Dear MIT,

Hi. My name is Jeff. I am six years old. I have a big sister named Jessica. My big sister likes you. She talks about you a lot. I think she really wants you to like her too. But she says she is worried you don't like her. She is worried you will choose someone else over her. Do you not like her? I think she is a great person. She is really smart, and really nice. I like her a lot, and I like when she is happy. I think she will be happy if you tell...

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Milkshakes from the cosmos! Or something like that. That's what I wanted my small business to be like. But this putrid fucking recession! Quit smoking. 43 days. You're goddam right I'm proud--not just anyone, that's for sure! Yeah my kid's joining the army. Can't stop him. I bought him season's tickets to the Donut Holes his whole damn life. Sure they ain't no Kan-zass Cit-tee Roy-als, but they play some sure as shit baseball, that's all I know. He hit that girl last summer, and things ain't been working out for him ever since. Yeah, sure I told him to...

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"I'm not stalking you, I swear," she said to him as he stared across the produce section in the grocer.

"Oh? The coffee shop by your office I could understand. The subway too. Maybe we live on the same line. The movie theatre might have been a coincidence. And the cologne section at Macy's could be justified. I'm a little concerned that you'd appear in the same Casino, the same bar and the same strip club, but to each their own. So that you'd even say you're not stalking me, here, in a grocery store, the most obvious place for...

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I hoped they would stop worshiping the coat soon. After my husband Ed spilled coffee on his shoulder I'd washed it and put it out on the line to dry.

Someone from town happened to pass by as it swung from the line. He said he saw the face of Jesus in it. Right where Ed had spilled the coffee.

They came after. Ed tried to run them off with his shotgun. He tried to sick the dogs on them. They still came. All wanting to look at it. Take a piece of it home with them.

I took it...

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This starts out as a fairy tale, but does not end as such.

Riding on a subway, Jane was squirming with self-consciousness. Shaking dark curls out of her eyes, she wiped her shaking, clammy hands on purple and black striped leggings, brushing her elbow against the heavy object that was swinging gently -- almost innocuously -- in her left hand jacket pocket.

It's so heavy, she thought. Would I be able to drink all of it?

Earlier that day, she had obtained a potion in a sketchy graffiti-infested alleyway from her great-great-grandfather, who was alive and well -- and a...

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Daring to be noticed for the first time in her life, she pushed her chair back and stood up. Channeling Renee Zelwegger in Jerry Maguire she said "I'm with you."
Nobody heard her mouselike voice. Clearing her throat, she repeated herself. "I'm with you."
James looked at her, "Oh um...anyone else?" he scanned the office hopefully. Everyone remained seated. "Oh um, great then. Thank you...who are you?"
"Sarah." she prompted, ignoring the disapointment on his face.
"Yes, Sarah. That's it you're in accounts, right?"
"Actually I'm one of the PAs." she was starting to feel a little disgruntled. She was...

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So there I was, cigarette in hand, pigeon in my mouth, and she starts talking to me. I'm like, lady, shut up already, will ya? If the blood bothers you, go read somewhere else, OK?

But no, she wants me to stop eating the pigeon. Or stop smoking, or something. I dunno, the sound of the bones crunching kinda drowned her out. Whatever she was saying, she must have felt pretty strongly about it, 'cause she popped a button on her blouse when she started pointing her finger in my face.

I was pretty sure the button wasn't one of...

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Hard to think now, gazing into her eyes as we lay side by side, that we'd only met on the train an hour ago. I'd been standing at first. She sat with a mother and two small kids, chatting away; she'd been so gentle, loving, playful with them. Occasionally, she'd look out the window. Several times she caught my eye in the glass, and smiled at my dimmer reflection. When the family got off at Bristol I sat down, the carriage empty now. We chatted about our lives, her boyfriend, my wife and grown up daughters. A generation gap meant...

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Midnight on the Roof. That's where he'll be. I know Santa Claus is real. I know that because he's my Dad.

It was small things at first. I made a list:
1) A wistful smile on Mum's lips each Christmas Eve. 
2) The way she hummed "I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus" without noticing.
3) The fact we ALWAYS put out cookies and beer for him before Christmas Day. And a carrot for Rudolf.
4) My last real memory of him dressed in his large red gown and hat with white fur trim telling Mum he had to go. His...

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Until now, she'd never thought of herself as pretty.

She'd never thought of herself as anything close to it. Too tall, too dark, too weird-looking in general, too much stomach fat and too small a face and too much that was just plain wrong.

Too little personality at first and then too weird a personality later. Too much for other people to deal with.

Too timid to speak up, too hinged on other people's expectations of her.

Too affected by what others said, too stupid to bring up her own ideas or her own thoughts.

And how that's changed.

Now...

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