She hated the name Lish, it reminded her of failed poets and Victorian school teachers. She said that he must hate her for having such an old fashioned name, but he said not really and smiled and she went back to making coffee. It was late afternoon and late summer and he’d come home late from work and she was late in a different way and worried and unhappy and not in the mood for coffee or dinner or anything, really. What she wanted was not to be. For a little while. If that were possible. If she had the ability to temporarily deactivate herself. If, by some benevolent manifestation of fate, she could locate the off switch.
Through the open kitchen window she heard the hot wind roaming through a garden that had never quite managed to do more than make weeds. The sunlight looked brittle. She imagined it fracturing. What a lousy name she said. I mean, Alicia. Who names their child Alicia in this day and age. What the hell were my parents thinking. You give a kid a name and it should serve as a guide for life. Tell me anyone named Alicia who amounted to a hill of beans.
He went to the stove and got the coffee pot. He poured two cups and added cream to them both.
What about that cool woman from the Fantastic Four.
The invisible one?
No, the Thing’s girlfriend. The blind sculptress.
What’s cool about being blind. What has a blind person ever accomplished.
How about Helen Keller. Stevie Wonder.
Sure, them. Two people in all of history.
How about Homer.
Homer who she said, weary and confused.
He laughed, absolutely the wrong path to take at that moment.
Shaking his head in frustration she went off to the bedroom, forgetting about coffee and whatever might next be said.