A SHORT SHORT STORY BY ZOLTAN JAMES
Once, two of us drove for three straight days and finally arrived at Four Corners (where through a freak of geography and political wrangling, the borders of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah bump up against each other).
After we disembarked and carefully placed our dusty feet on the historic spot of convergence, we looked at each other in disbelief. It’s about the only place you can stand in four states at the same time and not get taxed.
We were hot and thirsty as cowboys fresh off a cattle drive, so we celebrated with a fifth of bourbon. With the onset of high desert heat and the relaxing and soothing effects of fine grain alcohol, we were quick goners, cheap dates by all accounts, and we were soon out, like a light, by six. In fact, we slept so hard we didn’t even dream and our eyes didn’t flutter open until seven the next day.
Refreshed, we stumbled out of bed, dressed, headed out to Shirley’s Eat Here & Get Gas diner, where we ate a hearty breakfast. By nine, our stomachs were full and we had energy to go again. Afore we hit the highway, though, we stopped to pump ten gallons of gas into our tank.
The road called to us like the Emerald City beckoned Dorothy and her pals. We headed onward — over hill and dale, across rivers and through woods — to visit eleven more states before our summer days and blue moons ran out on us. We arrived home weary but safe on the twelfth of August.
As we unpacked our steamy laundry, we unanimously decided the trip was worthwhile, educational, and a general hoot and holler — all rolled into one — like a giant ball of twine, you might say, and which we did see, in Cawker City, Kansas.
Later that evening, we rocked in our chairs on the front porch and just sighed. We sipped at cool iced tea while the sun dipped behind the purple mountains. We looked at each other, held hands, and agreed that our road adventure brought us dozens of memories.
Note: The inspiration for this mathematical wordplay came from reading an old friend’s post on Facebook about a trip he and his family made to the Four Corners. I challenged myself to see if I could get all twelve numbers into a story and still make some sense with it all. Whether it makes sense or not, I guess I’ll let you be the judge of that. By the way, if you didn’t catch the heap of numbers, give it another look, or read it dozens of times. And, just for fun, one of them is a pun.