His raspy voice made me want to clear my throat, even though I knew it would do nothing to cure his unfortunate vocal debilitations.
I expected it to be like a tsunami: a sudden, unstoppable flood of tears down my face, drowning in my own sobs. Instead, the pain made a small hole in my heart that slowly cracked and spread. The tears pooled just as slowly, my chest tightening, as if to keep the heart inside from falling apart. Tears dripped down my face like a slow leak, but as the erosion widened the hole in my heart, the emotions began to escape and gush out.
He rolled his tongue around in his mouth, as if balling up the words he wanted to say to form into a bullet.
“Uh, yeah, I have someone who does all my chores for me.”
“Oh, really? Who would that be?”
“My future self.”
I found it funny that when I used that shampoo, that travel-sized container I’d brought with me on my trip, the smell . . . It was a brand I hadn’t used in a while. In fact, the last memory I had associated with it was . . . giving my dog a bath. My dog had died three years previous. The smell of that shampoo, however small, was strongly linked to the sensation of my knees on the rug, the cold tub squashing against my legs, my slimy hands massaging the familiar smelling suds into my dog’s fur. It was difficult at times, trying to reach the places she was reluctant to turn and let me access, like the back leg she had determinedly pressed against the back wall. It was tiring often, trying to reach my hands out and just scrub. But it was her. And it was I. And now it wasn’t. That shampoo once meant her. Now, it only meant the memory of her.
Just another one of those dreams where you’re being illogically chased all over a huge city for days, and the only way to shake off your pursuers is to scratch them with the serrated edge of your keys.
What’s worse than achieving your dream? Achieving your dream and then discovering it’s not good enough.
The bottom of my flipped car was so hugged to the now warped fence, you might think we’d been driving on it the whole time.
Q: All the nightmares you have at night come true. What does your life look like?
A: It would constantly be full of dead bodies and my dogs dying. I would be late for work or absent entirely half the time. I would consistently forget my lunch, my coworkers would alternate between trying to humiliate me and trying to kill me, and my social life would be composed of people knowing all my secrets and hating me.
My fuzzy, unclear vision shifted its focus, bringing each particular inch in and then out of clarity as it trailed downwards. The back and forth path of clearing vision made the pillow next to me pulse in and out like its own heartbeat.