by J.R. Carson

There is really no good reason for me telling you what I’m about to tell you, other than the fact that I’m tired of talking to myself and I’m afraid I may start talking back (cliché, but true). When I was 42 years old, I saw a man murdered before my eyes; he was shot dead by a mugger for what couldn’t have been more than a few dollars in his worn out leather wallet. What stuck with me wasn’t the murder, though – it was the wallet, as it reminded me of being a child and receiving my first birthday card with cash in it, a crisp twenty dollar bill. I begged my mother to immediately take me to the store so I could buy a nice wallet, my very first wallet, to put all of my future money in – it didn’t matter to me that spending the money meant that my nice new wallet would remain empty until my next birthday. Though I’ve never had better luck with my money since, I was comforted on the day I witnessed that murder by patting my pocket and assuring myself that the same familiar wallet was still with me, still keeping a place marked for all of my future money. I walked away from the dying man and whistled a happy tune, knowing that there would always be another birthday coming.


J.R. Carson was born in 1971 and will likely die in 2012, when the world comes to its preordained end.