Jeff Duntemann's Contrapositive Diary Rotating Header Image

Watch This Space…

(Something interesting coming soon to a Contra post near you…)

By the time Eric reached the road, his mother was already headed back to their campsite. He had to trot to catch up.

“She’s an interesting girl,” Marcia Lund said, when Eric drew alongside her.

“I think so too. But how did you…”

“No, I mean interesting.”

Eric’s mother had used that word with that emphasis before, sometimes of things she didn’t entirely approve of. “Mom, c’mon.”

Marcia laughed. “She came up to me and introduced herself. Dad came over and she introduced herself again. She said she wanted to meet you. I said you were down at the beach. Then your father invited her to have lunch with us.”

Eric grimaced. “Just like dad.” He took an uneasy breath. “Um…will she?”

“If her parents don’t object. And why would they?” Marcia grabbed her son’s forearm and squeezed it.

Eric waved her hand away. “Ok, ok. Now, what makes her, um, interesting?”

“Everything she said, she said in complete sentences. You could learn a few things from her.”

Eric groaned. “You’re an English teacher even on summer vacation.”

“I get paid year-round. And my kids will not be illiterate.”

They left the road and rounded the family’s big blue tent.

Charlene was already sitting at the campsite picnic table across from Eric’s younger sister Lisa, with a bright orange Melmac plate in front of her and a very big grin on her face.


  1. akiva eisenberg says:

    Reminds me of a column you wrote decades ago, wherein you recalled a party where an attractive young woman kept looking at you attentively. After a while, you went over to her to discover why. “Because you speak in complete sentences,” she revealed.

    1. Yes. That’s long been a standing joke in our family. (IIRC, it happened in 1972.) I actually didn’t go up to her. There was an argument about the Vietnam War in which I participated at one of the English Department’s wine-and-cheese parties. After the argument broke up, she was simply staring at me. At some point she came up to me and said, “You know, you always talk in complete sentences.” And then she walked away.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *