Andrew Keith :: Grudge ::

Flash Fiction

Southern Legitimacy Statement: Raised by rednecks and roughnecks, I reckon no one holds a grudge like a southerner. I’m from Johnson City, Tennessee – yes, the one from “Wagon Wheel” and I sure hope I’m the only ten-you-see. Happy to be here.


She has the snarky look of a California snob sending her chicken cordon bleu back to the chef because it was “too dry” for her liking. Her perfect teeth are this inauthentic white, like they were bleached – if only she’d accidentally let some slip, drip down that big gullet of hers. And the way she laughs – it’s like she has Michael Jackson stuck in her voice box, screeching and moonwalking all up in there. When we ate together, her lips kept smacking, snacking, macking on everything – and I mean everything. She ate off other people’s plates, even the overdone steak no one else would touch. What was she, pregnant or something? Her belly is big but baby-less, bloated’s more likely. Maybe I’m being too cruel, maybe she’s not as bad as I remember her; perhaps I misremember. But how could I forget that one Christmas (how many years ago?) that she didn’t send me a Christmas card?