Friday, March 16, 2012


Painful throbbing in my jaws makes me think of nothing but itself. I feel like my head is exploding, no, not my head, not the whole head, just my nasal cavity. I feel like I’ve been punched repeatedly by somebody I’ve somehow wronged, although really I try and stay out of other people’s ways and agree with them at all times, even if I’m lying. As an aside, this has made me, again, a completely nice and wholly agreeable person, an extremely talented liar.

I feel like the only thing that can get rid of this pain is a cigarette, maybe a bunch of pills, that or grinding my teeth until they crack and shatter. I’ve already had one, two…five cigarettes, and I’ll need my teeth to chew on the overcooked chicken breast my girlfriend is currently preparing in the kitchen so I look for some aspirin, find it, take it, and proceed to look for something else to chew on while the medicine takes effect. Wandering aimlessly in pain, doing all of my searching subconsciously, I find some toothpicks. Toothpicks we bought last year for the appetizers we brought to her family reunion.

My mind returns and I find myself in the kitchen, staring blankly in the direction of, though not actually at, pieces of raw chicken meat, covered in…something, although shiny bits of pink still peek through. I curse my subconscious for bringing me here, to the attention of my girlfriend, who looks at me and asks if I’m going to help. Her tone is one of annoyance, as it has been for several days now. I tell her I have a headache, which isn’t entirely a lie, and that I’m going to lie down for a bit, lay down for a bit, lie down for a bit. She tells me that she hopes it’ll make me feel better in time for supper, even though I can tell by her tone that she doesn’t care if I feel better or not. As I leave the kitchen, relieved to be leaving her sight, I think about how I should find a new girlfriend, but the lease for the apartment we live at is in both of our names, and there’s still the better part of a year left on it, so I dismiss the idea. Besides, I’m not the kind of person to do the breaking up. I leave it to the other person to do it for me. It’s never surprised me, and I have yet to empathize with whoever said that breaking up is hard to do.

Before I go to the bedroom I head back to the bathroom to put away the aspirin. The mirror covering the medicine cabinet is open slightly, angling the reflection. I say to myself, “Wow, this really changes me perspective on things,” which amuses me, but I don’t even smile because I’m looking at myself and how fat and ugly I am.

The smell of the cooking chicken wakes me up, and I hope it’s done, because I’m very, very hungry. I reach over for my glasses and put them on. The light blinds me for a moment after I open up the bedroom door. Before I go to check on the food I quickly put my pants back on, not wanting my girlfriend to see me in just my underwear, still self-conscious despite our being together for over a year now.

Heading into the kitchen I see her sitting on a stool by the window, smoking a cigarette and reading a book. I can’t tell which one. She acknowledges me without looking up, flicking ash into an ashtray sitting on the windowsill. I walk over to the oven and open it up to check on the chicken. Overdone.

I close the oven without taking the chicken out and I’m immediately grabbed around the waist by my girlfriend, who had put out her cigarette and put down her book. She kisses me and looks at me, smiling. “I love you,” she says.

I gently pull her hands off of me, and say, “You’re ruining my perception of reality.” As I slowly walk out of the kitchen, I add, “I love you, too,” before sitting down on the couch to think about how much my life sucks.

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