Joy Ride

Photo © Ambika Thompson


by Amanda Faye November 23, 2015

~after Sherman Alexie

  1. A car travelling at 100 mph will continue to do so until it hits a tree.

  2. There is a North Pole but Santa doesn’t live there anymore.

  3. St. Nicholas was a real person but he died eons ago.

  4. Last month you were alive.

  5. A life will go on unnoticed until interrupted.

  6. There are days you sit down and count the years like they were stick on glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling of your dorm room.

  7. At times you can’t remember what the night sky really looks like.

  8. Nor can you remember standing in the daylight.

  9. A cubicle, no matter how nice the décor, will never match the blue of a lake surrounded by mountains.

  10. The walls of a cubicle are too soft and unstable to hold the weight of a body.

  11. Slamming your fist into a mountain wall would shatter your insides in a way most satisfying.

  12. Jose Cuervo is the way you understand the world in the face of this new reality.

  13. One day you were 21.

  14. Some days you are so much older than you can bear.

  15. But still too young for all these people dressed in black.

  16. Today you Google the sky over L.A. to see if there are any new stars.

  17. You can not remember where the Seven Sisters should be, but you find a Dipper.

  18. Some nights, as you drift off to sleep, listening to your favorite mix, a song will strike.

  19. The song always remembers when.

  20. And you go back.

  21. Glitter-speckled paint, gold and chrome, no fuzzy dice but plenty of vatos looking on.

  22. The love between low-riding cholos and quiet bookworm good girls: unspoken but mutual.

  23. A California teenager dreams of turbo-charged chariots and plenty of open roadway.

  24. There are often sharp curves on California roads.

  25. Sometimes the road splits two ways.

  26. Some bonds can not be severed by distance or life decisions.

  27. Some strings that bind are so thin they’re invisible to the human eye.

  28. If packed with care a heart will survive without a human body.

  29. Ten years ago we were just kids.

  30. A body can travel many thousands of miles trying to forget its origins.

  31. That same body can return home.

  32. Changed both inside and out.

  33. Everybody can affect every other body in its sphere.

  34. A body can remember the way a song does.

  35. At 3am on HWY1, the ocean spray rusting the scattering of cars.

  36. Spun out and scattered along the rocks, like Cassiopeia overhead.

  37. We swore we’d see the Northern Lights someday.

  38. Someday, you will find you’ve lost time.

  39. You will be old enough to regret, but still too young to die.

  40. And you will be remembered like an old favorite song, the scent of the ocean alongside a cliff you stopped to take a photo at, the tingle of being young and racing to break the speed of sound.




Amanda Faye was born with a rare disease which makes it impossible for her to stay in one place for too long. You can try coaxing her with cupcakes, no promises it’ll work. She’s also quite fond of glitter and founded the lit journal Alyss. Those two things are not necessarily related but equally important. She should confess at this point she’s just adding words to get to 69.

Ambika Thompson used to take a lot of photos until her analogue camera fell out of the back of a cab and broke. She is the fiction editor of Leopardskin & Limes, and a writer herself.


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