‘Shot of Short’ #43: Proximity by Diana Spechler

Title: Proximity by Diana Spechler
Date Read: 07 August 2009
Available Online?: YES (as one of the stories posted by Harper Perennial on their website Fifty-Two Stories, which promises a new (or classic) short story from their collection, posted every week throughout 2009).
Briefly: An interesting story about an insecure woman with bulimia and an infatuation with her work colleague, J.D.
Afterthoughts: A little bit odd perhaps, but not a bad little story. It ticks along at a fine pace and has a fairly good, although slightly enigmatic (to me) ending.
Notable Quote: “I think of J.D. all day, how he tips the pint glass beneath the tap to let the foam off, how he keeps a rag and a bottle opener in the back pocket of his jeans, how, when he yanks the rag out, the faded white imprint of the bottle opener shows on the denim. I think of the way he moves around behind the bar like no one’s watching, and also like the whole world’s watching (all two hundred twenty pounds of him, the muscles in his arms, the beer belly that he’s proud of); how he can crack a different joke with every customer; how he can say to a beautiful girl he’s never met, “What’s up, Slick?” and she’ll giggle and keep stealing glances at him for the rest of the night.”

Rating: ★★★½☆

*Story read as part of my 100 Shots of Short reading challenge.

About Rob

Rob, a self-confessed bibliophile, is without any hope of rehabilitation. He gets unnaturally excited over anything book-shaped, and if book sniffing were a crime then he would have been locked up years ago (which wouldn't bother him in the slightest provided his cell was lined with books)