129 Southbound by Katherine Nabity

When she slept, Julie often dreamt of a man named Ben.

Ben was the right amount of tall. He had dark hair and sparkling blue eyes. He was rugged, but with boyish looks. Like a young Robert Sean Leonard. Ben always agreed with her or, if he didn’t, he politely deferred. Being a Cubs fan was the closest he came to athletics and he solemnly believed, like her, that there was no good rock music past 1979. And when he held her? Well, that felt like being safe and sound at home.

She met Jason on May 12th when she missed the 8:10, 129 southbound. He rode the 8:20 every day. His nose was a too big, more Adrian Brody than Dr. Wilson. In heels, she’d be able to look into his chameleon-like gray eyes. Jason played rec league basketball and had never set foot in Wrigley Field. He liked new, inventive music. Some of it was okay. He argued with her, demanded that she justify her views, but wasn’t afraid to change his mind if she had a good point. And when they touched, it was like being set on fire.

Ben took usually took the 8:00, 129 southbound, but on May 12th, he was late and rode the 8:10. He often dreamt of a girl named Julie, who was petite and a Cubs fan…

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “129 Southbound by Katherine Nabity

  1. Well done–hitting right on the “missing the bus” feeling we all wonder about.

  2. “Being a Cubs fan was the closest he came to athletics” — hehe, love this line.

  3. It is amazing what happens when we miss the bus! Thanks!

  4. Len

    evokes “gift of the magi” and “sliding door.” terrific work.

  5. Life is full of ‘what ifs?’ – isn’t it? Well done.

  6. Kim Hutchinson

    Loved this one. I’m still smiling…

  7. I’m quite far from Ben, so was a little relieved (if saddened) she settled for a Jason. Though then Ben showed up…

  8. It’d be sad if it wasn’t so well-written and funny, that ‘missing the perfect one’ by that much. Like Kim, I’m still smiling.

  9. The wonders of public transport, how being on which bus is vital to everything, and the details are splendid! It left me smiling also, no matter which pairing happens, or not.

  10. I always wonder ‘what if’ when I ride the metro. Great story, and made me smile. Peace…

  11. I love the idea of being “the right amount of tall”, and aren’t we all (or many of us) looking for that? When a film student, I always wanted to make a film about two characters – who should meet – never meeting. So this story made me smile.

  12. Pingback: Week #31 – Missed the bus | 52|250 A Year of Flash

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