300 short stories:: story 187

story: “Five Questions for the Snake Charmer”

author: C Pam Zhang

year: 2019

where: read on my phone

note: something short and not sweet

a line: “Pinned under that false gold, he’ll look as much the good Chinese boy as I am the bad Chinese girl, the kind who makes a public spectacle out of alcoholism as if she’s white and blonde and carefree and doesn’t drag a whole race’s reputation behind her.”

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300 short stories:: story 177

story: “The Billings Brothers at the End of the World”

author: Chelsea Hanna Cohen

year: 2019

where: back home, Abu Dhabi

note: from Split Lip 

a line: “Philip thinks there’s something wrong with the ride, but then he realizes that everything is shaking and Suzie is screaming and off in the distance the skyline of the city crumbles, entire skyscrapers falling into themselves before his eyes, and he barely has time to marvel at what he’s seeing before the bones of the Ferris wheel give way as well.”

300 short stories:: story 163

story: “Now That the Circus Has Shut Down, the Human Cannonball Looks for Work”

author: Meghan Phillips

year: 2018

where: 我的办公室 (again)

note: This short short story has the punch at the end like contemporary English poetry. Maybe it has something to do with its length too; though it would not be mistaken for a prose poem.

a line: “He’s happy to be a reference, but he’s not sure how much weight the words of a clown will carry.”