Dale Stromberg grew up not far from Sacramento before moving to Tokyo, where he had a brief music career. Now he lives near Kuala Lumpur and makes his living as an editor a translator. His work has been published here and there.

Dree Your Weird

Learn to love disappointment as the ear loves a resolving chord.


Hello. Welcome. Step right in, sir.

Yes. No, not a pet, sir. I am the proprietor.

I assure you, yes. Not a joke. Owner and operator, sir.

Not a cow, sir. A bull. The difference? Ahem. I’m surprised you ask.

Yes, right this way. We stock dinnerware, toasting flutes, vases. Christmas ornaments along that wall. Tumblers of

every variety by the window displays.


Oh, dreadfully sorry. I’ve just—well, yes, it seems every time I turn around, this sort of thing—no, really, I’ll clean it

up myself.

I beg your pardon? Well... yes. The—the merchandise. We do carry quite a bit of... shall I say, weathered


Well, I suppose, yes. Broken, sir. Strictly speaking.

No, sir, what you see is what we have.

Well. I can hardly deny it when you put it so plainly, but... yes. Indeed. Not surprising at all, being that I am a, as

you say, sir, yes: a bull.

Is it really so amusing, sir?

Well, please do come again. You won’t be? I am sorry to hear it, sir.

Open a what instead, sir? Ahem. It is the, erm, female of the species that gives milk, sir. But I thank you for the


Good day, sir.