Johnny America
Picture of Issue Nine
Johnny America is a little print ’zine of fiction, humor, and other miscellany. It’s a web site too, freshened every-other Friday.
Our ninth issue is thirty-six pages of very short shorts, illustrations, and a truly strange comic strip which confuses and delights us. As with previous issues, it sports a silkscreen cover, hand-stitched thread binding, and smells vaguely of citrus. It’s available now for four bucks.

The Unbearable Lightness of Being a Mike’s Hard Lemonade

by Leanne GREGG

Hey. I’m Mike. I came here with a few of my friends. Bud, Miller — you know, the guys. They’re more popular than I am. People bring me to a lot of parties, but I just stand here in the back behind the milk, waiting for you to pick me.

I used to be the cock of the walk in college mini-fridges. Those were the days. Hands would reach out and grab my kind. Underage girls would ask for me by name. Then one fateful day I came to a fridge with five other Mikes that got picked before me. I was finally going to go, I could feel it. But then one of those hands said he got a job and moved to the left to grab a bottle of water instead of me because he had an early meeting the next day. It was all downhill from there. My competition soon became Craft Beer, Pinot Grigio, and Perrier.

It’s okay though. I still get to a lot of parties and see the world. Usually it’s me, Wine Cooler, and a couple of Buds that make the rounds. The Buds always get picked first. So it’s just me and Wine Cooler leftover in every fridge. Wine Cooler’s too stupid to care, though. He just sits and sings, “Margaritaville,” all day and night. He’s less than two percent alcohol and electric blue, so what can you expect?

I usually keep to myself, behind the milk, to the right of the water bottles. Gives me some time to think, you know? Address some of the big questions like, does the refrigerator light go off when you close the door? It does. In case you were wondering.

I don’t let it get to me though. I knew another Mike years ago, it got to him. He rolled out the door when they opened the fridge, screaming, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade, bitches!” Huge party foul. I would never do that.

But I know one day someone will pick me. Maybe it will be you. Just reach out, open my cap, and drink me. I’ll return to the sea, to the sky, and I’ll rain down again upon the earth. I’ll finally reach a higher form, like a Smirnoff Ice.

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