thieves

Saturday evening. The Palinode, The Lotus, and The Friend With A Car are driving out to a party on the godforsaken townhouse-ridden edge of town. They spend so much time driving past fields, warehouses, hockey arenas and quonsets that The Palinode begins to believe that they've actually left the city behind, but no, they're just driving to an annexed parcel of farmland full of condos and prefab houses so dull that they had to be picked up with pinched fingers and dropped fifteen miles away from everywhere else.

The Palinode: Is this it?

The FWAC: This is a long road.

The Palinode: I remember this from last year. We drove endlessly.

The Lotus: It probably loops around.

The Palinode: I remember lots of curves. And banks of townhouses.

They keep driving.

The Palinode: There is absolutely fucking nothing out here. There's even less out here than there was the last time we came out.

The Lotus: Last year you were nearly delirious with jet lag. You'd just flown in from Australia the day before.

The Palinode: I must have been hallucinating a whole urban landscape out here. I bet it was beautiful.

The Lotus: Hey look, there's the overpass [an old friend] Marie drove off of.

The Palinode: Really?

The Lotus: She went off it twice. The first time she landed on her wheels. So she drove around and did it again.

The FWAC: She spent the whole year afterwards with that metal frame on her head.

They keep driving. Behind and in front, nothingness keeps getting swallowed up by darkness.

The FWAC: Actually, I don't think it was this overpass. It's the next one.

The Lotus: They haven't built the next overpass yet.

The Palinode: That makes no sense at all. What you just said.

More of that driving thing. No other overpass appears.

The Lotus: Turn here. The party's in that townhouse complex.

The Palinode: Should I leave my bag in the car?

The Lotus: Take it in to the party. It's a little safer than out here.

The Palinode: What if it gets stolen in there?

The Lotus: I don't think there are any thieves at the party.

The Palinode: Suppose there were, how could you tell the thieves from the guests?

The Lotus: When they break the windows to get inside you'll know. Guests come in by the front door.

The Palinode: Today's criminal is much too sophisticated for that. I'll look for the guys with stripey shirts and the dollar sign bags.