Friday, April 28, 2006

Be The Bait Day!

When you took over the Presidency of your high school's chapter of Students Against Premarital Sex (SAPS), the club was at death's door. Membership was low, the club's initiatives were criticized for being largely toothless, and the previous president had been ousted after a particularly embarrassing scandal that had launched a heated debate in the editorial pages of your high school's newspaper over the definition of the word "fingerbang." You knew if you were going to have any effect at all, something bold would be necessary.

That's why tonight, with your parents out of town, you're inviting your boyfriend of two months over to your house to watch some DVDs. Outside of some controlled kissing, you and Ronald have remained chaste and he has been very supportive of your effort to promote abstinence as the leader of
SAPS. He even joined the club and took an oath to save himself. But you're way hot, and you can see the fire in his eyes. You know that his only chance of honoring that oath is if you honor it for him.

In the name of confused teens throughout the school, your boyfriend's reputation will have to be sacrificed. You have to show the student body that the head of SAPS is not content to hand out pamphlets and gather petitions to quash in-school condom distribution. They need to learn that
the new SAPS is about aggressive, preventive initiatives that will target adolescent lust at its source: The Adolescent himself. SAPS is aiming directly at the loins of the student body, and it's going to start by cleaning up its own house.

When Elizabethtown grows dull and you and Ronald begin to kiss, close the standard ten inch window of space between your torsos and embrace your boyfriend the way a wife would embrace her husband. Guide Ronald's hands to places they would never have dared to go of their own volition.
Stir his desire to a boil until his lust takes control, until the only way he'll stop is if you stop him. When his pants are undone and his shirt is off, give the signal.

Shout, "Britney fell!"

Your SAPS tactical chief will spring from the closet and snap photos of your boyfriend in his fallen state, half-naked with his hands grabbing at your still fully-clothed person. The flashbulbs will pop and he'll be too bewildered with craving to know that he's been set up before it's too late and the evidence has been captured.

"What have you done?" he'll ask.

"I've obtained proof that you have no business being in SAPS," tell him. "Your membership is revoked."

"But what are you going to do with the pictures?" he'll ask.

"Publish them," say. Try not to cry. "I've already been guaranteed the front page of the school paper. The entire matriculating class is going to learn on Monday that the new SAPS president will not tolerate weakness of any kind in her membership."

Your boyfriend will look like a puppy tossed from a moving car on the side of a highway.

"No matter how much it pains her," add.

"But I wouldn't have. If you hadn't�"

Again, bite your lip. You so enjoyed these last two months with Ronald and you can't believe you have it in you to hurt him like this. But abstinence initiatives must come first.

"It's for the sake of the program," tell him. "I need to prove that I'm serious. Serious enough to sacrifice my own happiness. Think of the message it will send to all those girls being pressured into sex, looking for someone to tell them there's another way to go."

Ronald won't be able to think that far in advance. You'll just have to tell him to leave. On Monday the pictures will appear in the paper, and everyone will see what appears to be you refusing the aggressive advances of the boy who holds your hand in the hallways, and your afternoon meetings
will grow so crowded with prospective members you'll have to move to the band room to fit everybody. Ronald will be a pariah to his old friends, and he'll fall in with a whole new and far less morally sound crowd. He'll die of a sexually transmitted disease complicated by drug addiction at the
age of seventeen, effectively turning him into a cautionary tale for thousands of incoming high school students who want some guidance about how far is too far.

What you do to Ronald tonight will earn you quite a few sleepless nights in the years to come. But he took an oath to promote abstinence, an oath to do whatever it takes to curb teen sex amongst his peers, an oath he is too weak to honor. The only way Ronald can be a service to SAPS is if you
destroy him. In exploiting his weakness, you'll give strength to countless students for whom it's not too late. If he understood what purpose his humiliation might serve, would he object?

Happy Be The Bait Day!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Get Left For Dead Day!

Today is the day to get left to rot in your own sick by everyone who was supposed to give a damn. This one's not just about our brave troops fighting overseas. Today is also about the husband who shouts into the kitchen for his wife to make him a sandwich and she never shows. It's about the little kid waiting for her Dad to pick her up after school but is left to just stand there by the curb wondering what the fuck. It's about the garbageman who tosses a few bags into the back and when he slaps the side of the truck, nothing happens. He goes to the front and finds the doors ajar and his coworkers gone.

"Not even a goddamn note," the garbageman will think. "I'm such a giving fool."

It's about the guy who is approached by tourists to take their picture, and in the time it takes for him to look down at the camera and find the right button, the tourists take off, leaving him there to hold their camera. Forever.

"I'm standing here with my thumb up my ass!" the man with the camera will say.

It's about the 19 year old college kid on spring break who wakes up with a headache in his Caribbean resort cabana to find that his buddies and all the help have split and the island's government has been overthrown in a hideous coup. If he makes it home without being impaled on about nineteen bayonets, he's going to say to his buddies, "Dude you totally bailed on me."

But his buddies won't care. Neither will that little girl's Dad or that hungry husband's wife. Or the trashmen. Or the tourists. They all just left. Like it all meant nothing to them.

"I guess nothing is all there ever was," the husband, the little girl, the garbageman, the guy with the camera and that asshole with bleached tips and a Puka shell necklace on Spring Break will think. "I guess I've always been on my own. Any intimacy I've enjoyed has been an illusion. Time to live like everyone else. Time to start grabbing for what's mine."

Get out there and use somebody.

Happy Get Left For Dead Day!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

A Notch On Your Bedpost Day!

Tonight you're going to enter your 10,007th notch on your bedpost to commemorate your 10,007th consecutive night of sleeping alone since Francine left. Your bedpost is getting to look a little bit whittled. In fact you might need to get a new bed frame. Unless Francine comes back soon.

"She might come back," you'll say to no one while waiting for sleep that won't come.

Francine was younger than you and she felt like you were forcing the relationship to move ahead as far as it could go because you were afraid she'd run off and find someone her own age.

"It was like he'd put his hands in his ears and sing a song to keep from hearing me anytime I mentioned anything about wanting to expand my horizons," is akin to something Francine might say if she had been interviewed for this.

Tonight you're going to have a dream about riding a log flume where the log goes off the track and lands on your best friend Mark and his wife and new baby. Mark has been very patient about your breakup, inviting you over for dinner every week, and in your dream he'll be flattened. When you wake up you'll rub your bedpost to see if the bed frame is cracking. You won't be able to tell in the dark, but as you fall back to sleep the bed will feel a little off�balance. And lonely. And cold. And hopeless.

Happy A Notch On Your Bedpost Day!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Lead Them From Their Innocence Day!

