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Lunch Special

Bev Cobbett

He showered and dressed. 

“Your lunch is on the bottom shelf of the fridge.” She said, keeping her voice cold.

He went to the kitchen.

She stayed in bed, turned off his lamp. After the fight they’d had last night . . . He could get his

own cereal and coffee. She waited.

Minutes later, the door slammed as he left for work. Good. Her continuing anger had been 

noted. The slam was his “Backatcha!” 

It wasn’t often she didn’t get up with her husband, make his toast or whatever he wanted, 

and serve it with a smile. Well, no coffee and no smile today. He was lucky she’d already made 

his lunch last night, before the argument. Not that she still wouldn’t have made it. But it would 

be more edible than it might have been.

Her anger wouldn’t leave, and all through the morning, it jabbed her. She needed him to 

apologize for his hurtful words. She believed he hadn’t meant them, but she needed to hear

him say it. Then she would apologize for her own. But, ha! Fat chance of that. When angry, he 

was obstinate and immoveable. The word ‘apologize’ wasn’t even in his vocabulary—or, at least, 

rarely. She was always the peace-maker! She hated being at odds and always just wanted to get 

back to snuggles. Well, not this time.

She fumed her way through last night’s dishes, through furious vacuuming of every floor 

and household surface, until her anger was spent. In its place, only hurt remained. How 

could he say those mean things to her? Her heart was bruised.

She was about to go for a shower when the phone rang. She answered.

You did that on Purpose!” came an accusatory, almost yelling voice—but oddly, not really 

sounding angry.

“What?”

Don’t pretend you’re innocent! You deliberately did that, on purpose!” Her husband’s voice 

cracked and she could tell he was smiling.

“I have no idea what you’re talking about!” She remained aloof.

“YOU PURPOSELY GAVE ME CABBAGES FOR LUNCH! ADMIT IT!”

“WHAT?” Her mind raced back to the night before. She had made his

lunch, put it in a brown paper grocery bag, and set it on a shelf—as she always did. 

She opened the fridge door. There was his lunch, right where she had put it. And right beside

that was the empty space where a grocery bag holding two new small heads of cabbage had 

been. He had grabbed the wrong bag.

Oh my god! She burst into a fit of giggles and couldn’t stop. 

In mock indignation, he continued to berate her for her “deliberate vengeance” he had suffered. 

Finally, he said, “Course . . . if I hadn’t been such an asshole . . . You probably wouldn’t have 

given me cabbages for lunch . . .”

It would do for now. 

She grinned. Sometimes Providence lends a hand and delivers justice in a most delicious way. 

She couldn’t stop smiling.

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