Thursday, March 31, 2005

Toy Soldiers Day

Toy Soldiers Day!

Your son is a latchkey kid. I know you don't like to hear it said but saying it is saying the truth and there ain't nothing wrong with saying the truth is there? You don't like to hear it because when you were growing up it was the latchkey kids who were always running around behind houses breaking windows and watching stray cats give birth. You never wanted that for your son. You expected to be there for him when he got home from school, making him cookies, helping him with his homework, keeping him from joining a circle of boys around a neighborhood girl who's willing to pull down her pants and underwear. But your husband ran off and you needed to take on another job. In other words, you failed him. Once again, the truth is the truth and the truth is you're a failure.

Anyway, tonight when you get home you'll find your best frying pan covered in an oddly shaped splotch of green plastic. Today your son melted all his toy soldiers in a pan. Then he killed his hamster when he slammed it shut inside a bible.

Happy Toy Soldiers Day!

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

The Motorist Day

The Motorist Day!

When you're in your car, you are The Motorist, a superhero who rights wrongs from the confines of his car.

Look to your left. A woman is shouting angrily into her cell phone. Flap your index finger once in her direction and BAM her uterine wall is strong enough to hold a fertilized egg.

Look to your right. A middle-aged driver has his forehead in his hands. Wiggle all ten of your fingers his way and KAZOW he's no longer phobic of ants.

And that blind child peeking out of the rear windshield of the car in front of you. Just wink twice towards his sweet face and KERCHOW he has acid for blood.

Thank you The Motorist. You're late for work.

Happy The Motorist Day!

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

The Dog House Day

The Dog House Day!

Tonight you're sleeping in the dog house because your wife is dying of a rare bone disease and she's shrieking so much that you couldn't stay in the house without sobbing, even behind the closed door of the guest room. You had to get away from the sound, so you alerted her live-in nurse that you would be taking a walk. From the liquor cabinet you grabbed a bottle of Cutty Sark and wandered the streets of your neighborhood, drinking and being sad for you poor little bride. When you finally made it home, the bottle was empty and you were so drunk that you tumbled through the gate of your backyard and landed on the grass with your arms and head inside the doghouse.

Tomorrow you're going to wake up when your neighbor, Greg, pulls his car out of his garage. Greg will see you sitting there on the lawn part way inside your dog house, but he'll just look away as if he hadn't seen a thing. Greg can't imagine what he would do if it was his wife.

Happy The Dog House Day!

Monday, March 28, 2005

He Belongs To Critical Mass Day

He Belongs To Critical Mass Day!

Though you've dated frequently, you've been single for almost a year now. Your friends accuse you of being too choosy and electing to remain alone out of a fear of commitment. Except in the case of Ray.

"He was in Critical Mass?" your friend Martha asked. "Jesus, how long did he wait to tell you? Men are scum."

Jonathan, your roommate, was shocked. "He wasn't what I would call funny or anything, but he at least seemed like he might be in possession of a sense of humor. Jesus, a bicycle activist."

"Yeah," you shook your head.

"Man," he said.

Your mother was the only one who was angry with you. "I used to think you were throwing them away for the littlest things. Now I know you're just hunting down the lowest of the low so you can be sure it won't work. My God what sort of sleezeball bars are you going to?"

"I didn't know Mom," you shouted.

Ray called you a few times today, offering explanations into your machine, as well as some story about how a Critical Mass demonstration made the WTO change meeting rooms at a Holiday Inn or something. You've put in the order to have your number changed, but it won't take effect for another four hours. You're spending the night at your friend Shannon's just in case Ray gets drunk and bike rides over to your house tonight. And because you don't think you can be alone right now. It was just a deception, but you every time you remember his touch, you run into the bathroom to take another scalding hot shower.

Happy He Belongs To Critical Mass Day!

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Your Name Is Greg Day

Your Name Is Greg Day!

Your name is Greg and you clean up after orgies. You get paid 70 dollars to show up every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday morning at 11 AM and clean the floor of all of the spilled wine, cubed cheese, and other. You've never seen one of the orgies in person, but you used to know somebody who went to a few.

"That was when I was involved with a particularly crazy older lady by the name of Grace," said your former girlfriend's Uncle Leland. "I do have to say that it was interesting. But not every thing that is interesting is necessarily something that I'd ever want to experience again."

Your girlfriend at the time, she got excited to finally hear the inside scoop. She was intrigued by your job and was always excited when you told her about a particularly hard-to-explain puddle or when you showed her trinkets like cufflinks and compacts that you found during your morning sweep. "Were the girls pretty, Uncle Leland?" she asked, nearly bouncing on her couch cushion.

"To give you an idea," Uncle Leland said. "The next time you walk into town, take note of the first thirty-seven people that cross your path. No matter who they might be. I want you to imagine exactly those thirty-seven people scattered about a meeting hall in various states of fornication. That will give you an idea of the range of physicality that you'll find at the Modern Living Party."

That's what they call it, The Modern Living Party. Not that you've ever even seen an invitation. You're not with your former girlfriend anymore. No girlfriend to speak of at all at the moment. You can't afford a girlfriend with a cleaning man's salary.

