I. Carpooling Somewhere in the Midwest
A billboard advertises a gun show starting January 12. It is April.
II. An Airport in Utah
The large group of ladies that put down copies of the Salt Lake Tribune on the floor of the airport and just dumped their trash on it. They've found a way to spit seeds onto the ground in a manner respectful to those who need to clean the carpet.
III. A Greyhound in Texas
The northwest has condensed their sunsets somehow. The setting of the sun across the strip of desolate freeway I travel on always seems to confirm that for me.
I'd highly recommend staring aimlessly at the never-ending American landscape and think about absolutely nothing.
Except that's harder than it looks. I find myself circling back to a similar thought, whether I'm on a Greyhound in Texas or a Camry in Wisconsin, that the skyline in butt fuck nowhere is long as hell.
IV. A Work Trip to Colorado
I bought the cheapest plane tickets, like $200 cheap, and my bank account still flagged it as fraud and declined my card.
My routine always begins with a sleepless night.
Part of opting ~basic economy~ is you don't choose your seat. One is assigned to you at the very last minute in the hope you won't show up. Because COVID, that guarantees sitting next to someone. You have to spend money for safety.
The twist is your seat buddy is not necessary a member of the basic economy class. The gate attendant is required to notify them asking their permission to have their space invaded by my sorry ass. Are they really allowed to say no? When I was assigned my cell mate I was told, "I think you'll like her" which is very ominous.
I did. She was just trying to sleep the entire time and I really respect that.
V. My Bed, In Stasis
I like to think that the reason I don’t travel more is that I don’t have a car, not my anxieties.
Cassie Birk is a University of Iowa grad with a degree in words. She edits fiction for The Conium Review. Her work is also featured in Funny Looking Dog Quarterly, GLITCHWORDS, streetcake, The Daily Drunk, and more. Corporally, she's in the PNW and smells of Italian food. Mentally, she's on Twitter @BirkCassie