Why just the other evening I was
waiting for a friend I almost couldn't
wait to see. I was sitting on a marble
slab outside the library. It was a
memorial, one of those silly, civic
sorts, with the flags, the marble slabs
engraved with names, and, of course,
the names of the wars. Except, in this
case, they didn't call them wars. On
one side, the left, about 6 names, maybe,
for the 'Korean Conflict', and on the other,
the right side, maybe 15 names, for the
'Vietnam Conflict'. Euphemisms make
me ill, by the way, so I got sick right off.
These were dead guys, right here, next to
the high school, Woodbridge High, so I
figured they just graduated and got blasted
away in the 'Conflicts'. But, of course, you
can't say 'Dead' right off, so, they got 'mortally
perforated by airborne debris from the high-velocity
penetration of the conflict's external objects in flight.'
One of the Vietnam names, I noticed, was a 'Handerhahn.'
When I lived on Fulton Street, we used to buy fish, on
Main Street, right around the corner, from Handerhahn's
Fish Market. In all that time, and after, I never knew they'd
sustained such a loss. I'm sorry. They are gone now, and
their fish market, and their son too, or kin, whichever.
Anyway, that's my story. And, yes, then my friend
showed up, and we went inside to the lecture.