WOKE now; & damn, how weirdly;
no alarm set yet; zero calls missed yup●●●●○Verizon7:34 SUNDAY29% ❙❙⫿⫿⫿⫿;—
but can’t snooze none nuh-uh;
so listen close through the callpiece yuh-huh:
DAMN, GET UP AND DO YOUR THING. GET UP AND DO THAT FUNCTION THING!ok
and listen close to the pity pitters of them raindrops outsidepbdpdpdb…; oh then it must be a storm; oh then them streets must be slickssSsSSkkKKrrRrRReeEEEE!; oh then it must be sunday in Seattle, oh, now everything on earth clicks.
stretch/yawn(strawn) it out; nnnnyyYYYYyyAAaaaahhhh… ah…
& WELP, damn; woke now anyway; might as well stay so; & anylyhow, the rainpatter outsidebdppbdb forces out quick this p_r_i_m_e_v_a_l urge to piss.
obey bladder; zombiewalk to bathroomnnnggg…;
toilet == geyser!!!
full-frontal blast of cold sewage to face; wipe eyes clear, dull stench of fecal matter sears; throne drooling mad like drunken bastard king; socks soaked straight away, frigid foot sponges; audible use of the word ‘fuckitry’; rapidly remove tank cover; fiddle about aimlessly; kneel down in sewage mound to twist water valve into ‘OFF’ position‘god dammit,’; water valve ineffective‘fuck?’, biblical quantities of excrement forcibly being ejected from toiletssssshit; increasing in PSItsssss; oh now everything on earth clicks; yes it must be sunday in Seattle oh it must be and boy does it ever suck fucking dicks.
wade from bathroom; strip socks; dial plumber; FUCK:
boop boop BOOP bip beep BOOP BOOP—
—hello? losttz you there for a second. yesz, i’m here. and i ain’t goin nowhere; not til this comeszft off my chest. like i said, look, listen; between us,fzt just tell me one thing: why we gotta keep on saying the shit we always promised’d betzt unsaid? oh–oh you feel me? cuz it feels to me like weftzk a galaxy apart; but hey travel ain’t cheap and they got uszt both working for weeks. we keep in touch occasionally online but we ain’t touched in monthszt, and hey maybe that shit’s on me; but betweenzt usz; you wasz right, b. i ain’t heard your voicefzt in–; well, listen, i couldn’t tell you how long. it soundszt different, i mean a little, you know? does my voicefzt sound different to you?—
MY TOILET IS OVERFLOWING.
MY TOILET IS OVERFLOWING WITH ALARMING, I REPEAT, ALARMING VELOCITY AND HAS 100% FLOODED MY BATHROOM. THERE IS ALSO CURRENTLY A LARGE AMOUNT OF ANALLY ANONYMOUS FECAL MATTER COATING THE COASTAL SAILBOAT PATTERN WALLPAPER AND THERE APPEARS TO BE A HUMAN FINGER FLOATING AMIDST THE SOUPY SEWAGE.
PLEASE, I NEED ASSISTANCE.
521 SOUTH WELLER STREET, THANK YOU.
CAN YOU HEAR ME?
AM I COMING THROUGH CLEAR?
—what i’m really tryna tell you ist this: justzt like we go way back, we go right back; you know what i mean? i mean who giveszt a frolicking fuck about just HOW many weeks it’sft been since; i mean, one quick conversation is pretty much all it takesz for the two of uszt to get all caught up; so how come it’szt so tough for uszrt to give in & call on up? we ain’t got ten minutesz to catch up on the last ten months? we too busy zhstaring at these phonesz these dayszt to send a text? or maybe the both of us are just beginning to fade? tell me which one it is yo cuzz i don’t wanna wait.—click
?¿?WRONG NUMBER?¿?‘the shit?’
check call historyhrmggg…; dialed correct, every digit, double checked.
whateverwhateverwhatever; ask internet for a new plumber; maul keyboard.
boop BEEP beep bip BEEP boop bip—
—and listen yo i won’t just let myself sleepfzt this one offv alright, not before i say thisz shit out loud alright cuzz if i say thiszt in my sleep or one more time or in the back of my mind i think the wordsz might just punch through my forehead alright, punch right through my eyesz right and leave me blind no thiszrt shit just can’t be confined, thiszt feeling can’t be defined, and no i won’t be resigned to thiszt fake-ass co-sign we both went and signed, and signed to what? to stop speaking to one another asz if everything meant nothing? and since the both of us live in such a big city, i mean, who could even CARE right because there are just SO many other people to meet right and just SO MUCH more potentialzrt out there right that ifv the both of us are any smartfzt at all we would just admit to ourselveszt—click
repeat usage of word ‘fuckitry’; toilet gurgling with terminal sickness; grey water rapidly seeping through carpet‘of fucking course,’; late to work and terminated in t-minus twelve minutes… twenty-two seconds.
