Suzanne Grieco Mattaboni
The first week I meet Renata, she sits in my visitor’s chair in my colorless casket of an office and laughs. She doesn’t have an office so she comes to mine. Her hair is this fake yellow/orange except at the roots. It’s all wavy and flying everywhere.
“My friends tell me, Renata, you have no shame, girl,” she says. “No shame at all.” She smiles. She tells me she’s twenty-two. When I ask her where she lives, she says with her older brother.
Whenever I go to her apartment, her mother is always there. Her mom talks to me in accented English and to Renata and her brothers in Spanish. After seeing Renata’s mother there every time, I catch on. It’s her mother’s apartment. Renata knows I figured it out. We don’t discuss it.
In the fall, the department throws Carmine Albanese a retirement party in the big conference room. The ceiling is covered with white helium balloons bound together in bunches with white ribbons. The walls of the room have square built-ins along them, lit inside with gold lights. Each built-in encases an Oscar statuette on a marble stand.
Honest-to-God Oscars. That’s how big and glossy a film company [continued]
NOTE: THE REMAINDER OF THIS CONTENT HAS BEEN TRANSFERRED TO MY SHORT STORY SERIES:
© Suzanne Grieco Mattaboni