Originally posted on ThePlaidCrew.com on Jan. 5, 2010.
BOSTON—A local teenager is resting comfortably today after a potentially dangerous encounter with a cougar over the weekend. Jeremy Richmond, 19, of Somerville was walking his two-year-old golden retriever, Scooter, at a neighborhood dog park on Saturday afternoon when he was approached by the cougar who was later revealed to be Leslie Putnam, a 41-year-old divorcee and mother of two.
[I decided to share the short story I mentioned in last week’s column. A disclaimer: this is a work of fiction and should be read as such. It contains adult language and drug references.]
I’d always liked the sky in this part of the state.
I was coasting down the interstate with a full tank on my way back to school. Back to the tedious academics and social calisthenics. My eyes were on the clouds, framed perfectly by my dusty windshield. I had always admired the way the sky looked in this part of the state; up here in the corner of the North Country, along this flat stretch of I-87. It seemed reasonable to say that the sky was the same everywhere. Blue was blue. Same clouds. Same sun. Same atmosphere. Perhaps, it was because lately the ground had nothing to offer me that I admired the sky so much. Nothing caught my interest like that perfect, unobstructed blue and white cascading across the horizon. Those cottony summer cumulus, lazy and meandering, I could deal with. But the hastened pace of those icy, low autumn clouds was too much. A worn and haggard gait that hid their innate sense of urgency. I raced passed my exit at ninety determined not to lose them.
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