DEAD RINGER - ravi mangla


ravi mangla

I met the double in a Sam's Club, by the frozen pizzas. He looked just like - in almost every unique way - my dead father. We joked about the sign out front. Some of the letters had burnt out and it now read S M Club. His laugh was a little sharp, but I thought, maybe, we could work on that.

I found out he was eating alone and invited him to dinner. My mother was coming over to eat that night, and I decided it would be a neat surprise. After the salad, she excused herself, and hid in the bathroom. We set her lasagna outside the door.

While my wife did the dishes, the double and I tossed the pigskin around the backyard. That night he tucked us in, kissed our foreheads, and mussed my hair. My wife thought this was all too weird. I told her I agreed, even though I didn't. When we woke up our car was gone, the faux-Renoir that hung above the sofa, most of my wife's crystal stemware, and our son. A day out with Grandpa. It made me consider how little time I spent with my own grandfather growing up. I hoped my son wouldn't make the same mistakes that I did.

Ravi Mangla