Right now you're tired on your couch from this morning's work. On your coffee table is a locket with a little boy's photo inside. You know the little boy, cause he's you. Or was, when you were six. You found it this morning cleaning underneath a barstool. You have been planning to find new employment for about six months. And right now, staring at that locket, you really regret not having stepped on the gas with that job hunt.

Happy Your Name Is Greg Day!

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Another Dead Gossip Columnist Day

Another Dead Gossip Columnist Day!

"Item! Someone really hates gossip columnists."

You're a coroner with a horrible sense of gallows humor. Everyone you work with hates you, especially your wife, which has made it more and more difficult to keep up the appearances of your folksy, privately run, Mom & Pop-style morgue.

"I wish you were a gossip columnist," your wife says as she pries open the rib cage.

"Fuck you dickhead," you say to your wife. "You're saying you wish I could die right along with all these poor celebrity chasers."

"I'm saying," she says, "that maybe it'd be nice if my husband had sought a more palatable career path."

"But you're a coroner too!" you shout.

The mayor breaks it up. "Will you too stop bickering and get me a clue to who's killing these gossip columnists?!"

"Sorry Mayor," you and your wife say. Your wife shoots you one last dirty look before getting to work.

"You're lucky I wanna keep these murders under the radar," the mayor said. "If I didn't think these deaths would cause a wave of panic that would cripple the city's PR industry, your folksy, privately run, Mom & Pop-style morgue wouldn't get a lick of business from me. They're much more pleasant at the City Morgue."

"You're right mayor," you say.

"Seriously, though," the mayor says. "You're both horrible people."

Happy Another Dead Gossip Columnist Day!

Friday, March 25, 2005

Tell Your Dad You're In Love With A Girl Day

Tell Your Dad You're In Love With A Girl Day!

Sit down on the couch to the right of him in his easy chair.

"I met a girl dad," say.

Your Dad will say, "Get ready for some pain."

"I don't think so Dad," say. "She loves me and I love her. And I can feel it in my bones, we're never going to do anything but make each other happy."

Your Dad will laugh so hard he'll die. You'll bring your girlfriend to the funeral. During the priest's eulogy at the burial, she'll sneak off and cheat on you behind a tree.

Happy Tell Your Dad You're In Love With A Girl Day!

Thursday, March 24, 2005

How To Kill Bees Day

How To Kill Bees Day!

Bees are very scary animals, perhaps the scariest in all of the outdoors. Today, you're going to learn how to kill them. You're going to learn from a 70 year old man who lives in a shack under a tree in the woods.

"I've survived out here 70 years. Never been stung once," he'll tell you.

"Never?" you'll ask.

"Not since last May," he'll say. Then he'll show you how to fling a hammer at a small target.

"Should I only use your methods in self-defense?" you'll ask, confusing bee killing with the ancient Asian martial art, Karate.

"This isn't Karate," the old man will say. "I'd recommend you kill every bee you see. The fewer the better."

Just then a bee will land on your face.

"Hold still," the old man will say. Then he'll fling a hammer at your face.

The bee will sting you and fall to the ground and die. You'll bleed profusely from the hole in your face. The old man will look from you to the dead bee and he'll wonder whether he can count this in his kill column. Everything will go black.

Happy How To Kill Bees Day!

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Buddy Pictures Day

Buddy Pictures Day!

The temp agency sent over a guy named Buddy Pictures to fill in for your secretary while she's on maternity leave.

"My parents loved the Lethal Weapon movies," he'll say.

You'll nod with a tolerant smile on your face. Normally, you don't like it when temps make conversation with you, and if it happens more than twice in a day, you usually call the agency to send them over a replacement. But this Buddy Pictures kid is bringing out your giddy side.

"I hate my parents," Buddy will say.

Get up from your desk and put your hand on his shoulder. "Something you should know about me Buddy. I'm kind of a loose cannon. When a straight-laced, by-the-book kid like you gets partnered up with a nutcase like me, it seems like it could be hilarious, sure. But make no mistake, by the end of this temp assignment, your daughter will have been kidnapped."

Buddy will say, "But I don't have a daughter. I'm only twenty two and a half."

"Feeling a little too old for this assignment?" you'll say.

Buddy will look confused for a second. Then he'll burst into an obsequious laugh. "Ooooh. I get it, sure."

Say, "Fuck you temp and don't touch me again." Then take your hand off of Buddy's shoulder and pinch his forearm until he yelps. You're losing your mind, Assistant Vice President Riggs.

Happy Buddy Pictures Day!

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Bail Your Best Buddy Out Of Jail Day

Bail Your Best Buddy Out Of Jail Day!

"Promise Jenny's my girlfriend now?" you should say through the bars. The policemen of course allowed you go to the jail cell and talk to your best friend Mikey before you decide to bail him out. They warned you that the other prisoners will throw their semen at you as you pass their cells.

Mikey will say, "If Jenny wants you and not me there's nothing I can do about that is there?"

Get up from your chair. "Not good enough."

"Well what do you want me to say?" Mikey will ask. "I'll say whatever you want if you get me out of here. These guys already beat the crap out of me. My head's bleeding see?" He'll point to the matted blood caking the back of his head, then you'll look to the terrifying men sitting on the floor against the rear wall of the cell. They won't take their eyes off of you and Mikey, and you'll know that as soon as you're gone and there's no chance of the guards coming back for a bit they're really going to do a number on Mikey, especially now that he just bitched.