Everyone at the office calls you "The Creepy Temp" because whenever anyone jokes around with you, you tend to stare at them until they just walk away unnerved. Also, you have a photo of Maggie Gyllenhaal from the movie Secretary pinned to your cubicle wall. You keep to yourself and you do the work well, so no one has any plans to let you go. They're content to just set aside a few minutes at the end of every weekly status meeting to allow someone to say, "[YOUR NAME] kind of seemed a little freaky in the kitchen earlier. Just kind of standing there staring at nothing. He make anyone else nervous?" Then Susan will bring up how she's pretty sure you once reached underneath the adjoining cubicle wall and touched her calf just for a split second.

No one was expecting you to show up at today's softball game. They'll have just called the rainout and will be packing up their things when someone spots you walking across the field.

"This is it," Jonas will say, and everyone will laugh. Jonas always jokes about how he's pretty sure you're going to show up one day with an Uzi and "go postal" as he likes to say.

They'll all stop where they are on the bleachers and wait for you to approach.

"No game today I'm afraid," Lucinda will say. Lucinda is the one who signs your time sheet.

"Where are you going now?" ask them.

"Probably just go get some beers," Jonas will say.

They won't explicitly invite you, allowing the silence after Jonas' statement to be their grudging invitation.

Say, "You guys wanna go see a dead body?"

They'll all shrug and follow you down to the creek-bed behind the oscillating fan factory. You'll all walk silently together with you in the lead. It will probably be the first time you've seen your co-workers together when none of them were making any jokes. Not even Jonas.

"The hill gets pretty steep going down, so you guys should grab each other's hands as you climb down," tell them.

You'll continue on without slowing your pace in case any of them worry that you are only creating an excuse to hold hands with one of the girls. They'll all buddy up, guys with girls, except for the last three leftover girls who will all join hands and climb down last in one group. The hill will have lots of rocky steps and tall drops to climb down.

Stay ahead of them. The further away you are, the more they'll appreciate you. Leading the way, scoping the path ahead for rough terrain, this will be the first time when your coworkers will see your quiet and withdrawn demeanor as being completely appropriate to the situation. They'll remain silent in kind. This is a solemn journey.

After another mile, you'll be so far ahead they won't be able to find you. They'll start calling your name.

"Down here!" shout. They'll come to the lip of the hill and see you at the bottom of a ravine beside a young boy splayed out in the weeds. They'll begin the climb down.

"How'd he die?" Jonas will ask.

Tell him. "Cancer."

The boy-girl pairs won't work down here. All of the girls will pair up in twos and threes, huddling and sometimes crying. The boys will stand alone, staring at the dead body with confusion on their faces, not sure what to do with their hands.

"Aren't those the folks from Leland Morrow?" Lucinda will ask.

A hundred yards down the ravine another group of people in corporate dress will be staring at their own dead body. They'll be huddled in the same groups as your coworkers are. One or two will look up to try to make out which office you're all from.

"They bought a whole lot of software bundles last quarter," Susan will say. "Maybe we can try and get some face time with them on the climb back up."

The others will silence Susan with their eyes. Everyone will again look at the body as if to beg pardon for the interruption.

"Do you think he's at peace?" Jonas will ask.

No one will say anything. Then you'll look up and see that they're all waiting to hear an answer from you.

"I think he's gone," say. "I don't think peace has anything to do with it."

In another five minutes you'll all be climbing back to the office. You won't be able to remember who started walking first. You'll all just find yourselves on your way. Tomorrow, and every day after that, you won't be able to forget what happened this afternoon. You're never going to have coworkers like these again. Jesus, does anybody?

Happy Lead Them From Their Innocence Day!

Monday, April 24, 2006

You're A Princess Day!

Today you're going to discover that you are the long-lost ancestor of royalty for a small country in the far eastern region of Europe.

"You're a princess," the kindly old crown's attendant will tell you. "It's time for you to claim your throne."

First, the attendant will teach you how to walk so that you look as if your bowels have been fully vacated. Then she'll teach you how to eat without honking through your nose. Next, she'll teach you how to dance with Princes representing those nations that you need to establish an alliance with, in order to thwart marauding armies. Next, she'll teach you how to talk like a lady (don't call it a "puss"). Finally, she'll take you shopping on the Castle's credit card.

Once you've learned how to be a princess, you'll say goodbye to your parents and you'll fly to the nation that has always been your home, where you'll quickly be beheaded following a particularly messy coup (the third one this Spring). Since the throne cannot remain empty, no matter how many crowns the peasants want to send bouncing into wicker baskets, the crown's attendant will reopen the books and hunt down another descendant with just barely a drop of royal blood in her veins to come up to the castle and rule. Hopefully, if the weather gets nice, she'll rule for more than a few weeks before the next revolt.

Happy You're A Princess Day!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Your Wayward Older Sister Is Now A Ticket Scalper Day!

Your father sunk all of his money into your Ivy League education while your sister was flunking out of community college. Your father kicked her out and she turned to ticket scalping. It's kept her afloat, earning her enough money to never have to come home and ask for a loan no matter how much she needed one. But today you're going to come to her for a favor.

When you find her on the corner outside of the Coliseum she'll be trying to convince a couple of teenagers that even though her tickets say "Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus" on the face, they'll still get them into the Pink concert.

"I need your help," you'll tell her.

"I'm with clients," she'll say.

The kids will take that chance to walk away emptyhanded.

"You just blew that sale for me," she'll say.

"I have my own clients," tell her. "They love ice shows."

"I was wondering what would send you out to this end of town."

"Please," you'll tell her. "You know I'd help you. If you ever asked me that is."

Your sister will not have looked you in the eye yet. Her eyes will be scanning the streets for people who might either want to buy or sell tickets. "I don't need your help," she'll bark.

"Four tickets," tell her. "Center rink. If these guys don't walk away with some glitter from the skater's leotards on their suitjackets, I'll lose this account."

"And I should care because�?" your sister will say.

"Because I'm your sister," tell her.

At that your sister will look you in the eye finally. She'll touch her hand to your shoulder and she'll say, "I'll get you the tickets. Don't worry about it."

"Thanks Sis," you'll say.

The two of you will hug. Then you'll cry and talk about the old times. Then you'll skip through a cemetery and come out on the other side to find an old storefront for rent where you'll open up a bakery selling pies made from the recipes passed down from your mother, who has been dead a while.

Happy Your Wayward Older Sister Is Now A Ticket Scalper Day!

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Your Roommate Is Way Too Into God Day!

