God Exists and He Is Good

I’m on my hands and knees like a feckless fuckup, feeling around for something I’ve lost. I’m not sure what I’m looking for until I hear someone say: this chick dropped her phone. 

I’ve dropped my phone. Of course.

His friends begin to echo him.

She’s dropped her phone. She’s dropped her phone. She’s dropped her phone.

I spot it underneath the sole of someone’s sneaker.

The sneaker is squishing my precious slice of space gray into smithereens. Intent to kill. Oh, you want your phone? They are laughing at me. My suffering delights them. My suffering delights them because they hate me. They hate me because I am a feeler, and they hate feelers here.

I resurface with my phone in my hand. Not a single scratch. But they had stomped on it. Hadn’t they? Hadn’t they?

I’m looking around for my people when I come face to face with a woman who looks exactly like Hayden Panettierre if Hayden Panettierre were ugly. Are you gonna stay, or are you gonna go? She screams at my face in a thick, Jersey accent. Bad attitude. She pushes past me as if I were a cancerous tumor. Her hatred hurts me—puts me in pain—yet I relish the feeling, for I am madly in love with being alive. 

I’ve lost my people, but I’ve found a bleary-eyed blonde whose beautifully-tanned arms feel even softer than they look. Smooth as silk, warm as wonder.

I love you, she shouts at the space between my eyeballs. I love you!

Fake fake fake. I need to get away from this mockery of affection. Dishonesty disturbs me, but I know I deserve it. This is what I get for touching strangers. Don’t touch strangers. All humans, including strangers, are to be treated with respect, and that entails being polite and helpful when needed, but otherwise keeping entirely to oneself. Whoever proclaimed, “grab them by the pussy” what not in a clear state of mind. He was not enlightened at all!  

I’ve made it to the center of everything, when it hits me: an epiphany like no other. If I put my right hand on my left arm, and my left hand on my right arm, and squeeze very hard, I can experience all the joy and warmth in the world without any consequences. I am all I need.

The beat drops, making my ear drums orgasm. I did not know my ear drums were such sexual creatures. The lights look pretty, but I close my eyes and squeeze myself because the pleasure is coming from within. Pure happiness floods my cells. The air tastes so amazing, I could die.

I could die in this moment and be perfectly content, because God exists, and he loves me unconditionally. 

I’ve never before experienced such certainty. I hate writing because it forces me to make order out of disorder, to craft stories out of randomness. 

But this moment is not random. This moment is God’s will. God has made my body holy because He loves me. His goodness is undeniable. 

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God (1 John 4:7). 

I didn’t know they rolled in Biblical times.

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I don’t give money to homeless people

“Could somebody spare a penny?” Said the homeless man with organically green hair. I tried to tune him out, irritated by his shamelessness. I walked past him most days. Except when it was raining. He was never there when it was raining. I mostly hated him. I dreaded the sound of his demented voice. I tried my best to avoid eye-contact. 

One day in May he waved at me, and I smiled back. He ruined the moment by saying, “take me home with you!” His homeless lady-friend sneered, “yeah right!” I loved her for backing me up, for giving him a requisite reality check. 

Early June he surprised me by hollering, “why aren’t you jogging today?” I ignored him as usual. 

He no longer asks me if I can “spare a penny,” because he knows I’m a frigid bitch. 

We silently acknowledge each other’s existence. His glassy eyes gleam with laughter. Maybe he finds my face amusing. I don’t find him amusing at all.

He disturbs me. But we are friends now. He’s earned my trust or something like that

I don’t know. 

Separation of blood

I’m typing up my pendulum lab report when I feel something warm trickle out of my right nostril down my lip. It lands as a red drop on my keyboard: blood. 

Delighted, I grab a plastic sauce container I’ve saved for the occasion and position it under my nose. I lean forward and let gravity do its thing. The bottom surface becomes a blanket of red. With each drop the crimson pool rises. 

Unfortunately my platelets kick in, forming a clot and stopping the flow when the cup reaches roughly three quarters full. I violently blow my nose to dislodge the occlusion, adding just enough volume to give the harvest a consummate appearance. 

I lick my upper lip clean and crawl into bed, drowsy and drunk on my own flavorful claret. I try to savor the taste, but sleep comes too fast. 

Nervous knocking. I groggily open the door. It’s Cute Chris, and I reflexively wipe the drool off my face, thankful I just had my eyebrows threaded (theoretically mitigating my ugliness).  

Cute Chris is the most effortlessly angelic human I have ever met; and while I’m not delusional enough to think him 100% flawless, his gratuitously humble nature coupled with his aptitude for linear algebra are enough to make me want to have hours of unprotected sex with him. 

