Jam

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I had 15 minutes to shove food into my mouth before I left for the theater. An American in Paris was going to take up most of my afternoon and I wanted to make sure I had eaten.

Hangry theater is the worst kind of theater.

The toaster oven  buzzer went off and I struggled to spread the honey roasted peanut butter on my toast. I cursed the dark refrigerator as I rummaged around for the Bonne Maman blueberry jam.

“ANDY!” I yelled. “Why didn’t you replace the light bulb?”

He had left for Florida to take care of his dad and I wasn’t expecting a response to my selfish cry.

I am completely capable of buying a refrigerator light bulb, but it fell into the husband category and I rummaged around a dark refrigerator for two weeks.

With a few minutes to spare, I shoved the peanut butter and jelly sandwich in my mouth as I double checked my winning lottery instructions. I grabbed by purse, pet Walter, and ran out the door.

As I walked down Nostrand Ave a Rasta stopped and watched me walk by.

“Maybe I look good today.” I thought to myself.

On the train, an elderly woman and her grandson sat across from me. They kept sneaking glances at me for the ride’s entirety. I had made sure to dress nicely, put on makeup and do my hair, so I was happy for the admiration.

I was killing it.

At 42nd Street, I exited the train and pushed my way past the costumed characters and desnudas.  An American in Pairs’s marquee came into view and I shimmied my way to the will call line.

Lottery tickets were at the 3rd window on the right.

“What is your name?” the woman asked me.

“April Uzarski. U-Z as in zebra-A-R”

She cut me off. “Found you. Can I see your ID?” she said.

I started rummaging through my purse and she gave me a weird look. Then she said, “Don’t worry about it.”

She handed me my ticket through the slot at the bottom of the window.

I went directly towards the restroom and was in a typical long line. Two women on the landing below were staring up at me as they talked. In a city where no one gives you the time of day, it was nice to be noticed.

It was finally my turn to use the restroom and I was quick about it as always. I walked out of the stall and stepped up to the sinks. As I suds my hands I looked up at the mirror to check my hair and makeup.

Then I saw it.

The thing that everyone had stared at.

An enormous glob of blueberry jam dried on my face.

It looked like blood had streamed out of the side of my mouth.

My hair sticking to the dried blob.

I sighed at my horrific reflection.

I quickly washed it off; my face turning bright red by the minute.

As I walked up the stairs I kept my head down to avoid any other strange looks. When I found my seat I slouched as I sat. Happy to sit in the dark for a while.

The lights went down and the actors slogged through the uneventful show.

Leave it to me to have jam and egg on my face at the same time.

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