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Hey, remember The Fourth of July, 2003? We don't, but found this in our archives:

Fourth of July Fourthiness.

Independence is on the march, patriots.

& Recently . . .

Kurt Cobain's Ghost with an Invitation to a Fourth of July Picnic and Fireworks by Angela Genusa

"B.L.T.": A Review by Will Layman

Ten Tiny Poems by Brian Beatty

Angry Words from a Gnome Who to This Day Continues to Think the Human Genome Project Was Actually The Human Gnome Project by David Ng

Key Party, N.Y.C., Circa Always by William K. Burnette

A Day on the Phone with Mythological Norse Firewarrior, Bringer of Storms by Aaron Belz

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Tuesday, July 8, 2003   |    Fiction

How It Ended: My Last Four Relationships

by Josh Abraham


Cecilia shaved her head. I loved running my fingers through her long brown curls, but I have to admit, the bald was sexy too. Her skull was so round like a basketball. I couldn’t resist the urge to bounce her against the sidewalk and slam-dunk her into the hoop above my driveway. That’s when she stopped talking to me. Not only was she incredibly pissed, but also my slamming her head against the pavement like that smashed up her brain causing speech to be very difficult to her.

Her hair’s growing in now. Little stubbly patches of peach fuzz. Which makes me crave a peach cobbler. So it’s probably for the best that she’s not talking to me.


Dana was into really kinky stuff in the bedroom. She was always incorporating a cucumber or twisty-ties or swatches of felt. One time, she even brought in a Ziploc bag full of crickets! This was all too much for me. I guess I’m kind of an old-fashioned guy, because I like my intercourse to involve only me, the girl, and my sock puppet, Gary.

The thing is, Gary was really into Dana’s deviant forays. He loved it when she’d dip him into a bucket of red wall paint, or when she’d unravel the threads at his heel. And then one day Dana ran off with Gary on her arm. I should have seen it coming.


Jeanette was a real catch: she was smart, she was funny, she was cool. She was a great dancer, she was wild in bed. But she was a dead ringer for Sir Winston Churchill. I loved her dearly, but every time I looked into her fat, bulldog face, all I could see was Sir Winston. It drove me bonkers. I kept my feelings bottled up for a long time, because I was really crazy about her and I didn’t want to blow a good thing just because of some superficial quirk. But one day at dinner, she was going on and on about her ex-boyfriend and every time she got angry, her jowls would shake, and I just couldn’t take it anymore. I excused myself to the bathroom, snuck out the kitchen door, and never returned.

Occasionally, I’ll still get messages from her on my answering machine, where she’s pretending to be somebody else, like a call from Blockbuster or a doctor’s office confirming an appointment… but I can recognize that slurred yet over-enunciated British accent of hers in a second. She thinks I don’t know it’s her! Girls are so crazy like that.


Mia and I were together for three wild years. When I finally proposed to her, she admitted that, though she loved me, she couldn’t marry me, because not only did it violate the hooker-john contract, but also Slick Leo, her pimp, would likely bust a cap in my ass, fo sho, muthafucka.

Josh Abraham was born in Algeria in 1913. He spent his early years in North Africa, working various jobs—in the weather bureau, in an automobile-accessory firm, in a shipping company—to help pay for his courses at the University of Algiers. As a young journalist, his report on the unhappy state of Muslims in the Kabylie region aroused the Algerian government to action and brought him public notice. From 1935 to 1938 he ran the Théâtre de l'Equipe, a theatrical company that produced plays by Malraux, Gide, Synge, and Dostoevski. During World War II he was one of the leading writers of the French Resistance and editor of Combat, then an important underground newspaper. Abraham's fiction, his philosophical essays, and his plays have assured his preëminent position in modern French letters. In 1957 Abraham was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. His sudden death on January 4, 1960, cut short the career of one of the most important literary figures of the Western world when he was at the very summit of his powers. No, wait. That was Albert Camus.