Drinking Games

by Carolyn Parkhurst

08/24/2012

KANSAS
Okay, okay, I’ll go. I never had a fruit as my state vegetable.
(No one drinks.)

TEXAS
Oh, come on—are you seriously telling me you’re not gonna drink for that one?

OKLAHOMA
You can look it up; my state legislature has clearly proven that a watermelon can be classified as either a fruit or vegetable. It’s related to the cucumber.

TEXAS
Yeah, your state legislators are related to their cousins, more like.

OKLAHOMA
That doesn’t even make sense. You know anyone who’s not related to their cousins?

TEXAS
You know what I mean. Okay. I never made anybody think of a heart-warming musical. (KANSAS and OKLAHOMA both drink.)

OKLAHOMA
I never made it illegal to sell your own eye. (TEXAS drinks.)

TEXAS
I don’t know why the hell not. Seems pretty sensible to me. You’re up, Kansas.

KANSAS
Okay, Oklahoma: I never bragged about being a little … quick on the trigger. Sooner State. How about The Premature State? (OKLAHOMA drinks.)

OKLAHOMA
You’re just jealous that no one’s ever been that excited to get into Kansas.

TEXAS
I never forced bars to serve wussy low-alcohol beer. (OKLAHOMA drinks.)

OKLAHOMA
I never had a county where you couldn’t buy beer at all.
(KANSAS and TEXAS both drink.)

TEXAS
Yeah, okay.

KANSAS
I’ve never been the birthplace for a United States president.
(TEXAS drinks.)

TEXAS
Of course, neither of you’ve seen a president die, either. That’s not one I’m proud to claim.

KANSAS
True enough. (Yawns.) Well, it’s getting late, and tomorrow’s a workday.

TEXAS
Not for me: it’s Texas Independence Day.

OKLAHOMA
Oh, yeah, I forgot how festive you are. Hey, Kansas, you want to go in with me on a San Jacinto Day card?

TEXAS
Aw, go pick on somebody your own size.


Carolyn Parkhurst is the author of the novels The Dogs of Babel, Lost and Found, and The Nobodies Album. She has published fiction in the North American Review, the Minnesota Review, Hawai’i Review, and the Crescent Review. She received a B.A. from Wesleyan University and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from American University. She lives in Washington D.C., with her husband and two children.