priceless, and to consider their accompanying narratives when making those choices. This issue asks the questions: What is the worth of any object? Does an object with a personal history become more or less valuable? The reader is presented with a random selection of price stickers, which are impossibly limiting. The exercise is both honorific and destined to failure.
I have a new short story — “Your Heart Does for Me What Hope Does for You” — in the recent issue of The Outrider Review, a quarterly art and literary journal that features writers and artists exploring gender and identity, this one with cool cover art by J. Marcus Weekley. –>
“Shell and I climb out the window onto the fire escape when the apartment is so hot that we can’t sleep and we can no longer stand it. We put a bowl of ice in front of a fan, but that’s a joke. We eat pints of strawberry Häagen Dazs until our bellies are miserable, and the bodega thinks we are lunatics. Finally, we put the mattresses on the roof and cover ourselves with bed sheets soaked in cold water from the shower.”
Crying Frodo 3.2 delves into the rhythmic patterns of language observed during the bonus rounds of daily reruns of The $25,000 Pyramid, and then recreates and re-imagines the focused, intentional trains of thought that lead to a winning outcome. With emphatic concentration and unexpected links from one idea to another, a mental picture is observed and named. Using simple lists adhering to the rules of the original game show, this issue is a minimalist meditation, a reflection, a non-ironic reverie.
In 1997, I arrived in New York to begin my adult life, and the same week my would-be roommates had adopted two ten-week old kittens, siblings from Brooklyn. Bean was the shyer of the two, the more-strange, the most enigmatic. She liked tiny pieces of Brie. She chirped a tiny meow, a bless you, when anyone sneezed. And she was totally obsessed, for many years, with a catnip-infused crinkly frog toy which she knew I kept hidden in a kitchen drawer.
When I moved from Queens to Brooklyn, she was suddenly sharing the house with her brother and our other male cat. They ganged up on her — typical big brother bullies — and she spent a couple of years, very literally, hiding under a bed and coming out only to snuggle if the house was totally silent. The boys eventually passed away, and for the last fourteen months Bean has enjoyed, or rather flagrantly and luxuriously reveled in, finally being the Queen of her Queendom. We called her the Queen Bean from the beginning, actually. It is fitting, and I think not surprising, that she outlasted them all.
She was so reclusive and sensitive, anyone who she let pet her, well, they felt like they’d won a prize. (As many of you know, her presence in the house was sometimes mythological.) When I think of the 17 years spent with this peerless little lady, all tiny, barely five pounds of her, I know that my life has been richer and more meaningful thanks to her odd, delicate company. I am inconsolable and I am grateful.