When Life Hands You Lemons or Mustard or Something Like That

By Laura Stamps

“Life is like potato salad,” Lisa says, looking into the camera. “But use mayonnaise. Not mustard.” Stirring the ingredients in a mixing bowl, she laughs. “Like my mother always said, why ruin a good potato salad when you can choose the sweet instead of the bitter?” she asks. Ten minutes later her popular cooking show wraps up another winning episode. “Great job, everyone!” Lisa shouts. As a round of applause ripples through the television studio, her assistant hands Lisa a cell phone. “A text from your husband,” her assistant says, frowning. Lisa reads: I’M FILING FOR DIVORCE. I’VE FALLEN IN LOVE WITH SOMEONE ELSE. Lisa freezes. What? She never saw this coming. Never! “What are you going to do?” her assistant whispers. Lisa squares her shoulders. She opens the refrigerator door and grabs the big jar of mustard, hurling it into the trash. “Mother always knew best,” Lisa says, smiling.    

Laura Stamps loves to play with words and create experimental forms for her fiction. Author of several novels and short story collections, including IT’S ALL ABOUT THE RIDE: CAT MANIA (Alien Buddha Press). Muses Prize. Pulitzer Prize nomination. 7 Pushcart Prize nominations. Mom of 4 cats. Twitter: @LauraStamps16. www.laurastampsfiction.blogspot.com