Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Complaints Line Day!

You bought an oscillating fan in 1963 that doesn’t work very well. The instructions came with a phone number to call if you have complaints. You’ve been calling once a week for the last 48 years. You missed your call last week because you went to the hospital with a hematoma on your brain. Jeff, the guy who’s been listening to your complaints for most of his life, he got worried so he tracked you down and now he’s sitting by your bedside, his hand clenched tight in your feverish grip. There’s no one else in the room, no family or friends, just the guy who works for the oscillating fan company. You’re fighting an infection post-surgery.

“Come on,” Jeff says. “Tell me what’s wrong with the rotor! Live another day to tell me how that contraption couldn’t blow air stronger than a kitten fart.”

You gasp for a breath.

“Goddammit,” Jeff says. “What about the adjustable stand. That thing slips and drops more than a drunk on ice. Lemme hear it.”

The machine sounds. You’re in cardiac arrest. Nurses and doctors converge while Jeff continues to scream in your ear.

“The cord’s too short! Lemme hear it! That power cord doesn’t let you place the damn fan more than two feet away from a damn socket! You know you wanna tell me, dammit!”

The doctors try to revive you but you’re too far gone. They call the time of death at 8:43 PM. Jeff wanders out of the room without anyone noticing. He goes home and cancels his second phone line. When the fan company shut down in 1988 Jeff managed to secure the complaints phone number and had it installed at his one-room apartment. You were the only one who ever called it and he looked forward to hearing your voice every week. He’s going to miss you. Someone on this Earth heard you, and he’s sorryer than Christ he’ll never be able to hear from you again.

Happy Complaints Line Day!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

California Is Haunted Day!

The ghost of the boy who tried to give you everything haunts California. You can never go back there Amy. The minute you cross the state line, when you’re telling the guy in the booth whether you have any fruit or vegetables in your possession, a gust of wind will bounce that voice into your car and you’ll swear you hear him ask you why when he tries to hold you you always try to make him let go.

When you get to your new apartment and you turn on the tub to take a bath, you’ll see his face reflected in the water, looking up at you, pleading with his eyes for you to lean forward and kiss his sweet wet face. Entranced you’ll do what his eyes demand and you’ll suck some water down your windpipe, making you cough, sputter, and fall to the bathroom floor struggling for air.

On your first day at your new job, when you sit down at your cubicle and open up your desk drawer, you’ll feel the warmth of his spirit fly up out of the drawer, then papers and office supplies will go flying everywhere and a stapler will swirl around the room releasing staples at your coworkers’ eyes. Three will be left blind, and since no one will be able to explain what happened, no one will be able to blame all that horror on your decision to push a boy out of your life who just wanted to give you the love he thought you deserved.

When you go out on dates they’ll burst into flames during appetizers. When you try to join softball leagues everyone on the team will have car accidents on game day and you’ll constantly be forced to forfeit. When you go hiking in the canyons, windstorms will send your hiking companions tumbling to the bottom, and they’ll be left with broken arms and legs, unable to join you on hikes for at least six weeks at a time.

California is haunted, Amy. It’s haunted because of you. You refused a love that wanted to be yours, and even though the boy who offered you that love hasn’t died, but is in fact alive and well and selling insurance in Cincinnati, the love he had for you is still there in California, and love never ever ever dies.

Happy California Is Haunted Day!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Kill Me Like The Failed Hit On Vito In ‘The Godfather’ Day!

People with diseases pay you to kill them when they don’t want to battle their diseases any longer but they’re too scared or Catholic to pull the trigger themselves. You settled into this line of work after the mafia got too weak to afford your fee and the only client you still had left was the Government of the United States, but since they only ever wanted to pay you to kill people who stood in the way of the one-world government and secret global bank initiative, you decided that lowering your fee to kill people who actually wanted to die might be a fun change.

Anyway, today by wild coincidence you’re going to be hired to kill the woman you always thought you should have married. You haven’t seen her in thirty years, when you were getting on a plane to Helsinki and at the least minute she changed her mind and refused to go with you. She wants you to kill her while she’s buying oranges from a sidewalk grocer.

“I loved The Godfather,” she’ll say.

Tell her you can’t do it. Tell her you’ll do anything if she’ll stay alive and share whatever time she has left with you. Tell her you have some money and you can pay to get her better treatment for whatever disease she has.

“I don’t have a disease,” she’ll say. “I’m just done. I made the wrong choice thirty years ago when I didn’t go with you, and I’ve tried to live with it until now. I think thirty years is enough time to realize it’s not working.”

Tell her that you’re here now and you and she can make up for lost time.

“Just being around you makes me sad for the decades I wasted not being with you. It’s not fate that brought you here. I didn’t have the idea to die until I tracked you down and found out you were a killer for money. I realized that if it was you who killed me at the very end, the pain of being around you would be so great that I’d definitely go through with it. Make sure I’ve just barely bought the orange when you run up and pull the trigger.”

Tell her you won’t do it.

“Then I’ll report you to the police,” she’ll say. “Come on. You didn’t get to be the most important person in my life. I’m giving you the opportunity to be the most important person in my death. Don’t you want that?”

She makes a convincing argument. You agree to kill her and on the big day, right after you shoot her, while she’s still panting her last breaths, you lean over her and put the gun to your head.

“I knew you would,” she says.

Then you pull the trigger and the two of you leave this life the way you should have lived it - together.

Happy Kill Me Like The Failed Hit On Vito In ‘The Godfather’ Day!

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Cross-Country Loving Day!

You and Jennifer started fucking back in Nebraska. You met when you started fighting over a cab at the airport after both your flights were cancelled. You decided that if you put your heads together you could get home faster than apart and make it home in time for your kids’ respective graduations. Tonight at the Super 8 in Denver you’re going to tell her the truth.

“I don’t have any kids,” you’ll tell her. “My wife, Pam, left me and we never had children. I just go to airports in bad weather looking for women trying to get across the country because I’m trying to recreate the trip I took with my wife back in 1992, when we were relocating for her job in Palo Alto.”

Jennifer will ask if there’s any reason why she shouldn’t just immediately leave the motel room and go find someone else to travel across the country with.

“Only this,” tell her. “The next time I go to the airport looking for a woman to travel across the country with, it won’t be to recreate the trip I took with my wife. It’ll be to recreate the trip I took with you.”

She’ll be unable to help but smile. Tears will form in her eyes. She’ll wrap her arms around you.

Whisper in her ear, “I’ve had such a good time with you on this trip, I can’t wait to try and recreate it with someone else.”

She’ll pull away and ask if maybe you and she could try and make it work and you’ll tell her that’s not what you’re into. “Old trips with new women,” say. “That’s my thing. But rest assured, when I trick a woman into helping me recreate this one, I’m going to do it with a woman who’s really special.”

Then tell her to wear a green dress to dinner that night because that’s what Pam wore in Denver.

Happy Cross-Country Loving Day!