Whenever the picture on the TV becomes perfect, your roommate will say, "God really came through for us didn't he?" Or if your landlord renews your lease without a big rent increase, your roommate will read the fine print and say things like, "God definitely copyedited this paragraph." What pisses you off though, is your roommate thinks God is so awesome that he won't give you the credit you deserve. Like when you sweep up, your roommate will come out of his room and say, "Man, God cleaned the shit out of this place!"

And you'll tell him, "No, that was me. I swept. It's my week, remember?"

But he won't budge. "God did most of it," he'll say. "God always gets in the hard to reach corners."

Sometimes you'll tell him that you actually got on your hands on knees with the brush and dustpan, but other times you just let it slide.

Today when you and your roommate come home from brunch, your apartment will have been broken into. Your roommate will immediately start screaming shit at God for making it happen. But the burglar will still be in the apartment at that point, and he'll come sprinting out of your roommate's bedroom and he'll swing your roommate's DVD player at his face and take off out the open door. The electrical cord from the DVD player will whip at your roommate's ear and slice it open. When you visit him in the hospital, you'll find him in bed with his arms folded averting his eyes from the ceiling. He'll tell you that God is trying to apologize, but he's not ready to forgive him yet. Figure out a delicate way to tell him you want him to move out when he recovers.

Happy Your Roommate Is Way Too Into God Day!

Friday, April 21, 2006

You Always Sleep With The Winner Of Trivia Night Day!

For the last fourteen weeks, you've been sleeping with Manny. He's been undefeated at the weekly McCluskey's Bar & Grill's Trivia Night for so long that you swear if someone doesn't beat him soon he's gonna pop the question. Then what'll you say?

I'm sorry Manny, but I always dreamed I'd marry someone for more than their unfailing ability to call up random facts while inebriated and under tremendous pressure. And besides, if we got married and you lost trivia night one week, whether because you had suffered a head injury or because you faced off with some drifter who just seemed to have a superhuman retention of the minutiae of popular culture, well I'd just have no choice but to commit adultery in order to sleep with the winner that week.

That would only make Manny ask you something along the lines of, "Why do you have to sleep with the winner of trivia night every week anyway?"

You haven't come up with an answer to that one yet. Luckily, you won't have to. Not after tonight's Trivia Night.

At tonight's Trivia Night, Manny's going to go up against a new opponent. One who's got an unfamiliar face and shoes that look like they were bought back East. This man will have a manner about him that makes it clear he's not from around here, and there's no way in hell he'll be around for very long. When he joins in the game it'll be apparent that he's playing because he really needs that grand prize of thirty-five dollars cash. Needs it like somebody's life depended on it. He's the drifter you always thought might come along. And goddamn if he doesn't know a whole lot of shit about nothing!

From midway through round one it will be clear who's taking you home tonight. Manny will blank on a question about the TV show Dynasty. But the drifter will look as if he's barely paying attention, and when the question is thrown to him he'll mutter "John Forsythe" as bored as if he were ordering a side of mayo with his chicken club.

The drifter will sweep the next three rounds. Round one, he'll nail the year the first Swatch was sold in America. Round two, he'll breeze to a win on a question about Presidents born in the Bible belt. And round three, he'll slam it home on a two-parter about Peyton Place author Grace Metalious.

By the time they hit the championship round, it will be obvious to everyone in the bar that Manny's reign is over. His fans will have abandoned him in his sweat-drenched tee shirt and table full of empty highball glasses (Manny always drinks more when the game is close) so that they can gather behind the drifter. They'll all want to stand a little bit closer to the winner nobody ever heard of before. They'll try to catch his eye on the rare occasion his gaze leaves his hands folded on the table before him. And they'll all let out a cheer and jump into each other's arms when he brings it all home on a question about the final resting place of Edgar Allen Poe. (How could Manny not have known that one?)

It will take a while for the crowd of well-wishers to part so that you can get closer to him. He'll barely even acknowledge their congratulations. They'll fawn and pander and he'll only offer the slightest of nods in return. You'll be about ready to slap the sycophants aside when the crowd finally thins enough for you to offer a place in your bed to this week's McCluskey's Bar & Grill's Trivia Night winner.

"Hi, I'm�"

"I know who you are," he'll say.

"You do?"

"I do. I've been to this town before," he'll say.

"But I thought I knew everybody who ever passed through here," you'll say with a smile.

"I've been to this town a hundred times," he'll say. "Towns like this, they're all over the country, every one exactly the same. Every one of 'em's got a trivia night where I can win myself some drink money. And every one of 'em's got a lady who'll offer herself up to me just because I know a lot of useless stuff about TV and politics."

"I suddenly feel so�"

"You sure do keep getting prettier though," he'll say. "That's another thing I can count on. With every single town, it gets harder and harder to say to you that I'm just passing through, on my way back to a lady who might not welcome me home. So I'm afraid I'm going to have to decline your invitation, though I do appreciate it."

The drifter will rise from his table and put his hat on his head.

You'll say to him, "No one's ever said no before."

The drifter won't say anything. But he will wait for more from you.

"I don't even know why I do it," you'll tell him. "Why do I feel the need to go home with the winner every week?"

The drifter will say, "Now that is one question I do not have the answer for. Stay warm, pretty lady." And with that he'll head out the door.

You'll feel invisible for a moment, like you're made of nothing. Then you'll spot Manny across the bar, sitting alone at a corner table with his hands wrapped around a mug of beer. The both of you will have had your identities stripped away from you over that last couple of hours, so go and sit with him. He'll take you home tonight and you'll marry him in six months. One day your children will ask when you knew you were supposed to be together. Just tell them you knew right away.

Happy You Always Sleep With The Winner Of Trivia Night Day!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

The Doo Wop Group Stopped Day!

Today as you approach your apartment, you'll notice that your spirit is a little lighter, the neighborhood feels a little more welcoming, and you won't be able to help but smile at everyone you see. When you're half a block away, you'll realize what makes today so special. The Doo Wop group that has been singing "Under The Boardwalk" outside of the Quizno's over and over again without pause for years is presently silent.

They'll still be there. All five of them in their matching gray sweatshirts spread out across the unused steps rising up to the sealed second door of the industrial building across the street. But today, they won't be hunched over in a circle snapping their fingers and harmonizing at ear bleeding volume. Today they'll just sit there together. Silent, and at peace. Approach them.

"You guys on break?" ask.

The one in the middle, the one who always sings the "We'll be havin' some fun" part will say, "We just finished."

"Just finished what?"

The bass singer, the one who does all of the "Bao Bao Bao" stuff will tell you in his deep, seductive growl, "Our work is complete."

"What are you guys talking about?"

The tenor with all the silver bracelets on both wrists will say, "We're not gonna sing 'Under The Boardwalk' no more."

