Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Live Through It Day!

Stay alive 73 days. Then 31 more. After that, go twelve more years, breathing. Then a day. Then play it by ear. Anytime you think you can't do one more day, say to yourself, "People sometimes give you brownies when you're alive, but not when you're dead. Also, I think I look pretty in skirts. If I died, my eyes would bloat up and go black as 8 balls and I would never get the chance to put on a skirt and check my own shit out again." It won't help, but it'll stall you for a little while.

Happy Live Through It Day!

Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Everyone's Sitting In The Windows Of Bars Day!

Every bar you pass, sitting in the window is someone else you know. Matthew, your friend who's cut himself off from you, he's in the window of Cafferty's with four people you don't know. They're all laughing hysterically at a story he's telling them with big hands. Down the block, at the Hi-Life, there's your boss in the window making out with a very young woman. It's horrifying. Your parents got the table by the window at Jake's. Your Mom is staring through the window, watching the snow turn black. Your Dad is trying to get the waitress' attention. His glass is empty. Keep walking. Sarah is aglow in the window of Drinketeria. Sarah is your ex-girlfriend. Len is her new boyfriend and he's sitting across from her, talking through a big smile. Keep walking. In the window of Lord's Lounge is a clown in full makeup who once was hired to entertain your ninth birthday party. You were too old for a clown. The clown was upset by something that day. Just above his pint, he looks pretty upset about something today. But not as upset as Gilbert the Auto Mechanic who used to fix your Mitsubishi back when you were still commuting from your wife's place. Gilbert has the booth by the window at Ralph's. Gilbert has in his possession an active cell phone, into which he is apparently shouting, and five empty hi-ball glasses, each of which he'll occasionally pick up to drain the final drops of melted ice at the bottom just before not catching his waitress' eye yet again. All these people sitting in the windows of bars, not one of them has spotted you. Unless they saw you and just didn't wanna say hi.

Happy Everyone's Sitting In The Windows Of Bars Day!

Monday, December 29, 2003

A While On Friday Day!

Just a little while though. Just a little bit alone and a whole lot bewildered.

He's in Tucson. He's writing you sometimes, yes, but he doesn't write as well as he smells when he's lying right next to you. Next to you there on the sheet where your hand glides nice and free through all those uncrushed folds.

He likes his job and he's looking forward to coming back to see you five Fridays from now. You don't have a job and you're doing all you can to keep him in your thoughts, for five Fridays from now.

You're digging your nose into the pillow, searching out his smell. But you smoke too much and everything stinks the same as your jacket cuff. You don't take enough pictures. You've seen these six. He's very pretty, but only six times. Five whole Fridays remember.

Push him out of your thoughts. If you don't let him in your head you won't know how hard it is to keep him there. You can go without a single thought of him for five whole Fridays then feel the near virgin rush when he's back beside you in your sheets. Panic. Race to call up the day he fell asleep on your shoulder in a cab. If you let him out of your thoughts, what if you can't get him back?

That was a great day in the back of that cab. One of your favorites. You should really save that one for emergencies, but you have other favorites you can call up when you need them. As many as...four. Five Fridays.

Get dressed to meet your friends but don't enjoy yourself too much tonight. You've been enjoying your friends a little more since he's been gone. But that'll go away five Fridays from now sure.

Happy A While On Friday Day!

Sunday, December 28, 2003

Before You Fling Your Shit Around The Room Make Sure To Turn Off The Ceiling Fan This Time Please Day!

You ask, "But how will my shit coat every nook and cranny of the room? How will it slap upon everyone who answered my invitation to come on up and watch the shit fly? Dear God, how will this place feel in the morning if it doesn't stink to high heaven of this giant wad of shit I'm about to send soaring into the air?!"

You're right, I was wrong. Lemme get my poncho I guess then.

Happy Before You Fling Your Shit Around The Room Make Sure To Turn Off The Ceiling Fan This Time Please Day!

Saturday, December 27, 2003

You're Gonna Go And Get Your Heart Broke Day!

Note: Today's Personal Regression Assignment is simply a rewording of the same Personal Regression Assignment that has been issued about two hundred times over the year and a half or so since Girls Are Pretty came into existence (albeit with slightly different plotting. Sometimes it's about a boy digging a girl. Other times, it's about gays). However, it is nonetheless as valid and urgent an assignment as Stand Up And Swirl Your Turd Around In The Toilet Bowl With Your Pee Stream Day or whatever the hell yesterday's was. This is because you keep on having to go out and get your heart broke again and again and a motherfucking gain. You never learn. You never will learn. You find the rush of pain and hysteria following the loss or denial of love far more interesting than the love itself. Don't get fined or banned from a bar.

Today, what you're gonna do is you're gonna go on and head out to where Mr. Prettyface is kissing someone special and new and you're gonna go up to the two of them and you're gonna say to him, "Can I talk to you for a second?"

He's gonna roll his eyes and apologize to Special 'n New and you're gonna realize that this isn't gonna work out at all the way you imagined it would in your head. You can do one of the following:

1. When he joins you by the Megatouch machine, ask him if he's dead set on digging into Special n' New or if he wants to come on back to the sweet-sweet you have waiting for him in the fridge. He'll say no. You'll walk home over a bridge.

2. When he joins you by the Megatouch machine, don't ask him anything. Tell him you're gonna tell him something and then you're gonna walk away. Tell him that you don't want him to say anything after you say what you have to say and you walk away. Then tell him that you still love him and you don't think you're gonna ever stop and that being without him is making you double over with severe stomach pain about 1000 times a day. Then walk away imagining that he could give a flying fuck. You'll walk home over a bridge.

Happy You're Gonna Go And Get Your Heart Broke Day!

Friday, December 26, 2003

Cats Curl Up Together To Keep Warm And To Love Day!

They don't need you. You can feel free to watch them cuddle their way through their nap, but don't try to get involved. There's is a love that will last as long as your couch is luxurious. Sit in the rocking chair and finish your Cutty Sark. The love between your cats is honest and completely of the moment. Your cats don't close up their hearts the way you do. Your cats aren't you. They're thankful for this fact.

When your bottle is empty, pee and go for a walk. Let the love between your cats go untainted by your presence.

Happy Cats Curl Up Together To Keep Warm And To Love Day!

Thursday, December 25, 2003

Where Handguns Come From Day!

You were born before your Dad went to Viet Nam. You were born before he lost his legs and developed an addiction to opiates. And you were born before your Mom snuck you into your Grandma's back yard in the middle of the night, told you to sit at your Grandma's picnic table, then disappeared forever.

You sometimes see your Dad. He works as a Wal-Mart Greeter three towns over. Occasionally you have to head over to that Wal-Mart when you need a new drill bit for that weird drill your kids got you for your birthday years back. You don't know where they got that drill because you haven't seen it in any other stores, and only that Wal-Mart sells bits that'll fit it (though they don't sell the drill). When your Dad greets you from his chair, you're just another customer. He says welcome to Wal-Mart and you say thanks.

The first time he greeted you, you stopped in your tracks and stared at him. He had said "Welcome to Wal-Mart." You looked him up and down. He had prosthetic legs that looked like they were just for show, not like they could walk him around. You rested your eyes on his and tried to hold onto the shock you felt so as to not let on to any pity. Your Dad said again, "Welcome."

You waited for an acknowledgement. He gave you one. He nodded and let his eyelids fall just a bit. That's more than the other customers get, you decided. You nodded back and went about your shopping.

You never missed your Dad. He might've been a better father to you than your Grandma and Grandpa maybe. Who knows. They weren't that great. They kept a handgun in the linen closet, top shelf. You fired it once when you were fourteen. You went out into the yard and shot the garage window into nothing. One gunshot, no more window, then no nothing. No neighbors came looking. No one called the police. Just you holding a hot handgun in a throbbing teen's hand. After a half hour of standing in the yard looking from the window to the pistol in your hand, you went to the linen closet, replaced the bullet you shot, and put the gun back at the bottom of the box full of gift bows and ribbon.

Your Dad probably would've kept a handgun in the house too, if he could've afforded one. Your Dad seems kind of messed up in the head though, a little retarded. It was probably better you were raised by your Grandparents.

Happy Where Handguns Come From Day!

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

Engaged Day!

He thinks he knows what's best for you. Lately he's become convinced that what's best for you is him.

"Oh my God that's so great!"

They check the ring. They hug you to their shoulders, your friends. You haven't even glanced at him. You don't have to. He's slumped into the easy chair, a whiskey in his left hand, and just the most smug and condescending smirk on his lips.

"Congratulations. Hey everybody, we lost another one!"

You tell them about the walk on the jetty. How he knelt down onto a low bed of rocks and the crashing waves made it so you couldn't even hear him propose. How you scraped your knee on the way back. You tell them quietly. If he hears this story, he will offer one of his miserable, joyless, one-beat chuckles and it might make you put a plastic fork through his eye.

"Have you set a date?"

You're hoping for June a year and a half from now and you don't expect it to be in the city. 'But you'll all be invited,' you say it loud enough to get him to his feet. He goes to his girlfriend and puts his right hand in her left. Only then can you stand to give him your eyes. Only when he has his dimwit by his side.

He's looking at you. He's got her hand in his hand and he's looking at you. I think if you avoided him for the entire night he'd keep this expression trained on your face, waiting for you to catch it. It's so awful you go to him. He lets go of her hand and the two of you meet in the kitchen.


So congratulations.

Shut up.

No I--

Can't you pretend that I'm dead or something?

We just started trying to pretend you're engaged. One thing at a time.


How could you?

Easy. He's not you. He's wonderful.

I'm going to have to think about how to deal with this. I might not be civil.

A million responses flood your head, but none of them are words. You choose the 34,327th. You punch him in the belly. When he doubles over, you take his whiskey glass from the counter and smash it over his head. The shards rip your hands open, but it doesn't hurt yet. So you reach low and slap your palms with their jagged slivers into his face. You grip his cheeks in your palms and you drag them over his skin. You can feel the tug when the slivers catch on his face and tear open the skin. People begin to pull on you from behind, so you push him to the corner of the kitchen, into the cat dish, and you kick him in the face, aiming for the throat, with your high heeled shoes. You get in four good kicks before you're dragged away.

