For the short story reader. Updated every Monday.

The Short Form

“Milagros, Mercuro Street”

Carmen Lugo Filippi


The tourists amused me a lot, particularly the Spaniards. Junito let me take care of them because he said I treated them with class. Let's just say that yours truly was the only one there with three years of college behind her and experience abroad, and that gave me the upper hand among Junito's ten assistants. Of course, such consideration had at first led to a lot of resentment from the girls, resentment I was only able to allay by dint of many smiles and kindnesses. Maybe what calmed them down was the sincerity of my protestations: three years of comparative literature don't guarantee anyone a spot in lofty intellectual circles, especially if one hasn't completed the blessed degree. In some measure I sweetened the bitterness of their frustrations by assuring them that many women with brand new degrees in literature were forced to get jobs at airports or work as stewardesses if they didn't want to starve. You earned more with some hairstyling courses than with three years of literature or languages...

We read it in Callaloo: Vol. 17, No. 3.