"I know you're scared of dying Mikey," say. "But you should have thought of that before you burst into Jenny's house and found us making love. You were out of control."

"I'm sorry," Mikey will say. "You're my best friend and she's my girlfriend. I got jealous."

"That's not the kind of talk that's gonna get you out of here Mikey," say.

"Fine," Mikey will say. "Jenny's your girlfriend now."

"And you'll make sure of that?" ask him.

"How?" he'll say.

"Threaten her or something. Tell her that if she ever sees anyone but me you'll hurt her and her family. I've been waiting a long time for this Mikey, ever since you started seeing her really. But we're starting out as an infidelity, which puts our relationship on really shakey ground," say. Now lean in real close to the bars. "I need your help pal."

Mikey will say, "Fine. I'll let her know that she has to keep seeing you or she'll enter a world of hurt that she never could have imagined."

Reach through the bars for a handshake. Say, "Sounds like someone just made bail!" Then grab your handkerchief to wipe away the semen that someone just splattered across the bridge of your nose. When you get home to Jenny, tell her about your agreement with Mikey, and how she's on thin ice.

Happy Bail Your Best Buddy Out Of Jail Day!

Monday, March 21, 2005

Cruising Altitude Day

Cruising Altitude Day!

Your father was a gay flight attendant, and all of his greatest loves were found in the air. He met your mother (and by extension, you) on a New York to London redeye, more than enough time for her to explain the contractual obligations of providing her with his sperm, and for him to agree only on the condition that he be granted visiting rights and an opportunity to apply for joint custody. And he met Carl, his true love, on both trips of a Vegas hop. He fell in love with Carl on the flight in, but promised himself that unless he saw Carl, happy with winnings, on the return flight, he wouldn't make a move. Nothing guarantees a heartbreak like a gambler on a losing streak with something to prove.

As it turned out, your father saw Carl, happy as can be but about 1400 dollars in the hole on the flight back. "I'm smiling," he said, "Because even with my empty pockets, when I saw it was you pushing the drink cart down the aisle I thought to myself...Jackpot." Your father couldn't resist. And they never looked back.

And today you're taking off for Los Angeles with the same fantasy that runs through your head on every flight you take without your wife. "Please just let me meet someone I love enough to leave my wife for." On this flight, you're not going to find that person. You will meet an adorable woman named Marci who you would love just fine if you were single, but you don't love her enough to end a marriage for. Maybe next trip. You've got the miles.

Happy Cruising Altitude Day!

Sunday, March 20, 2005

The Washington Monument Day

The Washington Monument Day!

She said, "Meet me in a year at the Washington Monument." That's today.

It's raining and you'll sit under a black umbrella, looking at all the men around you sitting alone under their black umbrellas, wondering if they're waiting to reunite with a love or if they're just journalists meeting informants. Either way, you're probably on a watchlist by now. Anyone who lingers alone near a DC monument for more than an hour or two probably gets thrown on a watchlist automatically. Actually, you were probably already on a watchlist. We're all on watchlists I bet. They're just broken down according to what to watch for. Like I'm probably on a watchlist for "awesomeness conspiracies." And you're probably on a "acting like a total loser who shows up a year later to meet his ex-girlfriend where she told him to meet her and waits all day but she never shows up" watchlist.

She's in San Francisco. She's living with that guy still. She followed him out there actually. He treats her like crap. You were much better for her.

But anyway, wait all day then go home and be sad.

Happy The Washington Monument Day!

Saturday, March 19, 2005

That Part Of You That You Hate, That's Pretty Much All That's Left Day

That Part Of You That You Hate, That's Pretty Much All That's Left Day!

It was the part that you used to say was "holding me back" and "making me say the things that send people away." The part that you "need to work on" and "have to hold in check." Maybe a therapist could help you "figure out what fuels that side of me" you used to wonder, though you never bothered to find out.

Don't feel bad when you hear this. Honestly, this is what happens to 99% of human beings who turn 36. That part of you that you hate, the one that drinks exactly the wrong amount of alcohol at the exact wrong moment? The part that makes excessive demands of loved one that appease nothing more than your desire to prove that everyone will one day let you down? That part that quietly (except when you're drinking) believes that petowners are fascistic? That part is all that's left. But seriously, don't feel bad. The reason it's all that's left is because it was the only thing that was ever true about your character. Everything else was you making efforts to try to battle it and bury it under gloss. You're going to feel like a big weight has fallen off your shoulders in about six months.

Happy That Part Of You That You Hate, That's Pretty Much All That's Left Day!

Friday, March 18, 2005

Mandatory Bellybuttons Day

Mandatory Bellybuttons Day!

Your tireless campaign efforts have were successful, and today the Mandatory Bellybuttons policy will be enacted into your workplace's bylaws. At this morning's status meeting, before the agenda is read, everyone in attendance will be required to untuck their shirts and expose their bellybuttons. And each of them will then be required to say one nice thing about one of their coworker's bellybuttons before the meeting can commence. It's hard to believe it took upper management so long to catch up with the new millennium.

Happy Mandatory Bellybuttons Day!

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Ride To The Dance Day

Ride To The Dance Day!

