In Stealing Home, Donnie attends an Atlanta Braves game at Turner Field with his father, who has late-stage Alzheimer’s. An impatient man by nature, Donnie is torn between correcting his father’s belief that they are watching the Yankees of 1960 and relaxing enough to enjoy what might be the last game they attend together.
Odhrán, a sixteen-year-old, has moved from Ireland to start a new life in a strange city. He doesn’t know anyone. But a chance meeting with some strangers is about to change his life forever.
Having played Father Christmas at the local mall for three weeks, Harry has sworn off kids. His ears are ringing from the screams of children forced to sit for photos, and his shins are blue from the kicks of unwilling toddlers. Not to worry. All he has waiting for him at home is an empty house and a frozen dinner.
Ten years ago, Jancy sold Speckles--the horse she loved--to pursue a bright future with her new husband. Now her husband has left, and her future is no longer bright. In today’s story, Jancy drives to the country to apologize to Speckles, perhaps hoping that her spirits can be lifted by the love of a horse.
In I Can See Clearly Now, Wendy tries to calm her screaming baby as she waits in the optometrist’s office. She hopes the glasses he broke the night before can be mended. She has a headache from lack of sleep, and on top of everything, her friend has invited her to dine at a fancy restaurant that Wendy can’t afford.
In No Shovel, No Bacon, Blind Henry and Yamaha, two men with a lot of self-inflicted scars from their pasts, sit around and talk about the dogs they’ve known and loved, family lore, and how to make the best clam chowder.
In Welcome Home, after passenger trains pull to a stop in a busy station, hundreds of returning veterans debark. The soldiers are greeted by family and friends. In the corner, a young woman and a little boy search the faces of the soldiers, not at all sure they will find the man they seek.
In Getting in Trouble, an elderly man who forfeited his driver’s license to a judge years ago becomes hungry and decides to drive to the store for some cereal. Now, if he could just figure out how to unlock the car.
In Piano Girl, a man enjoys listening to the young girl in the apartment next door practice playing the piano. Late one night, the man hears the girl sneak out of her apartment. Concerned about the girl’s safety, he follows her through dark streets to a jazz club.
In Off to College, a young woman sitting at a bus stop watches her ex pick up his new girlfriend in his shiny car.
In Money in the Jar, an aging restaurant owner named Doug is set in his ways, which explains why the new place up the street is stealing all his customers. The story poses a familiar question: Can you teach an old Doug new tricks?
In The Good Baker, a young student takes a summer job at a local bakery with surprising consequences.
In A Black Morning, Celia wakes up on her fiftieth birthday, laments the wrinkles on her face and hands, and wonders why her husband is not lying beside her in bed. If he is off golfing, she’ll kill him!
In The Sunflower Girl, the guilt-ridden husband of a woman with breast cancer reluctantly rearranges his work calendar to meet his wife at a new clinic. Once there, he has an unexpected encounter with the patients in the waiting room.
In the Sailboat, an aging widower named Nick makes wooden furniture by hand for a living. When his customer visits to check on an order of rocking chairs, Nick must endure repeated inquiries into his mysterious side project: the crafting of a model sailboat.
In One Day in May, Erin, a young sign language teacher, tries to teach Graysie, her five-year-old deaf student, how to read a calendar. As hard as she tries, Erin cannot get Graysie to understand that May has come and gone and she must turn the page to June.
In The Ramp, a gruff school bus driver drops off a load of teenagers at an unoccupied field and tells them to “go have fun.” In the middle of the field sits a mysterious concrete ramp to nowhere.
In What Happens in Arcata, a father is determined to throw his daughter a wonderful birthday party after screwing it up the prior year. But when his wife texts him to Get Some Healthy Snacks, he buys soda, chips, cookies, chocolate milk, and Twizzlers. Things go downhill from there.
In Dragons, Po Sein, a nine-year-old boy, is sent to fetch a take-out meal by his single mother. To accomplish his task, Po Sein must navigate unfriendly streets, but along the way, he is comforted by visions of beautiful dragons.
In Hippopotamus, a harried mother of three whose husband is deployed somewhere in Afghanistan resorts to a time-honored escape: She goes to the mall. Once there, she finds herself inside the multiplex watching a movie with a total stranger.