Happy Engaged Day!

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

This Guy You Were In Love With. Through Some Binoculars Day!

You hit the road five years ago and you completely cut yourself off from everyone who loves you and everyone you've ever loved. Necessary, you thought, in order to successfully locate and exact vengeance upon your father's assassin.

But you still think you see people you used to know. You're constantly doing double-takes, primarily at tourist attractions where people hold still long enough for you to look twice and declare the match a false positive. Is it a need you have, a longing for the life you left behind that you think you see it in the face of every midwesterner with a fanny pack?

Well, it wasn't a longing that put Patrick there on the lip of the Grand Canyon today. The funny thing was, when you saw his shape, you thought it could be Leonard, your old supervisor at Strauss and Strauss. So you borrowed the binoculars of the little boy to your left and there he was. The boy who once ate a lot of pills to get you back (it worked). The boy who you proposed to, and who accepted your proposal (you never told anyone you were engaged). The boy who stole away your appetite for a year and a half after he left. While your love for Patrick might have been the most groundless and immature love you've ever felt, never will you feel so consumed by a trick of the heart again. The both of you are lucky to be alive.

And Patrick is lucky to be holding a little girl in a baby pack on his belly. And Patrick is lucky to be holding the hand of a little boy standing to his right. And Patrick is lucky to be taking a soda from the hand of a woman you've never seen before, a woman holding a cooler and handing out sandwiches to her husband and children.

And you're lucky to be looking through a pair of borrowed binoculars.

Happy This Guy You Were In Love With. Through Some Binoculars Day!

Monday, December 22, 2003

The Putrid Stench Of Happiness Day!

It's all over your body and all over your coat and people can't even smell the thousand cigarettes you smoked today because you smell so motherfucking happy. There's gonna be some action taken. Your friends are going to kill you. They're going to murder you tonight. At the bar. In the men's room. Wire hanger around your throat while you pee. Make sure you show up and get killed because you smell horrible, Happy McJoyfulgrin.

Happy The Putrid Stench Of Happiness Day!

Sunday, December 21, 2003

Two People's Worth O' Skin Only Fifty Cents Day!

For today only, you can get all the skin on those two in that bed over there for only fifty cents. Only fifty cents for all the skin contained in that embrace. For ten cents extra, we'll stun them still, right there in that embrace, and we'll strip the skin from the two of them while they still have their arms round each other, her with her left middle finger midway through an absentminded stroke across the clifftop of his right hip. Only fifty cents. Nipples included and belly buttons tied like the day they were born. Only fifty cents. Looka that mole. Only fifty cents.

(Smiles of eternal contentedness will unfortunately lose some degree of radiance upon removal from the skull, due to the draining of all the lovin lovin blood)

Happy Two People's Worth O' Skin Only Fifty Cents Day!

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Still Life With Cocksucker Day!

It'll finish the triptych. A bowl of apples. A rocking chair with a hat and coat draped over the back. And that cocksucker Brian. In his stupid ironic golf sweater and that fake "I'm pensive" look on his stupid fucking face fucking cocksucker. Paint him really skinny and AIDSed out.

Happy Still Life With Cocksucker Day!

Friday, December 19, 2003

Boxing Match Day!

Today, you're going to fight your ex-wife's new husband in a boxing match for charity. The proceeds will benefit deaf children. Your daughter is deaf, you're in love with someone new, and you really like your ex-wife's new husband. You're very happy for them both.

Keep it clean.

Happy Boxing Match Day!

Thursday, December 18, 2003

You Kissed His Nose Day!

He saw you. He asked you for your itinerary. You couldn't go home with him. He silently vowed to be dead by dawn. You kissed his nose and promised tomorrow. He lives still.

Happy You Kissed His Nose Day!

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Tom Misses Ruth Day!

He wrote it down inside a wobbly circle on the bathroom stall. "Tom Misses Ruth - Forever And Always". He wrote it on the bathroom stall inside the staff men's room at the restaurant where he waiters.

A lotta staff come and go through Chez Tagritte. But Tom had been there ever since college ended 18 months ago. The only other waiter who had been at the restaurant nearly as long was Mark, who is presently sitting on the toilet reading Tom's sharpied lament and shaking his head.

"Man, let her go," Mark thinks.

Mark gets up from the toilet, flushes, stuffs his shirt back into his pants and ties his apron around his waist, and begins his march onto the floor to find Tom and tell him just that, tell Tom to forget all about his Big Sister.

Mark's stride is broken by a camera crew that stops him for a few questions.

"Tom hadn't seen her in about three years. And back in November he got a letter from one of the program administrators that Ruth had taken her life. Where is this gonna air?"

"Tom feels like he owes her a lot. When he was signed up for Big Sisters, he was apparently in a pretty bad place, thinking of suicide himself. I don't know though, I guess Ruth took him to the zoo and shit and made him feel better."

"I just think he should forget about her. She got something out of the relationship too. Tom where you going?"

Mark spies Tom behind the camera crew walking to the restaurant exit. Tom stops and gives Mark a calm smile.

"I know what to do," says Tom. "I have to paint a mural in her honor on a hot air balloon and sail the balloon around the world."

Tom leaves the restaurant. Mark shakes his head and looks into the camera. "See what I mean?"

Happy Tom Misses Ruth Day!

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Used Cars Day!

Used cars all contain the ghosts of their former owners. Randy didn't know that, which is why he kept bringing his 93 Accord back into the shop.

"Every day at 4:35 the radio dial spins on it's own catching just a word or two from various stations until it forms the same barely coherent sentence. 'Don't. Kiss. Him. On. The. Mouth.'"

The mechanic would shrug. "I can rewire it for you again. It'll cost you 250, like usual. But if you'd just believe..."

"In ghost stories? C'mon Ramon. Just do what you do best and save the hocus pocus for your dinner theater act."

So Ramon the mechanic would rewire the Honda, as asked. And later that night when the curtain rose on The Amazing Ramon, Mentalist Extraordinaire, he would tell the story of the man who wouldn't believe. The man who returns again and again to pay money to have the unexplainable swept under the carpet for a few hundred dollars at a time.

"This man wants a world of equations and fair transactions," the Amazing Ramon would say. "No matter how obvious it is that the former owner of his Honda was in love with a prostitute and had become obsessed with her, followed her on her tricks, waiting to see how she treated her other Johns, whether she gave them the same tenderness, whether she kissed them on the mouth. And he eventually killed himself behind the wheel of his vehicle. No matter how obvious it may be, this man wants no part of it. He wants to pay someone money and have everything be the way it should be."

The Amazing Ramon would then ready his table for the first reading. "That's the way it's supposed to work isn't it?" Ramon would then send an intense gaze out into the crowd. "Well?" he'd ask. "Isn't it?"

Then the best show in the world would begin.

Happy Used Cars Day!

Monday, December 15, 2003

The Widow's Song Day!

Chopping up some carrots for her rabbit stew, the widow decides it's time she started being evil.

"I've been without a husband for like ten months now," she thinks. "Who am I being good for? The fern? Fuck this."

The widow retires to the bath to masturbate and think about how her evil should manifest.

"I could sell dope. I could lock kids in my basement until they starve to death. Let's see..." She plays with her sponges a bit before it finally hits her. "Of course!" she splashes. She climbs out of the tub and towels off, taking a moment to admire her naked body in the mirror and lament that there's no husband around to take a crack at something so finefine. "Goddamn waste."

The widow drives to the shopping center where she buys a Casio keyboard for $429. On her way back to her car, she spots a flyer that reads, "Learn to play a keyboard or something." She rips off the phone number and drives home and calls and makes an appointment for keyboard lessons and learns to play the keyboard in six months.

When the widow has learned to play the keyboard, she unleashes her evil upon the world via the following original rock and roll song:

Death's Dark Heart
by The Widow

Creeping 'cross the land
To take
Another unlucky man
Drizzling from the sky
To wash
Away another life

You thought you hurt me
Nothing can hurt me anymore
Nothing can make me weep
Death's dark heart
Death's dark heart
Death's dark heart (yeah)
Death's dark heart

Streets all painted white
Goes another light
Icing up the ground
The Dutchess
Lost without a sound

You thought you hurt me
Nothing can hurt me anymore
Nothing can make me weep
Death's dark heart
Death's dark heart
Death's dark heart (no)
Death's dark heart

Happy The Widow's Song Day!

Sunday, December 14, 2003

Choppers Day!

You slept under a bramble to keep out of the lights of the choppers. He's still asleep, but you're wide awake, listening to the marshalls' shouts and twig snaps getting louder, getting closer. You don't know these woods. Getting out would take some pathfinding. And you'd probably end up stumbling right into their hands.

He's in your arms. Four months ago he promised you that he would never let either one of you be taken to jail. He made the promise at your demand. You owe him the same duty. Kiss his forehead and slit his throat before he wakes up. Then cut into your own. This is how love plays out in a life of crime.

Happy Choppers Day!

Saturday, December 13, 2003

Throw A Knife At A Tree Day!

Where do you have to be? Where? Are you a surgeon? Do you help poor kids or something? Meals on wheels or shit?

Face it, you are useless and no one needs you. So go down to the park or the elementary school front lawn and practice some knife throws for three or four hours until it's time to get loaded and fight.

You should hold the knife by the blade, in between your index finger and thumb. And you should flip it through the air at a tree. The best way to throw it is so that it sticks in the tree. When it sticks in the tree, there is nothing more satisfying in all the world. Way better than winning prizes. If it bounces off the tree and clatters to the ground you'll wanna kill yourself it'll suck so bad. So make it stick in the tree.

If you throw for like three or four hours, that's about 478 individual throws. At least 25% of the time, the knife will bounce off of the tree and clatter to the ground. Which means, today, you're going to want to kill yourself at least a hundred and nineteen times. Have fun throwing a knife at a tree and wanting to kill yourself a hundred and nineteen times, fuckdick.

Happy Throw A Knife At A Tree Day!

