FUNCTIONAL FAMILIES by Taylor Garcia
Families. You can’t pick them, but you can keep them. Or not.
As your family is bright, so is it dark. Sure, the love and laughter of family lingers in your heart, yet it’s the secrets, pranks, and punishments that haunt your soul. The mothers, fathers, daughters, and sons in Functional Families all seek only love to cure their familial ills, but they often go about it in strange ways. To come to terms with his father’s past and encroaching dementia, Reynold Vasquez takes his father out for one last fancy dinner in “Bird Dog,” while in “Bat Out of Hell,” Margaret abandons her mother at a Tijuana gas station hoping to move on with her life. In “My First War,” young cadet Gilbert Fernandez goes AWOL from a pretend battlefield to be with his pregnant girlfriend on the verge of an abortion, and in “Wheel of Fortune,” Hillary Clinton visits a homegirl fortune teller in Santa Fe, New Mexico. In the end, these disparate souls resolve their desperate actions to return to their nuclei, the only places they can call home.
Publication Date: November 2, 2021