Early one January morning, David Emami looked outside and was delighted to see that it had snowed in the night while he slept. He was disappointed, however, that he had accepted a weeklong substitute janitor job in a district across town that hadn’t canceled due to the weather. As much as he wanted to stay at home and sip hot chocolate while petting his cats, Fred and Barbra Streisand, he had no choice but to brave the weather and get to work.
After putting on his thick winter coat, a frumpy knit orange cap, and a giant scarf, he went outside and realized that his Toyota Previa minivan was, along with the rest of the parking lot, buried in snow. The snowplow from the streets had pushed a mountain of snow right at the exit, and unless David did something about it, he wouldn’t be going anywhere.
“Well, how am I supposed to get to work?” asked David aloud.
After assessing the situation, he decided to grab his shovel and start digging. He began cutting a path behind his minivan and started working toward the street. After lots of digging, his neighbor, Bette, who also had a crush on David, came out and exclaimed, “My hero!”
“Oh, go back to bed!” yelled David.
“Why would I miss an opportunity to spend a beautiful winter morning with such a gentleman?” she replied.
“I’m not enjoying this at all, actually. I’m trying to get out of the parking lot so I can go to work. Unlike you, I don’t live off of welfare and stay home getting ugly!”
“You’re always in such a bad mood!” She picked up a snowball and threw it. It smashed into David’s glasses, knocking them to the ground.
“How dare you!” he yelled. David tossed his shovel toward her, but it only hit a snowbank and disappeared under the powder. “Now you’re just wasting my time! I have to get out of here!”
“Or, you can stay here and keep me warm! I just bought a new blanket!”
“Bette, that’s probably the worst offer I’ve ever received in my life.”
“Fine. Play hard to get.” She shook her head and went back inside.
David shoveled for hours, but at long last, he finished his work. He looked at the clock and realized that school was over. He had missed his assignment.
“Screw it,” he said. He went inside, made some hot chocolate, and watched movies with his cats.
David Emami is Alone in Portland is a collection of stories that peer into the life of a middle-aged curmudgeon with a fondness for cats and antiques.
Playfully illustrated with Bitmoji characters, his story comes to life as each day brings a new adventure.
He was obsessive compulsive and mad about antiques. The apartment was covered, top to bottom, in decor that would be more aligned with that of an old woman that peaked in the 1960s. david-emami-takes-on-portland.html
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