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Tightrope

I’m driving to work when my wife calls me on my cellphone. Answering using the hands free gizmo my car is immediately filled with the wails of a crying baby. “Natalie burned herself,” my wife says, choking back tears. “How?” “I was in the kitchen,”

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Burn and Rave

I’ve been floated up to the geriatric psych ward and I’m not happy. When I was younger I didn’t sweat working with old people. Back then old age and death seemed impossibly far away. Now, with my fiftieth birthday in sight, the demented elderly chattering

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Mean Little Spaces

It’s five-thirty and I’ve just finished the lovely sandwich my wife made for me when Hakim sticks his head in the break room. “Can you do me a favor?” the young nurse asks. “Sure.” “You know that new patient in 308?” “He’s been in bed

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Zombies and Tacos

If you’ve ever waited tables, at some point in your nocturnal life, you’ve had a “waiter dream.” These nightmares usually share common thematic elements; you’ve got a hundred customers who all hate you, the restaurant’s layout is bizarrely different, the menu’s a hundred pages, written

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Halloween Isn’t What It Used To Be

Having a baby has made 2014 a year of firsts so, when Halloween rolls around, my wife and I get into gear. After dressing Natalie up as Snow White we run over to an arts and crafts store, hit up Target for candy and go

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Mischief Night

I’m on the checkout line in the supermarket when a teenaged boy comes up to me with an extra large carton of eggs. “Excuse me, sir.” he says. “Could you buy these eggs for me?” My shopping cart is loaded with stuff. “You have one

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The Fires of Hell

“Stephen, dear,” Connie says. “Please refill my ice water.” I don’t even look up from my chart.  “Connie, the water machine is right over there. You’re perfectly capable of getting it.” “I’m too old. Be a nice young man and get me my water. A

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Coffee,Tea and Pills

It’s 7:00 PM and I’m tired so I go into the staff room and brew a pot of coffee. Within minutes the smell of java fills the nurse’s station. Normally I take it black but, as I’ve gotten older, I like it with milk and

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Carousel

I’ve got the baby all to myself and a Nor’Easter is blowing outside. If I don’t take Natalie outside for a walk she won’t take a nap. That means Daddy won’t get a nap. Not good. When there’s a lull in the storm I load

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Brunch Is for Jerks?

A couple of days ago a friend of mine, an avowed foodie, texted the above picture to my cell phone. “I disagree,” I wrote back. “As do I,” he replied. “Sometimes that’s my only meal!” I like brunch, but brunch done right. Post-waiter-stress trauma makes