Nonfiction | July 17, 2011
Elegy and Narrative
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The year after my wife died, I compulsively watched television. I needed distraction, to be entertained. What I could not stream online or order through the mail I sought out at the local video store. I was living in a suburb of Indianapolis, about a mile from a strip mall where I could rent, in a pinch, midseason discs of The Wire, The Office, Friday Night Lights. I got to know the clerks by name, then their shifts, finally their tastes. Once, I tried to make a formal complaint against the corporate headquarters regarding the suspicious and perpetual absence of Battlestar Galactica. It seemed unjust that the universe would conspire to deny my knowledge of its fictional origins. I worked up a good head of steam before leaving, distraught. The offense was egregious, and entirely my own. I went back a few days later, during a different shift.
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