Fictional Interlude: “Conversation Over Coffee” or “Discourse On Why the Earth Is Flat”

This story is actually submitted to a magazine contest, but the magazine doesn’t care about online publication, only print publication.

            “It’s like when someone finds a new boyfriend and falls off the edge of the earth for a while,” said Sally.

            Deb frowned. “What do you mean, the edge of the earth?”

            Sally didn’t hesitate. “It’s a simile that…” then she paused and scratched her chin. “Okay, let’s start with the inner metaphor. You presuppose that the earth is flat and of finite dimensions, and–“

            “Wait!” Deb cried, squinting. “How does finding a new boyfriend mean the earth is flat?”

            “And of finite dimensions,” mumbled Elaine over her cup.

            Deb’s face snapped over to stare at Elaine. “What???”

            Elaine swallowed her mouthful and put her cup down. “You have to be able to reach the edge, so–“

            “Fine!!!” said Deb, screwing her eyes shut. Then she opened her eyes and turned back to Sally. “Just tell me how you get that the earth is flat from someone finding a new boyfriend.”

            “You don’t,” said Sally. “You just assume it is and use it as a way to explain how people fall out of touch with their friends when they find a new boyfriend.”

            “But people do that even though the earth is round,” said Deb, “so your argument is stupid.”

            “Does anyone want more coffee?” said Ann.

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