Thursday, December 29, 2016

the last book I ever read (Mr. and Mrs. Doctor by Julie Iromuanya, excerpt one)

from Mr. and Mrs. Doctor by Julie Iromuanya:

This was the fourth of the residences Job had occupied since his arrival in the United States at nineteen years of age. Before this, a basement apartment with a separate entrance. At every month’s end, the old man had cornered Job to make sure he paid the rent on time: We’re all living under the foot of the Man, right, man? He’d also lived in a closet of a room in a dormitory-style men’s residence hall, complete with communal showers. It was a place where walls were so thin that he was troubled by the most intimate of sounds: tears, passionless sex, and yes, farts. One of his homes had been on the topmost floor of a building scarred by the scents of mingled garlic, curry, and stockfish, regarded with collective disgust by guests of this nation, international students like himself, unlucky in their ability to smell American.

All of these places had been available to Job then. When he found the advertisements tacked to bulletin boards in campus buildings or in the American Classifieds, he needed only to tell them that he was a medical student who commuted to UNMC three times per week for his studies. The thin voice on the other end of the telephone would dismiss the accent. He needed only to arrive for the interview in scrubs, and the eyes would forgive the dark skin. But that was long ago.

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