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January 13. 3 AM. I open the keyboard of my cellphone. Ten years pass between the time I tap on the "Internet" icon and land on Facebook. Another ten between the flurry of well-wishers and wall posts I wish didn't exist or a were a day premature. It's not that I don't enjoy birthdays or that I'm not anticipating that first legal sip of beer. It's that none of these Facebook posts are from the person I want them to be from: my professor. My makeshift daddy when I was living in the dorms-states away from my cat and my dog and my guinea pigs and my bi-curious parents. His shoulders were smaller than my fists, but he was the closest thing I ever wanted to a man. I'd seen the men in my older mother's police reports. I knew what they were capable of doing. Still, my heart jumped a little when I first heard his name. Maybe the idea of calling someone "daddy" filled some profound psychological need my two mothers couldn't. Maybe I just liked the letter "y". My friends, the ones who graduated, are coming up later. I've invited them even though I have no place to live. I'm hoping they'll bring food. Or at least a drink. Anything I can guzzle.

Story by:

Amanda Harris

submitted at 2:01am

14 May 2012