An Extra Life
I know what you’re thinking. “Jesus already did that. What a poser!” Unfortunately, I’m not going to be able to tell you exactly how to figure this one out. It is my birthday, after all. But you could try picking up a coin every time you see one until you get a hundred or maybe killing your boss would work. That’s how they do it in video games, at least. I don’t really think they would just make something like that up.
The Color Orange
Do you know anyone else that owns a color? Stop, no you don’t. I’d be walking down the street and people would be like “yo dudes! It’s Jason, he’s that cat that owns orange!” I would probably be wearing a fuzzy orange Kangol jump suit and that might give it away. But whatever, I own orange now, that’s my job.
To be as Cool as Someone Named Derek
I knew this kid named Derek once that was so cool that he just stayed a kid forever. He even wore a backwards hat. I also heard this really cool rumor that all Dereks learn how to slam dunk a basketball when they’re five. I still have to sing a song to help me tie my shoes.
A Stick or Something
I don’t know, I’m kind of out of ideas.
A New Breath
Mine has been disgusting lately and it’s really starting to piss me off. The other night after I ate a Doritos and asparagus salad, I’m pretty sure I killed my grandma just by talking to her on the phone. I’d like my new breath to smell like something delightful, like a box of crayons or a new book. You know, something sexy but not too over the top.
I’ve been in a lot of weird relationships throughout the course of my life, but one in particular takes the cake. Now everyone has been in complicated relationships with their fair share of misunderstandings and unfair treatment. But believe me when I tell you, none of you have ever experienced something like this. Remember “love jail?” This is how I came up with that term.
I met this girl on a blind date that, for some reason, started at the movies for a showing of Sex and the City 2. That should have been my first clue that this was a horrible idea. My second clue was her name. It was Desdemona. When you meet someone with a name that you never knew existed, that’s a surefire sign that they can’t be trusted. I found that out the hard way but in passing on my knowledge, I’m trying to protect the rest of you.
The date was set up by my friends Byron and Sasha. In getting me to agree to the date, Desdemona was described to me as “funny, cute, smart and normal.” When someone that you’re considering going on a date with is described as “normal” before you have even met them, that’s a surefire sign that they’re actually hiding something and are completely fucked. So that’s three warning signs that I ignored. At this point, I can fully understand that the reader will have absolutely no sympathy for me.
My relationship with Desdemona started out reasonably normal. Now that doesn’t exactly mean that it was healthy. We were in the type of relationship that was more like a competition. You know, the kind where one of the parties would make a mistake and the other party, or the competition in this situation, would be “winning” for a week or so. This would change only when the other person was able to gain the upper hand through a costly relationship mistake, allowing a shift in power. This would go on for a couple months and, sadly, this is the part of our relationship that I look back on most fondly.
After a few months, there was a radical shift in power. Desdemona became the chairman of the Love Competition Committee. After analyzing important events in our relationship and doing months of research, I believe that I may have discovered the turning point. It took place at Desdemona’s dad’s fiftieth birthday party. While dramatically pulling a beer out of a cooler, I accidentally punched her dad in the nose on the back swing while following through. As my hand and beer went behind my head, I socked him hard with my rock solid, freezing cold beerfist. He let out a loud “ooof” and clutched his nose. I saw blood right away. I tried to apologize, but before I could say anything, he screamed at me.
“You drunk shit head! You ruined my birthday!”
I wasn’t even that drunk. Just because I screamed “Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers” like a giggly ten-year old as I executed my dramatic beer grab doesn’t mean I was wasted. But the party was ruined nonetheless. A few women screamed at the sight of the blood and someone threw a plate of nachos at me. The party cleared out quickly, Desdemona’s dad was rushed to the hospital and Desdemona and her entire family all told me how much they hated me. I was more upset about not being able to complete my Power Rangers move as the party ended than anything else.
Despite the way the party ended, Desdemona didn’t break up with me. And at the time, for some reason, I was relieved. If I would have known that I’d be losing in the relationship game for the remainder of it’s lifespan, I think I would have been more upset than anything. The days after the party are when things really started to change.
First, Desdemona decided that she needed to compile a list of rules for me to follow. The list included twenty-six different rules that touched on everything from the type of aerobics I was required to do to stay in shape to the zipperless jeans I was forced to wear. She also compiled a list of acceptable friends that I was allowed to see while dating her. Of course, all female friends were excluded from this list. She had both “important documents” laminated and framed them, hanging them over my bed and adding them to my summer reading list so that I’d never forget anything from her precious lists.
Around the same time, she started to have me run all sorts of weird errands for her. Aside from the regular, but embarrassing, errand of “run to the store for tampons for me,” there were dozens of extremely insane errands I was forced to run. The errand running itself was a bit of a problem. I was more broke than a sex addict at a stripper convention and was without a car. So on all of these errands, I was forced to ride my bike.
