Tuesday, October 12, 2010


When you don’t know what a man is thinking, you judge him on his actions.

Drunk, he threw his alarm clock at the wall and smiled when he heard the familiar sound of the battery case breaking off.  He picked up his cell phone to throw it, but paused and saw her text message from earlier in the day:  “How are you doing?  I’m worried about you.”  The girl was clearly concerned.  He sat down and texted her back, saying that he’s a piece of shit and worthless.  He thought it was true.  She texted him back, saying that it wasn't.  He dialled her and she picked up.  She was worried.  She asked him to come over so that she could take care of him.  He said okay, he would be on his way.  He hung up and looked for his flask of whiskey.  It wasn’t where it usually was.  He threw everything off of the dresser out of frustration.  Then there it was on the ground, among the mess.  He grabbed it and shook it to see if it was full.  It was half full.  Or half empty.  Good enough.  He took a swig and kicked his garbage can over for good measure.  Semen-encrusted tissues, old newspapers, banana peels and pieces of plastic junk joined the clutter.

He put his sunglasses on and grabbed his flask and his cell phone and 5 dollars and his keys and some Kleenex tissues and stuffed them all in his pockets.  He put his shoes on and paused to look at his friends lying on the futon in the living room.  They were asleep.  He took a swig.

He pressed a button and waited for the elevator to appear.  Once in the elevator he stared at himself in the mirror.  He tried to see if he could see his eyes through his sunglasses but he couldn’t.  Mirrored lenses.  His eyes were now mirrors, and all he saw was himself staring back at himself staring back at himself staring back at himself.

He left the building and took another swig of his flask.  It didn’t burn going down anymore, but he felt warmer.  It was dark, and the people on the sidewalk were frightened of him.  He knew they were.  Their faces shifted and the women clung to their men.  He liked how they avoided him so methodically.  The five-metre bubble surrounding him amused him.  He smiled.  He staggered down the ten blocks to her apartment.

He rang the buzzer and she came downstairs and greeted him.  He followed her up the stairs.  He sloppily took his shoes off and plopped down on the couch and picked up a cat and hugged it.  It squirmed out of his hands and ran away.  He stared at the ground and felt pathetic.  She told him he wasn’t and offered him evidence supporting her theory.  He tried to deny it but he knew a lot of it was true, he wasn’t a complete piece of shit.  He had done a great thing once or twice in his life at least.

He asked her to hug him over and over again, and each time she did.  He asked her if she loved him and she hesitated but then she said yes.  He smiled and said nothing.  He was drunk but he still remembered that most people wouldn’t ever dare tell a drunk what he didn’t want to hear.  He started to talk about what was bugging him but then he couldn’t.  It was too hard.  He knew she wouldn’t really understand.  It would get awkward.  He started to feel like a burden.  Going there was a mistake.  He considered leaving but he was exhausted and he knew it would just worry her even more.  It would only make both of them feel worse.

He asked if he could go to sleep and she said yes.  He took his clothes off and awkwardly stumbled into her bed.  He shut his eyes.  It felt good to lie there.  She took her clothes off and joined him soon after.  He grabbed her wrist and draped her arm over his torso.  “I want to be little spoon,” he said.  

She let him be little spoon.