“The Question Is”

Here’s another short story that takes place in the A&P two Tuesdays before Thanksgiving a little before 6pm. Jennifer Lerner, PhD., asks herself 66 questions about competition, marriage, academia, children, sex, careers, the soul, and cake mix.

Here’s an excerpt:


Better still: who is crying? Or is that two people crying? Who cries in the A&P? Then again, isn’t the riotous excess of options, the tens of thousands of micro-decisions that constitute every expedition through this temple to consumer choice and evolutionary irrelevance enough to make anyone with even a fraction of her soul intact sob with gratitude, guilt, and despair?

Does one still believe in the soul?

That can hardly be the question right now, can it?

Does academia ruin a person for normal life might be a valid question. Another: is it better to keep reading the text of the baking aisle, or just to get on with Tuesday evening?

Still another: why won’t that child stop howling? Furthermore, if one began crying in the A&P, how would one ever stop?

Read the rest here, and let me know what you think.

(Can’t get enough stories about the A&P? Here’s another, published last year in River, River. More coming!)

About Julie Goldberg

Julie Goldberg has lived a life entirely too entangled with books. She is a school librarian, former English teacher, compulsive reader, occasional jazz singer and the author of Lily in the Light of Halfmoon. You can email her at perfectwhole@gmail.com and follow her on Twitter @juliegoldberg.
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