“City of Clowns”
I was called to bring more beer from the fridge. I passed the cold bottle to my father, who took it without looking, intent on what his partner Felipe was saying. I listened too: “I always try to smack the maid real good,” Felipe said proudly. “And I try to break something—just so the family doesn't think she was in on it.” Everyone cheered this perverse generosity. My father too. I stood at the edge of the circle of men as they passed the beer around. I hardly understood it. Standing at the edge of circle of men, I thought of my own mother falling to the floor.