Tuesday, January 29, 2008

And then there was one...

Suddenly, he’s awake.

His mouth is dry, but the room is not spinning. He drank last night, but not too much. Still, he should’ve had a glass of water before going to sleep.

She’s lying next to him, so still that she could be dead.

He stares at her back as his eyes adjust. The light creeping in from behind the curtains show that her body is slowly moving up and down. The smell of her skin in the morning is his favorite. It smells like slumber.

He misses her when she’s asleep.

Quietly he slides out of the bed and plants his feet firmly on the carpet, sure to close the door quietly to not wake her.

The coffee maker relieves itself into the pot which reminds him that he too needs to create an exodus of sorts. Cigarettes are strewn across the counter like pick up sticks, he loses the game by moving them as he plucks one out of the pile. Coffee and a cigarette is how he usually starts the morning, "Breakfast of champions..." he slurs as he fires one up.

The view isn’t much from the apartment. It overlooks the parking lot of the grocery store next door. In the morning while he’s trying to wake up he tries to guess what each person has in their bags as they walk out to their cars. Morning doesn’t usually come too early for him.

He notices a family wearing Sunday’s best walking across the asphalt. The father is carrying two bags as his wife holds two little girl's hands. Their dresses have flowers on them and they’re yellow and pink. It could be Easter Sunday. He has no clue.

“I bet that’s a ham for dinner tonight and maybe a gallon of milk.” He mutters.

As he takes a drag off of his cigarette he watches the family drive away in their SUV. The smoke pulls hard breaking free from his lips. It vanishes before his eyes.

Moments later a teenage girl walks out with a small plastic bag. She almost gets hit by a minivan as she walks right out in to the parking lot with out looking. She throws her hands up and repeatedly mouths the word "sorry" as she sprints out of the way.

“Now that has to be a pregnancy test.” He laughs to himself. “I can spot that a mile away.”

Coffee grounds cover the bottom of his cup. The cigarette is down to its butt. He decides to go in and wake her.

Even though he wants her to get up he still tries to be as quiet as possible. She likes to be greeted first thing with back rubs and kisses. Glasses of orange juice are also welcomed.

He makes his way to the side of her bed, tripping over some shoes and cursing under his breath.
She shifts in her sleep. Finally sitting down on the bed next to her she slides towards him due to his weight pressing down on the mattress.

He places his hand in the small of her back. She squirms. His hands feel cold and dead.

While sitting there in the dark he hears a clicking sound, maybe it’s a popping, like someone cracking their knuckles. He slowly looks around the room for any sign of what might be causing the noise. There it is again. The noise seems to be coming from the corner.

Next thing he knows he’s on his feet staring into the dark corner of the room. After hearing the popping a third time he gets down on his hands and knees. There appeared to be some sort of beetle climbing the wall. He didn't think that a bug that small could’ve made that loud of a noise until the beetle stood upright on the wall and made the noise again, like some sort of battle cry.

It startled him so much that he swatted at the beetle and knocked it to the floor. The beetle began making the noise over and over, louder and louder. He cupped it to the carpet with his hand attempting to quiet the strange bug.

Everything went silent.

Just when he thought that he had killed it a small pain shot up his middle finger. At first the pain felt rigid like something had bit him or was sawing at his finger, but then it felt hot and then eventually numb. He grabbed his finger with his other hand only feeling something oval-like on the tip.

He walked quietly to the door to go in the other room to tend to his finger all the while the biting, burning and numbing continued through his hand. By the time he made it in to the other room his whole arm was numb. As he stepped into the light he realized that it was the beetle that had bit his finger, but now he was to the knuckle.

He went hysterical trying to smash and pry this insect off of his finger but it appeared to have not only a solid grip on his finger, but also a shell harder than that of a turtle. His whole side now seemed bloated and was void of feeling.

The beetle slowly consumed his middle finger and when he made it to the palm of his hand its mouth enlarged like a snake's mouth and started swallowing the rest of his fingers. The man had never seen anything like it. It’s stomach digested the flesh and bone instantaneously.

The burning and numbing sensation continued to take over his whole body. Little by little he lost all energy and even the power to talk. By the time the beetle had eaten his hand he had fallen to the floor in a paralyzed heap of mass waiting to be consumed by a small bug that appeared to have a monstrous appetite.

While watching the bug devour his arm the only thing he could think about was how it never changed in size despite it's mass consumption. The only thing that expanded was its jaws.

After consuming his arm it began eating into his chest. He knew that she slept oblivious in the other, so the man tried mouthing her name, but his lips were too numb to even move at this point.

Moments later, without being in any pain, he died.