Your heart will leap in your chest at the thought. And almost as quickly it will sink into your stomach and you'll ask with fear, "So what are you gonna sing now?"

"Nothing," the one in the middle will say. "It's time to move on. It was our intention to give something back to the neighborhood."

"By singing 'Under The Boardwalk' over and over again day in and day out. That's more like a haunting."

"Call it what you will," the bass will bark. "But we have someplace else to sing now."

At that all of them will laugh heartily. You'll continue on your way home, uncomfortable with what just transpired. You should be thrilled that you're never going to hear that menace of a song again, but something about the cryptic explanation they gave and the way they laughed at the end. You'll feel like you've been had. When you reach the end of the block and you glance back at the steps, the Doo Wop group will be gone.

Later tonight, go to the library and look up all the local Doo Wop groups on microfiche. You'll come upon a story from 1967 about a Doo Wop group that was found to be responsible for a string of burglaries in the neighborhood. They used their spot on the steps as a chance to case all the apartments on the block and note the comings and goings of residents. The heat came down on them fast when one of their burglaries was interrupted and they were forced to bludgeon the homeowner to death. It happened just around the corner from you. They must have thought they were in the clear because they went right back to their spot on the steps, singing their songs. The police came looking and the members of the group drew guns. All five of them were killed in the shootout, right there on the steps.

You'll look closely at the yellowed photo taken of the group while they were still alive. It will be the exact same faces, the exact same sweatshirts. The men who've been tormenting you with their singing have been dead for nearly forty years.

"My God," you'll think. "They were ghosts. Probably forced to sing to the neighborhood for decades as penance for their crimes. This was purgatory for them as they waited to pass on to the next world."

But that would mean that God believes that making them sing Doo Wop to the neighborhood is a repayment to the God-fearing citizens that they've wronged. Which in turn would have to imply that God really likes Doo Wop. Therefore, you are going to have to renounce God and all for which he stands.

Become evil. Fight the Doo Wop.

Happy The Doo Wop Group Stopped Day!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The Cable Installer And The Homeless Guy Day!

You work as a technician for the cable company, cruising the city all day long in a little white van hooking people up with their HBO and their internet. You wanted to quit months ago, but you need the money. Especially now that you went ahead and proposed to your girlfriend.

Today you're going to be sent to an address that doesn't exist. Or at least, an address that used to exist. When you pull up you'll see nothing but a vacant lot full of dirt and debris. You'll check the neighboring addresses and it will be clear that you're in the right place.

"Cable man!" a voice will shout.

A homeless man will squeeze through the fence of the vacant lot and approach you.

"You give me my TV, cable man," he'll say.

"Sorry," you'll tell him. "I must have the wrong address."

The homeless man will say, "To hell with that. You give me my cable TV."

You'll explain to the homeless man that he has to have a residence with electrical power and a television set. He'll point towards the middle of the vacant lot at the TV sitting on an overturned oilcan that appears to be working somehow.

"Oh," you'll say. "You're one of those homeless people who can still watch TV."

He'll say, "You win some you lose some."

You'll explain to the homeless man that he'll still need an address where he can receive mail for the bills and it looks pretty clear that that's not possible with his current situation. He'll ask if you might be able to bend the rules for your future father-in-law.

"You're..?" you won't know what to ask. Your girlfriend told you her father was homeless, but she never went into details. "But how did you know about me?"

The homeless man will explain that he breaks into his daughter's apartment from time to time to steal the jewelry she inherited from her mother, and on occasion he's had to hide in the closet while you and his daughter have sex. "But I got a good look at you," he'll say. "Figured it'd be best if I met you, seeing as we'll be kin soon. Figured you might give me my cable for free. Do your old man a favor."

You'll worry over what your girlfriend would want you to do, but your need to make a good impression with her father will be too strong to deny him. So you'll run a cable illegally out of the neighboring building's patch and hook your girlfriend's homeless father up.

"So how do you keep your TV working out here on the streets like that?" you'll ask.

"Some homeless people are just lucky," he'll say. "You be good to my daughter?"

"Are you going to break into our house and steal from us after we're married?"

Your future father-in-law will say, "Nope." Then you'll both laugh really hard because you'll know he's lying. He'll settle in for some "Entourage" on-demand and you'll head off for your remaining assignments, really glad that you got along so well with your girlfriend's dad. When you get home and tell her what happened, she'll cry for a day before telling you that the man hasn't tried to contact her in thirteen years.

Happy The Cable Installer And The Homeless Guy Day!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Walk The Path Of The Chicken Or The Fish Day!

Congratulations. Today is the first day of the rest of your life as a Cater Waiter. You're about to join the ranks of the only truly free class of people.

"But they're like bums that can hold down jobs for four hours at a stretch!" your Dad wll exclaim when you tell him. "Oh please think this through. The cater waiters at your sister Nancy's wedding were like a street gang without the bicycle chains. If you're a cater waiter you're nothing but�"

"Nothing but a drifter in a stolen tux," you'll tell Marty, the veteran cater waiter who'll show you the ropes before the wedding party arrives. Marty is one of the few who've worked events at this hall before. Most cater waiters like to keep three hundred miles between each job. But Marty got caught in a trap.

"I fell in love with a bride's maid," he'll tell you. "Every time word floats down about a convention in Scottsdale or a Bar Mitzvah in Poughkeepsie, I get my tux all packed and I'm just about to climb out the window when I catch sight of her, sleeping in the moonlight. And I just climb right back into bed and snuggle up beside her. Don't let it happen to you kid, if you want to walk the Path Of The Chicken Or The Fish."

That's what they call it, the Path Of The Chicken Or The Fish. The ones who consider it less of a job and more of a lifestyle, they see themselves as unique persons of leisure, choosing the path of least responsibility. It's your life, starting today. You'll show up out of nowhere, with barely your first name as identification, to make a quick hundred bucks shuffling around wedding receptions and business conventions with cold soup and crab-cakes. You'll make friends with the bartender to skim your drinks on shift and you'll eat potatoes off of dinner plates after you leave the kitchen but before you can be seen by the guests. You won't pay taxes and you'll only have sex in unwashed groups, after the wedding party has dispersed and the sidework is complete. You'll all adjourn to the dance floor and lay down in a blanket of naked and writhing underemployment. The only time the bunch of you will bathe is when you find an old swimming hole where you can strip down and dive in from dangerously high cliffsides.

The company of the other cater waiters will be the closest you'll get to being part of a family. You won't see your father or mother again, unless you happen to work an event they're attending. And if you're lucky, you'll never fall in love. Not even with another cater waiter. She'll wanna do a Tech Expo in Seattle but you'll want to work an advertising awards dinner in New York and before you know it you'll be at each other's throats with, "Why don't you ever want to work the events that I wanna work?" Then one of you will have to move out of the car and it's just a scene you don't want any part of.