Friday, December 12, 2003

Couple Eyes, Couple Lifetimes Or So Day!

Just a couple eyes. Two of em. Not gonna ever let you go or nothin'.

Couple eyes that, like, that are there right in front of you. Like, even when you're alone and shit. Even when there's a couple other eyes in the way and shit. Couple eyes that, like, that you made cry over and over and over and over and

Couple eyes that could probably talk if they ever thought you were worth talkin to. Couple eyes that could make you do anything they ever wanted you to do. Couple eyes that probably got arms, pretty little arms, stronger than yours, keep you still, keep you where they want you to be.

Couple eyes that got a lotta money, you can tell. More than they'd ever need. Really really rich millionaire eyes that don't need to throw it all around cause they got class. It's earned money, hard-earned, but it ain't new money. Class.

Couple eyes, sorta blue, swimming in trim too, probably. Eyes that get more pussy than a fuckin' no-kill shelter, pretty eyes. Couple eyes just one look make you harder than a goddamn quarry, pretty eyes. Couple. Two of em.

Couple eyes got a car leave the door unlocked all night long nobody fuck with it. Couple eyes got a family big one cousins nephews and sons take care of em all die for em when it's time for it. Couple eyes got friends in high places get shit done get your fiance citizenship they think she worth it.

Couple eyes blink once make you die, right there. Make you sing, make you say everything you want em to hear, right then and there. Couple eyes the prettiest thing you ever gonna see, forever, never anything else better. That's it for a couple lifetimes or so probably I'm bettin.

Happy Couple Eyes, Couple Lifetimes Or So Day!

Thursday, December 11, 2003

Candlelit Breakfast Day!

Strange men you bring home at 3 AM never want to wake up at 6 AM like you do. You stopped asking when you were 25.

You slip out from underneath whatever limb he left on top of you when he passed out. You put on some underwear and a shirt. You go to the kitchen and you start coffee.

Your thick white bowl always has yesterday's oatmeal stuccoed to the sides. It's cold now in the kitchen in the morning and it takes hot water and a butter knife to get it good as yesterday. You pour in today's oatmeal, close the door on the microwave, push a button. The coffee is done and your cigarette is lit and in your fingertips.

You must have sleepwalked for a bit because the next thing you remember you're sitting at your table, the cigarette in your hand in the air by your head, your face taking in the steam over the full black of the coffee cup. The Oatmeal is hot in front of you. You need to do something to make sure you're awake. You get up and get a spoon.

A few spoons of Oatmeal. A cup and a half of coffee. In the middle of your second cigarette, he wanders in. This happens sometimes.


You smile the way you smiled at 3 AM and you wave your cigarette to the coffee maker. He finds his own cup, finds his own spoon, looks for milk but finds none, the sugar is already out. He stirs, sips, sits. Across from you.

"Mm." He's not going to say a whole lot. Just some sighs and murbles and slurps.

"How you feeling?" Asked the way one asks after the recently bereaved. You nod. You smile the way you smile at 6 AM.

You haven't taken any more spoons of oatmeal and you don't plan to. He's making his way to the white of his coffee cup. There's nothing to say. No newspaper to read. No cat to watch do stuff. But there's half a candle on a candlestick holder sitting right between the two of you. You pick up your cigarette lighter and you light the wick.

Of course he's confused. You smile the way you smile when you want to allow something you did to be funny. He laughs one short hmph.

"Romantic," he says. You smile the way you never do.

He gets up with lots of grunts and goes into the bathroom. You sip your coffee. He flushes and shuffles into the bedroom. You put your finger to the surface of your oatmeal. He returns to the kitchen dressed in his clothes and overcoat and tells you he has work to go and get to. You get up.

You walk him to the door. Someone says "again." You kiss him and shut the door behind him and listen against the door to his footsteps on the stairs. Then you go back to the kitchen to sit and watch a candle burn at 6:23 AM.

Happy Candlelit Breakfast Day!

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

The Lady In The Lake Day!

You and The Lady In The Lake have been dancing around each other since the summertime. Any time she popped up from the surface of the water to bestow upon you a blessed assault rifle or some gum, you'd make small talk to stall for time as you racked your brain for someplace fun to invite her. Sometimes you'd make excuses to yourself as to why the timing was inconvenient (I have to work in the morning, I'm all dirty from warfare, It's chilly out and she's always real wet with lake-water so if we embrace I might catch cold). And other times you'd invite the Lady In The Lake to a friend's gallery opening or The Track, and she'd decline because she had prior commitments. But she always made it pretty clear that had she not had an undersea engagement, she would very much enjoy your company.

Well today you have to go and return some blessed "The First Season Of 24" DVDs she bestowed upon you last Thursday. Why not ask The Lady In The Lake to come out with you and see Big Fish. Tell her, "It's supposed to kind of blow. But you know, it's Tim Burton." If she says yes, tell her she's welcome to come back to your place first and towel off if she'd like. That way, you and the Lady In The Lake might be able to get the mm mm out of the way and you'll enjoy your film viewing all that much more.

Happy The Lady In The Lake Day!

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Captain Barometric Pressure Day!

Today Captain Barometric Pressure is going to save someone who is about to walk into an open manhole. He'll do this by wrapping his rubbery right arm around the trunk of a Redwood Tree, and he'll reach his left arm out across light years of space to grab onto the perimeter of a particularly obstinate galaxy. This will force the world to stop spinning and effectively stop time.

Captain Barometric Pressure will then stretch his right leg the 75 feet down the avenue to where Ronald Deveer is walking towards an open manhole while reading the latest issue of Lucky. Captain Barometric Pressure will place his ankle directly in the path of Mr. Deveer, and then he will let go of the galaxy and allow the world to spin again, starting it up
with a little whirr like he'd just pulled his thumb off the record on a spinning turntable.

As soon as time resumes, Ronald Deveer will continue in his walk and immediately trip over Captain Barometric Pressure's ankle, landing Deveer with his eyes peering down into the manhole that was about to lay claim to his life.

Deveer will look up and see Captain Barometric Pressure hovering over him, his hands in fists on his hips, his leg reclaiming its shape.

Deveer will say, "Wow, thanks Captain Barometric Pressure."

Captain Barometric Pressure will say, "47% chance of rain. Watch yourself kid."

And then, Captain Barometric Pressure will leave!

Happy Captain Barometric Pressure Day!

Monday, December 08, 2003

Careful With Those Firecrackers Day!

John never leaves the house without a dozen firecrackers wrapped up in a ziplock bag and stuffed inside his jacket pocket. "Just in case," he'll say when you ask.

John's a Catholic. He was brought up in the religion rather lackadaisically. But lately he's been making an effort to embrace it. "I have this entire belief system right at my fingertips," he'll say. "I'd be an idiot to never try it out and see if it's the right road for me."

If you don't blow your fingertips off with those firecrackers you keep in your pocket, you'll say. You'll high five Amrit and laugh. John won't laugh. He'll just play with the bacon on his plate with a fork.

"You know who loses fingers to recreational explosives?" John, suddenly quite grave, will ask you and Amrit. "Little kids and drunk Dads, that's who. I have respect for these firecrackers. When I finally light them, there won't be the slightest hint of danger. Only perfection."

When are you gonna light them? you'll ask John.

He'll say the words one at a time, like he's holding them up in front of your eyes for you to take a good hard look. "When. I. Have. No. Choice."

He'll stare at you. Then, "When I find myself in a moment that demands such a punctuation."

Just then, John will get up from the table to go and meet with a Deacon.

Happy Careful With Those Firecrackers Day!

Sunday, December 07, 2003

A Magnificent Head On Your Shoulder Day!

She's asleep. Her head's on your shoulder. Probably gonna stay there till the end of the busride. She's as unconscious as a baby, contented as a baby, as unaware of herself as a baby. Call her "Baby" from now on.

As in, "C'Mon Baby, we're gonna be late for dinner." Or, "Aw Baby."

Lean your nose away from your book about a writer having trouble writing a book to kiss her scalp and breathe in the smell of her skull for ten minutes. Her skull contains her brain, and her brain is what reminds her that she's in love with you. You owe her brain big time, so give it some kisses. About ten minutes worth is adequate tribute. Then go back to reading your book about a writer having trouble writing a book.

Happy A Magnificent Head On Your Shouilder Day!

Saturday, December 06, 2003

96 Hours Alone Day!

Tonight at ten, you'll have done it. Four days without coming in contact with another living thing. You smell a little worse for the wear, sure, but it's been worth it. Because around 3 PM yesterday, you took your old scale and discovered that you weigh the exact same weight as your dictionary, all of your pants, a carton of cigarettes minus one pack, your cell phone and charger, your wallet, a plush toy giraffe, an ibook, 11 bricks, a silver framed photograph of your nephew, your dog, and seven five pound bags of sugar all piled high. The pile is four inches shorter than you, not including the inch and a half height of the scale.

Congratulations. Now get on a train and go to your brother's funeral.

Happy 96 Hours Alone Day!

Friday, December 05, 2003

Three Naked Dolls, One Melted With A Lighter Day!

You're not sure what you can say about it. It's not exactly offensive. Not necessarily sexual. But it is really creepy for a boss to create a desk display comprised of three naked Barbie knockoff dolls, one of them with her left side apparently having been melted with a lighter, as it is now covered in black and beige ripples where the dripping plastic dried.

They're not in any sort of sexual position. Just standing side-by-side on the edge of the desk, the first thing you see when you come into his office. And their arms are up in the air and they're kind of kicking their legs out. It just looks like they're walking someplace, nude (and severely burned), and they just saw a friend they're really excited to see. They're shouting hello.

When you went in this morning, your boss alerted you to the new addition to the dolls. It was a little toy guitar leaning against one of them. He said, "See? They're a band."

Happy Three Naked Dolls, One Melted With A Lighter Day!

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Cool As Meg Day!

You have seven hundred dollars in cash rolled up in your pocket and some red lipstick on your lips. You've got this guy in this building that can only be reached after three AM and you're gonna reach him. You once fired a gun at a tree, once pointed a gun at a face, and once went out and bought a gun, but you never hurt nobody. You have a secret that sometimes keeps you awake for a week. You look best in leather or corduroy, nothing in between. And you drink all the time.

