February 1

The Horizontal Takes On The Vertical

Sometimes things just happen. Other times they just start happening. Like when ice starts to melt, or thaw. Usually the ones that require a slow process are the most interesting, but require a lot of patience from the one who is waiting on them to happen–or to have happened.

Take today for example. I’m waiting at a bus stop for a bus to come. (I could have been waiting on someone else to pick me up, but there is no one else.) I get to the covered stop by 7:25 in the morning and at fucking 8:09 there’s no fucking bus.

Well, today I chose to be a moderately patient person, so I wait a little longer. The cars and trucks and bicycles keep passing but not one of them is a bus. It gets to be 8:51 and I have seen no fucking busses.

Fuck it, I say. I’m walking. As I rise from the bench I realize I may have made it to my destination had I just started walking at the 8:09 mark. At least I would have been closer.

So here it is, the theme: I started walking and therefore made something start happening. The bus for all I know never fucking came to pick me up but I picked myself up off that fucking bench and got to where I was going.

Sometimes things happen and we don’t know why. But we’re there, right there, taking some degree of solace in the fact that we ourselves are always ‘happening’–kind of like objects falling from a shelf, avoiding in ignorance the hands that are so desperately trying to catch us.

January 31

Lester of Manila

Lester likes little girls. Not like normal people like little girls. Nor like deranged persons like little girls. He liked to watch them in the absence of clothes. He liked to watch them as frolicked with various types of exotic fruits. Many of my friends and I found him by a rusty chain linked fence admiring a group of these certain aged, certain gendered persons. He was trying to imagine them nudely frolicking in the presents of durians. One dreary day he was successful in luring one of these little human larva’s to travel home with him concealed underneath his appearingly masculine evening dress. He wanted her to come home with him and nakedly undulate in close proximity to a pair of baobabs. But when they returned to his home she indulged his request and then beat him to death with the very same baobabs.

January 29

Little Things

One morning–it was a morning like all other known mornings—a professional laboratory rat named Mr. Drekk scampered out of bed and went to the bathroom to brush his teeth. Just then the phone rang, preventing Drekk from brushing his teeth. He turned around and scampered to the phone.

‘Hello?’ Drekk said, glancing back and forth between the dresser mirror and the large walnut desk that stood between the door of the bedroom and the love seat, which sat near the window.

‘Yes,’ said the voice on the other end.

Drekk stopped glancing and frowned. ‘Sorry?’

‘Hi, my name is…well, I know you’re not going to believe this, but–‘

Drekk screeched. ‘Is this Jerry Jones? If this is Jerry Jones, please say so NOW!’

‘Yes, it is Jerry Jones,’ said the voice, who now had identified itself as none other than Jerry Jones. ‘Well, I’ll be! You actually exist!’

Jerry Jones chuckled. ‘Yeah, I guess I do.’

‘Well,’ said Drekk, starting to glance back and forth again, ‘why don’t we have dinner sometime, catch up on the little things we missed. Sound good?’

‘Sure,’ said Jerry Jones. ‘You name it, I’ll be there.’

‘Okay, then, how about tomorrow night, eight-fifteen, Denny’s.’

‘Sounds great. See you then.’

‘Bye!’ Drekk screeched in his overwhelming excitement. Drekk hung up first, then Jerry Jones hung up second, making the hang-up non-simultaneous. Drekk scampered back to the bathroom and brushed his teeth, then made his way to the laboratory downstairs in his dark but dimly lit basement. There was a lot of shiny concrete down there, though.

The next night, just as planned, Drekk and Jerry Jones had dinner together at Denny’s. The food was delicious and they caught up on the little things they had missed. Soon after the check was paid (Drekk was always the one) they each went their separate ways–Drekk to his apartment/bathroom/basement/laboratory and Jerry Jones to, well, wherever Jerry Jones goes when he finishes meals out.

January 29

The Visitor

‘Are you the gardener?’

The man, who wore a dark green shirt and trousers, looked up from what he was doing, which wasn’t really all that much. ‘No, I think he’s off today. Besides, it’s a she.’

There was a pause. ‘Then why did you say he’s off today?’

The man looked bewildered. ‘What?’

‘You said you think he’s off today. If it’s a she then why did you call her a he?’

‘I didn’t,’ said the man, wondering if the zipper to his green trousers was open.

‘Oh but yes you did, you most certainly did, I heard it for myself, you said that he’s off today, and then you said that he’s a she.’

‘No, I think I said it’s a she.’

‘A human cannot be an it. A human is either a he or a she, for all practical purposes. You, I promise, called her a he and then a she. So which is it?’

‘Not an it,’ said the man.

‘What?’

‘You said which is it, but before that you said that a human can’t be an it.’

‘You know what I mean! When I said which is it, I was referring to the pronoun, not the person himself or herself. Didn’t you attend grammar school?’

‘Yes, in fact I did.’

‘Okay, then, so let’s get to the business at hand here: Is the gardener a he or a she?’

The man thought a moment. ‘Actually, it would be better to ask is the gardener a man or a woman, or is the gardener male or female. To put as you did, a he or a she, that seems kind of strange, don’t you think?’

