Day 297

"There is a Korean myth," she says. "I want to tell you it."

"Okay," I say.

"A bear and a tiger go to the Gods. They want to be human. The Gods say if you eat garlic everyday you will be human."

"Just for a week? A month?"

"No, like 300 days."

"Why, 300?"

"Because it makes it more dramatic."


"So the tiger gives up after a while. He can't take it. The bear doesn't though. He keeps eating garlic. He becomes human."


"So that's where Koreans come from. We are the ancestors of bears."



I drink my coffee. It has things floating in it. They taste like jelly beans. I didn't ask for them. They were complimentary. I swirl them around. I stand up.

"It's time," I say.

"For what?"

"I have to go to my cave."

"You are going to write?"

"I am going to be a bear."

"You are Korean, Pirooz."

"Yes, could be."

I walk my friend to the bus. She gets on the 144. I wave. I walk across the street. I walk across the university campus. I don't say anything. I don't think anything. I get to my room. I turn off the lights. I lie on my bed. I wait.

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