[1] Concerning the Properties of Slowly Heated Water*


*There can't possibly be anything correct about putting an asterisk in a header but you gotta know the way water is pronounced here, because it's not in the rest of her newscasters English, no.  And it's not a Scranton accent.  She says it whuuder.  It is a tiny softness like a white pill on a sweater.  On occasion, everything in her voice hazes out.  And the letter T often takes day trips but whuuder, whuuder is always present.  Where'd it come from?  Not Scranton, not Philly, not her parents.  Her parent's wouldn't say whuuder.  Scranton, in fact, is the land of WAAH-terrr, said loudly and always a lil annoyed regardless of the situation.  She couldn't have learned whuuder from her mom, who is a fiber shy of full-on Scranton accent mess.  And her father?  His killed Spanish made room for newscaster's English, so no, not him.

When whuuder comes out it's mostly second nature.  Sometimes, though, she is back in the fourth grade gazing at Matt Wells and his wide sunny face and blond hair and curling lips, curling kinda like a snarl but a friendly snarl.  He was from Brooklyn.  The way he said words was fun to hold in your own mouth silently and try later.


Her favorite teacup is made of very thin glass and when she fills it with hot water her knuckles press so slightly against the outside.  It's cool to her touch and then a little warmer, and then unbearably hot but she has to take it because she can't just put the cup down because there's other dishes in the way, so she ow ow ow ows to the cabinet and gets a saucer and then shimmies her grip so no part of skin has to meet glass hugging the boiling whuuder.