Meg can say all this about herself. But Meg can also say that she doesn't have bone marrow cancer. So you'll never be as cool as Meg, Cancer Bones.

Happy Cool As Meg Day!

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Go To Court Day!

Today, you should stand trial. You will have a lawyer, as will your accuser. The judge will for the most part appear to side with the plaintiff. At least until a surprise witness takes the stand.

The surprise witness will be an ex who tried to kill you just a week prior. She is a woman who demanded from behind the steel of a gun that you either summon whatever is necessary to love her, or meet your maker. Since you were already facing the trial of your life, you'd considered a bullet to your brow a sweet relief. You asked her to pull the trigger, but she couldn't go through with it. Instead, she dropped the gun at your feet and walked downstairs to sleep on your couch. She was gone when you woke up the following morning. Considering all of this, it will be quite a shock when she takes the stand and perjures herself to safe your skin.

Following her testimony, many will murmur from their seats. Some will jump to their feet and shout at the judge. The judge will say overruled and order. You and the surprise witness will stare into each other's eyes from across the room, the same very vague smirk on both your faces. Today will be the last time you see her for six years. She will be the last person to surprise you.

Happy Go To Court Day!

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

You Are Too In Love To Land This Plane Day!

Don't sweat it. Everyone appreciates you stepping up to the plate, what with the entire crew having been murdered by the O'Hare Strangler and all (HE'S STILL ON THE PLANE SOMEWHERE!). But seriously, go back to your seat so you can sigh over her perfume on your sweater without having to pull on a throttle.

Seriously, good effort. But no one ever crash landed in the middle of the field while wearing a big silly grin. And pointing to all the clouds and saying things like, "That one looks like Sharon, but not as cute" and "That one looks like Sharon, but Sharon's eyes are prettier" and "There, that one looks just like Sharon, but Sharon's hair is brown, not white," well that pretty much just freaked the flight attendants way the fuck out. Oh and by the way, ground control responded. They couldn't get Sharon on the phone for you so that you could tell her how lucky you were to enjoy the love of such a wonderful woman for the brief time you shared. And no, they will not keep trying.

Anyway, we understand that you flew fighters in Enduring Freedom and all, but apparently there's a guy in coach who used to drive a forklift at UPS. We all took a vote and we're gonna go with him. His head's not up in the clouds, excuse the pun.

Happy You Are Too In Love To Land This Plane Day!

Monday, December 01, 2003

Beer And Some Songs Day!

Orange light on orange hair on orange beer. Your orange hand is in his orange hand. You're on a bench and some songs are pretty perfect considering the color of everything. Everything is warmer than it is outside.


He lets go of your orange hand and puts his arm around your shoulders and rubs some heat into your bicep and you realize he thinks you just gave him an order. You don't retract it. A lot of songs are about people who are lost or who are looking for someone they lost but some songs are about a perfect little moment.

"A memory."

He smiles at you, awaiting your story. You sip your beer to tell him you don't have one. An hour in bed that must have lasted a lifetime. A glance stolen at a dinner that must have caught an entire life's tale. A kiss on a cheek because the lips must have been forbidden. They write songs about memories that don't fit into memories.

"Big fat and shapeless spilling out all over everything and they try all they can to pull it all back into tupperware containers but it just keeps dripping over the edge before they can get the lid to snap shut so they have no choice but to stuff it into something that has no corners or bottom or top like a song."

Now he's just staring at you. Kiss him.

Happy Beer And Some Songs Day!

Sunday, November 30, 2003

Lisa Digs Girls Day!

14 year old field hockey star Lisa Maldonado does not reserve her enthusiasm only for autumn sport.

"I love women," says Maldonado while adjusting a shin guard in the Grover Cleveland High School girls' locker room. This Decatur, IL freshman was handed a Varsity letter the first day of summer tryouts, six weeks before she would even set foot in her first high school classroom. "The way they walk, the way they laugh. Why tell a joke if there isn't a woman within earshot to laugh at it."

Maldonado first demonstrated her athletic starpower when she was a seven year old halfback in her local community Y girl's soccer league. Her former soccer coach, Nancy Walden, was stunned by her ability to weave and pivot through the field. "Give this chick a ball and tell her to cross Times Square on a sunny Saturday afternoon and she'll make it without so much as brushing a stranger's shirtcuff. She's a motherfucking ghost."

Maldonado bristles at such talk. "Ghost? This game is a collaboration. A matching and pairing of wits and physical prowess amongst some of the most beautiful and charming young women you'll ever meet. I don't just float past them. With every turn and swipe and pivot, I relish their essences. I taste their persons."

But it wouldn't be until someone gave her a stick that destiny would shine in neon lights. In middle school, the only thing keeping Maldonado from going to Interscholastic Field Hockey Nationals was her school's decision to waive consideration of their Field Hockey program for national participation. "We didn't have the money to go for Field Hockey," said former principal Terry Holmes, whose dismissal followed a local newspaper's revelation that the town's star athlete was being held back from national recognition due to lack of foresight on the part of school administrators.

"We could only pay dues for three sports programs to be considered for Nationals," Holmes was quoted in that article. "Middle school field hockey just never produced any standouts before."

Maldonado's parents moved two towns over in order for their daughter to attend Grover Cleveland, a high school with a long tradition of propelling their athletes beyond local competition. "I feel very lucky to be here at Grover Cleveland," says Maldonado. "Everyone here has been so supportive. And my teammates are a delight. When they pass the ball my way, God, it's like a first kiss every single time."

She adds, "I met a girl the other night, a goaltender for West Catholic. I scored three points on her and we went and got tacos after the game. I can't get her out of my head. Keep your fingers crossed."

Maldonado scoffs at the question of whether her boundless affection for girls who share the field with her might come between her and a win. "Please," she says. "The better I play, the more I demonstrate my respect for my opponents and teammates. If I ever held back, I wouldn't be able to look these girls in the eye. And to not be able to look into those beautiful brown, blue, green and hazel eyes day after day, I'd open up my throat before succumbing to such a fate."

She adds, "That girl I had the tacos with, her name's Lisa too. Is that awesome?"

While Grover Cleveland is coming into the end of the season with a 9 and 6 record, Maldonado has already surpassed league records for scoring. By spring, she'll know whether she'll be playing in the National tournement next fall. Though most in the know consider her a guaranteed pick.

"We'll see," Maldonado shrugs. "I just wanna keep playing. I wanna run down that field, rushing into the thicket of beautiful exposed knee and firey autumn cheekbone until it ingests me and digests me and sleeps."

Happy Lisa Digs Girls Day!

Saturday, November 29, 2003

Girl On Horseback Day!

"Can't we talk about this another time?" she said.

"You say that every time I bring it up," you said. "Then you jump on your horse and go riding for hours and hours and then you come back and say you've strained your knee again and you need to sit in the bath."

You didn't ask her where she goes riding to. You're not ready. Just then, Jolson kicked up some mud.

"Please, honey," she said. "I can't just hop into the saddle and then keep him standing still like this while we dissect our relationship. He'll never be ready for the horse show."

"Interesting word choice," you said. "No one ever dissects what isn't already dead." That was good. It was quick and she was caught off guard. Nice. "Is that what we are? Just a dead frog floating in some smelly formaldehyde waiting to be torn apart by some high school biology students?" All right, that was too much.

"I have to ride. What is it? What do you want to know?"

You looked into her eyes, then into Jolson's. There was much more comfort in Jolson's.

"Is it over?" you asked Jolson.

"I don't know. We're just..." said the girl on horseback, just before Jolson took her off into the field's horizon. You were watching her foot and you didn't see it kick. That horse ran off on its own free will. That horse, it knows something.

Go out to the stables tonight.

Happy Girl On Horseback Day!

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

It's the Girls Are Pretty "Hitchin' To Get Hitched" Weekend!

Every November, Prettygirl likes to take to the open road and thumb her way into a brand new marriage. Unlock the passenger door fellas, cause something naughty yet servile this way comes.

Because this is gonna take a few days, the next few personal regression assignments are going up now. Scroll down to read today's. And wait until tomorrow to read tomorrow's. As always, if you read ahead, you'll get blah blah herpes blah...

Friday, November 28, 2003

Wash Your Heart Day!

Soap it up and wring it dry. Get rid of every feeling you've ever had, from love to itchy. When you're done you'll be able to look at someone attractive and think, "I have no emotional precedent to believe that you might tear me into pieces and leave me to spend the next few years wriggling back together like the liquid metal terminator in T2. Come over my house."

Happy Wash Your Heart Day!

Thursday, November 27, 2003

Commit Crimes Day!

Start with arson. That's where you set something that's not yours on fire. Yes, that includes the fucking bakery.

Happy Commit Crimes Day!

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Fall Asleep, Naked, In Someone's Arms, Never Wake Up Day!

The "never wake up" part of this one can be tricky, so you should eat lots of pills before you lay down. Either that or really hit the treadmill like a fucking bull so you'll be tired enough to sleep for all eternity. Also, it is recommended that the person in whose arms you fall asleep is bitchin', and that you've decided that this person is the only person that you ever want to be with, to hold you, to breathe with you for the rest of your life.

Happy Fall Asleep, Naked, In Someone's Arms, Never Wake Up Day!

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

In Your Beautiful Car Day!

He's so happy. He's got his knees bent nice and his hands are folded in his lap. He put on the CD he brought for the ride tonight. He's by your side. He's in love with you and your beautiful car.

It's so cold outside. It's just cold enough inside. The heat turned on so low it keeps the cheeks red. He's looking forward to the cigarette he's going to have when you pull over for coffee. And he puts the back of your right hand to his lips more often than you get green lights.

This wasn't in the cards for tonight. You drove to his house to watch "Catch Me If You Can." Then Jennifer called his house and cried to him for a while. Jennifer is your friend but he's the sort of boy girls are wont to cry to. She asked for you and you learned that you had to go to her. A 100 minute drive and he immediately offered to accompany you. Right after he finds that CD in the stack.

