Three Smallies

Zac Smith

Two Dogs

Like most people, I spent a lot of money to learn how to climb mountains. Lots of people do it, so it's not like, you know, that weird. I got pretty good at it. I got to ride in helicopters a lot, too. I liked that part a lot. Sometimes, while riding in the helicopter, I didn't want to do the mountain climbing thing. I would just look at stuff out of the windows and feel good, even though it was always pretty loud, but you get those ear muff headphone things, which is good, and so it’s not so loud. Some people have really quiet helicopters but I don't know much about that. I didn't really like climbing mountains sometimes but when you get to the base camp on the mountain it's like, you feel a lot of pressure, especially after the helicopter part, and paying all the guys to do the stuff. There are a lot of mountains though and I thought I could get more into it if I learned a lot about what made them different and, like, try out different climbing stuff, like the way you climb, or climbing pants, stuff like that. The helicopters are really the best part though. Once I got to ride in this really big helicopter before we had to get into one of the normal small ones, and that was pretty cool. The big one had different seats, and you could walk around and go to the sides and stuff and throw pennies out of the window slits. I rode a pretty normal helicopter before I climbed the last mountain. It was the really tall one and it was really hard. I kept stepping on rocks and stuff in weird ways and all the stuff I had to carry was heavy, which is normal but still hard and not that fun. At the top it looked pretty much the same as the other mountain tops. Like, you know, it was windy and cold, and you could see clouds and stuff, and it was hard to breathe. It was cool to be on the tallest one but it didn’t really feel that different. Like, one time I bought this really expensive pizza, but it just kind of tasted like normal pizza. It wasn’t that special. Sometimes, on the helicopter, they let you bring pizza, or even offer you some pizza. Those were usually my favorite helicopter rides.

White Zinfandel 3 (feat. Giacomo Pope)

Francis sits in the waiting room, filling out a packet of paperwork. He tries to remember if he's ever had a blood transfusion. He thinks he's never had a blood transfusion but is unsure what a blood transfusion actually is. He considers looking up “blood transfusion” on his phone. He hears a woman on the other side of the room say “It was nice but he kept reaching back and eating my shoes.” Francis checks the box that says he's never had a blood transfusion. He reads through a list of common medical problems. He checks boxes at random and thinks about writing a story about a horse; earlier, he listened to an interview podcast with an author where the author said that she only likes stories where all the words sound good together, in terms of alliteration and rhythm, based on something Gordon Lish taught her in an intensive, week-long writers’ workshop. Francis thinks about the sentence “Francis sits in the waiting room, filling out a packet of paperwork” and feels self-conscious. He thinks about fixing the sentence by changing the name “Francis” to something else, like “Greg,” maybe. Something cooler than “Francis.” A doctor comes out and says, “Greg?” He looks at Francis. Francis looks down at his shoes and thinks, “Horses.”

The Shoe Goes Inside the Sock

Let me tell you the secret: people love to be tucked into little boxes. But a box can be anything, you understand. I was once in a large mouth – I was boxed in, happy as I have ever been. I was married in a box – a car – on the road. My wife was there. We loved each other, but not quite as much as we loved the box. An octopus is a type of box, even. I used to watch videos of people eating little octopuses alive. They can get caught in your throat and kill you. The videos are incredible. The octopus has a beak…some would bite into the octopus and shatter the beak. These videos were a type of box, to me. I encourage you to look this up. The sound of the crunching beak, in particular, is its own little box. It can fit a man perfectly, snug as anything, and I wear it like skin.

Zac Smith is Zac Smith.