Short Stories All the Time

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... a few of my thoughts about 900, mostly contemporary, short stories.
Showing posts with label Sayrafiezadeh. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sayrafiezadeh. Show all posts

13 August, 2014

Saïd Sayrafiezadeh, "Last Meal at Whole Foods"

First person story about a guy whose mother is about to die. There are some great insights and descriptions. The first paragraph does a great job of setting the story and characters. The father of the narrator left when the narrator was a boy. The mother struggled financially even though she had been college educated. She retained her elegance however even as they had to shop at Goodwill. "She wanted to spin this move to a new city as just one in a series of adventures, when in fact it was a last-gasp attempt at finding our own good will."


I like the role the game Scrabble plays in the story. I have written a story in which the same game is utilized. The story opens in a restaurant and closes in one as well. Throughout the story, the narrator comes to several conclusions about life and death. "Dying is arduous and taxing. Only the dead rest in peace." And, "Perhaps when your days are numbered your senses become heightened and you begin to experience everything with newfound intensity." One thing I was hoping the narrator would learn is that all of our days are numbered. We just don't know what the number is. "The march toward finiteness has begun." He claims it just for his mother but it is for him as well.

"Last Meal at Whole Foods" is in the current issue of the New Yorker, July 28, 2014.

 FAVORITE LINES:

"In contrast to the short time that remains for my mother stands the long time that remains for me."

"He made it sound as if he were delivering moderately good news, as if there were less challenging months to come, and if we could only get through these 'next few months' it would be smooth sailing after that."

LINKS:
Sayrafiezadeh's web page, list of works, videos, bio., etc.