Happy Campers By Len Kuntz
June 20, 2011 Comments Off on Happy Campers By Len Kuntz
She says all this forestation is making her nauseous, giving her headaches and diarrhea. She says she’d rather be a stuffed animal than a deer or bear or chick squirrel.
“There’s no such thing as chick squirrels,” her husband says.
“Like you would know.”
This is how it’s been for a week. Camping was of course his idea. Her husband is the rare man that not only says he likes change, but actually does enjoy it, shamefully so.
“Why did you have to bring a gun along?”
“We’re in the woods, aren’t we?”
“But we have cell phones.”
His laughter lately has had to be coaxed, but now he nearly chokes to death chuckling, hacking and coughing like a smoker, pounding his chest so that his beard becomes dotted with white-tipped spittle pearls.
“Let’s make a deal,” she says, “this is the last time we go camping, and I won’t divorce you.”
His previous laughter had not subsided when this newt wave arrived: convulsive, angry-sounding like the ocean.
“You think I’m joking but I’m not.”
She remembered their early dating, how he would open her door, pick wild flowers and stick them in her hair, always wanting to know what was on her mind, laughing with her not at her.
Now he’s bent over, clutching himself, a red-faced curmudgeon. His eyes are boiled eyes. “Can’t breathe,” he says.
She thought she’d end up having to use the gun. She never considered she’d get this lucky.
“I’m choking to death,” he says.
She leans over to meet his astonished expression, pleased to see how ugly he’s become.
“You’re choking to death?”
He looks like a crippled grizzly, hunched over and nodding, his head huge with blood.
“Choking to death in the woods,” she says. “Now that’s some funny shit.”
© 2011 Len Kuntz
Len Kuntz lives on a lake in rural Washington State with his wife and son. His writing appears widely in print and online at such places as Blue Stem, The Wrong Tree Review, Clutching At Straws, and also at lenkuntz.blogspot.com