Seeking: Part-Time Ghosts

For Harriet…


I saw the ad while drinking my tea on Thursday morning. For the past several weeks I had been experiencing sleeplessness, an irritable stomach and general unease. As a result I decided to amend my diet to exclude coffee as I thought it might be the source of my perpetual discomfort. If you were to ask me how I was handling the transition I might deploy the ageless aphorism that “the cure is worse than the disease.” The worst thing about making the switch was not knowing which kind of tea to drink. Green tea left a dry, soapy residue in the crevices between my teeth that hung around for hours. Assam was fine but flavorless without milk and sugar. Per recommendation by a former roommate, I once made the mistake of buying lapsang souchong, which smells like what a tree’s gym socks might smell like if trees in fact had feet and used those feet to play squash every Monday with Barry from the corporate office. Continue reading


My Dentist is a Horse

For Pizza, Brother Rapid & Tootie Bullshit…


My dentist is a horse. And that’s fine. She wants to shave my teeth so I look more like her. I don’t like having my teeth shaved because the drill she uses is very loud and sometimes I breathe in my own enamel through my nose. I just don’t like the idea of parts of my own body ending up in my digestive system. It feels too much like cannibalism and I am firmly against cannibalism. Have been for quite some time. Because of her hooves, my dentist isn’t very good at holding the drill and sometimes she drops it onto my tongue where it wriggles around like a metal snake. I’m worried that someday I’m going to swallow it and shave off the lining of my stomach or tear a hole through that flap that opens and closes whenever I breathe in order to keep food from being sucked into my lungs. I imagine getting food in your lungs tends to happen more frequently this time of year what with Thanksgiving, Hannukah and Christmas all being a combination of overeating and familial anxiety; a hellish cycle of guilt and indigestion. I just can’t afford to choke. Not this year. I’m going to Thanksgiving with my girlfriend and her parents. My girlfriend is not a horse and I’m very grateful for that. I’m not worried about Thanksgiving but I would be if I had a hole in my esophagus. That would be pretty embarrassing. Continue reading