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A family tale of emigration, tradition, and future. Becca Miles joins Talking Soup with a story as carefully crafted as freshly made hamantaschen.
From friendship to growing up, Esther Hope Arthurson gives us a snippet on life on cocktail night.
Driving Corpses for Money
The following is an excerpt from Brandon Christopher’s book ‘The Job Pirate: An Entertaining Tale of my Job-Hopping Journey in America’.
Losing It: Four Cautionary Tales of Travel
In a series of ill goings-on across a life spent travelling the length and breadth of the world, Frank Sonderborg recounts a few cautionary travellers tales.
Retail Tales with Brian Brehmer: #7 The Break Room
Eager to escape from the drudgery of the floor, Brian Brehmer heads for the supposed sanctuary of the break room, only to be greeted with anything but the tranquility he desired.
The Job Interview
Skint but with the mouth-watering prospect of working as a potwash in the local pub, famous for its aroma of old farts, Holly Watson reluctantly goes to a job interview.
Talking Soup Talks: #1 The University Experience
In a new series of interviews and reviews, the editorial team at Talking Soup kick off a new series of podcasts. In this pilot episode our digital editor, John Smith, takes a look at the issues surrounding students in a time of the Covid-19 pandemic. Should they stay or should they go? If you want to take part in the podcast, then please get in touch.
Land of Eternal Thirst
Bisbee, Arizona. Leah Mueller talks of family, loss and going back to what you have always known.
In a powerful piece, Ramona Long reflects on her mother’s death from Covid-19, and looks back at her relationship with the beauty shop, one of the few all-female spaces in a male-dominated world.
Her Last Hurrah
As his mother-in-law’s mental health deteriorates, Jim Ross finds himself faced with the difficult tasks of looking after a loved one with dementia.
Carpet Fitter’s Christmas Rush
Brian King, who has worked in the flooring and carpet-fitting industry for 30 years, joins Talking Soup to talk about the Christmas rush for carpets and flooring and the toll it takes on the workers.
The Joys of Boys
In a new series on parenthood, Yvonne Hardman, 45-year-old mother of three teenage boys, gives us a stark but witty warning about what is in store for any potential parents.
As part of a new series on parenthood, Dee Caples takes a look at the huge perspective shift from childhood to adulthood, and debates what parts to keep and what to throw out when we raise our own children.
In Search of 53 German Student Girls
The dance that night was in a converted cinema. We sat in the front row seats and watched the natives giving it, like it was 1919. Country and western was big in the hinterlands back in the day. Sugary sweet songs of the poor emigrant Paddy in his bed-sit in London, pining for his golden haired girlfriend and his silver haired mother while he drank himself into a stupor.
How Black Was My Thumb?
I finish my £8.30 pint and head for where I used to live. Why? I’ve started writing now, I might as well go. It’s an ex-council block. East London thick brick. Rubicon cans on the stairwell, faulty lifts. A kid called Abdi that tries to sell you weed every time you see him, even though you tell him that you don’t smoke weed. It was him that I thought I saw walking past the pub. He’s got a dog. He told me that it is was rare for a Bengali to have a dog. I wonder if he’s still here?
Please Let Me Cry
I have given up so many times, thought I had hit absolute rock bottom, but after this morning I want only to cry, just cry, Lord please let me just cry. I want that great, cleansing, belly-shaking rain of tears that I had wished would come for depressed Cassie, but I can’t. I can’t cry. I try to bring something up from deep in my chest but nothing comes. I realize now that ghosts have no bodily fluids. Tears, blood, semen, sweat; these are the province of the living.
You didn’t want to make her uncomfortable by smoking in front of her, or subject her to secondhand fumes. You huddled in your bedroom with your stash, emerging when the coast was clear. Still, the smell should have been a tip-off. Not to mention your red eyes and dilated pupils.
And so I often find myself wandering through a hollow house alone, as he adventures to the tool sheds in the far corner of a backyard. I sift through the trinkets, the decorated knives, commemorative postcards, and wonder – who held these before me? I find a binder full to bursting with buttons of all types and sizes and colors. What hands carefully sewed each into place?
Zadusnice: The Serbian All Souls’ Day
There are four Zadusnice in a year, one for every season: summer, autumn, winter and spring, and they always fall on Saturday. Saturday is the day of week devoted to the dead in Serbian culture. And Serbs are funny people. They are outgoing and talkative, and they love to socialize with one another, laugh and make jokes anywhere, even in the cemetery.
I have killed her in my head more times than I can count. I have attended her funeral. I have wept on her grave. I have cried alone in a room littered with pill bottles and years of filth because I wasn’t there to save her. Every unknown number from Connecticut is her final plea for forgiveness before she swallows the pills or slices the blade across pale blue-veined wrists. I am a bad son. I let her do this. It is all my fault.
Cheap cotton tank top stuck under my armpits, the summer heat was making us light extra candles and pray for extra $5 donations. I was cheap and stuck at Saint Joseph Oratory under Mary’s smile and she gazed at her feet and I felt her son didn’t really save me. You had sad eyes and your hair was the best thing in the heat.
A Happy Ending
The affair happened more than ten years ago. We worked together on a project with four other colleagues. She was married and had two small children. During the holidays, she texted me several times saying that she was thinking about me. The first two or three messages, I ignored. I erased them. I seriously thought she was a no-go. The fourth time, I wrote back: “You’re married.” I thought that would end it….
Love in the West Midlands
From 90s suburban Coventry, Holly Watson recalls stories from her childhood. This time she looks at a relationship between her Aunty Mandy and her husband SImon, a man so boring as to drive you to tears.
Under the Sounds of Bullets
Sara Swaidek travels back home to Tripoli, Libya. The hope of finding peace is far off as she tries to sleep under the sounds of bullets.