He sincerely apologizes for waking me up, but I tell him it’s alright, totally ok. He needs the practice test: slept through class this morning. I fix my messy pony tail and step aside to let him in. He stands patiently in the middle of my room as I rummage through my backpack.

I hand him the packet of problems. He’s staring warily at something on my dresser. Is it… blood? 

Yes it’s blood. I suffer from 1) allergies and 2) shortage of facial tissues. This combination of factors led me to collect my fluids in the only available vessel: a sauce cup.  

I catch him staring at my fully stocked box of Kleenex and copious rolls of paper towels. A troubled look tints his characteristically seraphic countenance. 

He thanks me for the packet. I tell him no problem. Anytime. 

He leaves too quickly, and I want to die a terrible death. Not really, but this is the only mantra that is able to mollify the debilitating despair that crawls up my throat, through my brain stem and into my temples where it threatens to linger for eternity, mercilessly radiating shame and humiliation forever and ever and ever. But I’m going to die I’m going to die I’m going to die. 

The next day the blood in the cup separates into two, distinct layers: clear plasma on top, red platelets on bottom. Of course: gravity likes heavy things more than it likes light things. The world is a centrifuge, but my body stubbornly resists equilibrium, fighting tirelessly to maintain a steady state.

“But I’ve escaped,” my blood whispers to me, “and you’re never going to get me back.” 

How to be a Successful Sugar Baby

“I want a sugar daddy,” says the club promoter, stirring her gin and tonic wistfully, “but I would never—like—do anything sexual with him or anything.”

“Interesting,” I say.

 I chug my pineapple vodka. 

I am often overcome with a feeling of horror when I realize the person I am conversing with possesses an aggressive disregard for economics, cause-and-effect, logic and the like. She may as well have said, “I want to be a professional basketball player, but I would never touch a ball. I fucking hate balls and sneakers and black people and running.”

A sugar baby is essentially a shrewd, discerning prostitute who possesses the skills to generate revenue without the help of a pimp or an escort agency. 

She is gifted with an innate understanding of human psychology and uses this to supply a service tailored specifically to the client’s tastes. She is able to make him feel special and desirable all while being paid, a seemingly paradoxical conundrum few have the finesse to navigate.

Needless to say, successful sugar babies (grossing six figures) are as rare as successful entrepreneurs. Many try and most fail. The majority don’t try at all: acquiescing to simpler arrangements like escorting or investment banking. Indeed self-employment (the lucrative kind) demands a fuck-ton of faith coupled with concupiscent persistence.

“Are you serious about becoming a sugar baby?” I ask.

She’s texting someone. “What was that?”

“Do you really want to be a sugar baby?”

“Well like yeah,” she puts her phone down, “I really need the money.”

“It can’t come from a place of desperation—” 

“What?” She laughs nervously. 

“Sugaring is a pretty… nuanced art I think, and if your only motivation is money I don’t think you’d find it…very rewarding—“

“Are you on drugs?” She looks pissed.

“No I’m sorry—“ I hiccup, “I’m just like really fucking drunk.” 

Being bad at things

One of my dreams is to be a stripper: to hustle for cold, hard cash. I want bitches to throw me Benjamins as I gyrate to Juicy J. I want this more than Mahatma Ghandi wanted world peace. 

I called Penthouse Executive Club to schedule an audition but hung up after the second ring. I’m terrified I don’t have what it takes. 

My dance style is best described as “aggressive.” I like to hump, and I like to be humped. I don’t dance with my ass or my shoulders or my hips. Rather my movements originate from the area surrounding my belly button. I’m pregnant with rage, and the rage controls me. 

An Australian girl at a Parisian night club described my twerking as “demonic.”

I suppose what I lack is femininity. I don’t know how to dance like I have a vagina. I do know how to dance like an epileptic experiencing a whole body seizure. 

A private lap dance from me would likely result in the client muttering “what the fuck” under his breath and storming out of the club with an eerie sense of dread. He would later suffer night terrors about the experience, waking up in cold sweat screaming for his wife. 

I’m trying to determine why I want to be a stripper so badly when I would so clearly suck at it. I think it stems from insecurity coupled with a thirst for glamour.

I often fear I am unattractive and awkward, especially compared to my disgustingly beautiful best friend and those glowing Korean chicks who calmly sit at tables in racist night clubs. Their eyebrows alone make me feel like Susan Boyle if Susan Boyle was untalented and Chinese-American. 

The title as a bona fide stripper would combat it all: bow down bitches, for I am hot and confident and the diametric antithesis of nerdy. My resplendent rump on your lap shall cost you as much as a Starbucks barista makes in three fortnights. 

But sometimes dreams are just dreams. Especially when fueled by something as shallow and unsubstantial as desire for prestige? 

What I really want to be is a writer because I fucking love words and sentences and how they fit together. But I can’t do it because it’s too important to me.

