Undergraduate Honors Theses

Title

Aqua Vitae

Thesis Defended

Fall 2012

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

Maricia Douglas

Abstract

A jumper, a gardener, a doctor, and a slinger all walk into a bar; they order four liquids of varying viscosity and commiserate for a bit over tiny umbrellas and half-eaten manzanilla olives. Stories are dredged up from the last dregs of the drinks, slurred yet relatively understood, flurries of slightly lucid prose sluiced from the annals of that next to last martini glass. Hanging from numb lips, participles dangle before crashing to the unwiped counter strewn with sentence fragments and forgotten asides. Hello, Author speaking—the real author, one Richard Montoya, not some narrative construct or self-aware, third-wall smashing narrator—here to address you directly, a pleasure you’ll enjoy now and never again in the preceding pages. So enjoy it while it lasts. I was once told that bars provide the tritest setting to a story imaginable. While not all of these stories contain scenes set therein (by some herculean strength I was able to contain myself) each of these stories does contain elements culled from establishments of an inebriating nature. Which is not to say I’m a proponent of the write drunk, edit sober mantra, but rather I find that the loosest lips let loose the most interesting narratives. Unfortunately I find myself sifting through piles of inconsequence to extract the quintessence, which might explain, to some degree, my somewhat bibacious nature. What you hold in your hands is that reduction, the promised Aqua Vitae, the water of life, my life, my mind in flowing, liquidious form. Drink up.

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