An hour later his entire body was gone, as though he had never existed. After finishing his meal the small beetle scurried to the corner and quietly made a popping noise.

This savage ritual of predator devouring prey all quietly happened while she soundly slept feet away.

Another hour passes. The apartment is still.

And then suddenly, she is awake.

Friday, January 11, 2008

It's better than being compared to John Malkovich.

This girl at work told me that I was “well-rounded” today. What I think she means by that is that she thinks I’m pretty normal considering I was raised going to an evangelical church. What I think she really means though, is that she thinks I’m hot because of my haircut, but only within a day or two of me getting a haircut which is actually a lack of a hair cut because I shave my head. Her interest in me is strictly above the forehead.

She’s married and her husband shaves his head sometimes. Since he’s going bald it’s her favorite look for him to have. She’s pretty much just fantasizing about her husband when she looks at me, which means she’s probably not fantasizing about either of us, but about Bruce Willis.

What generated this conversation was me wandering the halls looking for a couch to sit on to finish reading the book I’ve been reading for a long time now. I’ve been on a three month hiatus from reading this book because I went crazy.

If you don’t know me in real life you didn’t know that I went crazy. Actually, if you knew me in real life you probably didn’t know that I was going crazy either, well maybe three of you did, but this isn’t Live Journal. I’m not going to talk about that. What I will talk about is the fact that I’m not crazy anymore and I finished my book today, but not because I found a good couch to sit on.

I read it in my cubicle. The walls were gray, but the story was vivid.

What’s coincidental is that not only do I share the same haircut as Bruce, but he also starred as the main character when this particular book that I finished today was made into a movie.

Can you guess the book? I’ll give you a hint, actually, another hint.

“Yippy Kiya Mother Fucker” is not one of his lines.

Typing in my sleep...

She’s sound asleep. Maybe they should call that “making sounds in their sleep” because that’s what they’re really doing. Heavy breathing, snoring, grinding teeth and muttering lost words under their breath.

I lay here and stare at the ceiling. I toss and turn and even try the old spoon.

Nothing.

She has a digital alarm clock but I still hear ticking.

Ideas race through my head that only entertain me while I drive down a congested interstate, have shampoo in my hair or when I’m trying to sleep at 3:17 am. It’s the nature of the beast right?

So what idea’s come to mind? The sacredness of sex. How important a job it would be to know when everyone is to expire(die) and something else that I thought I would remember in the morning but obviously I already forgot.

It must not have been that good.

The people upstairs always sound like they’re moving furniture. How many times can you rearrange your apartment? And why do it in the middle of the night? Maybe they’re herding goats from one room to another. Maybe they've converted their living room into a wrestling ring and they're practicing Gorilla Press Drops!

Regardless of the goat roping, Wrestle Mania or the ticking watch I still can’t fucking sleep.

I have a feeling the real culprit is my mind.

My imagination creates sagas within itself without ever giving me enough time to write them down. Bastard.

Don’t feel like you’re missing out though. At 3am, it’s usually about a renegade army of ants looking to overthrow a dictator that looks very similar to M. Bison from Street Fighter 2.

Goodnight, I’m going to bed.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Robert Allen Zimmerman

I watch as he pours another one. Jameson on the rocks. My glass is filled as well and we sit at the table that he bought before I was born. We ate dinner at this table. I did home work here. Lectures were given here, but tonight we sit here drinking whiskey and listening to Bob Dylan.

"Have you ever listened to Bob's first album? What about Highway 61 revisited?"

"Yeah, I've heard them both. Free Wheelin' is my favorite though."

"Just listen to that." He says as he gestures towards the speakers. "That was 1962."

"Yeah I know."

"I know you can't understand…but..."

"I understand."

"But it was 1962! There was nothing like this."

"I know."

"But you can't know."

And he's right in a sense. I can't know because if you had only heard Elvis and The Beatles before and put on a Bob Dylan Record it definitely was going to change you, for better or for worse. I would never have the chance to experience it the way he did.

When they renewed their vows back in '88 that's what I heard them say, "for better or for worse". Like him, I did experience that.

But she never liked Bob. He would get dirty looks when he played his songs on the guitar and get the silent treatment if one of his records ever got played in the house. So I never heard him growing up. But naturally, I found him on my own, just like he did back in '62.

It all came full circle though. Because here we sit at 4am with full glasses and a broken volume experiencing his songs together, like it was the first time for both of us.



Oh God said to Abraham, "Kill me a son"
Abe says, "Man, you must be puttin' me on"
God say, "No." Abe say, "What ?"
God say, "You can do what you want Abe, but
The next time you see me comin' you better run"
Well Abe says, "Where do you want this killin' done ?"
God says. "Out on Highway 61".

Resolution