‘Look, mister, all I want to know is if the gardener–regardless of the sexual orientation–is present on this property today. Can you answer that question?’

‘Okay, the gardener is off today. There.’

‘Thank you. That’s all I wanted to know. Geesh, man, you need to get a life.’

The man watched the visitor leave, then looked down at what he had been doing before. Suddenly he noticed that indeed his zipper was open. ‘Oh good,’ he thought with a slight smirk, ‘I’m glad it didn’t notice.’

January 28

Effects

Your father is dead.

He just died in his little one-bedroom apartment.

Your mother has hated him for years.

Someone called you and let you know that your father is dead. That your father has died.

Ok, you tell them, and hang up. You grab a beer from the fridge and sit down. You stare out the nearest window. You feel like a fucking cliché.

You are a fucking cliché.

The trip takes seven hours, including all stops. The stops are numerous. When you stop, you feel like stopping for good. But you go on despite all the stopping.

A lot of people greet you when you arrive. The one who called you is smiling and you want to smack them. You want to say My father just died, what the fuck are you smiling about. You look at them after they embrace you, as they would term it. What are you smiling about.
You are there a week. You are your father’s executor. There isn’t much to do. The apartment is no big deal. Your father doesn’t have much to his name. You decide to sell/donate the furniture. Who needs it. You don’t. The personal effects are all yours. You are given his vehicle, a small truck he hardly ever drove. It is still practically brand new. The personal effects and the truck are yours. You drop off your rental and take the truck back home. It is a personal effects truck.

You pull in with the truck and stop.

You sit there for hours, until night falls upon you.

Crushing you, cursing you.

You are crushed and cursed by the night.

Your father is dead.

January 28

Laid

Laid
The doctors said it was terminal. No chance in hell of her surviving. She was determined not to die a virgin.
She looked around the doctor’s office on her way out. Four older men sitting, but they were all next to women who appeared to be their wives.
She sat in her car, but she wasn’t thinking about her demise, she was thinking how to get laid.
A man walked by but he was pushing a walker, that wouldn’t work.
She stopped at the 7-11 for a Big Gulp. The boy behind the counter looked so young but she struck up a conversation anyway, until it got around to age. He was the owner’s son, just 13.
She sat in her apartment, ordered a pizza from Domino’s and turned on the TV. She couldn’t focus; her mind was entirely absorbed with getting laid.
The doorbell rang 45 minutes later, maybe the pizza man would be willing she thought.
She opened the door; it was a woman delivering her pizza. This was new. She was disappointed, but only for a while.
They spent a wonderful night together. She was no longer a virgin, but she will spare us the details.

Beverly Romain

January 27

The Nightmare

Manny Romanesko. Good old Manny. Yeah, that’s his name all right. Yep.

Now would be a good time to cause a telephone to ring, or some knuckles to knock against a door. But no, we ain’t doin’ that. Not this time. There ain’t nothing that’s gonna save us now.

Let’s put it this way. He likes peanut butter sandwiches. Nothing else, just the bread and the peanut butter. Now that’s fucking crazy ain’t it. Take him forever to get the fucking thing down. All that stickiness going on. Whatever serves as flotation, right? You know, the boat thing.

So he’s up at a lot after midnight chowing down on the sticky. He’s not fully awake but close enough. At least he knows what he’s eating. Munch, munch, munch. Of course, there’s no sounds, at least not munch munch munch. It’s more like, slap slap slap, ’cause all that fucking peanut butter’s sticking to the roof of his mouth—just the way he likes—and he’s having to use his tongue to get it off. Slap-sound.

Well, he gets it down him. Wants another one but he’s sleepy again. So he goes back to bed, mostly satiated. He’ll have another one for breakfast. Sleepy time for now, though. Sleepy time…sleepy time…sleeeeeeeeeeepy time.

January 26

The Undercover Budget Director

‘Super glue is all I need, really, so if you’ll just bring that back then I’ll be set, okay?’

I nodded after he said this, not knowing if I should have. I mean what else could I have done? Shrugged? Blinked a lot like I didn’t understand (I certainly understood)? Nothing? Well, it’s impossible to do nothing, since the human body is always doing something. So anything I would have done, facially or otherwise, would have been, yes, a reaction. It’s just that I nodded before I took the opportunity to make my selection.

‘Thanks,’ he said, and walked away, heading toward the den, where the TV was, where a game was ready to be played, where he would sit and munch and drink and yell and scream and stuff while I, the faithful roommate, went I got his beloved Super glue so that he would be ‘set’. What did that mean, anyway, ‘set’? The word itself has a plethora meanings, but to him it could have meant any number of things, I suppose. In this case, I figured it meant, in some ways, ‘satisfied’ or ‘happy’ or ‘appeased’.

See the truth is (was), I didn’t exactly know why he needed the Super glue in the first place. He had mentioned nothing to me. You can use the stuff for a lot of things, like gluing broken china back together, or glass or, well, pretty much anything, because the stuff’s really strong and all. I once got some on my finger when I was in college and it took days–no, weeks–until I could get it off completely. The stuff’s that strong. In fact, this old couple I house-sat for was using it and the man got his index finger and thumb stuck together. For a while there I thought he was going to have to be taken to the emergency room and have some surgeon saw his fingers apart.

