sometimes you just have to curse someone

Listen to me you godless, lying crypt-keeper-looking, knock-off Gucci handbag with your outdated degree and an undeserved sense of smug superiority: you are a living beacon of shame. (Did you know that if you walk around looking like you stepped in dog feces all the time your face is going to stick that way? Or has it already stuck that way, and that’s why you resemble a livid corpse?) You are a greedy and meretricious worm incapable of admitting the truth or others’ humanity. Your friends ought to be ashamed to associate with you. Your ancestors in the halls of the dead are ashamed that their line has produced such a foul pustule as yourself. As you have no shame I don’t expect you to feel a thing (except perhaps cold and narcissistic outrage that someone has the nerve, to be honest about you) but that hardly matters.

You will henceforth experience perpetual inconvenience. Visceral discomfort since you cannot experience its emotional equivalent. May your punishment only begin with this:

  • May every dog you come near or try to pet shy away from you in fear.
  • May you always suspect that your friends’ smiles are disingenuous.
  • May you always run out of toilet paper when you have explosive diarrhea in public.
  • May you walk around with the sensation of popcorn kernels stuck into your gums but never find relief.
  • May you never live without a sense of fear of losing your money.
  • May you never be able to identify the stench of body odor that follows you everywhere as yourself.
  • May you forever be seen as the truth of what you are even when your words and expression try to hide it.
  • May every meal you ever prepare, serve, or receive be oversalted to the point of inedibility.
  • May you be given the same amount of empathy that you have shown to me whenever you are at your lowest.
  • May you never be able to find a truly comfortable and peaceful sleeping position.
  • May you always look directly into every too-bright light by mistake.
  • May you continually bite the same spot on the inside of your cheek.
  • May no person ever treat you as if you are wealthy.
  • May you never be given the satisfaction of making another person cry.

rlb 5.22.18

 

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Quarters

Paying in quarters makes it less painful. A step closer to actual bills than nickels and dimes. Heavier in the hand to remind me of what I’m giving up. The price of bread, milk, tea, dinner for three off the dollar menu at McDonald’s. It’s harder to spend quarters frivolously and easier to keep them clenched in my palm until the hash-marked edges leave dents along my lifeline that won’t fade for hours. I think I can still feel them days later. The ghost of change where it would be a gift to be able to think of anything except how it might be to afford to leave town and never come back.

I know a rich boy. This rich boy is older than me but he acts four years younger because his parents are a doctor and a hedge fund manager and when his hours are short at work he’s gleeful. He’s never counted quarters to figure whether he could afford to spend time outside with his friends in an overpriced coffee shop at the expense of bread.

His life’s goal is to make a million dollars. Mine is to pay my bills on time, own a greyhound named Tilda, and have a savings account with more than $5 in it.

Funnily enough I’m closer to achieving mine than he is. Guess which one of us is happier.

rlb 7.12.17