Walk the path. Serve, collect, then hit the road. You're a cater waiter, and for the six years you have left to live**, you will know what it means to be free.

**(cater waiters average a lifespan of six years following their first event due to the prevalence of contagious disease among catering wait staff and the likelihood of freezing to death in January and February, when meeting halls go dark and the winter grows angry)

Happy Walk The Path Of The Chicken Or The Fish Day!

Monday, April 17, 2006

Milkman Day!

You're the last milkman in the country. You have just one customer left, a 91 year old woman who doesn't know she's the last woman in America to have milk delivered to her house. She also doesn't know that all these years she's been the love of your life. Tell her today.

"We're relics," say to her.

"I wonder what kept us from moving into the future with the rest of the world?" she'll ask.

"An appreciation for the simpler things?" you'll propose.

"Isn't it amazing?" she'll say. "You being my milkman all these years and you never once came in through the back door and ravaged me on my kitchen table."

"Yeah, the other milkmen called us the Will-They-Won't-They couple of the milk routes, since you're the only housewife of any milk route that didn't take it from a Milkman."

"What kept you?" she'll ask.

"Perhaps I didn't want to reduce you to just another lonely housewife that I could enter as a notch on my belt," tell her.

She'll tell you that the mailman never cared quite so much.

Say, "Now I feel like a fool. I kept real happiness at bay to hold on to some imaginary idea of purity, while all the while the mailmen was sending you to a place of ecstasy. That could have been me."

She'll walk her fingers up your chest and say, "It's never too late."

Tell her it actually is too late. She's 91 and you're 87. Neither of you should be having sex with anybody, and you don't really have any desire to try. Sit side-by-side and silently enjoy the twilight of your lives.

Happy Milkman Day!

Sunday, April 16, 2006

They Call You Chocolate Martha Day!

It's because you're a 43 year old woman and you always have chocolate on your face. Little kids run up to you and they say, "Do you have any more chocolate?" And you say, "Nope," even though you do. You just don't like to share your chocolate.

Today you're going to be in line at the airport metal detector and you're going to meet a little boy with cancer.

The boy's mother will say to you, "These heightened security measures sure are annoying, huh?"

You'll say to the boy's mother, "Yep. Nice to meet'cha. They call me Chocolate Martha."

The boy's mother will say, "I predict we're going to be friends for a very long time."

Then the boy will notice the chocolate on your face. He'll say, "Do you have any more chocolate?"

You'll tell him no.

The boy will cough. "I have cancer you know."

You'll just shake your head no. Then you'll wait to be ushered through the metal detector.

When you pass through, the detector will beep and you'll be forced to empty your purse of the 43 tin-foil wrapped Hershey's Kisses in your bag. You'll steal a glance back at the boy with cancer and his mother. The boy with cancer will be crying because he's dying and you made him feel like nobody cares enough to even give him some chocolate. The mother will just look away. You'll feel bad because it would have been nice to have a friend for once. Then you'll think about having to share your chocolate with the boy with cancer, and just thinking about it will make you glad to be all alone. You'll spend the flight caressing your candy.

Happy They Call You Chocolate Martha Day!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

One Bad Apple Day!

You've run the most profitable apple cart in the city for forty years now. It's difficult holding off the competition. For example, today a rival apple cart operator is going to kidnap your wife and daughter and he won't return them unless you compromise your apple inventory with wormy apples.

"A worm in every eighth apple sold," the voice on the phone will say. "It has to look like your crop is compromised, but not sabotaged."

You've never sold a wormy apple in your life. And you thought you never would. But now these kidnappers are making you decide which you love more: your wife and daughter, or your integrity as a produce salesman. Even if you get your wife and daughter back, other rivals will strike next. It won't stop until your customer-base is obliterated. The best thing to do is to show them you can't be compromised. Find where the kidnappers are hiding out and when they show you your wife and daughter, kill them yourself. It's the only way to keep the worms at bay.

Happy One Bad Apple Day!

Friday, April 14, 2006

In The Margins Day!

You're about halfway through that Malamud book you bought at the Once Again Bookshop. Today you'll get to around page 181 and you'll see a small note written in the right-hand margin.

It is important that you meet the man at the Degas on Friday at 3.

You check the copyright page and it shows that you bought a reprint published in 1974. That note could have been written any time within the last thirty-two years. Whomever wrote it could be dead already. But you never ever work so you figure what the hay.

There's only one Degas at the art museum. It's of one of those ballerinas (perv). You'll get there a little early and stand before the painting, taking it in. You'll hold the book in your hand at your side. At 3:00 on the dot, a man who looks to be in his fifties or sixties will enter the gallery and when he sees you, he'll stop in his tracks.

"Holy shit! You bought my book!" He'll have a lisp.

Say, "Yeah. Saw the note and I figured�"

"I've had to come to this fucking painting every Friday for the past twenty-seven years! My Christ, I can't believe it! It's all over!"

The man will do a little dance.

"Um, glad I could help," tell him.

"Wow, thank you. Thank you so fucking much!" The man will grab you in his arms and hug you tight. Then he'll turn to the painting and give it an "Up Yours" with a slap to his forearm. "So long you talentless little waif. I hope you get an anorexia-related complication and faint mid- Chass�."

He'll hold his middle finger as close to the ballerina as he can without drawing the attention of the guards.

"So, what was so imperative? Is your life in danger?"

"My life's in tatters, if that's what you're asking. After having to drop everything and come here every Friday for all these years, all the things I've passed on because of this commitment. My life's been a whole lot of false-starts, if that's what you're asking."

"It isn't," say. "Why'd you write that note?"

The man will shrug. "I thought it was a cool idea. To arrange something clandestine like that in the margin of a book. And I came here the first few weeks expecting every time to meet the stranger that bought my book. But I always left alone. Then it became kind of a dare for myself. Like, I've already wasted all this time on it, you know? I even went down to the bookshop every week and checked to see if it sold, but it never did. Until now!"

The man will kiss you on the lips in a "welcoming you as liberators" kind of way.

"So you dragged me up here for nothing?"

The man will hand you some microfilm. "You're not going to leave empty-handed."

Say, "What is this? Launch codes?"

The man will say, "Just a vacation I took in Cape May in 1970. Good snapshots." The man will kiss your lips again. Then he'll dance out of the gallery as if he were that painted ballerina he'd just showered with epithets and obscene gestures.