Anyway, I went and got the Super glue for my roommate, plus some candy for me. I went to the dollar store–Super glue used to be a special commodity until a few years ago–and brought it back to the apartment.

Sure enough, there he was, sitting in that velvet chair of his–the one he found on the side of the road one day when he was in his twenties–cheering his ‘team’ on. Pathetic, I thought, as I dropped the small white plastic bag into his lap, which also held, at that point, an almost-finished bowl of tortilla chips.

‘There,’ I said, and started to walk away.

‘Hey!’

I turned around; he was standing and holding the plastic bag; the bowl of chips had dropped to the floor, overturned. He looked ecstatic.

‘Yeah?’ I said, dreading what he would say next.

‘Thanks!’

I nodded and said, ‘Sure,’ then went to my room.

Later that night I thought of his face, how happy he had appeared. I wondered how much of that joy was due to my bringing him the Super glue and how much of it was because of the fact that he was doing precisely what he wanted to do at that particular moment. I fell asleep wondering, pondering, cogitating, you name it. All I know now is that for once in my life–in my entire life, mind you–I witnessed one person who believed he had found true happiness.

Super.

January 26

The Invisible Poor Bastard

Part One: To And Fro On Bulbous Feets:
I was born an invisible boy and nobody could see me but my mother; and she could only see my bulbous little feet. When it was time to leave the hospital she took my feet with her and she went home. After awhile she could see my knees too but no one else could see me yet. I made some friends with other invisible kids but we could never find each other back again.

I went to school but they didn’t know I was there. I could see the black board but the words were invisible. I always put my hand up to answer a question but since the teachers could not see me they didn’t pick me. The only way I could get notice was either to poop myself or fart really loud but still they didn’t know where it came from. Another invisible boy that everyone could see, who sat in front of me in class, was always getting into trouble. The teacher would yell at him and he would pee his pants.

When we had recorder rehearsal I never did very well although I did better with the guitar. But the teacher would take it away from me and give it to another student. I guess that was because I was invisible. When we had a recorder concert in front of our parents I became visible but I wasn’t any good so I hid behind another visible boy. I thought recorders were stupid and wished they were invisible. But the next day I was invisible again instead of the recorders. I got so mad about that that I stabbed a visible kid in the arm with a pencil.

Suddenly I became visible and I got in trouble. They made me sit in the corner facing the wall while other kid went to nurse to get the pencil tip over of his arm. When I became invisible again I went around to various class rooms and wrote stupid invisible words on them that everyone could see.

On the last day of school; just before the summer, still invisible, I was riding home on the school bus. We got to my house and I was so happy because I didn’t have to see those other stupid visible kids for the next three months. I ran down the center aisle, ran past the stupid visible kids and their stupid visible bus driver and jumped out of the door.

Suddenly I was in a hazy dark world and I couldn’t see anything but flickering lights. They were visible and I thought they were stupid too. Then I could see again and realized I was laying on the ground half in and half of the bus. I also discovered that I was now a stupid visible kid and all the other visible kids were laughing at me. The bus driver asked me if I was alright while I was getting up and cleaning myself off. I gave her the finger and ran inside my house.

Category: Justynn Tyme | 1 Comment
January 23

Fly On Your Shoulder Or Larmey’s Chore

Larmey Oats walked into the hardware store. He looked around the aisles but there were already too many people in the world. So he went directly up to the main counter where he waited what seemed like two an half seconds.

‘Hello. My name is Philip. How can I help you sir?’ the man behind the counter asked.

‘Yes. May I please have a bag of Mellick3’s Moisture Control Potting Soil, please.’ said Larmey in a very direct manner.

‘Certainly.’ Philip said in a very pleasant way and continued in an even more pleasant manner. ‘Let me get that for you.’ He picked up the phone and made an announcement. ‘Ray, call the front desk please. Ray, call the front desk.’

As expected Ray called the front desk and the phone rang. Philip picked up the phone and explained to Ray what Larmey wanted. Then Mr. Kush walked by…

‘Everything ok here?’ he asked in a nonchalant manner.

‘Yes sir everything’s fine.’ Philip said and Mr. Kush walked elsewhere into the store. Just then Ray came walking up from the back of the store. He stopped just behind Larmey and removed a sack from a display and with a smile, turned around and placed it on the counter.

‘There you go sir…’ Philip exclaimed somewhat triumphantly ‘…will there be anything else?’ he asked.

‘No.’ Larmey said unemotionally

‘Well then Tina can ring you up.’ with that Philip walked away and didn’t look back. Larmey paid for his potting soil and within twenty minutes he was home, out of the car, in the front door and walking through the house. He walked to the bedroom and set the bag of potting soil on the bed.

He went to the closet and removed a plain white pillow case from the shelf and slid it over the unopened bag of potting soil. He tucked in the access cloth and placed the bag at the head of the bed on the right side. Then he left the room heading for the kitchen to get some lunch.