You can hear a hum. Could be the engine or the whirr of the CD. Can a love make noise? It's coming from him. It's either coming out of his heart or his belly. You look at him, you look at the trees and houses whizzing by. The lights are streaks of yellow and green and the sky's painted too purple, like a kid's room. You try to open up to it all, try to feel what he's feeling. You've almost got it, you think, but your mouth just can't smile like that.

Don't blame yourself. It's not his car, Jennifer's not his friend, and he doesn't have to keep his eyes on the road.

Happy In Your Beautiful Car Day!

Monday, November 24, 2003

Your Cabin's All Set Day!

Your husband spent the weekend boarding up the windows and locking everything down for the winter. It will be ready to sell once the weather clears, and there probably won't be anyone living in it until the summer after next. You think that's appropriate.

You didn't fall in love there. It was home to your love. There were no questions inside that cabin. It is the place where one of your sons was conceived. It contains the chair where you slept inside your husband's lap for a thousand hours over the course of nine summers. The cabin didn't see your love blossom, it saw your love celebrated.

A winter, a spring, a summer, a fall, a winter, a spring. So glad you are that it can't be shown during the colder months. That there is absolutely no chance of someone moving in there for over a year. Let it freeze solid until it cracks into two halves that fall to their sides. Let it stand empty and cold, a dead shadow in the snow. Let teens on a ski weekend break in and fuck on your beds and piss on your floors. But don't let anyone else try and love inside that wood. At least not for five or six seasons. That should be enough time. Almost maybe just enough.

Happy Your Cabin's All Set Day!

Sunday, November 23, 2003

Into Darkness, Hold His Hand Day!

When you and your boyfriend go down into your parents' basement to find the Twister mat, use the opportunity to squeeze his hand and jump into his arms at the softest of disturbance in the junk around the floor. Should a killer or a phantom jump out at the two of you, hide behind him. Then when your boyfriend kills the killer/phantom and you're back upstairs, shiver in your boyfriend's embrace then lift your lips up to him and make out with him like crazy. If your boyfriend gets killed by the killer/phantom, look down at the bloody, pulpy mass that used to be his body and scream in a maelstrom of horror and woe, then look to the killer/phantom and let it be plain in your eyes that you comprehend the palpable erotic charge in the current situation: you being the cowering prey to his/its bloodthirsty hunter.

Happy Into Darkness, Hold His Hand Day!

Saturday, November 22, 2003

The Wasted Boys Day!

The wasted boys are on the couch. They're a little angry. Because all the pussy left. The wasted boys aren't saying anything to each other. They're hungry though, and there's nothing to eat. The wasted boys all blame each other for making the pussy get up and leave before it was even 2 am. There's something good on tv and sometimes the wasted boys laugh at what they're watching. But most of the time, the wasted boys just wish they were somewhere else. Somewhere where all the boys around them aren't quite so wasted. Maybe San Diego, that might be nice. There'd probably be a lot more pussy there, each of the wasted boys thinks to himself.

One of the wasted boys is really sad, but he won't tell the other wasted boys. They'd just make fun of him. So the sad wasted boy is gonna go off and be alone for a while, starting in three days. He's gonna try to shape up.

Happy The Wasted Boys Day!

Friday, November 21, 2003

Not Yet Ripened Peaches Day!

In the morning you will find that the peaches in the refrigerator are not ripened to an ideal degree of deliciousness. You will squeeze each one twice and maybe three times before you tell the toaster, "I guess I can't eat my peaches yet." That's when everything will go black.

You'll say to the toaster, "Looks like someone cut off the electricity. Must be trying to bust into the building." You'll try the phone, but it will be dead. Then you will see a man in black rappel past your window. And he will see you. He will pause just long enough to put his finger to his lips in a gesture of "Shush" before he continues down the side of the building.

You will say to the toaster, "Guess I'd better be quiet for a little while. At least until that guy's gone. Talk to you later toaster." You will go into your room, lay in bed, and listen to the smashing of glass and the screaming.

There shall be gunfire.

Happy Not Yet Ripened Peaches Day!

Thursday, November 20, 2003

The Kissings Day!

Today there will be a rash outbreak of kissings, starting with...

7:32 AM - The Home of Jeffrey and Wilma Craig, Milford, Wisconsin. Mr. Craig will awake to the sound of his morning news radio station. He will blink his eyes a few times to wipe away a dream. He will roll over and kiss his wife Wilma of eleven years. He will go to the bathroom and wash.

9:41 AM- Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School, Wilmington Delaware. Assistant principal Laura Marcus will lead 3rd grade language arts teacher David Willis to the xerox room under the pretense of needing assistance with a toner change. When Willis crouches down to peek into the exposed belly of the copier, Marcus will take his left hand and pull him back to his feet. She will place her closed lips upon his slightly parted lips. It will have been a long time coming.

3:59 PM - La Brea Jiffy Lube, Los Angeles, Ca. Three car lengths away from getting his car serviced, Jacob Reed will take his new kitten out of the cardboard carrier provided to him by the shelter, and he will pet its squirming head with his thumbs, and he will kiss it three times between the ears and once on the spine. Jacob will put the kitten back in its carrier and he will believe that today is the start of a better time.

8:20 PM - Rich People's Attics, a New York City antique shop owned by Johnson Crane. In the back office Johnson Crane will make love to Charles Evans, his boyfriend of eleven months. This will involve many kisses.

11:04 PM - O'Hare Airport, Terminal D. Jetblue flight 86 will arrive at gate 21 B and release the round smiling face of Lisa Cohen. Waiting for her, impatient to find out the decision Lisa said she would make while visiting her parents in Sacramento, will be Tobias Hutch. When Lisa sees Tobias, her smile will expand by thirteen percent. She will walk to him and lift her lips up to be kissed. Tobias will comply. In the kiss, her decision will be plain. Tobias will take her bag and they will walk to short-term parking.

Happy The Kissings Day!

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

You Are Foreign Day!

Ever wish you didn't speak the language indigenous to the place you live and everything around you was frightening and things as small as buying a roll of toilet paper would loom over you as huge obstacles to traverse?

Well today's the day when your wishes are all gonna come true. Because today, you're foreign! And though you have a certain otherworldly charm that's gonna land you lots of tang, the elderly are pissed off that you're even here. Now go take our jobs, wetback!

Happy You Are Foreign Day!

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Inadvertently Steal From A Drug Kingpin Day!

What the hell else is there to do in this one lesbian town? Nothin', that's what!

So when you and your friend decide to rob a stranger in town who looks like he's got some spare cash on his person, make sure that stranger is actually a bagman for a very dangerous Drug Lord (amen) and is in town to exchange several million dollars in unmarked bills for several briefcases full of an exciting new synthetic drug that's better than cocaine but doesn't make people as dead. But you of course can't know that the guy is involved in a drug deal. You can't realize what you've done until you're in the passenger seat of a car and you open up the guy's bag and find millions of dollars. Your friend will pull the car over and you'll figure out what to do by the side of the road.

You'll decide to confront the Drug Lord (have mercy) and you will of course end up killing him and taking over the cartel. Congratulations, and I love you.

Happy Inadvertently Steal From A Drug Kingpin Day!

Monday, November 17, 2003

Pretty Skin And Bones Day!

On your way to work think of the pretty pile of skin and bones you left inside your bed, the pretty unemployed pile of skin and bones whose address you have so you don't have to worry about your stereo being stolen. The pretty pile of skin and bones who's way too giddy before and after sex, which makes you think that (after) she didn't quite get satisifed and (before) she doesn't like you all that much and she's trying to distract herself from that fact by singing some songs and playing some games and putting on a hat and saying, "How do I look in this? Stupid?"

The pile of skin and bones smiled in such a way last night that she can stay in your bed for ten days. If during those ten days she does not smile in such a way again, she's going to have to go back to her apartment and wait for you to call her. Unless during those ten days she does something else equally awesome, perhaps something involving tears.

When you get to work, don't think about the pretty pile of skin and bones anymore. While at work, let the memory of the pile of skin and bones consume your being. Merely thinking about it is not enough to battle the horror. You must hear her giggle with every word spoken, smell her shoulder with every breath you take in. Count the hours until you can return to her and find out whether the pile stayed inide your bed or whether she gathered her skin and bones together and walked out the door, leaving behind a note of thanks and a promise regarding later that night.

Happy Pretty Skin And Bones Day!

Sunday, November 16, 2003

Let's Make Me Beautiful Day!

Let's have you throw your jacket on your body and run from a bar. We're gonna send you through a million red and yellow lit streets and we'll put some glycerine drops in your eyes to get some tears on your fat baby cheeks.

Now we've got my friend Steve throwing a small dinner for friends you don't know in his apartment. I'm not there, you called Steve ahead of time to find that out. You couldn't tell Steve why you're coming over because you needed Steve to excuse himself from his dinner table to sit down on the stairwell with some cigarettes and find out what put that moan into your phone voice.

The way we're gonna have Steve play this one is he's gonna be giddy. Steve'll have had a pretty boring week and his dinner guests and his girlfriend won't have livened it up by the time you call. But when he tells you it's cool to come over, he'll be excited to go back to the dinner table and announce that a friend is coming over and she sounds like she's in bad shape. He might need to step away for a moment, but it won't be long, he'll say. "I am important to someone," will be his point. The guests will ask some questions but will try not to be too probing, though they will all be glad that the conversation will have veered away from what one of them read in that morning's Times magazine. Steve's girlfriend will sit quietly in a homocidal rage. This will make Steve happy.

In the apartment, Steve will introduce you briefly to the table. "This is the breakdown I'm going to prevent," will be his point. You'll apologize for interrupting and then the two of you will go out to the stairs. You'll light a cigarette. Steve will light one of yours for himself because he doesn't smoke.

Before you say a word, we need you to smoke that cigarette to the butt then light a second.

"I just all of a sudden felt crippled. At this table, with all our friends at the bar, I thought he could show up at any second. And I couldn't have that." These are your lines. "I needed to be where he won't be. I feel like this whole city was built for just him and me to walk around in. He's out there not knowing where I am and I'm out there not knowing where he is. And I just needed to be someplace where I know he won't be."

