Better Go Catch It
by Mosca

"Oh, good, Danny, you're there," Casey said.

"Where else would I be? It's four in the morning." I coughed, squeezed my eyes shut, and hoped to fall asleep right there on the phone.

"My refrigerator's making a weird noise," he said.

"Your refrigerator?"


"Is making a weird noise?"


"And you thought I might be able to remedy the situation?" I said.

"I thought... you've been living alone longer than I have, and... Lisa used to take care of this stuff."

"So my lack of success in long-term relationships qualifies me to fix your refrigerator?"

"You're more qualified than I am," he said.

"I'm qualified to do many things, including but not limited to co-anchoring a national sports news show, reciting the ERAs of every starting pitcher in Major League Baseball, and whipping up a pretty good margarita," I said. "Sadly, none of them relate to refrigerators."

"Well, if you wanted to keep your leftover margaritas fresh..."

"Call a repairman in the morning, Casey," I said. "Later in the morning."

"Just listen to this, and tell me if you know what it means," he said. I heard some rustling, then a noise like an endless roll on a steel drum in the Holland Tunnel.

"Time to call the Frigidaire guy," I said. "It means that it's time to call the Frigidaire guy."

Casey sighed. "I can't sleep, Danny," he said. "The refrigerator's making too much noise, and I can't sleep."

"Do you need me to come over there?" I said, kidding, but he said yes, yes he did. And I couldn't say no. I put on yesterday's clothes and dragged myself to the echoingly empty subway.

When I got to Casey's, he answered the door in boxers, an undershirt, and sweat socks. His refrigerator churned out demented background percussion. "Women's curling championships, tractor pull, or European darts finals?" he said.

"I think I'm going to have to vote for none of the above."

"TV's the only thing that drowns out the infernal machine," he said.

"You know, there are other channels," I said.

"But none of them show sports," he said.

"Good point," I said. There was a tiny hole in his undershirt, above his nipple, and heavy purple rimmed his eyes. The man needed a hug, so I gave him one. He pulled me closer to him than I expected, desperately, and breathed uncomfortably in my ear. It felt good, his knees and his nascent stubble brushing against mine. He started kissing my hairline, my cheekbones. "I feel like Chris Webber," I said.

"Like who?"

"I'm catching your rebound," I said. "I'm catching your rebound."

He let me go. "I've got beer," he said shakily. "I've got beer, and... very strange sports."

"Some of those German curlers are darned attractive," I said.

"It's the steroids," he said.

I went in and sat on his sofa and drank his beer and watched Scotland beat Sweden. He fell asleep in my lap while Japan lost to Canada. I was terrified of stroking his hair.


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