© 2012 Ronen Divon, All Rights Reserved.
“Beer time!” John stepped out of his brand new Cadillac, a gift from his father for his 21st birthday. Crossing the supermarket parking lot, John and his best buddy Michael, escorted by two other college mates, headed in for some legal booze. Officially permitted alcohol had dominated their minds during baseball practice earlier that day. Going into the store they hardly noticed an older guy coming out the doors, pushing a shopping cart semi‐filled with groceries. None of them, however, ignored a good‐ looking woman just leaving the beer isle. “Stop staring,” said Michael to John, “or else you may come back as her in your next life…” “Huh?” responded John. “Hinduism 101?” answered Michael, “you come back in your next life as what was on your mind at the moment of death.” “Screw that!” said John, “all it means is that I may come back as a Budweiser!” Matthew was tired. It had been a long day and the last thing on his mind was going to the supermarket. Yet he could not argue with his wife, or, more precisely, arguing was useless. There was nothing Matthew disliked more than going shopping; the exhausting search for products on his wife’s never‐ ending list, the long line at the cashier, the sickeningly cheerful music, even the overwhelming mix of smells. But most of all, it was the inconsideration of other shoppers, pushing their carts mindlessly, blocking isles, shouting private conversations aloud, all, so it seemed to Matthew, with the direct goal of making him feel uncomfortable. An early adopter of online shopping, he avoided public malls and stores as much as he could. Yet, this journey was now behind him. All items on the list were checked off, bill paid, and Matthew, pushing his green Best‐Mart cart was finally at the parking lot, a gate to the Promised Land called home. Ten minutes later, with the groceries all packed neatly onto his SUV, Matthew, a disciplined citizen, was searching for the carriage’s return space. Spotting it, he headed in that direction. A few feet away Matthew decided to try his luck at pushing the cart into the retrieval spot. Taking a half step forward to gain speed, Matthew launched the wagon with a strong push, just as a sting in his right forearm hit his nervous system. Instinctively he dropped his arm causing the cart to slightly shift its course and divert to the right. Matthew watched helplessly as the carriage headed towards, and shortly after hit, a brand new Cadillac. The impact was quite forceful, leaving visible marks along its path. Matthew felt his insides turn with a sick feeling of disaster. As the scraping sound subsided, a loud shout came from behind “What the hell are you doing?!” Turning around Matthew’s heart begun to race as he saw a bunch of younger, large, ferocious guys coming his way. As they were closing in on him, Matthew desperately searched for words but nothing came out. He wanted to say “I am sorry. I didn’t mean for this to happen. It was a freak accident. I’ll pay for the damage,” but his whole being froze in fear. From nowhere, the leader of the gang pulled out a baseball bat, swinging it twice before hitting Matthew in the head. Matthew saw a great white light followed by a blanket of utter darkness. He didn’t feel the cold hard asphalt as his body collapsed onto it. “What are you doing John?!” yelled someone from behind, “Stop! You’ll kill him!” But John didn’t seem to hear. He was enraged. “The mother fucker ruined my freaking new car!! I’ll make him pay alright!” Somewhere in the murky emptiness of his mind, as Matthew’s soul was preparing to exit his beaten up body, a sense of an itch snuck into his awareness, and a final thought slipped in: This bloody mosquito, it’s all the mosquito’s fault. © 2012 Ronen Divon, All Rights Reserved.
Throughout his fifteen years of prison time, shortened from twenty two for good behavior, there was hardly a day John did not think of Matthew and the senseless act of violence. It tortured him constantly as, at his core, John was not evil; hot blooded yes, but not evil. On the day of his release from jail, John’s best friend Michael prepared a surprise for him; John’s Cadillac, repaired, washed and polished, was waiting for him at home. John cringed at the sight of the car that helped send him to nearly eternity in jail. Yet he was now a changed man. Upon receiving the keys from Michael, John walked slowly along the side of the car, and, to Michael’s surprise, made a long deep scratch from one end of the shiny Cadillac to the other. “It’s to serve as a reminder,” he explained. Some hours later, celebrating his new freedom, John was driving fast on the highway, top down, wind on his face. Suddenly something stung his right leg hard. Not reaching the spot easily, John bent slightly, taking his eye off the road to scratch the bite. To his surprise the mosquito who apparently bitten him was flying in front of his face, as if mocking him. Diverting his attention to the creature, John lost control over the car. The last thought on his mind as his car crashed in high‐speed into a tree at the side of the road, was damn bloody mosquito…
© 2012 Ronen Divon, All Rights Reserved.