Ass

I’ve been obsessed with the phenomena of twerking for some time now. I was first captivated by the music video for Nicki Minaj’s hypnotic single, Anaconda. The plethoric presentation of fleshy behinds bouncing in sync to a booming beat struck awe into my heart and soul. 

I fantasized about twerking, but I never actually attempted it; I always had something better to do such as studying for exams and simply meeting the daily demands of living a productive life. 

But the other day after waking up at noon and feeling the late March breeze on my face as I strolled down 8th avenue with a sublime black sesame latte from Paris Baguette, I found myself in a strange mood best described as boredom coupled with restless energy. 

I decided I would learn to twerk. 

In the privacy of my own room, I assumed a squatting position and moved my hips back and forth in the prescribed manner, but something was terribly wrong. Nothing happened. Absolutely nothing happened. And then it hit me: I don’t have an ass. I can’t make my ass clap because I literally don’t have one. 

I stood sideways in front of the bathroom mirror, shimmied my hips and observed the result. Indeed my stomach, thighs and my buttocks jiggled, but my butt did not bounce the way Nicki’s does. I suddenly felt like a manly nun. 

Since I’ve always considered myself relatively curvy, I’ve never questioned my body’s femininity. But suddenly I was hit by feelings of insecurity. What’s wrong with me. Why don’t I have an ass—or more specifically—an ass that can bounce

I called my dad because 1) I was mentally distressed and 2) sometimes he has the answers.

“Everysing ok?” he asked warily.

“Yes everything’s fine—well kind of.” I took a breath. “I just realized my ass is kind of flat?”

“What?” he sounded appalled. “Not frat at arr! I see so many pancake butt, and you have hao pigu. Should be very happy!”

I nodded silently in agreement. “But—“

“Hmm?”

“Why is it so different from like—Nicki Minaj’s butt? Like why do all black women seem to have such huge bubble butts?”

“Ah,” he sighed, “just the evolution, Jennifer. Just the evolution. Let me explain to you.”

“There’s an explanation?” I asked apprehensively.

“Jennifer everysing in rife have explanation. In Africa so hot, you see. This charrenging environment select for the women with the fat ass. Fat is good. The fat help to carry children, to provide reserve during famine. But tell me, Jennifer: what is the problem with the fat?”

I tried to think on my feet, “it makes it difficult to run?”

“Think harder, Jennifer. Think Africa.”

It clicked. “Fat insulates body heat!”

“Yes,” he sounded excited. “Exactry. So the surface-area vorume ratio maximized by all the fat in the ass. Not too hot, but still have plenty of fat. Understand?”

“That makes so much sense. Did you come up with that on your own?”

“Of course not,” he laughed, “daddy no genius. It’s genetic trait called Steatopygia. I read paper about it. Anthropology so much fun!”

“It is,” I agreed.

“You should try study somesing. I worry about you. All you do is sit around and think about your ass. You should go grad school.” 

I rolled my eyes. “I gotta go dad. I have things to do.” 

Stage

When I booked my haircut with Stage, I did not picture him as asian. But he is asian, and I like him instantly because I am also asian. 

His spiky hair is juxtaposed with a slick side-shave, adding just the right amount of badass to his otherwise pale, innocuous, schoolboy look. He’s dressed simply in a baby-blue cashmere V-neck sweater and pearl-grey corduroy pants. 

I wish my painfully straight brother could look this fabulous on his own. 

I trust him completely with my neglected ponytail of gangrenous split ends. 

After we’ve agreed on keeping my hair long (but adding subtle layers and sexy, side-swept bangs), he asks me the difficult questions.

“So are you a student or do you work?”

“I’m not in school, and I don’t have a job.”

Sensing the awkward silence, I quickly add: “Well I just graduated in December.”

I suddenly realize it’s like…almost fucking April.

But he nods along sympathetically, “What field are you looking in?”

“I’m not looking.” I stare at my scummy self in the mirror and feel unforgivably scummy. Snip snip snip

“But I got my degree in biochemistry,” I offer, desperately defending my credibility, “only I kind of hated it.”

Stage laughs, and I’m relieved, but then he hits me with the most incriminating inquiry: “So what do you do all day then?”

I think fast on my feet. “Walk dogs. And read books. I read a lot of books.”

Before he can probe further into my ridiculously unambitious life of unmitigated inaction, I turn the spotlight on him. 

“So do you like cutting hair?”

“Absolutely,” he gushes, “I love it.”

The orgasmic energy that accompanies career fulfillment flows from his pale hand through his busy scissors, my hair, my brain, my heart, my soul and into my own fingertips, which tingle with something like inspiration. 

Or maybe I just have peripheral neuropathy from never wearing gloves while handling toxic reagents.