Your older sister's gonna give you and your girlfriend a ride to the dance tonight. She'll give you each a wine cooler to drink on the way. Your girlfriend will throw up on her dress from the wine cooler, and you'll have to pull over to get some napkins from a Burger King to clean her off before you go to the dance. Once you're inside, your older sister will drive around for a while, then she'll park outside her ex-boyfriend's house. Then she'll come and pick you up and take you both home. She'll seem happy when she comes to get you.

Happy Ride To The Dance Day!

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Towel Each Other Off Day

Towel Each Other Off Day!

You and your fellow college diving teammates don't quite have it together this season and it's because you all are still afraid to really care for each other. You all turn out for practice every morning. You all cheer each other on at the meets, and it can't be said that any one of you cares more about himself than about the team's success as a whole. But you all treat the diving team as if it's something outside of your lives. What happens inside the confines of that natatorium can't touch your real lives, the lives you lead in your dorm rooms and classrooms.

What you have to do to solidify your diving team is you have to open the doors to the natatorium so life can walk in and go for a swim with you boys. Your teammates share a goal with you, they stand side-by-side with you as you all push yourselves to the limits of your physical ability. Day after day you watch each other strive to create a momentary flash of grace. Acknowledge all that you share and the ragged incongruities that make you all beautiful to each other will show themselves in contrast.

And most importantly, you should all towel each other off after every practice, and during meets, after every dive. You all have nice, toned bodies and we want to see you towel each other's wet bodies dry. We want to imagine that back in the locker rooms you're peeling off your Speedos and gently padding each other's groins with the towels, so do that too and tell us about it. You want to win your division don't you? You want to make your fathers proud?

Happy Towel Each Other Off Day!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Chad 1.5 Day

Chad 1.5 Day!

Julie's sad tonight. She barely ate her open-faced turkey sandwich. And she's laughing a lot. Whenever she's low her laugh gets louder and more disturbing.

You have something to tell her, something she's not going to like. But every time you feel ready to broach the subject she says something else she finds funny, and that laugh bursts out with the clatter of a loose window shutter on a stormy day. You push forth.

"I'm seeing Chad again," you say.

Julie doesn't laugh. In fact, she looks as if she might start to cry into the mashed potatoes she didn't touch.

"It just happened," you say.

Julie dated Chad for six months, and six months after that you started seeing him. Julie didn't speak to you for nearly a year, which was fine because you only went out with Chad to hurt her. But when you and Chad broke up after a year and a half, you discovered you actually missed him. You craved him for months, until last night, when you held him again.

"I thought you hated him," Julie says.

"He's different now."

Julie's eyes are dull and looking at the wall. She looks crazy and medicated.

"It's like he's Chad, version 1.5," you say.

Julie doesn't respond. She looks like she didn't even hear you, which you hope is the case because you're embarrassed by the Chad 1.5 comment. It made you sound like this was all a whim of yours, and now you're worried that it could be.

"It's been over between you and him for so long," you say.

"I won't be able to be around you two," Julie will say.

You're furious with your self now. Last night, when he called and you went to his apartment you were sure that it was right. Now that Julie is withering in front of you, you think maybe you just tried to repeat that to yourself over and over to make no room in your head for second-guesses.

"If that's the way it's got to be," you say.

Julie grabs her coat and runs through the diner and out the door. Chad's probably a mistake, and if so you'll see Julie again in a year when you break up again. Assuming she doesn't hurt herself. Or leave town. (Julie has no one else in this city.)

Happy Chad 1.5 Day!

Monday, March 14, 2005

UFO Sucks You Into Outer Space Day!

So today a UFO will be sucking you into outer space. But before the UFO takes off, it will give you the opportunity to resolve one earthly concern of your choosing.

"Not that it really matters," the alien telling you all of this will tell you. "You were all always just a bunch of noise inside the fingernail of this gigantic dickhead that everyone in the Galaxy already hates. But we'll make a quick stop if you want to say something to somebody."

"Susie Camenbaren's house please," you'll say without a moment's thought.

So the UFO (it's as big as Washington DC) moves to Susie Camenbaren's tri-state area and extends a stairway of lights down so you two can talk. When you walk down the stairs, she's waiting there at the bottom with her football player boyfriend, Kurt Holtz.

"What's with the alien craft, faggot?" Kurt Holtz will say.

Tell him, "I just need a word with Susie, if that's okay with you Kurt."

Kurt doesn't look like he heard you, or at least it's not clear that he understood you, so you walk behind the stairway of lights with Susie Camenbaren.

"Pretty bitchin, yeah?" you say.

Susie says, "Why'd you bring this spaceship here, faggot?"

Tell her that you've had a crush on her ever since seventh grade and when the alien told you that you could visit with just one last person to resolve something, you chose her.

"Okay, faggot," Susie will say. "What are we resolving?"

"Well," say. "I've always loved you. And I brought extraterrestrials to your house."

Susie will say, "Ew!"

At that, a ray of heat from the hovering craft will destroy Susie, and another will destroy Kurt Holtz, who didn't even notice Susie's destruction before he himself had been turned into a small pile of ash that immediately blew away in the gust of air that travels off of the river often.

"Why'd you do that?" you'll ask the alien when you get back up to the ship.

"She was a cock," the alien will say. AND THUSLY SHALL YOUR ADVENTURES BEGIN.

Happy UFO Sucks You Into Outer Space Day!

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Mausoleum Day

Mausoleum Day!

