Friday, December 31, 2010

That Sickness: a monologue

It is not until I learn to take care of myself that I will be of any use to anyone else. My husband and children do not understand that. it is always mommy this and honey that. I feel like I am a rag doll being stretched in five different directions. Eventually, I will unravel completely and there will be nothing left of me but a torn scrap of fabric. I am already frayed at the edges.

Look at all the gray hairs I have collected in the past ten years. The last thing in the world I wanted to be was a stay-at-home wife and mother. But, like Mom always said, life is what happens when you have other plans. Oh, ain't that the truth! Ain't that the godforsaken truth! And Heaven forbid I should get pregnant again. My husband is a very god-fearing man and insists upon the need to "be fruitful and multiply."

The next time I feel that sickness coming on, I will go to the witchwoman in the woods. She will save me from going though this whole ordeal again. She will make me a black brew to burn my insides and the baby itself will never form.

Friday, December 24, 2010

I Am an Evil Spirit

The houses we own, the apartments we rent, and all of the things we put in them are an attempt to control our environment. By doing so, we think we can also control our lives. Consider feng shui, for example. This way of decorating and building design was originally an attempt to confuse evil spirits.

Most houses designed with feng shui principles include a labyrinthine walkway leading up to the front door. These winding pathways grow so convoluted that they don't seem to go anywhere, until you get there, of course. They also use mirrors to distract the evil spirits and send them in the wrong direction.

We Westerners find the concept of feng shui interesting. It seems to tell us that we can fundamentally change our lives by rearranging our furniture and adding a few mirrors, candles, and plants to our d├ęcor. As usual, we bastardize the culture and try to make it our own, completely leaving out the context.

My very limited experience with feng shui proved disappointing. One of the first things I realized was that my ex's desk was located in the power position of our apartment. This is the spot diagonal from the front door. From this vantage point, you can see the evil spirits who have made it to your front door and stop them before they cause any real mayhem.

My ex's desk was arranged so that his back was to the corner, and he could look out into the living room. It was intimidating to walk into that apartment while he was sitting at his desk. He would be staring at you as soon as you stepped in the door.

I felt a little like an evil spirit, but maybe I am an evil spirit. I just haven't come into my own yet.

Banishing Evil Spirits


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Monday, December 13, 2010


Published in Straylight, UW-Parkside's literary mag, online series.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Woman in My Life

An irresistible powerhouse of technology, little Miss Black Berry, led me to my worst vices: porno, gambling, shopping, gaming. She gives me incentives to keep my eyes on her glowing screen. She keeps me awake until the wee hours of the morning. And I can look up all the pertinent information I think I need.

Black Berry. Blackberry. Even her name has begun to haunt me. And I respond to all her beeps and blaring, like she is a whining newborn suffering in a soggy diaper. I know she doesn't really need me, but I am obsessed with her. She makes me feel useful in this world of to-do-lists and telephone calls, e-mail and text messages, even up-to-the-minute news and weather alerts. Having her at my side makes me an important person.

And important things happen to important people. Just the other day, I bumped into Frank Baum, owner of my company. In the elevator of all places. Not very often you run into a man like that in the elevator. Its like he has his own teleporting machine to whisk him away to wherever it is he needs to be. And turns out, he has one of my apps!

But of course, he has one of those iPhones. Blackberries are so outdated. My Miss needs to be updated if I ever want to get promoted in this place. What is it that they say? He with the most toys wins. And it's true. Believe me, its true.