Steve has always liked talking to you alone. Steve is very happy with the man he's become when he manages to hold a meaningful conversation with you. He doesn't have a crush on you or anything. We don't want that. We just want him to admire you.

"I want a list. A map color-coded according to the places he isn't. I don't want to know where he is. I want to know where he won't be."

Steve will ask, "Can't you go home. You can be sure he won't be there."

We need you to shake your head. "Home is worst of all. I once saw him there. He was just walking down the street past my building, but he never has any reason to be there. Since then, I've put off starting my work by just sitting in the window tracing the path I saw him walk that day. It's awful, my street."

We're gonna have Steve go into the apartment to make some calls and find out where you can sleep or drink. You'll wait the duration of two cigarettes.

"Janice says her shift ends at two. Janice was working there while they were going out and he used to be there every night drinking for free while he waited for her to get off. So he'll never set foot in that bar again for the rest of his life." We want you to understand this. We want it to be clear that you know about his breakup with Janice.

"Also," Steve's gonna say. "Kim said you can crash at her place."

"Kim?" you'll say. The way Steve feels about you, the admiration for you and the pride he derives from knowing you take him seriously, that's how we need you to feel about Kim. An invitation from her is one you would never pass up. You find her to be an amazing person, the kind of woman you want to be. In short, it's important that Kim takes you seriously.

"You're sure Kim's okay with this?" you'll ask.

Steve is gonna say, "Honestly, she sounded a little roughed up herself. I don't think she's going to sleep anytime soon. She could use the company."

Now you're gonna go to Kim's. But first, Steve is gonna ask, "Has it been this bad for a while, or did you just get hit especially hard tonight?" We know it's a stupid question, but that's what we want Steve to say. We need him to grasp at something that will keep you out there on his stairwell a little longer. We want to hammer home how much Steve wants to give of himself to you so that for years after tonight, you'll remember what a good friend he was to you when you needed a good friend, and you will speak well of him.

Happy Let's Make Me Beautiful Day!

Saturday, November 15, 2003

You Two Are Pretty Serious Now Day!

Does this bother you?

Not at all. You don't want me

I just want to watch.

I really had to go.

It starts with a corkscrew.

A what?

A little spiral. Right at the top of the stream.

So it does.

Like a competitive diver.

I never noticed.

Is it kind of closed up?

It's just a little flair. Flash and lights.

Come on.

I like to put on a good show for my audience.

It's sort of perfect.

I think that's just the shape of the peehole.

One of those things repeated throughout nature. Spirals.

I dated a girl who liked that. Liked it on her.

I don't. You really did have to go.

Almost done. When are we meeting Jen and Brian?

I don't want to go to dinner. Let's stay in?

Call and cancel?

I'll call and cancel. We'll eat in bed.

Happy You Two Are Pretty Serious Now Day!

Friday, November 14, 2003

She's Addicted To Drugs Day!

If you're wondering why Marie doesn't seem like herself lately, it's because she's addicted to drugs. Specifically, crystal meth, cocaine, acid, heroin, and alcohol. And marijuana and PCP. And crack.

That's why her eyes are bright red and they sometimes spin in their sockets. That's why she's a gunowner and a reckless one at that. That's why she bought, sold, bought back, and is now looking for a new buyer for that baby Heather. That's why she lives in a puddle of urine on the fourth floor of an abandoned building no one can get into without sticking someone's cock in his or her mouth. That's why she seems so fickle all the time, every day calling you to tell you about the new boy that she's in love with. "No, no, Jason was yesterday. Today, I think Brad is the dreamiest!" And yes, that's why her forearms fell off at the elbow.

You're her friend. She needs your help with this. Get her off of drugs. If she dies, it will be your fault and yours alone.

Happy She's Addicted To Drugs Day!

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Strive For Elegance Day!

When you walk down stairs, let your hand glide just a centimeter above the banister. When you get to the bottom of the stairs, pause, look to your left, then your right, then smile like you're rich. When you walk across the room, choose a pace that says, "No one's going to start without me. And I'm not at all afraid that I'm going to be shot." When you enter the grand ballroom, pause, look to your left, then your right, then smile like you've given up on love, but the one you're smiling is a pretty fun time. There'll be three steps down to the floor. Walk them as if they were balanced on toothpicks (but don't scream out). Now blink your eyes as if to say, "My pussy's only just a little bit wet at all times. In fact, my day to day, errand-running lubrication is no different than when I am in the throes of passion. But no one's ever complained. I sure as hell ain't gonna." Now take your money out of your purse and count it.

Happy Strive For Elegance Day!

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

That Kid's Not Gonna Die Day!

He's the one we all look to for hope. We always knew there had to be someone out there who would just by some weird accident or chance of circumstances never ever die. He's Bobby, and he's immortal. Apparently.

See, Bobby has cancer, but he's hanging in there. He's really weak, and vomits constantly the way everyone with cancer is real into doing. When you see him, you'll think "That kid is definitely going to die. And actually, I wanna get outta here because I think it's gonna happen right now." But medical doctors think otherwise.

"That kid is not going to die!" said Dr. Davis, a medical doctor, right after he examined Bobby and, though he found all the telltale signs of a dying boy, nonetheless came to the conclusion that "This kid's got the stuff. He's going to outlive us all. Even our energies that linger in rooms and lead people to believe in ghosts. He'll outlive our energies," Dr. Davis went on to say.

"I concur with Dr. Davis," said Dr. Daniels, also a medical doctor. Dr. Daniels gave Bobby the thoroughest of looksees, and though Bobby had no pulse and his lungs were drowned in bile, Dr. Daniels countered all objections with, "Look, who's the doctor here? Are you a doctor? You? How about you? No? Well then, I guess I'm the only one up in this shit that can say what up. If you shut your fat stinking mortal pieholes for a second I'll explain it in terms even retards like you can understand. Get it? Got it? Fuckin awesome."

All of Bobby's relatives who were gathered around his bed quieted down to listen to Dr. Daniels. The doctor took a deep breath, appeared to be searching for the right words, then just shrugged his shoulders and said, "Check it out. This kid's in it to win it. He was clearly born from a power dark and unholy. Gonna live forever after, yes he is so gonna."

Later, Dr. Dougherty, an additional medical doctor, joined Doctors Davis and Daniels in their optimistic prognosis. "They're right," he said.

What no one realizes is that, though Bobby slips in and out of a feverish coma-like vegetative state only to vomit or shriek in anguish, he can hear what everyone is saying. And he is very excited that he's the kid that's not gonna die.

Happy That Kid's Not Gonna Die Day!

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

It Snowed Day!

You tell your roommate but he already found out. You tell him your plans. You're getting out. You're going to go buy candy. You ask if he's down. He is.

Neither of you wash your bodies, but you both put on pants, shirts, coats, he has boots. You don't.

You head down the steps through the door and out into nothing. There's white and there's silence and there's nothing. People stand still here and there. They smile at nothing. They do nothing.

After Eight makes a candy bar now. You buy one for three dollars. You also buy an egg sandwich. The man behind the counter is happy. There's nothing outside for him to covet. In here is good. He'll stay as long as this is all there is.

Your roommate buys vitamin water and cakes. He buys potato chips and toothpaste. He buys a bag of cashews for 95 cents American.

The fifteen minutes in the deli fills weeks. Back outside, you hold bags and you taste your breath. New people stand on the intersection. They have placed themselves randomly, or they were dropped from the sky.

Upstairs you unload in the kitchen with your coats still on. There's a message from your roommate's girlfriend. She needs to come over but she doesn't know how. She's trying to find a way. She'll call again if she decides it is impossible.

Happy It Snowed Day!

Monday, November 10, 2003

Hm Day!

While Michelle's sleeping, you rifle through her things. Mostly bills and official looking papers, some weed, some photographs, a lot of one guy who is less attractive than you. His arms are around her sometimes. Whatever. You won't ever be seeing Michelle again, probably, so you just wanna learn a little bit about her before you run back home to change before you go to work.

You hate having to get up this early. But everyone you sleep with has a better apartment than you (you sleep on a twin-sized mattress on the floor of a semi-private bedroom). So it shall be done. But not before you rifle through a drawer or two, a drawer or two containing remnants of a girl.

Letters, a shitload of pens. Drawing pencils (only one sharpened, looks like the point is barely dulled). Printed out emails (get the hell outta there). A passport. Where's she been?


Two stamps. One for Argentina. One for the Phillipines.


In her passport picture she looks like hell. Very different hair. No, completely unrecognizable hair. And the name on the page reads Nina Kreplovich.

She said her name was Michelle.


You go home to change before you go to work.

Happy Hm Day!

Sunday, November 09, 2003

Was She Held? Day!

At 10:20 am, as her eyes opened and saw that it was sunny outside, and as she tried to decide whether that was a good thing or a bad thing, and as she tried to shuffle off the dream she had been bundled up in, and as she tried to buy the fact that "this is what it's like to be awake or I mean alive, this staring at some curtains and buying that yeah it's sunny today and now let's try to feel something," was she held then?

There were some arms within reaching distance. In a logical world they would've been wrapped all up around her because she was even naked even. But not just that, more importantly, she was there and she was coming to and starting a new day. Who wouldn't want to lay claim on that moment, wrap the little girl up like "The moment when she comes back to all of us for one more day, that moment is all mine, wrapped up tight close to my chest. Just try and take it away from me I swear to God I'll kill you dead." Did that go down? Was she held then?

For certain, no doubt, she was locked in a coil of arm and elbow and big safe Dad-type muscle. How else could this morning have worked out. Gonna try to tell me she was right there, and he was right beside her all night long thinking about something besides how awful it is that suns sometimes rise and make you get out of bed? Gonna try to make me buy that, that someone was too busy crossing off a to-do list in his head, adding up how many years he's got left to make himself a man, wondering how someone else in someone else's bed is gonna wake up tomorrow morning? Wondering if she'll be held then?

No fucking way. She was held then, right?

Happy Was She Held? Day!

