In years to come, Joanna never said a word to her mother about the incident, even though she did marry Clive. At the wedding Thelma vowed sobriety to herself so strictly that she ended up completely plastered by nine in the evening, lying in the arms of a man dressed in a green suit, who suggested that they engage in lewd acts in the back seat of his Toyota.
The marriage lasted just under a year. Joanna could not find a job as a professor and so became a real estate agent in Oakland, California, where she makes a quarter of a million dollars a year. Thelma, Rafe and Ginny continue hopeful, intense and concentrated on that big win just around the corner. No one has heard from Clive since, though Rafe occasionally dredges up faint memories of the man with the mole when he mutters, usually after a losing day at the track, "How's Clyde?"
Joanna calls her mother every Sunday.
A. R. Taylor is an award-winning playwright, essayist, and writer of fiction. In her book Male Novelists and Their Female Voices: Literary Masquerades, she explores gender-bending narratives and what they reveal about male attitudes toward women. She received two Emmys for her work in public television, and has, just recently, finished a novel called Sex, Rain, and Cold Fusion.
You can learn more about A. R. Taylor's work by visiting her website, www.LoneCamel.com. Click on the title of this post to enjoy a comic introduction to Anne's upcoming book.