While standing in her foyer, waiting for her to go and grab a wrap to wear, you notice her dayplanner open on the table under the mirror. She had asked you to touch nothing while you wait, but she didn't forbid you to look. It's open to this week. You barely even have to glance at it to make out the word "Mausoleum" written in the box for tomorrow. No time even. Just that word. "Mausoleum."

At dinner, you bring up all of the people in your family who have died. She mentions her grandmother.

"I hate going to the cemetery," you say.

She says that she got lucky because her grandmother opted for cremation and a sprinkling of ashes over the Redwoods in California.

Over dessert you try another angle. "I like all music except Death Metal."

She says she doesn't even know what Death Metal would sound like. "Sounds gross," she says. "I like mostly alternative rock I guess."

Walking by the water you start grasping. "My friend is so boring and his house is so musty and dismal whenever I visit him I tell people, 'I'm going into the coffin.'"

She chuckles.

Riding on the Ferris Wheel, just after you've kissed at the top, you say, "Dance clubs have the silliest names don't they? Morgue. Coroner's Office. House Where The Dead People Are Buried In The Walls."

She says she never heard of those and that she hates clubs.

Staring at the moon and the shooting stars that are constantly flying past, you say, "I broke up with a girl once because she liked to fuck corpses. You don't do that do you?"

She says nope.

Back at her house, she invites you in. You say, "I don't know, you don't have any big plans for tomorrow?"

She says not until sundown.

After having sex for the fourth time, you say, "I feel like I could share anything with you."

She says, "Me too. Almost anything."

You ask her why she's building walls between the two of you already, and if she knows a nine-letter word for gravesite that begins with the letter M so that you can solve this crossword puzzle you've been working on.

"I'm not. I'm just reticent to share everything with someone right away. And does Mortuary have nine letters?"

You sigh. You tell her about the dayplanner. She says, "It's all right. You couldn't help it. You shouldn't blame yourself for what's going to happen."

"What's going to happen?" you ask.

She doesn't say anything, but her eyeballs go white and some cloaked figures appear out of nowhere. Your depth perception gets skewed in a million wild ways. Figures that are miles away from you seem to hold you down on the bed. Though you're alive, you can feel your insides being torn to shreds. You scream with all of your strength but all you hear is laughter. Your date is dancing on the windowpanes like a fan dancer. Your pain is unimaginable and seems to last for centuries, though you can still make out the clock, which says that not twelve minutes have passed since your date last spoke. There are dogs in the bedroom now and they're coated in blood and your innards dangle from their teeth. They bite your face. A fire has started and flames begin to climb up your legs and over your torso. Two of the cloaked figures carve a hole in your chest and punch you in the heart. Your date is having sex with a pig on her roll-top desk. You swear that you've lived three lifetimes, but the clock says only another minute has passed. The cloaked figures stop up your breathing by taking turns covering your nose and mouth with their anuses. They found a hammer and a garlic press and they're going at your kneecaps and ears (hammer to the ears, garlic press to the kneecaps). Now they all sigh at once, growing tired of creating a hell from your existence, and one says to the other, "Anything going on tomorrow?"

Everyone looks at that cloaked figure like he's an idiot. He looks at them, looks down at you, then says, "Oh yeah! Duh."

Happy Mausoleum Day!

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Masquerade Day

Masquerade Day!

Rooting through your wife's handbag looking for her cocaine, you'll find an invite to a masquerade ball that occurred three weeks ago. Confront her.

"Did you find my cocaine?" Jenny will ask when you come back into the room.

Say, "You're out. We'll have to call Guillermo." Take the invitation out of your pocket. "Why didn't you tell me about this?"

"I didn't think you'd be interested," she'll say.

Say, "But you love masquerade balls. I would have gone for you."

Jenny will look down at the floor. Calculate.

"Wait a minute," say. "Three weeks ago I was in Cincinnati. I remember there was one night when I couldn't get you on the phone."

She'll say, "I went."


She'll shake her head.

"With Beth," you'll conclude.

Long, boring story short: Beth is your ex-wife who hired Jenny to have you killed. While plotting the assassination, Jenny fell in love with both Beth and with you, but she realized that you would provide her with the better future. So she broke it off with Beth, promised to kill her if any harm came your way, and married you. They're still friends.

"She's a lot of fun at masquerade balls," Jenny will say.

"And I'm not?" you'll say. But you know the answer to that. You always choose a "visual pun" kind of costume that requires lots of explanation. And you always complain of itching.

Say, "I feel so inadequate."

Jenny will say, "Only when it comes to masquerade balls. In every other area, except for ski weekends, you're the best."

Go outside on the front step and smoke. You should wait until the cocaine arrives before you two discuss this further. If you're both irritable because you haven't done any cocaine yet, you might say something you regret.

Happy Masquerade Day!

Friday, March 11, 2005

Teenage President Day

Teenage President Day!

As the first American ever to be elected President of the United States before turning twenty, you have put a new face on this country. You have brought the country's government into the hands of the country's future. You have quickened the blood in your countrymen's veins with a newfound vitality. You have told Congress to "Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!"

But today, you will meet the greatest challenge of your brief tenure in office. At 3 PM, North Korea will detonate a nuclear bomb in New York City, immediately wiping out the metropolitan area and forcing evacuation of much of the surrounding region.

