Karen E. Bender

Karen E. Bender is the author of the novel Like Normal People (Houghton Mifflin, 2000) and co-editor of the forthcoming anthology Choice (MacAdam/Cage). Her fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Zoetrope: All-Story, Best American Short Stories, Best American Mystery Stories, and the Pushcart Prize series.


It was four thirty in the afternoon, and Diane Bernstein knew that the phone was about to ring. She had just paid the babysitter, the third one to quit this month, extremely polite when she quit, blaming it on other…