A Collection

Two days ago I began dipping into a new collection of short stories by Amanda Curtin.  Definitely not a Red Chair Read, mainly because she is from the wrong century and she writes way too well, although it is also true that I had not heard of her before . . . .  But I love a good short story (menopause shortens the attention span), and I am always on the lookout for new (to me, anyway) writers.  Thus far I have read just the first three stories from Inherited, but I am already a fan.  How amazing to be able to pack so much into such a brief tale as “Sarah’s ark,” a surreal take on acquisition and accumulation.

I collect many things, usually for utilitarian reasons (see story #3, “On the uses of the dead to the living“); for example, I have an endless supply of plastic grocery bags my neighbor gives me because she can’t be bothered to keep canvas bags in her car. I reuse her bags for the garbage, and she gets to feel environmentally friendly.  And then there is the stash of gas station receipts I have been accumulating in my car.  I did not remember when I had started holding on to those receipts, but I knew I started collecting them originally because I was curious about how much gas prices were going up and how often I filled up the car.  Today, I cleared out the receipts, and discovered that I had been keeping them since 2007!  I am not sure what this collection says about me, but I do know it took just 45 seconds to shred almost 5 years of history:

Snapshots of consumption:

5/21/2007 — 3.349/gallon

3/03/2008 — 3.049/gallon

3/27/2009 — 1.949/gallon

3/10/2010 — 2.629/gallon

3/10/2011 — 3.349/gallon

3/09/2012 — 3.299/gallon

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