Recently, it was advertised that Roxane Gay would be judging a fiction contest for the Masters Review. There was an informative few sentences as to what kind of stories Ms. Gay likes and didn’t like. Among the things she didn’t like: stories about writers, and stories about white couples in sad relationships. I chortled, and decided not to enter that contest because the piece I had ready would have trended too closely to the sad relationship trope. Then, this arrived in the mail. I’m sorry to say that Roxane Gay’s comments were still too fresh in my mind. It’s a story of a white couple in a sad relationship. Even without Gay’s comments, I think I might have still compared it unfavorably to an earlier One Story about a white couple in a sad relationship. That one–“Queen Elizabeth”–I really enjoyed. This one, not so much.