Sartorial Dark Arts

Sartorial Dark Arts
by Eric D. Howerton
Diller was wearing his new red shorts when he was struck by a black Mercedes at an intersection near the park. The car had sleek leather seats and an automated GPS navigational system with two vocal options: “Helpful American Tourguide” and “Prim British Dam.” The driver sped away, turned right as the GPS commanded with Elizabethan aplomb, and left poor, felled Diller prostrated near the gutter, bruised and concussed
The asphalt was hot against his cheek.
Before the EMTs could arrived, Diller was pickpocketed by a street performer, the red shorts practically spitting his billfold out at the feet of the metallic cowboy. The withdrawn pocket lining flapped in the breeze like a lint-riddled tongue.
Diller wore the shorts again after he was released from the hospital. He was promptly stabbed in the stomach with an Angel blade. His new wallet was taken and he retained consciousness throughout the attack, noting that the clippity-clop of enriched footsteps conducted an uncanny music, a tattoo to match the pierced skin near his navel and the bilious hues of digestion that spilled from his belly like jazz from a clarinet.
The third time Diller wore the shorts he paused, the cotton bunched in folds around his ankles, his hands ready to hoist. He was suddenly struck that his shorts were the same color as a stop sign—the premonitory flash of danger, the quiet siren of warning—but he pulled them up anyway, because it was a blistering-hot day and he could not imagine wearing pants.

0 thoughts on “Sartorial Dark Arts

  1. interesting enough story. doesn’t really tie into itself that well. guy in red shorts with bad luck. if somehow it was the shorts causing the bad luck that’d make it more involving, but overall it was interesting enough to keep me reading until the end.

  2. I gathered from the title that rather than the shorts being a source of bad luck, the act of putting on those shorts is a component of a spell.
    For some odd reason, I see this story as a commentary on the strange relationship of the supposedly innovative culture in the US and how mired it is in dependence on things like oil, technology with designed obsolesce, and puerile entertainment like the adult cartoon character of Angel Blade.
    I put the gas in because I can’t imagine having an empty tank.

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