Russell Lee state Texas guy boy President Russell Lee state Texas

The Grizzly in the Purple Pants

nytimes.com

Russell Lee spat a wad of snuff into a Planters peanuts can. We sat at a picnic table in his backyard, next to the railroad tracks.

He jackhammered the ground with his right leg. “Your mom’s having an affair,” said Russ, my mother’s husband. “What’re you talking about?” I stared at his face — grayed muttonchops against skin bronzed from working under the Texas sun.

Hummingbirds buzzed past us, sucking sugar water from the cherry-red feeder. I wanted to crush them. Russ struggled against tears. “And she has AIDS.

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