Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Thad Rutkowski in the New York Times


Thad Rutkowski's short story "The Mountain Man" is featured today in the New York Times.

Here's the opening of the story.  The entire piece is available by clicking here:


I walked to the post office to pick up my family’s mail. When I opened the swinging doors, I saw that the dusty room was empty. Presently, the postmistress came out of her living area and stepped behind the counter.
While she checked a pigeonhole for mail, I looked at the “wanted” posters on the wall. They showed fugitives’ faces and described their crimes. Some of the men were “armed and dangerous”; others were “extremely dangerous.” I tried to memorize what they looked like, in case I saw one of them. If I did see one there wasn’t much I could do, because I had no weapon. I would just have to run as fast as I could in the opposite direction.
The postmistress handed me a roll of mail, and I went out through the heavy wooden doors.
On my way home, I saw a couple of hunters outside the hotel bar. They were wearing plaid wool coats and fleece-lined boots. As I walked past, I saw a dead deer in the back of their pickup truck. The deer had no antlers — it looked like an illegal kill.
In the truck cab, a gun rack held two rifles. Both of the guns had scopes and shoulder straps. I could imagine the hunters marching through the woods like soldiers, guns slung over their shoulders, barrels pointing into the air.
One of the men noticed me and asked, “Doing any hunting this season?”
I shook my head no and walked on.

Thaddeus Rutkowski is the author of the novels HaywireTetched and Roughhouse. He works as a copy editor, adjunct lecturer and fiction-writing instructor. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and daughter.

"Pan Taddeus," a chapter of Rutkowski's novel Haywire, was featured last year at Writing the Polish Diaspora.  Click here to read it.  

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