As kids, we screamed with laughter whenever the kid in Paperboy got killed. We’d sit in front of that old TV and that little grey box, the carpet reddening our knees, one of us embedding the square sides of the controller into our palms while we stared at the pixelated images.

Amusing, how many ways there are to die on a paper route: rocks, vicious dogs, rogue tires, possessed lawn mowers, suspicious men exercising in inconvenient places. Everyday life trying its best to destroy you.

We cracked ourselves up so much we never made it beyond the second stage. We’d pass the controller around. We’d laugh in the face of constant failure.

I wish I still could.

Emily Stephan is a writer, reader, film buff, and Louisiana native. Her poetry has recently been featured in Louisiana's Best Emerging Poets by Z Publishing House.