An act of congress between two unconsummated bodies
Because I cleverly disguise my sinuous form in the cloak of a 14-year-old boy, I am often left alone by boorish, defensive delivery men and heaving, corpulent South Asian immigrants who stare with psychotic insistence for psychosis-inspiring durations on the Coney Island-bound F train. But every so often when I revert to the female variant of my humanoid form, a not unattractive middle aged man in a tweed suit and pretty parcel under his elbow will discretely eye me in my unmasked female magnitude, glancing askance from a suitable distance while allowing me the opportunity to return the overture without looking foolish. The playful look of my partner in philandering crime is then abruptly aborted if I do not respond. But because I am easily charmed by manners and mischief, because I am awed by a mysterious professor’s gentlemanly consideration for my volition (which, in my mind, means he’s human which means we could plausibly procreate which means I’m biologically into it), I say yes! to the darting eyes and downward gazes, interspersed head turns, hip swivels, silly smiles, masculine cigarette flicks and corner skirting and it’s SO much more fun to be an equal player in the flirting game, with both parties committed, neither harassed! Three cheers for civilized sexual levity!
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The painful partings and pitiable places of the apocalypse!
In preparation for the world to end, I tearfully set my baby cat outside the house through my Minnesota front door. It’s a beautifully temperate sunny Spring day, the unfairly attractive atmosphere typical of tragedies. But I have to let her go, I tell myself queasily, since I know she’ll be safe in the wild. Still, as she bounds gleefully into my mom’s flower beds and into the street, through the neighbor’s yards and out of my eyesight, my heart sinks to watch her go. That’s when I see one speeding van–and then another–with roofs that teem with house-hold pets of all descriptions with their tongues wagging and ears flopping in the wind, the sounds of meows compounding my sorrow! Are other peoples’ pets being saved? I cry my eyes out interminably over my needlessly lost Lamington, but amazingly, a few days later my cat comes back wherein she left. Her coat is a different, darker color but in my ecstatic gratitude that we should be reunited, I pay it little mind…
But still, the world is ending and I can’t wish it away, so soon I find myself in Dublin to stave off my decease. Waiting with Gary in a queue that reminds me of the line I imagine exists outside heaven, I am made aware that only Irish people are allowed past the gatekeeper. Luckily, Gary has a plan that I don’t understand. When it comes my turn to be judged by the oracles–I mean, speak with the single gatekeeper in fatigues–I look up to see that the guard is outrageously tall and obscured by sunlight. Holding my hand up to shield myself, I am swiftly given entrance on account of my stature; it seems he thought I was a child. I feel guilty for capitalizing on my childishness to save my skin since I long to be adult, but if this is how it goes, so be my wee lowness. After narrowly escaping my fate, I mix in with a group temporarily safekeeping in a bomb shelter, sitting semi-circle. There’s one other American woman who escaped the authorities with whom I try to speak but I can’t make her acquaintance and I wonder why on earth I’m spending my last moments in Dublin.
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