FIGHT / ➤ FLIGHT
cartwheel through closet; emerge mostly dressed; streak to work;
THE FOLLOWING EIGHT HOURS BROUGHT TO YOU BY:
Capitol Hill Connection Grocery™ — not just food; people!
clock out; return home; 1 unread message:
WELCOME BACK, spells out a series of mushy, dark damp streaks outside the front door, all in a neat, tasteful cursive: YOU ARE IN FOR A REAL TREAT!
hand: gripped tensley upon doorknob;
gingerly push door open a few centimeters;—
take tidal wave of puréed shite straight to the torso; loafers squelching in guck and FUCK; survey damage; a solid inch of murky scumwater sits stagnant across all 428 square feet; a framed photograph floats face-down towards the doorway; fecal odeurs resist fumigation via open windows/manic arm-waving; toilet continuing to opposite flush with renewed gusto.
compose electronic mail directed towards building maintenance staff:
[SUBJECT: Plumbing problem]
[BODY: Hello, today the toilet erupted with violent, volcanic force. My studio apartment (#412) is currently submerged in raw excrement. If a capable plumber and clean-up/sanitation squadron could visit my unit as soon as humanly possible that would be extremely convenient for me. Thank you.]
waste 20 minutes idly scrolling down various webpages in the pitch dark; nonchalantly ankle-deep in room temperature feces; screens flash; eyes go; wash face; brush; floss; turn tube ON; stare; glow:
congress in deadlock due to controversial spending patterns over KSHT three hand-some slices of our voraciously sweet, ab-solutely au-thentic Kona sugarloaf pineapple here, mm’that’ll be at three-hundred and fifty degrees for KSHT the weekend, so dooon’t forget to bundle up those young ones and tighten up those scarves KSHT hanged himself in the unoccupied KSHT cold symptoms such as stuffy nose slight headache sore throat sneezing; drowsiness dizziness feeling nervous; upset stomach mild nausea indigestion constipation light diarrhea; fever sweating joint stiffness muscle soreness; sleeping problems (insomnia); decreased sex drive impotence difficulty having an orgasm dry mouth; increased appetite decreased appetite changes in weight KSHT the picture perfect couple; him, a Phoenix-based multimillionaire real estate development tycoon; and her, a stunning, one-time model, part-time real estate agent and full-time socialite of Arizona’s premier. “The public certainly viewed them as a power couple. They saw her as beautiful, and him as charismatic; so, yes, people were envious. Envy was actually quite polite around these people.” but all is not as it seems in paradise. the money’s not his. “He owed a lot of money to a lot of scary people. He was in over his head, and, eventually, was forced to declare bankruptcy.” when greed grips hold of their marriage, is there anything this couple won’t do for money? coming up on American Filth.
say out loud to no one in particular, ‘this is not so bad.’