When you get home you'll examine the microfilm. Instead of vacation snapshots, it will contain evidence of a 30-year old international scandal with proof that President Carter was behind it all along. Get down, they're coming!

Happy In The Margins Day!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Your Brother The Cult Leader Day!

You hate how your parents are always comparing you to your brother the cult leader. "You always need to borrow money. Why can't you have thousands of international devotees send you Experience Tuition fees every year like Ronald has?" they ask. "Ronald came over last week and he had some of his followers reshingle the house," they tell you. "Have you found a cheaper apartment yet?" And then there's always, "Did you hear how Ronald sent that stadium full of cancer patients into remission just by having them all join hands and listen to him hum into a microphone? He calls much more often than you do."

You're going to have to call your parents tonight and tell them you can't make it home for the holiday. Don't tell them it's because you've had a tough month and you don't think you can handle listening to Ronald talk about all the enemies he's destroyed via his bottomless checkbook style of litigation. Just tell them you have to work. They won't care anyway. "We're not celebrating the holidays this year," they'll tell you. "Ronald's flying us all out to his De-Pollution Retreat center in St Tropez. Sorry you can't come, but Ronald doesn't think you'd have fun anyway because you're too accepting of the Modern Lie." That's his clever way of referring to modern life. "You're brother's so funny," they add. "You were always the serious and quiet one. He was the funny one."

Happy Your Brother The Cult Leader Day!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Welcome To Jail Day!

Tonight when you show up at jail, everyone on your cell block will jump out of their cells and shout, "Welcome To D-Block" and they'll unfurl a banner from the upper level that reads, "Glad To Have Ya, Kiddie Raper." You'll meet so many new people you'll barely be able to remember your own name, let alone everybody else's. They'll have managed to smuggle in a cake for you, and after it's cut everyone will gather for a "Challenge Circle," which is where two inmates meet in a circle and try to rape each other. You'll realize that it's a lot like Fight Club, except with rape. And just like with Fight Club, the surge of male camaraderie you'll feel will cause you to raise your hand and say, "Can I be next?" Everyone will applaud and start chanting, "New Guy! New Guy!" You'll be paired up with an older looking Aryan, and he'll rape you pretty fast. But in the end he'll give you his hand to pull you back up and he'll say, "Better luck next time." And everyone will applaud when you leave the circle because you'll have shown that you really want to be a part of their family. The next three weeks you spend in the infirmary will be torture as you count down the days until you're healthy enough to go see your new friends in D-Block.

Happy Welcome To Jail Day!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Found In The Ice Chest Day!

You intend to wait until you got to the Bed and Breakfast, but that storm they're predicting is going to make you and your girlfriend pull over at an old roadside motel for the night. You'll both be so charmed you'll decide that rickety old motel is the perfect place to ask her to marry you. But first you'll go get some ice for your soft drinks.

In the ice chest you'll find a bottle of champagne sporting a label you've never heard of. You'll pull it out of the chest to get a closer look. The bottle will be dated 1912.

"Put my champagne down," the terrifying motel operator who has a limp will say. "I'm saving that for when my wife returns."

You'll apologize and say that it looks like she's in for one heck of a good sip of bubbly.

Back in the motel room you'll propose and she'll say yes and you'll make love and then you'll hop into the bath. You'll be so blissed out you'll start to fall asleep a bit. You won't hear your new fianc� leave the room. You won't hear a thing until you hear the POP! of the bottle of champagne in her hands.

"Look what I found in the ice chest. It's like a sign!" she'll say.

The terrifying motel operator with a limp will come in and kill you both. Then he'll put both of your bodies in the ice chest, on top of his wife's body, who clearly isn't coming back at all because she's dead and in the ice chest. The terrifying motel operator with a limp must just be crazy if he's saving bottled beverages for a woman he knows is dead. And then he goes and kills a young couple in love for drinking some champagne that no one's ever going to drink? He overreacts.

Happy Found In The Ice Chest Day!

Monday, April 10, 2006

They're Moving You Out Of Reception Day!

They're going to be switching you to a desk in the back so that they can try out the new temp up front for a little while. It's not that they're unhappy with your work. They just feel you've gotten a little "vein-y" lately.


"Your skin is so pale it's almost translucent," your supervisor will tell you. "You're very ghostly lately. People have been complaining about having to see you first thing when they come back from lunch because you remind them of death."

Say, "I'm going through a breakup. I should be allowed some time to let my skin slide off of my bones. Every breath from my mouth could be a sob if I forget to grind my fist under my knee first."

Your supervisor will sit up in her chair, fold her hands in front of her on her desk, and she'll say, "That's very understandable. But while you're healing, why don't we just pull you out of the waiting room for a little while, hmm?"

Ask her why she folded her hands in front of her like she did. "You're trying to send me an off-limits signal, aren't you? You're afraid that since I'm going through a breakup I'm gonna make a pass at you, right?"

Your supervisor will keep her hands clasped before her. "Yes I am," she'll say.

Tell her, "Relax. I'm still too heartbroken to even know that other women exist."

Your supervisor will unclasp her hands and breath a sigh of relief. "Thank goodness!" she'll say. "So you'll consent to being moved to the back for a while?"

Say, "Why not. Might do me some good."

Your supervisor will say, "Excellent." Then the both of you will get up from your chairs, the perfect time to make a pass. Go on, everyone in the world has probably been waiting with bated breath for you to be single again. Give them what they crave!

Happy They're Moving You Out Of Reception Day!

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Snowglobe Day!

You love creating miniature dioramas for snowglobes. But you also love killing runaways and leaving clues for the police to try to grasp whom and where you'll kill next. In these two loves, you refused to compromise.

The way your game of cat and mouse works is, you create a diorama depicting the setting, method, and victim of your next murder down to the smallest detail. For example, your next victim will be a cherub-faced runaway who lives underneath the bridge. You plan to kill him with some garden shears in the alley behind the opera house (the cherub-faced runaway loves to lean his ear up against the back wall of the opera-house and listen to the performances). Today you're going to finish up a snowglobe that displays a beautiful snowfall blanketing the very accurately designed back-alley where the cherub-faced runaway is leaning against the opera-house wall and you, your face covered in a red winter scarf, are lurking behind him with the garden shears held in your upraised hand. Then you'll mail the snowglobe to Detective McKluskey (the only detective that you think might actually be your intellectual equal) and he'll have only two things to do. Scour the shelters for that cherub-faced runaway and check the daily weather reports for hints at the next snowfall. Where you live though, snow is as frequent and unpredictable as the breeze.