Saturday, November 08, 2003

In The Papa Don't Preach Video, Danny Aiello Gave The Performance Of A Lifetime Day!

You remember. The dishwashing scene. The leaning on things. Where's her mother? you, the viewer, asked his sad eyes. Why must you tackle this trouble all on your own. Did she leave? Did she pass away? Something in the way his flesh hung from his cheek bones made you think you knew the answer, or at least made you rethink writing a letter to Danny Aiello c/o Madonna's recording company.

When you first saw the video, you were one year old and when Madonna told Danny Aiello that she was pregnant, you wanted to say to somebody "He's gonna take a swing at her," but you didn't know how to talk. When he didn't, you realized he wanted you to think that. And there, in your playpen, you thought, "Danny Aiello, you are one wily coyote." And then you lived for 29 years.

Happy In The Papa Don't Preach Video, Danny Aiello Gave The Performance Of A Lifetime Day!

Friday, November 07, 2003

The Rilke Poem Day!

The one about the bikes. Huffys. Reading it in on the grass of a hill, you will finally attain the understanding necessary to conclude your mourning period for your father and get back into competitive archery.

It's the one about the bikes. But not the one that starts, "Fuck suck ya'll..."

Happy The Rilke Poem Day!

Thursday, November 06, 2003

The Creation Station Day!

When you signed up for the ice sculpture class, you just wanted to learn how to make something nice for your sister's wedding. The Creation Station welcomes beginners and it seemed like a budget-friendly, low-pressure environment for you to get your chops and hopefully give you the skills you need to bring your design to life (a little boy and a little girl standing at an altar getting married by a penguin in a tophat).

But instead, with your very first exercise, you went and chiseled the face of God into a block of ice. Whether it was just beginners luck or someone working through you doesn't really matter to all of your classmates who are now blind because their eyeballs turned to hot coals that they had to pry out with their chisels before any brain matter was singed.

No one blames you, especially since you got it worst of all (not only are your eyes gone, but your mouth sealed up into a little tiny O that can just barely allow entrance to a club soda straw, and you now whistle with every breath). The Creation Station, while offering low-cost outlets to the inner Da Vinci in every Mom, is appearently also home to the wrath of an angry angry God. But not quite so angry as the letter you are going to sit down to write to demand your non-refundable deposit back.

Happy The Creation Station Day!

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Your Favorite Plane Ride Day!

There's a girl you just met and you both get drunk and talk about Dads dying. You talk about dirty things and there's no one else in the row with you. She has the most beautiful neck in the sky. While you're not in first class, the flight attendant doesn't charge you for your drinks after a while. Additionally, though you're drunk and flying, it doesn't feel horrible and you're not sneezing.

The two of you confess some things. You do it very aware that you don't need to confess anything, you're just trying to impress her. She drops her bomb then cries a little then laughs about it and you give her napkins to wipe her snot and after she stops crying and laughing she puts her hand on yours. Not in any big dramatic way. She just puts it there. Then she keeps it there for the rest of the ride.

In mid-flight, the two of you make fun of everyone else on the plane. With just an hour to go, she falls asleep with her head on your shoulder. You lay your lips on the top of her head and keep them there. She wakes up kissing your shirt without being aware of it.

In the terminal, you make a plan for where you'll meet up that night in Chicago. She doesn't show.

Happy Your Favorite Plane Ride Day!

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Peanut Butter Day!

Sick with love and alcoholism, Randy tries to eat peanut butter because he can't swallow solids. His stomach can keep the food down, but the lump in his throat won't let anything get there without a great effort.

Randy gets a spoonful of peanut butter past his tonsils and feels it envelope the lump. It clumps near his windpipe. He's afraid it might cup over the top of the pipe and stop his breathing while he's sleeping tonight.

Randy has to drink some more bourbon. Bourbon is the only thing that can shrink the lump right now. Last week it was rum, but that stopped working so he had to switch to bourbon.

The glassful of bourbon rains on the clump of peanut butter in his throat. It puddles in the crevaces. Randy has to wait for the bourbon to seep deep into the mass of peanut butter and eventually dribble onto the lump. It takes a moment.

"I think I can feel the lump getting smaller," Randy says out loud, hoping to make it come true. "But just to be sure..."

Randy drinks another glass of bourbon. He can now feel the lump yielding passage to the peanut butter. He is able to close his mouth now without gagging.

"The peanut butter is definitely heading for my belly now," he thinks. "Once it is there, I will have eaten. And I will get better."

Randy knows that it is the bourbon that shrinks the lump. And whenever he stops drinking the bourbon, the lump in his throat returns.

"But one day it won't," he says to his glass of bourbon. He talks to his bourbon sometimes. His bourbon is his friend. "One day, I'll wake up and the lump won't be there anymore. And I'll climb off of the floor and into my bed and sleep with a slight smile on my lips." But there's no reason for Randy to stop drinking bourbon if all he can do is wait. Unless the bourbon stops working. But he's thought ahead. There's gin in the cabinet.

Randy pours another glass of bourbon. "This time, I'll think of Anna's bras."

With a vision of two Annas wearing two different bras in his head, his two favorites, Randy swallows the glassful of bourbon and goes into the living room to sit on the floor with his back up against the couch.

Happy Peanut Butter Day!

Monday, November 03, 2003

She's In The Hospital Day!

You walk through the hospital with urgency. If there are any doors on hinges, you march towards them and fling them open with a loud clap. Everyone looks your way as you run to your ex's bedside.

The day you hear about the tumble, you don't arrive with a gift in hand. Of fucking course not. Everyone else believes her story about getting dizzy from antihistimines while gardening on the roof, but you know damn well it was an attempted suicide and you're furious. You don't hear from the twat for a month and a half, and then you get a call that she tried to off herself. The walk to the hospital room seems to be taking forever and you hope that by the time you get there your urge to slap her in the eyes has cooled down a bit.

Crowding into the room are her husband of one year, and his fucking mom and dad. They're all at every occasion. How she can keep from releasing a single never-ending yawn is beyond you.

She's in the middle of smiling her way through a story when you burst in. She spots you, and her face turns solemn. She mutters through the remainder of the story, then everyone turns to acknowledge you.

Her torso is in a body cast. "You look like a fucking idiot," you say.

She shakes her head, closes her eyes. "Tom, take Beth and Martin out to the vending machines for a bit." Tom's her dull as ducklings husband and he knows his place. He obeys.

"You wanna talk about this..."

"Who the fuck do you think you are? I could kill you."

"You wanna talk about this, you talk to me about it. These people are sweet."

"You just referred to the man you married as 'these people'."

"They love and care for me and they accept the fact that I accidentally fell from the roof. Because they would never want me to be so unhappy that I might want to jump. Don't upset them with the truth."

"I wouldn't care if your in-laws were tied to burning posts. I care about you."

"You care about yourself."

"I do. And if you take your life I swear to God I'll destroy this world."

She can tell you mean it, but she says, "You wouldn't." Perhaps to get you to say it again.

"You fucking know I would you miserable cunt."

Her husband pokes his head through the door. "Honey, can I get you some tea or a snack?"

"Run out to the deli, sweetie? And pick me up some magazines to read."

Her husband says sure thing. She says, "Lock that door."

You do. She says, "Climb atop my body cast."

You do. She turns her head on its side on the pillow. You rest your lips on her cheek. You keep them there.

She says, "We have about ten minutes before he comes back."

For about ten minutes, your lips sleep upon her cheek, your legs straddling her body cast.

Happy She's In The Hospital Day!

Sunday, November 02, 2003

Everyone Into The Basement Day!

That's what your big brother tells you and your five sisters whenever your Dad comes home drunk.

"Everyone into the basement!" he shouts. "Dad's home and he don't look so good. Move IT! Move IT! Move IT!"

It makes you all laugh. Especially your Dad. He laughs the hardest, because he's a very jovial, gentle drunk. And your Dad loves it when your older brother acts like he's the kind of drunk Dad who's just gonna haul off and start beating the shit out of you all, burning your forearms on hot radiators and the like. When in reality, he's just gonna turn on Bravo and pass out in his chair.

Happy Everyone Into The Basement Day!

Saturday, November 01, 2003

A Gripping Moment At The State Diner Day!

Reggie's learning to spend some time alone. It's going well enough. He's finding that his thoughts can be good company, especially since he's always thinking about what it would be like to have two girlfriends and the ability to run as fast as horses.

Tonight Reggie went to the diner. For a coffee and a view of the street. He's been there for around forty minutes with a vision of crossing a finish line in his head, and two smiling young ladies jumping up and down and applauding on opposite ends of the bleachers. It's a pretty Saturday night for Reggie.

In his mind he's drinking some gatorade and giving an interview to a television sportscaster when he shakes the fantasy away to notice the mailman with a mailbag slung over his shoulder stopping in front of the diner to check the address. The mailman looks at the postcard in his hand

Reggie looks at his watch to see it's 8:53 PM. "That guy woke up late today," thinks Reggie. The mailman enters the diner and speaks with the cashier.

Reggie drifts back to the track where he, Julie and Lorraine are trying to coordinate their plans for the evening. Julie wants to see Mystic River at 8, and Lorraine just wants to make sure the movie lets out early enough for Reggie to meet her and her visiting parents for a drink at the hotel where her parents are staying. Then he notices the waiter is standing by his table and not refilling his coffee. He looks up to see the waiter with a postcard in his hand.

"You Reggie...uh..." the waiter checks the postcard. "Reggie...Milanopolous?"

Reggie is. "How'd you know?"

The waiter drops the postcard on the table. Reggie picks it up and reads.

Reggie Milanopolous
c/o State Diner
Third Booth By The Window
333 Morton Blvd
Hayworth, TX

Boy, get down! Head to the tabletop! Now!

Reggie throws his nose to the table and waits for the gunshot. He turns his eyes up just in time to see a straw wrapper shoot past and float down onto the empty seat of adjacent booth. Had Reggie not gotten that postcard, the straw wrapper would've slammed directly into the back of his head.

