This story was inspired by Shannon Wendt’s (@wordswendt) #liblit prompt of the day: (character) “a man called Junior” & bonus word: “portentous”.
by Jan Brown
Junior brought home his new treasure and proudly displayed it to his girlfriend. “So…you think I can’t help you decorate the apartment? Look at this!”
Tanya regarded the monstrosity with a cynical look and sighed in her trademark, exaggerated manner. “Geez, Junior, it’s just a piece of junk! And what is that gooey stuff all over it?”
“Sorry, I haven’t had a chance to clean it up. Kip and Dredge found it on one of their trips around the neighborhood, so I promised them a beer if they’d let us have it. I guess we had a few. Beers, I mean.”
“I know what you mean, but I think you had more than a few! Only a stoner or a drunk would think this thing would look good in anyone’s apartment.”
“That’s what Kip’s dad said. But I figured you had better taste. Younger. You know, pop culture. Hip hop.”
“What hip hop artist would put this crap in their home?”
“It’s not crap. It’s ironic. An artistic mobile made out of scraps of stuff we use every day. It makes a statement.”
“It’s ironic that you think it doesn’t look like crap. And the only statement it makes is, ‘I have no taste and no money for real art, so I go dumpster diving with my slacker friends.’ ”
“OK, can we agree to disagree? I’ll clean it up, and we can hang it out of the way, in the back hallway.”
“I have a better place for it.” Tanya yanked the trash-art out of Junior’s hand and flung it into the garbage can. The metal mobile struck the side of the trash can with a portentous clang that echoed throughout the apartment. “Now Kip and Dredge can rediscover it another day,” she smiled.