A couple of these errands stick out in my mind. One of them took place just a couple weeks after the birthday party incident. Desdemona had discovered an ant infestation in her house. Now this was extremely terrible news to her as she was deathly afraid of bugs. When she first spotted the little creatures, she had a panic attack and freaked the fuck out on me.
“Why would you bring those here? You knew this would happen! Why are you trying to kill me!?!” she sobbed while shaking uncontrollably. I tried to calm her down but to no avail. I recommended that we get some type of ant traps or some type of spray. I even volunteered to go pick some up on my bike.
“Are you insane?!” she replied. “You don’t understand anything, do you? That would never work! Why would that ever work?! Answer me! Don’t talk! You don’t understand anything. We need fear! Fear is king! Fear is GOD!”
She screamed God at the top of her lungs as if it were the crescendo of an opera written by Satan himself. I had no idea what she was talking about. How the Hell could you scare ants? I didn’t dare ask her but I was soon to find out. Desdemona barked her commands at me like a Nazi general.
“The only thing you were right about is that you’re going to go take your bike to pick something up. We’re going to scare these ants to death! You’re going to go to the store and pick up the biggest spider you can find. I don’t mean a real spider dipshit! You’re going to get one of those enormous Halloween decoration spiders. That’s how we’re going to scare these ants!”
So I went out and picked up a huge spider. Getting the spider home was ridiculous. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any pegs on the back of my bike. If I did, I would have had the spider ride home on them. Instead, the spider had to sit on the seat behind me with it’s arms wrapped around me. The ride home was completely embarrassing. We looked like some kind of weird, arachno-love motorcycle couple.
As ridiculous as the spider experience was, one errand that I was forced to run sticks out more than any other. For some reason, on top of all the other weird shit going on with Desdemona, she started to get into witchcraft. After watching The Craft and Sabrina the Teenage Witch literally forty-five times one day, she decided that she needed to get her hands on a book of spells. I’m sure she intended to curse me and make me date her for the rest of my life. I considered becoming a warlock just so I could beat her in an apocalyptic spell battle if worse came to worst. I decided against it so that I could remain a normal person rather than turning into some ridiculous Juggalo warlock with dreadlocks and a wizard’s staff with the insignia “Wikkid Wizurd” on it.
So I was given my command for picking up the spell book. I was to ride my bike to a book store that was two towns over. She insisted that this place would have a “centuries old Bible for witches.” I told her that I was pretty sure that witches didn’t read the Bible and she replied by speaking in tongues under her breath in a demonic voice while staring at me and shaking.
“Don’t you need your witch Bible to do your little spells?” I asked.
She ignored me and actually gave me some great news. She informed me that I would be allowed to ask an approved friend to come on this journey with me. I asked her for her copy of the approved friends list (of course she kept one) and tried to pick out one of the few non-lames that were included. The fact that I needed to see the list to make a decision made her angry since she had already made reading them a homework assignment of mine. Would I be able to convince any of these people to come with me on what would most likely amount to a four-hour long bike ride? I chose my friend Josh and called him to try to convince him. I gave him my best sales pitch and used words like “adventure” and “archaeology” knowing that anyone would get super pumped when promise of those events were thrown out there. Somehow Josh agreed to come with and it was decided I would meet him at his house on the way.
I met Josh and we started out on our epic archaeology adventure. I was pretty excited to be free from Desdemona and actually be around a friend. I told Josh that we would ride slow and take our time so that I could enjoy the day off that the penitentiary had given me. Just as I finished saying that, I got a text message. Of course it was from Desdemona.
“i n0 wat ur d0ing. ride ur byke fastr. u bet3r b bak bi dinnr. i wnt spel b0k.”
Not only was this completely impossible, but apparently she was also psychic. I looked around to make sure I wasn’t being followed or watched by spies from the Army of Darkness. The coast looked clear. I told Josh about the text and suggested that we rode a little faster.
“You’re a pussie-whipped little bitch,” replied Josh. “You don’t have to jump at everything she says, you know.”
“If your girlfriend was reciting Satanic tongues toward you, I’m prettty sure you’d do the same.”
I sped up and Josh followed. I rode along in fear for a few minutes until I found some fun again. There was an elevated spot in the sidewalk and I decided I wanted to do an amazing and nearly impossible bike jump over it. I flew toward the jump, elevated over the bump and did a full 360 spin. Somehow I landed. Josh saw how much fun I had just had and wanted to follow suit. He flew toward the ramp and took off. Josh’s landing didn’t work out so well. He crashed to the ground hard and was screaming in pain.
“Aaaaaaahhh my arm! It’s broken! Aaaah!! This is all YOUR fault! All you and your crazy girlfriend’s fault! Fuck you Jason! Fuck you!”
For some reason, I felt like I had to stick up for Desdemona.
“Just because she’s a witch doesn’t mean she’s crazy! Witches are real! You have to believe!”
I rode my bike as fast as I could and left Josh writhing in pain on a stranger’s front lawn. I couldn’t wait for him, I had to save my own life. I rode my bike until I couldn’t feel my legs anymore. When they started to burn, I decided I needed to make a quick stop. I only had one more town to go but I needed a little rest and a drink. I found the nearest grocery store and rode my bike in.