Many of your critics have ranted in their op-ed columns that you're the wrong man to run the country because you're just a teenager. This nuclear holocaust is the perfect opportunity to prove them wrong.

Happy Teenage President Day!

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Your Masseuse Is At The Door Day!

"I'm being chased," she'll say.

"Greta, meet my wife. Pauline, this is Greta, my masseuse."

Greta and Pauline will shake hands. Pauline will fix Greta a drink.

"I left my boyfriend last week," Greta will tell you. "He's a real sleezeball. He got some guys to follow me today. Lucky I remembered where you live. I don't have many clients in this neighborhood."

Pauline will tell Greta, "My husband just raves about you."

Over dinner, you will be excited to have Greta and Pauline at the same table, as you've spent many hours imagining having sex with the both of them at once.

"So Greta," Pauline will ask, "Do you ever get disgusted by the state of a client's skin?"

Greta will have to take a moment to chew all of the food she had shoveled into her mouth. "No," she'll say. "If it's really gross, with open sores or loose moles, I refuse to do the job because I could cause damage by doing a rubdown on skin like that. But really, it's just the job."

After dinner, Pauline will invite Greta to spend the night.

"Only if you let me give you a rub," Greta will say.

After her rubdown, Pauline will fix up Greta's bed for her, then she'll join you in bed.

"She's going to get back together with her ex-boyfriend," Pauline will say to you. "She told me as much during the rubdown."

"That thug?" you'll ask.

Pauline will say, "You know, that rubdown wasn't that good."

Demand that Pauline take back what she said about Greta's rubdown or else you'll leave her.

Happy Your Masseuse Is At The Door Day!

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Roof Access Day

Roof Access Day!

You don't have roof access, but your neighbor does. This is not because he has a private access-way to the roof from his apartment. For either of you to get out to the roof, you must leave your apartment and walk up the main stairway, the same stairway that would take you down to the ground floor. It just so happens that he can go up the stairs and out to the roof, and you cannot. When you signed the lease, the landlady told you the deal.

"I'm telling you up front so that you don't have to sniff around on your own and get sore about this," she said. "6E has roof access. 6W, no roof access. You're in 6W. Sorry, but that's the way it's always been."

"Does 6E pay a higher rent?" you asked.

"Don't try to find the reason in it," she bellowed. "Things just are a certain way sometimes."

She had trouble catching her breath after that.

"Sorry," you said.

"Everyone thinks the world oughta make sense," she said. "The world is shit."

You signed the lease.

And then you signed another. 14 months in that apartment and you never tried to go out to the roof. You can hear when your neighbor goes out there. He seems to be out there a lot. You'd listen to the footsteps on your ceiling and wonder what life must be like up on top of the building. In the summer, you'd go out onto your fire escape and climb a few rungs near the roof, just to see if you could estimate the view. But you honored the rules, and you never climbed the remaining rungs to the top.

But tonight, you're going to go up on the roof. Tonight is going to be the night because on your train ride home today a well-dressed man in his 50's, apparently drunk, will spit on you on his way off the train. He'll disappear through the closing doors before you even get a chance to shout. And then the entire car will watch you wipe the man's spit from your cheek and jacket and they'll all just shake their heads.

When you hear the footsteps through your ceiling, you'll already have been looking for a way to be defiant. You'll be lying in your bed, staring at the ceiling, and you'll say fuck it. I'm going up there.

When you push your way through the door, you'll find a completely barren and useless rooftop. Nothing but a sloping spread of blacktop and variously shaped chimney stacks. The view, you'll see, is blocked by a riverfront office tower that you never noticed before. It doesn't even look like there's anywhere to sit, which might be why your neighbor is squatting in his spot by the edge of the roof.

When he sees you, he'll approach slowly. When his face gets out of the glare of the sunlight, you'll see the shock in his eyes.

"You don't have access," he'll say. His tone will be incredulous.

"I know," you'll respond.

He'll take a step closer. He'll put his hands on you and push a little, trying to see if his hands go through you. Then he'll look down at himself.

"But…you don't have access," he'll say again.

You'll nod. You'll say, "What's going to happen?"

You'll both look down at the palms of your hands. Then you'll look around at the skyline to see if any of the buildings have fallen away.

"Why'd you have to try it?" your neighbor will ask. "While I'm out here too. Why?"

"I'm sorry," you'll say. "A man spit on me today. I had to try something."

Your neighbor will turn to the sun.

"I'd hope," you'll say, "That this will only affect me. I broke the rules."

Your neighbor will keep his eye on the sun, afraid of letting it out of his sight. "6E has roof access. 6W, no roof access. You're in 6W." He'll turn back to you. "I'm in 6E. The door's gone."

Behind you, the door into the building will have disappeared. It'll just be a wall now.

"Oh," you'll reach to touch where the door was, but think better of it. "God I'm sorry."

Your neighbor will turn back to the sun. "Just have to wait to find out what's changed."

"I could do with some things changing," you'll say.

Your neighbor will nod in agreement. He'll keep his eye on the sun. You'll check your pockets to see if you're rich. You'll want to call your mom to see if maybe your brother never died, but you don't know how to get back down yet. You're gonna feel really bad if your neighbor all of a sudden flickers and disappears.

Happy Roof Access Day!

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Sex Change Operation Day

Sex Change Operation Day!

