Friday, June 6, 2008


James couldn't picture the color of his wife's eyes anymore. He couldn't remember the last time he'd really looked into her eyes. Lately her eyes were fixated on one thing - the giant IMac screen in their kitchen. With its bluish glow reflected in her brown eyes, it seemed as though her eyes had morphed into a new color, like those people who get colored lenses and create unnatural looking eye color combinations.

James rued the day he'd walked into the Apple store. He'd been easily seduced by the flawless design of the IMac. He had never thought that he would describe a computer as beautiful, but there simply was no other way to describe it, and the price couldn't be beat. He never would have bought it, even if it had only cost a dollar, if he'd known it would cost him his wife.

The IMac was, as advertised, truly plug and play. It was up and running as soon as he connected the power cord. They had all gathered, drawn in by the stunning purple space screensaver. One by one, the kids had drifted off to their games, and eventually James had gotten up to go to the bathroom. Brenda had just settled in on her stool and had never left. A little while later, when he'd gotten involved with his bathroom private time, Brenda had called out to him, all excited about how clear the ebay fonts were on the new monitor. He hadn't her sound that excited in a long time, and it worried him.

Now she was up late every night, monitoring her many auctions. She bought everything on ebay now: clothing, toys, furniture, even collectibles. They'd never been collectibles people - they used to call those people freaks - and they now were the proud owners of a growing collection of creepy bobble head figurines.

Brenda, who had always prided herself on being a supermom, barely noticed the kids. She only bathed them when they complained of being itchy or in pain. She threw in frozen waffles for breakfast and frozen chicken nuggets for lunch and dinner. She forgot to brush their hair and sign their permission slips. Although Brenda was still living with them, still physically his wife and their mother, she had mentally checked out of their lives.

James had tried speaking to her - at first nicely, then angrily, and finally with utter desperation. Nothing got through to her. She reacted with the least amount of word possible, and turned back to her screen. Now he was out of options, he opened the door to the highest bidder and helped him carry the IMac out to his car. James would miss having a computer, but he missed Brenda more.


Wild Iris said...

Oh that's going to be the fight of the century! Nicely done. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Jeff said...

What a wonderful story and I could really relate to this obsession, Enjoy Life!

Tricksy Pixie said...

Very applicable to a lot of families these days, I think. I love the way you described the computer- it's true those iMacs have a beauty in their design and I think you captured it really well. The ending was a good closure because Brenda was talking about eBay earlier, and then in the end the computer goes to the highest bidder. Sort of justice served.

Shelley said...

A good story, and applicable for today's world! I also liked how you used eBay earlier in the story and closed with the highest bidder.

Jodi Cleghorn said...

This pushed my buttons. My internet/computer time is a contention in our home ... which is hard because computer/internet time=writing/work for me. Ahh the merry and delicate balance of keeping everyone happy.

Loved the fact that the computer was sold on eBay ... I'm surprised that Brenda could be prised from the IMac long enough for it to be passed over. I'm grateful for the fact that Brenda's husband loved her enough to get rid of the computer, rather than get himself a new wife.

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Aww, James is a darling. Around here, it's hard to tell which adult is more computer addicted! (I think the Tour Manager wins; he works with them and has been elbow deep in them as long as I've known him. I won't scare you with how long that's been.)

Paul said...

This is me!!!!

Maybe I should spend less time with the computer, I don't want my wife to sell it!

But like Jodi said, computer time is also working/writing time for me (as well as goofing off time...)

I love the irony at the end of using her own obsession as a means of ending it.