A Tire Swing Story is a bite-sized "imagining" inspired by an object I discover while wandering. It could be a curbside trash gem or a message sprayed on a wall. A lost mitten, or an antique store find. Anything goes. I photograph the object and post them together, the story and its inspiration. There will be a new story every Monday and Wednesday. On Fridays, I'll discuss writing, life, love, and coffee. (In no particular order and maybe all at once.)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Preston Garlic is going to be a magician. Right now, he's a dishwasher at the Purple Potato. In his spare time, Preston develops his magic. 

He's given himself a name: "Presto the Amazing." 

Presto the Amazing has a black cape and a felt hat with a red feather. As he performs his flourishes while practicing in front of the mirror, Presto's feather bobs up and down. 

He bought a lop-eared bunny with black spots named Houdini. He's mastered many tricks, including "The Split Coin," "The Blooming Bouquet," and the "Airborne Champagne Bottle."

But every great magician needs an assistant.

There's a pastry chef at work named Bonnie. Preston yearns to saw her in half. But though she regularly deposits her batter-encrusted pans at his station for scrubbing, Bonnie doesn't know he exists.

Tomorrow, the Purple Potato is catering a wedding. Bonnie has stayed late at the restaurant to construct the cake. Just as Preston finishes putting away the very last pot, she slips on her coat. "Goodnight," she says. Preston wants to say: "I'll see you home," but his throat has gone dry. The door of the kitchen closes behind her.

A few minutes later, he's walking down Brant street when there's some kind of commotion in the shadows ahead. A woman screams.

"Hey!" Preston yells. Dark figures flee.

He arrives to find Bonnie lying on the pavement.

"Are you alright?" he asks her.

"Yeah," she says, "but they got my purse."

He helps her to her feet. Then he pulls a playing card from behind her ear. The King of Hearts. Presto sees her eyes widen, and she smiles. And that feels Amazing. 

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