Tag Archives: Revenge

Two insignificant things that didn’t really happen

Revenge

Rebecca worked for a small marketing firm that handled accounts from a diversity of clients. Last summer she began volunteering to head the ad campaigns that no one else wanted, e.g., the gastrointestinal disorder remedies, the spray-on hair. She did this because her ex-boyfriend had turned out to be a piece of shit who’d moved into her Soho apartment with no intention of ever getting a job, contributing to rent, or helping out in any way unless he could do it through singer-songwriting. Her ex-boyfriend had also posed for a series of stock photos back in the day so he could buy himself something nice that he didn’t deserve because he liked to stick his slimy crooked penis into everything.

Rebecca happened to discover this cache of stock photos of her ex-boyfriend not long after she’d confronted him about several items gone missing from her jewelry box, then kicked him to the curb. Revenge was sweet. Rebecca threw herself into work at the agency, and soon her ex’s face began appearing in ads aimed at those suffering from jock itch and hemorrhoids, uncontrollable diarrhea, chronic facial fungi. Rebecca had a girlfriend who worked for a popular online news outlet and she got in on the fun as well. The article “How to Identify a Hipster Douchebag” featured a close-up of Rebecca’s ex-boyfriend drinking an iced coffee in a rowboat in Central Park. The article “6 Signs Your Dude Is a Manwhore” was accompanied by a photo of Rebecca’s ex-boyfriend laughing into a slice of cheese pizza.

Rebecca had originally applied to the ad agency so she could earn a regular paycheck just until her online fan fiction landed her a Big Five book deal, but after the breakup she decided that she’d stay in the business at least long enough to see her ex on a billboard warning people about the pedophiles who live among us. Besides, she thought, pictures tell the best stories.

Photographer Emergency

An amateur photographer named David walks along the Florida beach in early morning, taking pictures of the sunrise. He squats on a dune so he can get the right angle on the light colliding with a lifeguard stand. He also takes pictures of a seagull. “Please, God,” he thinks, “let a sailboat pass by.”

A quarter mile down the beach, David passes a large crew of people staging shots of fashionable accessories in the white sand, probably for a Land’s End catalogue. A man with a camera barks orders at the handful of assistants holding white discs who are trying to reflect the morning light onto an array of vibrant products. Then David watches as the professional photographer suddenly drops to his knees, clutching his chest. The panicked crew surrounds him, but the professional photographer has collapsed face-down in the sand and is giving off every impression of being dead.

“Oh my God!” yells a woman with a clipboard, scanning the beach in every direction. “Is anyone here a photographer? Are there any photographers on the beach?”

One of the assistants scrambles up the steps of a lifeguard stand and grabs a bullhorn. “We have an emergency!” he says. “Someone please help us! Can anyone here shoot a purse?”

From a distance David takes in the undocumented fashion accessories, then looks down at his camera. This is his moment. “I can,” he says quietly. Then more loudly, toward the crew, as he speeds across the sand. “I can!” he says. “I can shoot a purse!”