McKluskey will study the snowglobe for clues he knows you left for him. Clues as to where in the city that alleyway could be. He knows there's something. Amongst the sanitation company names on the little dumpsters and the style of fire escape on the buildings, there's a message you left for him and when he finds it, it will seem as simple as if you wrote the address on a post-it note and stuck it to the glass. He knows you're playing with him, and he knows you want to play fair. That's why he's letting his marriage go down the toilet while he spends his nights sitting at his desk, shaking to vibrant life the ominous winter tableau of a child-murder contained inside a snowglobe.

Happy Snowglobe Day!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Gay Jackoff Webcams For Charity Day!

Today's the big day. All of your favorite gay webcam stars have signed on with the United Jewish Appeal to donate the proceeds from today's webcasts to the UJA's Operation Promise project for Jews in Ethiopia. So today, if you watch a nineteen-year old boy masturbate at his desk in his bedroom at his mom's house in Decatur, every penny you spend will be used to help bring Ethiopian Jews to Israel. So log on, drop trou, and help those who need it most by masturbating to nineteen year olds who might be sixteen. You like them skinny, so sue you.

Incidentally, though 100% of today's proceeds have been promised to the UJA Federation, the charity will only receive 4%. This was a predictable outcome since every day, 96% of the world's gay webcam porn models go missing and are never found.

Happy Gay Jackoff Webcams For Charity Day!

Friday, April 07, 2006

Super Umbrella Day!

Today when you get into a taxi, you will find an umbrella left behind by a previous passenger. It will be yours for the taking.

"Take me to the railyard," tell the cabby.

"The rail-yard?" the cabby will say. "That's been abandoned for years. There's not a soul around."

Hold up the umbrella and say, "Exactly. I gotta test this thing out."

When you get to the rail-yard, pay the cabby to wait for you, but tell him to park his cab behind one of the old train-cars should he need the cover. Walk about 500 paces into the field of empty train tracks until you're as far away as you can be from any hobos who might be sleeping out of sight. Then you should raise the umbrella pointed out away from you towards the empty expanse and push the button.

If the umbrella opens out without any gunfire, that means the button alone is not a trigger for a hidden pistol. But it could still be armed by twisting the handle in its base. Or the handle could pull out of the umbrella to reveal a hidden gun barrel or dagger or even a heat ray. Twist and turn at the handle to see if it can be adjusted in any manner.

If the handle doesn't move, it's unlikely that the umbrella stem contains any sort of weapon. But the skin of the umbrella itself could work as a parachute, or it could even be a bullet-proof shield. Jump up and down with the umbrella open to see if it feels like it might be able to hold your weight. And to check if it's bullet proof, borrow one of the cabby's handguns and shoot it.

If it does not appear to hold your weight and if the bullet pierces the umbrella skin, then the umbrella cannot protect you from steep falls or assassins. Last thing is to make sure the umbrella is not a bomb whose trigger you've activated via your testing. Hold the umbrella to your ear and listen for ticking or beeping, and smell it for any hint of plutonium.

If that all checks out, head back to the taxi and have the cabby take you where you need to go.

"That thing a piece of high tech weaponry or is it just�" he'll ask you.

"It's just the thing I need to keep me dry," tell the cabby. The cabby will laugh hysterically and he'll tell you that you are a piece of work.

Happy Super Umbrella Day!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Some Complaints About Your Dental Assistant Day!

She talks about Christ too much. It's a shame because she used to be all the patients' favorite because she was so hot. But ever since she came back from vacation, the suggestion box has been filling up with notes from patients saying that as soon as you leave the room, your assistant leans over the patient and starts expounding on Jesus' love. You aren't sure whether they know her vacation was spent at a recovery center and that her new love for Jesus has taken the place in her heart where her old love for painkillers used to be. Or maybe they do know and they just don't care. Maybe all of your patients are so selfish that they would rather your assistant place her life in the perilous hands of addiction just so they don't have to be made uncomfortable by a little talk about the long-haired man on the cross that saved her life.

"If someone saved my life, I'd wanna tell some people about him," you'll think. You'll sort through the notes in the suggestion box that read, "I'm made to feel uncomfortable" and "This is no place for religious talk" and "Aw man she was so hot why'd Jesus have to go and snatch her up?"

"I never knew how uncaring my patients could be," you'll think. Carry the pile of suggestion notes out to your receptionist and tell her to compare the handwriting to the handwriting on the patient files to find out their names.

"Then call them and tell them I won't be providing dental services to them anymore," tell her. "If they persist in asking why, tell them we have different ideas about just what we're doing here. Tell them I won't provide care to those who would prefer my dental assistant die from an overdose than be made to hear the word Jesus from time to time. I won't care for those who don't care about my team."

Your receptionist will say, "With pleasure!" and then she'll set about making her list of unwelcomes. This will be a blow to your income, losing all those regular visits. But if dental school taught you anything, it's that everything gets put on the backburner when your dental assistant is in distress. Know who comes first.

Happy Some Complaints About Your Dental Assistant Day!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Worst. Mafia. Ever. Day!

Your mafia connections suck. The only thing you can ever get from them is cheap ceramics. Anytime anyone in the house wants to go to a ceramic store, you step up like a big man and say, "Just tell me what you need. I know a guy." And a month or so later you'll come waltzing in with an ashtray and some coasters that cost you about forty cents less than they charge at The MudBurner. And you give up thirty percent of your income in return for that? You're a schoolteacher for God's sake. What do you need to be mobbed up for?

Today some of your mafia connections are going to show up at your house demanding that you give them your son's old room so that they can run a brothel-slash-stolen-car-repainting-garage out of it. They heard your son went off to college and you owe them for all those half-full Subway club cards they slide your way. Explain to your wife that this is the way the world works.

Happy Worst. Mafia. Ever. Day!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

You Gas Up Ambulances Day!

You are an essential part of the life-saving process. When an ambulance pulls into the hospital lot, it's your job to take it back out and fill the tank up with gas. You'll never get recognized as a hero. Most people don't even know your job exists. In fact, the only time you're noticed is when you slip up and someone is sent out on an emergency with an empty tank. When that ambulance comes back you can bet there are going to be some questions about whose job it is to fill up the tanks.

Today is going to be one of those days where you wish you could be even more invisible. While driving your ambulance to the gas station, someone will spot you coming and will run out to the street waving her arms for you to stop. She'll have either called for an ambulance or decided to try and flag you down before she could even get to a phone. This is the only other way you get noticed on the job and it's a major drawback. Since you're not a trained paramedic, all you can do is drive on past, hoping that her real ambulance is on its way. You used to stop and explain to the person in distress that you were just taking the ambulance for gas, and you'd offer to radio for a real ambulance if necessary. But people who need an ambulance are a little too excited to listen to all of that explanation about a job they never knew existed. So today you'll just drive past looking straight ahead as if you just didn't see the girl with the arms in the air and the blood on her shirt. You'd best take the roundabout way back.

