Own Worst Critic

Brad
8 min readOct 5, 2021

My inner critic sports a beret and a man-bun.

Brad Foster © 2021

Arrogant A-hole with a man-bun
Photo by SHTTEFAN on Unsplash

The moment I begin writing, he’s there.

Delimont Vandenburl is decked out in his tweed jacket and signature beret, resplendent a man-bun that screams arrogance. He bends his tall frame to watch me type at the computer. He takes one look at what I’ve written and scoffs.

“It’s utter crap. Puerile and pretentious.”

He stresses each “p” in his sentences as if he’s flicking boogers at the screen.

“It’s a rough draft.” I practically snarl. “And it’s only the first paragraph.”

This earns an amused snort and he pulls up an imaginary chair so he can watch my every keystroke. I turn back to the computer and write out the title.

Hit Grannies? Way to spoil the premise.”

“It’s a working title, Delimont.”

I grit my teeth and begin again:

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Leo Mikkels sat in the cramped booth, hidden behind the etched glass partition. He knew it wouldn’t have mattered if he’d been seated in the middle of the damned restaurant — he’d still be just as invisible to the staff brushing by him for the last fifteen minutes. For once, that invisibility might be his salvation.

From under his coat, he gripped the plain manila envelope which contained the $300,000 he’d bilked from his employer.

“Excuse me…” He said to an approaching waiter, fresh-faced and barely out of high school. Maybe the kid didn’t hear him, but it’s more likely he was being ignored. The waiter walked past him and greeted a booth of little old ladies who just got seated.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Delimont lets out a laugh. “Greeted a booth?”. He jumps up and mock-bows to the air.

“Why, hello booth, you’re looking mighty dashing today. I love how your material is so smooth and crisp, and not at all torn and duct-taped.” He pretends to caress the top of the backrest and blurts out a bad Ricardo Montalbán impression. “Soft Corinthian Leather….

I shouldn’t do it, but I take the bait. “It’s ‘Rich Corinthian Leather’”

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Brad

This is what I do: I drink and I write things.