bed; 30 mind-numbing minutes of past regret instant replays and anxious anticipations—;
1 unread message:
[SUBJECT: Re: Plumbing problem]
[BODY: I wouldn’t have missed it for everything in the world. But this past year everything in the world has buried me, everything; every fossil and bone of every being that ever lived; every single piece of art ever produced; every weightless bit of data that together weigh more than the spinning rock every 1/0 floats around; and every word in every language that ever passed through a person’s lips, oh; the words bury me most; the words. Some nights I wake up, lying in an imprint of cold sweat; no one is ever there, but I can hear everyone’s laughing. My throat collapses quick; I can’t breathe; I feel sick. My blood turns to hot sludge; a clot traveling quietly from calf to thigh and from thigh to brain; scalp about to pop like a dandelion without a wish. Everyone’s laughing; all that weight on top of me. The weight of living up to you. The weight of this life I have chosen, and I have chosen it, and so that weight I will bear and I will be happy to; but sometimes, I can’t tell whether it’s real or fake. All this weight; the weight to always say the exact right thing, pick the absolute precise and proper words. And when I choose wrong? Others have always been quick to cast stones; quick to cast me aside; and then the house of cards I’ve so carefully constructed inside; the whole thing comes crashing down on my back, burns, turns to ash; everyone’s laughing; everyone’s laughing; and they bury me; and they toss my words in the trash. I called 911 that weekend; swore to God I was gone; went numb in every limb; veins curled up inside my skin; heart seconds ready to explode. I was embarrassed; but the woman on the other line was rather sweet, and dead calm, to make me more calm, to make me breathe much slower, to prevent me from passing out, and she told me that two paramedics were on the way and that I was young and healthy and had nothing whatsoever to worry about.]
?¿?SPAM?¿?DELETE & UNSUBSCRIBE
mind goes _____ a moment.
stomach acid surges up throat; tickles tonsils—UKKk!; what could that horrid stench be?
no, it is not sewage; became basically accustomed to that smell after subconsciously breathing it for 8 hours overnight; no, this is the black odor of death; of rotting meat.
wade to kitchen; open refrigerator; UKKk–!
eggs, spoiled; cheese, regenerating; milk, at this point sentient‘FREE ME FROM THIS ABYSSAL DUNGEON I BEG!’; current temperature inside refrigerator/freezer: 78℉.
dial building manager:
beep beep beep boop beep bip BEEP—
—treat you like a princessz in public but you beg to be a slavefzt in the sack; yeah i know you like it hard baby that’s a smack, justz go ahead, be a good girlfzt and arch your back, i hit it back to back, then we tzsmoke in bed, jammin out to all your recordszt high as heavenfzt dead, i said yo fuck it pack another take a hit to the head, but baby firsttzt i’ll make you cum and that’sz all she said—
GOOD EVENING SIR MY REFRIGERATOR HAS CEASED TO FUNCTION.
THE MAJORITY OF MY FOOD HAS EXPIRED AS A RESULT.
MY APARTMENT IS ALSO NOW A SWAMP WITH A LIVING, BREATHING ECOSYSTEM OF FRUIT FLIES, MAGGOTRY, AND FLOATING, PREDATORIAL HAIR WEAVES. THAT IS TO SAY MY TOILET IS STILL VERY MUCH SPEWING FECES, IF THAT WAS NOT ALREADY CLEAR.
I AM NOT A CERTIFIED PLUMBER NOR A TRAINED MECHANIC.
I COULD REALLY USE A HAND HERE.
CAN YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT I’M SAYING RIGHT NOW?
—she don’t know you zsee me duringtzf the week do she? i’ve never enjoyed zsex with anyone astz much asz i have with you; it’sfz true baby; i need youfzt to fuck me; i want you so bad rightzt now; oh; oh my god; oh that’sz so tight; oh my god that’stzt so deep; oh; oh that’s so big; that feelsz so good; oh; right there; oh; you make me feel sozt good; fuck me; harder; oh god; oh zfuck; give itfz to me; fuck; i want it allfz the way; oh; fuck yeah; you’re so good; you fuck me sotz good; oh; you make me so wet; oh; oh; oh i’m gonna—click
?¿?VERIZON IS GARBAGE?¿?
go hungry for the night; contemplate the vast inner workings of cell-phone networks and landline connections; every wire and wave across the globe, tangled tight; the iron towers where ten thousand tons of small-talk is sent from every second; where the news of an unexpected family death is received; where thousands upon thousands of couples start and finish; where each minute ten years’ worth of plans are made & broken, lied & confirmed; where our lives exist completely, at least, as far as we have become concerned;
say out loud to no one in particular, ‘this is not so bad.’
lie in bed for hours without sleep;
& a knockknockknock at the door; ignore that shit.
& a knockknock at the door; go the fuck away.
& another knock at the door; okay okay o—
quit breathing; peep through the peephole:
the fish eyed face of a neighbor, from down the hall; turns out their electricity went dead; their face glowing with warmth, infrared; curious if you could come over; so curious if you wanted to chat; take a walk down the hall and lend a hand; and curiously walk from no man’s land.