16 Oct

Dwight is stuck. He thought he’d be able to make it through the ventilation duct of the First National Bank of Wanakigi. But there were two important factors Dwight failed to take into account.

One. The size of the vent.

Two. The increased size of his girth since the last time he robbed this bank 10 years ago. His last job before his retirement.

Dwight lies in the vent and tries to figure out what to do. He could call her. Shelly. She would know how to get him out of this mess. Oh but she would laugh. She would laugh loud and long. She would poke his belly with her long-nailed finger. “Not quite up to it any more are you gramps,” she’d howl. “Least you widened the vent for me next week.” No. He was not going to call. He was not. Shelly had been his protegé. He’d taught her everything he knew and now she treats him with disrespect. It makes Dwight’s blood boil.

Dwight finds himself regretting the hamburger he ate before entering the vent. At the time he just thought, “Need it for the energy. Been a long time.” And he’d super-sized his order. Long gone were the days where his policy was, “Always do a job on an empty stomach. Keeps you sharp.”

Dwight attempts to edge himself forward and realizes that he has sweat himself into a suction of sorts. “God in heaven.” The humiliation. He imagines himself found in the vent the next morning, snoring. His snores reverberating over the entire bank, startling tellers and customers alike.

It all started with a chiding bet. “Betcha couldn’t do it, gramps,” Shelly teased. She’d winked at him, pointing an index finger in the direction of his stomach. He’d sucked in. He’d grown angry. “I can! And I will!” he argued. She’d kissed him on the top of the head and said, “No one will ever deny you were the best in your day. No one.” He’d slapped her. Left angry. Left determined.

Dwight farts and it echos through the vent. Dwight imagines the night guard, alerted by bizarre bellow and strange smell calling the ventilation maintenance company. Someone opening the hatch which lies just 7 feet behind him and saying, “Hello. There appears to be a pair of feet here…”

Dwight rests his head on the cool surface of the crawl space. A tear trickles out of one eye. Behind him, he hears, “Oh Gramps. You’re lucky you have me.”


3 Responses to “Stuck”

  1. test October 16, 2012 at 10:32 pm #


    • Jon Forceton October 17, 2012 at 2:30 am #

      Nicely done. I smiled as I read it.

  2. jeanosullivan October 17, 2012 at 2:22 am #

    With Dwight’s decision about whether to eat a hamburger before the bank job you perfectly capture the shift in perception (and being) that happens between youth and middle age (hungry = sharp and efficient vs. hungry = weakened state).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: