The Car

By Thomas, Dorothy | The Saturday Evening Post, May-June 1984 | Go to article overview

The Car


Thomas, Dorothy, The Saturday Evening Post


Mrs. Joseph Barton woke at two minutes of seven and at once sat bolt upright in bed, like a woman who has set her mind and heart, like a clock, on waking at a certain time because she has something special planned.

Only moments later her husband woke and squinted sleepily at her where she stood, across the room from the bed, and said, "Say, am I seeing things, or are you going through my pockets?"

Mrs. Barton laughed and blushed a little. "I am," she said, "or I was, rather. These pants are going to the cleaner's. You said, 'Aw, I've already got them on,' the last time. Your stuff's right here." She dropped some coins, a key ring and a jackknife into a tray on the dresser. Some empty chewing-gum wrappers she tossed into the waste-basket.

"All right," Mr. Barton said. "I'm not wearing them anyhow. I'm wearing my golf pants. Don't you know what day this is? This is Sunday, Sally."

"I know it," Mrs. Barton said, "and I'm glad it's here. It's a lovely day, too. Lovely." She swung up from a third "fingers-touch-toes" to pant the second "Lovely." Her cheeks were very pink. Mr. Barton would likely have remarked on her pink cheeks and her general good looks had he been watching her, but he had already shut his eyes again for a last 40 winks.

Dressed, Mrs. Barton went to her sons' room. It was a habit with her to look on the boys and on Sara Louise, too, before going down to get breakfast. They were both sleeping so soundly that they did not hear her: Dick with one hand resting, palm up, on the floor, like an idler in a boat, Sally thought, and Davie lying biasly in his wide bed, his lean, tanned arms and legs outflung, as though he might have been dropped from a height. Almost soundlessly Sally picked up some of their clothes and hung them in their wardrobe. She lowered the blind so that the sun would not shine on Dick's handsome forehead and went out quietly into her girl's room.

Sara Louise was sleeping curled in a ball, like a creature hibernated, her rather long, yellow bob making a blurred halo round her head on the pillow. All that she had had on the night before made a larger and still more indefinite halo round the place where she had stood for her 2 a.m. undressing.

As quietly as she had picked up her sons' clothes, Mrs. Barton gathered up Sara Louise' stockings, panties, slip, shoes, dress and pocketbook. It was the click of the pocketbook fastener that woke Sara Louise and made her say without opening her eyes, "That you, mother? Will you turn off the light, please? It's right in my eyes."

"It's not the light, dear, it's the sun. I'll draw the blind."

"Um, thanks," Sara Louise murmured, and she curled, the ball she was, a little tighter.

Mrs. Barton went downstairs and out to the kitchen. "I'll make waffles," she said, and she brought the crock she used for waffle batter from the pantry and eggs and milk from the refrigerator. While she worked she hummed.

She spread a cloth and set five places in the breakfast porch. Waffles were best, of course, straight from the waffle iron, but Davie, who ate most, was grateful for numbers and was always pleased when he came down to find three or four baked and ready for him. When she had three waffles made, she began to call the family to wake up and to get downstairs. "Breakfast!" she shouted. "Waffles!"

They would know it was first come, first served. Mr. Barton was first. "Well, Sally, waffles?" he said.

"Yes," Mrs. Barton replied. "Will you have some of Davie's, or will you wait for the next one? It's all but ready."

"I'll wait, my dear. Did you bring in the paper? Ah!" Mr. Barton saw that Sally had brought in the paper and put it by his plate. He was highly pleased with himself to be up before either of the boys; to have the paper, fresh and unfolded, before family hand had touched it.

"Here's your waffle, Joe," Sally Barton said.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Car
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.