Posted by: stillironic | January 17, 2010

Let Me Set the Record Straight—4

No So Lucky

Who is Jack Blechman? When I picture his scrunched little face, I see his ice-cube-thick glasses slipping down a scrunched little nose. A nose so small and glasses so heavy he had to keep pushing them up with an index finger. His left finger it would have to be because he doesn’t have a right index finger, on account of it got blown off.

And not in Vietnam either; he didn’t do a tour of duty there—his mutilated hand exempted him. No, he was able to maintain his what-me worry? mug “in the world” as he put it—exercising an irksome penchant for using lingo he had no rightful claim to—and stay in one piece. Of which an older brother of his WAS NOT SO LUCKY.

Jack lost his finger as a small kid when said older brother—who was to die in Vietnam and leave not a trace, only memories and too few of those—set off some cheap firecrackers smuggled in from West Virginia. In other words, Jack’s brother may well have saved Jack’s life by blowing Jack’s finger the hell off a hand still pudgy with baby fat.

© 2010 by Virginia Gerhart

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