He sits back up and looks behind him to find a little boy with a crewcut, the naked straw to his lips aimed straight at Reggie. The boy's mother takes the straw from his mouth and motions for him to finish his hamburger. Reggie goes back to the postcard and reads the rest.

Hope this helped kid.


Tom Cruise

Reggie checks the postmark. It says "Hollywood."

Happy A Gripping Moment At The State Diner Day!

Friday, October 31, 2003

Being A Nurse Blows In Kansas Day!

I'm a twenty nine year old divorced nursing professional and I'm bored with the kind of nursing that goes on here in Wichita. Nothing but taking care of patients who live in or are visiting Wichita. Can you tell me some states in the USA where I can get in on some of that way bitchin' nursing I'm always seeing on television shows?

Being A Nurse Blows In Kansas

I have some good news and some bad news for you BANBIK. The good news is that you're not alone. Almost every nurse in the USA wakes up every morning thinking to herself, "I'm so disappointed with the occupation I've chosen. I wonder if all the other nurses in the USA feel the same way as me. That is, I wonder if all the other nurses in the USA wanna spit in faces and spraypaint graffiti onto sleeping bums."

The bad news is, there's one state in the USA where Nursing is awesome. Pennsylvania.

Happy Being A Nurse Blows In Kansas Day!

Thursday, October 30, 2003

Just Like In The Movie "She's Having A Baby" Day!

Today, you're pregnant. It's just like in the movie "She's Having A Baby" except you already took the US FDA approved equivalent of RU 486, which amounts to not much more than a shitload of birth control pills all at once. There'll be some abdominal pain and a lot of spotting, but you've pretty much taken care of everything. You'll be fine in a week, though your doctor said you should call in sick tomorrow and keep to bed for the rest of the weekend. Again, there isn't a lot of risk to this. But there can be complications. Just don't push yourself.

And don't tell your guy. He knows you'll get pissed off at him if he acts like he's glad you aborted, so he'll go through the "What right do you have to make that decision for the both of us" tantrum in order to keep getting that ass when you feel better next week.

Happy Just Like In The Movie "She's Having A Baby" Day!

Wednesday, October 29, 2003

You're Sick Of Murder Day!

Today, you won't be able to control yourself. You'll be leaning over the torn up remains of a sixteen year old homeless boy who was found underneath some trash. There'll be some vomit on his belly and a chisel lodged in his left eyesocket. In his wallet, you guessed it, a photo of a mother and a father, each with a hand on the shoulder of a twelve year old boy. It's just a guess that the bloody mess before you was the boy in that photo.

A cop in uniform will say, "Think it's the same guy, detective?" You'll reel around to shout something, but you won't know what or why. Just doing his job, trying to solve a murder. Just like you for fourteen years now. But you need to shout something. Anything.

"Don't you...?"

The cop will wait for a scolding. He's used to being batted around at a crime scene.


The alley will start to spin. You'll walk a few quick paces away from the cop, trying to get your bearings. Then you'll stop and shout up at the windows of the apartment buldings all around you.

"I am so SICK of murder!!!"

You'll feel like you shouted loud enough to crack the sky, and you'll wonder if you did because a silence will follow. A silence broken by a stifled snicker. You'll turn to find the uniformed cop with his shoulders shivering, his hand over his grinning mouth.

You'll be ready to shut him up when you spy the other beat cop and the landlady he's interviewing, both of them giggling together. A loud guffaw will echo from the mouth of a little boy hanging out his window up above. The crowd of bystanders will erupt in a rolling, building cackle.

Soon, everyone on the crime scene will be laughing at you. You can run or start shooting.

Happy You're Sick Of Murder Day!

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

The Kid That Dropped The Baton Day!

Today, you have a lunch date with Craig Latham. Yes, the Craig Latham. The kid that dropped the baton.

As far as you knew, there had been no word from Craig in the ten or so years since that baton clattered to the gravel of the track and he lost the relay race for his entire team. He stuck around school for another week or so after the race, but he was beaten so severely and ridiculed with such venom that he had no choice but to drop out and get out of town.

When someone from the school paper wanted to do a story on Craig a few years later, his parents were discovered to have moved four owns over. They left town as well because Craig's enemies did not draw a distinction between Craig and those who shared his blood. Rarely was the night that went by without a brick crashing through their window. Craig's parents knew it would only get worse, so they went away.

"But Craig didn't come with us," Mr. Latham said. "For our safety, he said he had to go off alone. Told us to forget we had a son."

Mrs. Latham added, "Goddamn did he ever cunt up a lotta shit for everybody when he dropped that cocksucking baton. Retard can't even grab onto a stick."

The Lathams showed the reporter a postcard with a postage stamp from Dubuque. "But he ain't there," said Mr. Latham. "See, it says so on the card."

Scribbled on the card were the words, "I'm not in Dubuque. I came down here solely to mail a postcard from here. Fucking baton. C."

You couldn't believe your eyes when you spotted him at the train station on Saturday. He was standing in the middle of the floor, underneath the clock, staring at you. Waiting for you it seemed.

"I don't have much time before I have to go underground again," he said. "Meet me at the lower level Au Bon Pain on Tuesday at 1:30."

You sucked in some air to ask a question, and he was gone.

Why you? Why now? Today, your questions will go unanswered. But what Craig has to say will prove your questions irrelevant.

He'll sit with his back to the wall, and he won't look you in the eye throughout your entire meeting. He'll be too busy looking for the face of his assassin.

He'll say, "Just a charity race for MS, I thought. What harm could it do. I just never thought everyone would take it so seriously."

Can you ever forgive the warrior heart inside of man? you'll ask.

"Forgiveness would imply a response to something resembling contrition. There is nothing to forgive." He'll lean in close. He'll stink. "I've seen the darkness inside of man, and I have chosen to study and embrace that darkness. To feed upon it and one day spread that darkness like a blanket over all the world. When I signed up for that race, it was an event of blblical proportions. If I can stay alive long enough, this world will end."

You'll sleep with him.

Happy The Kid That Dropped The Baton Day!

Monday, October 27, 2003

Dissuading The Architect Day!

The architect says, but if I build over the Ancient Indian Burial Ground, the sun will hit the skylight just so and the tile I've had imported from Peru will attain a permanent glisten. You adjust your shelf of bosom and stand very close to the architect, looking up into his eyes and playing with the buttons of his shirt and you say, but if you don't build over the ancient Indian burial ground, I'll remove my clothing and pull you inside of me. The architect says, hmm, you drive a hard bargain. But nope! I have to fulfill my vision or else my soul is fucked. You say, but it feels really awesome inside me. I've been told it feels, quote, Great, end-quote. The architect says, but why is it so important to you that I not build over the Ancient Indian Burial Ground? And, how great? You say, if you build over the Ancient Indian Burial Ground, those uppity Injuns'll pop up out of the ground shouting, "Guess how dead we are today, ya'll. Fuckin' shit up, it's on the agenda!" And, as great as a bath in a really big, clean tub. The architect says, Fine, pull me inside of you. BUT BE CLASSY ABOUT IT!!!

Happy Dissuading The Architect Day!

Sunday, October 26, 2003

Howling Fat Man Day!

Today on public transport, you will spy a 365 pound man in denim shorts sitting with his hands resting on the handle of an umbrella. He will be howling softly.

You'll follow his eyes to the crowd of young people huddled around one of the floor poles. None of them will be especially attractive and neither will any of them be carrying a little dog in a sherpa bag. But the fat man will be howling into their general direction.

When you look around to the other passengers to see if any of them find this as strange as you do, you will discover that everyone but the howling fat man is staring directly at you. You are marked and they know you walk among them.

Happy Howling Fat Man Day!

Saturday, October 25, 2003

It's the Girls Are Pretty Stakeout Weekend!

On Friday, October 24th at 7 AM, Prettygirl rented a Ford Taurus and parked it on a residential street on the Upper East Side of New York City. The Taurus is currently parked with a clear view of a third floor apartment window. The man who owns this apartment is Prettygirl's Uncle Morris. Uncle Morris' seventieth birthday is coming up soon. Prettygirl has no idea what to get him for a gift, but she wants it to be something special. Therefore, it is necessary that his day to day life be monitored, charted, and that conclusions be drawn as to just the kind of man this Uncle Morris truly is, and whether he would prefer a roll-neck J. Crew sweater, or a Tivo.

Thus far, Prettygirl has learned that Uncle Morris will not put on pants unless it is absolutely necessary. Additionally, his groin is itchy.

Not a lot to go on, which is why your personal regression assignments might be given to you on a less than regular basis, as Prettygirl is primarily alone on this Stakeout. Except when a boy named David visits the car so that she can run to a public bathroom or a Kinkos, then run back to the car to make out with David until he has to go back to class (he's studying to be an astronaut).

Yesterday's and today's assignments are below. Keep your head down and pass the donuts.

Saturday, October 25, 2003

King Libido Day!

Today, King Libido will leer out from his throne and decree, "Everybody come up here and rub upon me." And all shall obey.

Happy King Libido Day!

Friday, October 24, 2003

She's Way Fucked Up Day!

You fell in love with her on her first day of orientation at the museum. You showed everyone in your training group where the bathrooms were, and she said "Man, I'm gonna be spending a lot of time in there today. I've been sick to my stomach for three years now."

She's the prettiest museum guard you ever did see. And after months of shuffling your days off, you finally got it so that you're both in the Degas room on Fridays, and you both get off at six.

You'll ask if she'd like to grab a beer and she'll say, "I'll drive." You'll spend hours at the bar. The conversation will be just as perfect as you imagined it would be. The kind of ease with a person that you haven't felt since the last time you fell in love. You'll both have had quite a lot to drink, but alcohol doesn't make this kind of thing happen. You'll blame your hearts.

Finally, you'll suggest that the two of you get out of there. She'll say, "I'll drive." But she'll be way fucked up, and when she hits an icy patch she'll send the car into a ditch. You'll both live, but she'll have a horrible scrape on her face from the airbag. You'll wait inside the car for the police to arrive, holding each other for warmth, smothering each other with gentle kisses upon the face and neck. It's going to be wonderful.

Happy She's Way Fucked Up Day!