by Laura Caldwell
So I have a confession to make: sometimes I engage in the urban pastime of dumpster diving.
No, no, no, I don't send myself headlong into a garbage receptacle searching for food (although the pepperoni Pat's Pizza my neighbors tossed last night looked pretty delish). Rather, occasionally, if there's something good hanging out of a dumpster or left next to a dumpster, I'll grab it. (My neighborhood has a friendly homeless gentlemen who will, for $20, take the loot anywhere you want on his grocery cart).
Once, I found an antique entryway mirror set in carved wood. It's now in my cabin. Another time, I discovered a fantastic chair with questionable stains that I had reupholstered. One man's trash….
So I've been thinking we should have a literary dumpster. You know all those plot points and characters you reject for whatever reason? Let's put them in a literary dumpster and whoever wants them can have them. And if you think they're trash, just leave 'em alone.
Here's a plot point I tossed recently: a man is caught by his wife watching a video and being... uh, energetic. Unfortunately, the video was one he made, secretly, in his 12-year-old daughter's bedroom. On the video, his daughter and a friend are seen changing clothes. The wife wants to have him killed before he can take his fantasies too far.
Before you hate me for this, let me say that the children in the story were never going to learn of the video, nor were they ever going to be injured. Still, I just couldn't go there. But someone else wants it, get out your figurative grocery cart and have at it. Got anything for me?