Today, you're going to have that sex change operation you've been saving up for. You're almost 60% certain that you're doing the right thing.

About a year ago, you were 100% for becoming a chick. Everyone with whom you discussed it said that they thought you would make such a great lady. The women said they wished they had an evil streak in them strong enough to try and talk you out of it. "Like I need to have to compete against the chick version of you. Like it's not difficult enough for me that I already have bad burns all over the back of my left thigh."

The reason you decided to become a woman was because you were doing it with a guy, Brad, who said he really loves you but he hates fags and unless you became a woman, he couldn't date you anymore because dating a guy would make him a fag like you. So the very next morning you started the trans-gender process, the process of hanging onto Brad's love.

Trouble is, Brad hasn't been returning your phone calls very often over the past three or four months. And when you two do talk, he doesn't sound all that excited about your impending womanhood. Additionally, you've become involved with a so-so attractive Russian man named Victor. You still feel like you're meant to be with Brad, and you can make yourself believe sometimes that if you showed up on Brad's doorstep as a woman he'd take you into his arms and squeeze you tight for the rest of his life. But Victor is very good to you. He's not as intense as Brad, but when you say goodbye to Victor in the morning, you don't panic that he'll leave town without telling you the way you used to panic over Brad.

Things could work out with Victor if Brad is really out of the picture. Which leads to the real dilemma. Not only is Victor not attracted to women, he hates them. "Seriously," he once said. "Sometimes I'll leave a restaurant if I feel like I'm surrounded by too many women." Then he shuddered.

So, the only chance you'll have with Brad is if you become a woman because Brad hates gays. But there's a big chance Brad won't take you back whether you become a woman or not. And if he doesn't, Victor most definitely won't take you back if you're a woman because women make him sick.

It comes down to becoming a woman and gambling on Brad, or remaining a man and taking the safe bet with Victor.

Gamble on Brad. Get the sex-change operation. You're being a pussy.

Happy Sex Change Operation Day!

Monday, March 07, 2005

Rollercoaster Ride Day

Rollercoaster Ride Day!

You remember how last week you had sex with your ex-boyfriend, and he assumed that meant that the two of you were going to get back together, and you let him believe that for a few days but then you wrote him an email telling him that you decided not to leave your current boyfriend? And so he forwarded to your current boyfriend all of the emails you've been writing (to the ex) in which you were trying to figure out whether or not to leave (the current) and get back together (with the ex), remember that? And even though your current didn't break up with you, you did have to beg him to stay. So remember how you got so pissed off at being forced to beg that you went and found your ex at the bar where he was drinking that night and you dragged him off of his stool by his hair? And he bruised your cheek with his beer bottle as he fell, remember that? Well tonight your current is going to break up with you after all, and you're going to go chasing down your ex before the tears start to dry. Long story short, you're gonna fuck and then your ex is gonna fall three stories from a fire escape, though it's not clear whose. He'll live, and you'll start thinking about moving to California.

Happy Rollercoaster Ride Day!

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Get More Painkillers Day

Get More Painkillers Day!

You just ate your last five, which means you have about eleven hours to get your hands on five more or else you're going to spend the night curled up in the middle of your bed with every muscle in your body clenched rock-solid and your eyes ripped open wide, staring straight at a memory of your ex-wife and your daughter.

They're in Texas now, with her Dad. You went there once to beg them back but her Dad had the sheriff lock you up with a threat to prosecute if you didn't leave town. You still had Cobra back then and when you got back from Texas you underwent a long-overdue back surgery. The doctor prescribed you a month of bedrest and vicodin. The rest is the rest.

You feel pretty good right now, but the chance that you might not have those pills before bedtime is creeping along the back of your mind like a sleek little panther. In the back of your nasal passages there's just an itch. You don't have any ideas just yet for how to get a hold of those pills. Right now you're just gonna have to pretend that your daughter's coming to visit next week. Just lay still and pretend. You'll go and find more pills in a few hours, when you won't be able to think about anything else.

Happy Get More Painkillers Day!

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Ask Your Boss For His Daughter's Hand In Marriage Day

Ask Your Boss For His Daughter's Hand In Marriage Day!

"Please," he'll say. "Not here in my office. You come up to the estate this weekend and we'll do this properly."

You'll thank him and shake his hand, then you'll get his signature on your timecard.

At the estate, you'll first have a drink in the great room with him and his wife and son and of course, his daughter Penelope.

"Good beer," you'll say to his wife.

His wife will respond, "Becks. Yes."

After that, the five of you will adjourn to the badminton court. His wife will sit out the game and have another Manhattan (her fourth). You and Penelope will play against your boss and his son. Your team will get creamed, but at one point when you and Penelope both go for the shuttlecock at the same time, you'll collide and fall to the ground together. You'll be giggling and tangled up in each other's arms. Then you'll stop and lock eyes. Before you know it, the two of you will be rolling around making out in the dirt. You'll have her shirt partway off when your boss starts shouting, "Hey you two are just gonna have to postpone your little kissyfest until me and my boy here send you two to the showers." At that, your boss and his son will exchange a high-five and you and Penelope will get up and finish the game.

Later at dinner, your boss will bring up the fact that you want to marry Penelope.

"That's great," Penelope will say.

You boss will say, "Well if she's cool with it I'm cool with it." He'll add to his wife, "He's one of our finest temps dear. She's in good hands."

