"The only problem was the pickle barrel. It waited there at the end of every shift, loomed in her mind like a dark promise because it couldn’t be avoided. She had to perform closing duties before going home."
"Ruth Ann lifted her chin. Her bottom lip swollen and cut, the chip in her front tooth the size of a peanut’s heart."
"She left the foster home and lived three months on trains. Brushed her teeth and washed her hair in rusted sinks. Got her newspapers and mittens for free. People always leaving things on trains. It’s easy to get things. Once, even a cashmere scarf."
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"The last video taken of my parents together in the same room somehow survived her. Mother had her photo albums, the composed version of things, but Dad had his camcorder."
Talking Stick Volume 26: The Red Coat
"She hasn’t made anything like it since, couldn’t repeat this again if she wanted to, and what’s more it was made not for an infant but for a young girl. So who else could it be for?"
"Turns out, the term BRAT began as an acronym in the British army that stood for British Regiment Attached Traveler. That explains a lot to me. The feeling I get whenever I attend local functions is that I’m the one added, the one who wouldn’t normally be here, as if I had arrived on the bottom of a boat."
"And really, that’s great. We should all be allowed to date dancers named Jennifer if that’s what we want to do."