Happy You Gas Up Ambulances Day!

Monday, April 03, 2006

Agree To Some Bad Ideas Day!

You're a gnarled ex-fighter with a heart that beats only to the memory of your late wife. You run a dilapidated boxing gym in a bad neighborhood where lost causes train under the tutelage of true believers. Today, for the first time in fifteen years a woman is gonna come walking into your gym. She'll earn a chorus of catcalls and whistles as she marches her dress past your clientele. That woman is your daughter, come to say hi for the first time since your 60th birthday two and a half years ago.

"Mamie," say.

"I'm gettin' married papa," she'll tell you. "I want you to give me away."

Say, "Who is it thinks he's good enough to marry you? Nobody from this here neighborhood."

Your daughter will say, "It's Jack Plenty."

The last time you trained a fighter, eight years ago, he lost his eye in the ring to Jack Plenty. You had staked your life on that kid.

"He already took too much from me. I ain't giving him nothing."

"He's done with fighting, Papa. He just wants to love me and we're gonna co-manage a 99 cent store called Plenty Cheap."

Say, "Why'd you have to go and fall in love with a fighter, kid?"

Your daughter will say, "I'm my Mama's girl. We both can't help but hand our lives over to those hard boys with the soft hearts."

Agree to give her away. Then go into your office and sit at your desk staring at a picture of your late wife until a skinny kid with a tricky uppercut walks in begging you to train him. Against your better judgment, you'll agree to help the kid out. As you could have predicted, he'll end up making it to the title fight, which he will win right before he dies when his heart blows up in his chest (TOO MUCH HEART!). After you agree to train the kid, a telemarketer will call and ask you if you'd like to switch cell phone services. Tell the telemarketer that even though you're probably going to regret it, you'll go along with his crazy anytime minutes plan.

Happy Agree To Some Bad Ideas Day!

Sunday, April 02, 2006

In A Super 8 In Denver Day!

When Mortimer disappears, you'll both worry that she ran out the door while you were bringing your bags in from the Ryder truck. You had gone in and out a few times, and you might have left the door open. And Mortimer might have slipped past your ankles to disappear underneath the sea of parked cars in a parking lot in the middle of Denver.

You'll spend an hour wandering in separate directions throughout the parking lot, calling to your cat to come. You won't find anything in the truck but her wet food, so you'll run into an AM/PM and pick up two boxes of Meow Mix so you can shake the boxes of dry food and lure her out with the sound. You'll look like fools, and you'll occasionally have to say out loud, "Lost cat," whenever you pass a stranger who looks as if he might have concerns about the safety of his family with likes of you lurking around. You won't be able to speak for Sally, but for your own part you'll be glad to be searching alone.

"This is no good," Sally will tell you when you get back to the motel room. She'll have given up sooner. You'll make a point to be out there longer than her. Mortimer is her cat and to avoid a fight you have to stay out there longer than her.

"We'll find her," you'll say.

She'll say, "And what if we don't? Is it a good sign for our new life on the West Coast that getting here killed my favorite pet?"

The drive has been quiet ever since Nebraska. And there's been no sex in the motel rooms at night. You can't speak for Sally, but for your part you were content to remain silent and wonder whether you should have stayed back in New York. It never occurred to you that she might have some doubts of her own.

"This move is for you. Would you rather we not have come?" you'll say.

She'll say, "We just never discussed it. I told you the firm wanted me to relocate and you just immediately started talking as if we both had to go."

You'll say, "You're saying I should have stayed?"

She'll say, "I'm saying you could have stayed."

None of this will have anything to do with her cat going missing. She'll just be cluing you in on everything she's been thinking about for the past thousand miles or so. Maybe she's been thinking about it ever since they proposed the relocation to her. You could have stayed. She had to move across country and it was as good a time as any to break it off. You could have stayed. And if you had so much as broached the subject, you'd probably still be in New York at that moment, instead of putting your shoes back on to go out to a Denver parking lot and make loud kissing noises at a missing cat.

"So what do you want me to do then?" you'll ask.

"No," she'll say. "I want you to decide what you want. This move might already have caused something tragic, and I don't think we should make any more decisions together."

You'll go into the bathroom and splash some water into your face. It will feel like she just placed in your hands the resolve you've been missing all these months. The door will be open. And she'll have practically just given a shove to your back.

When you come out of the bathroom, your eyes will fall to the little nook where the wooden bed frame hits the wall. Just a couple of square inches of space with a gray and black striped cat's tale poking out of it.

Say to Sally, "When we get to San Francisco, I could just help you move in, then keep the truck. Drive my stuff back."

Sally won't say anything. You'll try not to look down at Mortimer's tale wagging just a twitch from time to time.

Sally will start to cry. "I'm sorry."

Say, "Don't be. It's okay. Let's go give another look around."

You'll both go outside and split up again, giving you each a chance to let your new decision settle in. When you get back upstairs a half hour later, you can "discover" that Mortimer was hiding under the bed frame all along. You'll have already been broken up for a half hour at that point, and when she finds her cat alive and well, Sally will take it as a sign that everything's gonna be okay.

Happy In A Super 8 In Denver Day!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Vampire Club Day!

Not long after entering high school, your little sister fell into the wrong crowd. She hangs out with these gay kids who pretend that they're vampires. Their activities amount to basically wearing black, being pale, and giving each other shitloads of hickies. Yours is a football school, so if you're not on the team or in one of the team booster clubs, you kind of have to make your own way. You're varsity, which kind of earns your sister a free pass to all the parties and clubs she could want to join. She's just too much of a loser to make friends with anybody who isn't all skinny and gay. Anyway, they like to hang out in the cemetery at night and have s�ances or some shit, and you just heard that some guys from the team are gonna go into the cemetery tonight and pound them with piss balloons (that's a balloon full of piss). You have to warn her.

"Don't go into the cemetery tonight," tell her. "Some of the guys are gonna launch a piss attack on you."

She'll say, "Good luck to them on finding us. Tonight we're going to transmogrify into a cougar. All of us as one jungle cat."

Say, "Oh good, so you'll be able to run real fast."

She'll say, "And kill with the strength and speed of ten men."

Say, "Seriously though, they're gonna through piss balloons at you."

She'll talk about that cougar shit again, which will make you call her a freak and say, "Your funeral." Tonight, she'll come home reeking of piss ad covered in hickies. She'll tell you your friends are dickheads. Tell her that she's not a vampire.

Happy Vampire Club Day!