The Reject Pile

I have too many feelings. Would you like some? These ones taste mostly good.


How does anyone ever pick up and move on, really? They obviously do. They take a bite of one cookie and say too soft. Another: nothing special. A third: overdone. A fourth: no…nuts. Everyone has a reject pile.

People all over the world are deciding actually, can you hang on, I think I’d rather that one.


They’re looking around a little wildly, wondering where they can put down the one they’ve picked up. Wondering how to go about it.  Without being too obvious, without hurting anybody’s feelings.

I suppose now would be a good time for me to box things up — although, looking down, I’m not sure if there is much worth saving. Just a few crumbled edges, really.

I know I should give up hope — you’re not even looking over here. You haven’t in years, honestly. You’re probably a brownie person now, for all I know. But the boy I knew would have gravitated towards the warm and familiar. The boy I knew would have at least been tempted by wait, I’m back, you are my favorite. You have been all along. The boy I knew might have been a lot of things, but he wouldn’t have been so cold.

This isn’t the kind of hurt I can brush off and stuff down into the seat cushions. How do people do it? How do they bury the fact that nothing in the world smells as good as the person they love?

Not big, beautiful loaves of bread baking.


Not even bacon fat jumping around a cast iron skillet, although that is a pretty close second. We can talk about bacon some more, if you’d like. Happier things. We should probably drain some of the fat here. Not into the sink!


Bacon fat is one of those things I like to have hanging out in the back of my fridge. I’m slightly self-conscious about this, but not enough so that the label doesn’t say ‘Bright Idea, Part I.’ Bright Idea, Part II, is a jar of Mom’s hot fudge sauce, scooped from the family fridge. In case you were wondering.

Additional bright ideas: Putting your own towel in the dryer just before you shower, so it’s all nice and toasty when you come out. If that doesn’t feel like a hug, I don’t know what does. Calling your best friend when you feel sad. Drinking hot chocolate while you watch the snow stack up.


Remembering that you have any number of people who will help talk you down off the ledge when it’s just you, and a jar of cookie butter. (Bright Idea, Part III.)


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