After you marry his daughter, you'll be rich.

Happy Ask Your Boss For His Daughter's Hand In Marriage Day!

Friday, March 04, 2005

Merry Go Round Day

Merry Go Round Day!

You and your man hopped on the Merry Go Round at the State Fair. It was glorious for a few spins, almost like a ride designed to take your love and show it off on display for all the patrons to ooh and ahh at. Then your man spied someone from his past. A woman in black.

"I’d better go talk to her," he said to you. And with that he kissed your lips once.

"Don't take too long," you smiled.

He maneuvered along the rotating platform to climb atop an empty horse about three spots up, next to the woman in black. They were far enough around the bend that you could see her, but not him. You remember the scar across his abdomen. When you asked him about it, he said only, "Not all girls are as sweet as you."

You thought you might be sick because suddenly the ride felt like it had shorted out and started spinning with G-force. Everything was moving so fast the woman in black would appear and disappear, and so would your man, the two of them, and all the children surrounding you, flickering in and out like stop-motion animation. The only thing holding still was the swirl of color that was everything and everyone else on the fairgrounds surrounding you. And of course, when the ride finally pulled to a stop and you loosened your grip on the pole protruding from your horse's head, you were the sole patron on the Merry Go Round. Your man was gone. And so was the woman in black.

That was a year ago. Tonight, the fair returns to town. And the Merry Go Round is in service for all of the children and their grandmothers.

Get on a horse and go after your man. After a few spins, I think you'll find his trail.

Happy Merry Go Round Day!

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Art Star Day

Art Star Day!

The pills that you take only work to counter the effects of the other pills that you take. You have two shows opening on two continents in April. You have two lovers and you have been impotent since 1989. Lately, you're working only in materials that can be bought from the CVS stationery aisle. Try and fail to kill yourself at 3 PM by sawing deep enough into your left wrist that your hand nearly falls off of your arm. Spend the evening recuperating. You have a lot of work to do.

Happy Art Star Day!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Your Favorite Rock Band Or Your Girlfriend Day

Your Favorite Rock Band Or Your Girlfriend Day!

They've both been taken hostage by one of those genius-killers who like to design their killing sprees according to twisted games that make statements on human nature and the state of morality in the 21st century. Like this one:

You've just woken up in the middle of a warehouse space, fastened to a rocking chair. Instinctively, you begin to rock. Across the floor, you spy two areas roped off by white plastic chains, the kind used to keep lines of people in order at crowded flower shows. In one of the roped off areas stands your girlfriend. In the other stands your favorite rock band, The Fiery Furnaces. You don't realize yet that something is wrong because you've just woken up. You try to get out of your chair and say to your girlfriend, "Wow Stacey, what are you and the Fiery Furnaces doing here in this warehouse?" but the straight razor strapped over your lips cuts a one inch gash into each corner of your mouth. You scream.

A voice is heard over a hidden public address system. It says, "Choose who will die. Your girlfriend, or the Fiery Furnaces."

After you ask a series of questions, including the following:


Who are you?

What if I refuse?

How can I trust that if I choose one to die, you'll let the other go?



you'll ask, "Why are you doing this?"

The killer will announce over the PA system, "You are not special. You are only the first. One day, everyone in this miserable country will be forced to choose between their girlfriend and their favorite rock band."

When it's clear that you, your girlfriend, and the Fiery Furnaces are all very confused, the killer will add, "If you know what I mean."

Finally, after another moment, the killer will add, "It'll make sense later. Just choose who gets offed."

The killer has promised that whomever you choose to live will be allowed to leave the warehouse unharmed, but he could not make you the same promise. Which means that you shouldn't base your decision in selfish reasoning, since you might killed along with whomever you choose to die. And whomever you choose to die will die painfully. So, should you allow your girlfriend to live, simply out of love for her? Or should you allow The Fiery Furnaces to live, so that the world might hear a follow-up LP to 2004's "Blueberry Boat?" Your girlfriend has little to offer the world at large, but many in her immediate circle of acquaintance will miss her dearly. But then again, The Fiery Furnaces has never cared for you while you were ill. But they have voiced numerous truths to you through their songs, truths that you might never have stumbled upon had you not heard their music.

Now your girlfriend and The Fiery Furnaces are all shouting your name, begging you to let them live. The Fiery Furnaces are promising a really great follow-up to 2004's "Blueberry Boat." Your girlfriend is demanding that you remember the weekend the two of you spent in Virginia.

The killer repeats. "Choose."

Incidentally, whomever you choose to die will be fed to a walk-in closet full of alligators. If you're killed (if!) you'll just be stabbed five times in the stomach and left to bleed until you're gone.

Happy Your Favorite Rock Band Or Your Girlfriend Day!

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

The Elementary School Diaries Day

The Elementary School Diaries Day!

Between the ages of six and ten, you'd drop your pants for any boy or girl who was the slightest bit curious to see what your pee parts looked like in comparison to their pee parts. Write a tell-all book about all the kids you undressed with and for behind bushes and in basement rec rooms. Call it "Childhood Lost" or "The Curiosity Rapes" or "If You Show Me Yours." If you did not have an addiction to crystal meth between the ages of six and ten, embellish. We are all going to be very very rich.

Happy The Elementary School Diaries Day!