As I walked toward the store, I heard a terrible noise. It was a disgusting mixture of hacking and coughing that made me think of someone gurgling blood. It got louder and louder as I approached until I heard a cracked-out voice call out to me.
“Mahscoozme, sir. Mahscoozme! Sir, I need yur help.”
Although I was in my mid-twenties, the lessons I learned about stranger danger followed me around like a guardian angel. I ignored the voice.
“Sir!!! Mahscoozmes!!! I need yur help! Sir please! I need you!”
My pending sainthood outweighed the lessons of stranger danger. I looked in the direction that this wretched voice was coming from. All I could see was a van that should have broken down fifteen years ago and a shadowy figure partially hanging out the window. I slowly walked toward the van and realized that keeping my distance was probably the best idea. I could only imagine how much ransom money could be demanded for such an important figure like myself. I stopped once I was about ten feet from the van and could barely make out the outline of an extremely haggard middle-aged women.
“Oh sir! Thank you so much! God bless yur soul,” she nearly sobbed. “Sir, I need you to do somethin’ for me. I throwed up all over myself and I need to return these diapers. There ain’t no way I can go in there and return ’em. Oh my GodLord this is so embarrassin’. Can you please return these diapers for me and bring me da cash? Here’s da receipt.”
I didn’t know what to say. First of all lady, you threw up all over yourself, isn’t getting home to wash up a little more important at this point in time than returning diapers? I’m pretty sure you could come back for this at another time. Do you need the diapers because you’ve shit all over yourself as well? For some reason, I agreed to do it. I took the diapers and receipt and headed for the door. On my way in, I saw a scantily clad young woman sitting on the curb in front of the store.
“What the hell are you looking at?” she snapped at me.
“I didn’t know they sold hookers here, too!” I replied quickly.
In talking to the two females that I had just spoken to, I had broken rule number seventeen on Desdemona’s list. You’d think that “no talking to other girls” would be rule number one, but everything she did was ridiculous and didn’t make sense. I approached the register with the diapers and receipt and explained to the cashier who then grabbed her manager.
“We’re really sorry about everything,” said the manager. I replied that it was okay even though it really wasn’t. What were a couple of grocery store employees going to do to help this situation? I got the money for the diapers and headed back outside. As I walked out the door, I heard the most dreadful coughing and gagging noises I’d ever heard and was convinced that my scumbag friend had thrown up on herself again. I walked to the van but stood far enough away to hand her the cash without getting throw-up all over myself. As I handed her the cash, she grabbed my wrist and pulled me closer. The stench of vomit, cigarette smoke and the piece of shit van she was in nearly made me throw up on myself.
“God bless yur soul! But I ain’t done witchyou just yet. Today’s my son’s birthday and I need to get da boy a cake. He loves da race cars so you gotta go on in dere and get me a race car cake made up all nice. Here I made dis drawin’,” she pulled a terribly drawn sketch of what was supposed to be a birthday cake out of her bra and handed it to me before I knew what was happening. It was slightly damp and when it touched my hands I almost passed out in disgust. I pinched the corners of the drawing, barely hanging onto it. “You see right dere,” she said pointing to a blob on the drawing “dat’s da race car. And all ’round near it, dats all dat swirly stuff. You gotta make sure dats how dey do it. Oh God bless yur soul!”
She gave me the money from the diaper return and a few dollars more and I turned to walk toward the grocery store with the diseased drawing in my hand. After I had taken two steps and was still a ways away from the store, a man in a shirt and tie stopped and held the door for me. I told him to go on because I’d rather take my time but he insisted on holding the door. I was forced to run to the door since he was holding it for me and I was pissed off.
“Oooooh thank you sooooo much Jim Business,” I said sarcastically. “I’m not sure what I would have done without you.”
I walked to the bakery and handed them the drawing. I was relieved that it was finally out of my hands. I explained the entire situation to her and she responded by saying “sorry kiss,” which I thought was a little strange but I didn’t question her. She started to make the cake and I told her that she needed more squigglies in a couple of areas. I took the cake and cashed out. As I walked outside, I noticed it was dark out. I had missed my deadline of dinner time by probably a couple of hours. Desdemona sent me another text.
“wat da fuk? wher r u? this iz ann0yin. want mi spelz.”
I ignored the text. I had more important matters to tend do. I brought the cake out to the car and was thanked immensely. I was told that I was an “angel from the God above,” and that “if I ever needed anythin’ to ask around town for Betty.” No thanks, bye.
As I started off toward the book store, I realized that my life was a joke. Fuck Desdemona and her stupid spell book. I didn’t care anymore. I turned my bike around and started to ride home. I wasn’t going to be her slave anymore. A couple of hours into my ride home, I got a text from her. It said “we r d0ne.” I replied with “h00 karez. Lurn 2 spel.” I went home and stole her money that she had given me for the spell book and I didn’t even care.