Wednesday, October 2, 2013


By Eric Suhem

Wild porcupines chewed on my right eyeball, and then scurried purposefully across the green kitchen tile, hoping for an opportune spot under the large grey chandelier, helpfully installed by the Chandelier Support Team, a fellowship of like-minded ceiling-light enthusiasts. Below the chandelier we occupied the hardwood floor, sucking on varnished wood grain, dozing, or otherwise horizontal for reasons known only to us. We don’t know why the strange bird flew through the window, pecked busily at our eyes, and brought its odd ways with eggs of mystery into our apartment. We found a blue egg near the ash tray in the living room, a red egg located near the clothes hamper in the hall closet, and a green egg suspended near the garbage disposal. I decided that I had to leave the eggs alone and proceed out of the apartment until the eggs could be exterminated by a professional removal team wearing white space suits, wielding flamethrowers and large industrial vacuums with impressive capabilities. Leaving the apartment, I chose to follow the moss in the hallway, leading outside. I crawled along the moss towards the beach, where I could be more in touch with the eels, jellyfish, and strange one-celled creatures of our ancestry. When I reached the water, I boarded a faded green rowboat, grabbed both its oars, and rowed out into the water. In the middle of the bay, I had an epiphany that I should try to use my left hand more in general activities (I’m right-handed), to get more of a feeling of newness, discovery, refreshment, hope, and aliveness. I dropped the right oar, clutched the left oar, and rowed in circles for hours, not proceeding forward. I’m not sure what kind of lesson this taught me, or if it was a lesson at all. Instead of using the right oar to get back to shore I decided to activate the small outboard motor that had been helpfully placed in a small compartment of the boat by an unknown entity. I reflected on the implications that this reliance on technology had, and I decided that I envied the lizard that had crawled up from the bottom of the boat and was chewing on my left eyeball. Soon I was back in my air-conditioned, yet heated apartment, cooking omelets consisting of the colored eggs that still remained, and weaving aerated pillows with a passion that I had never felt before. I wasn’t sure whether my new-found passion for weaving aerated pillows would lead to an internet-based business, beholden to the tenets of cyber commerce, but I was willing to cast my lot with this wave of economic promise.  At my computer, I decided to play Angry Birds instead. I got through a number of levels, but was frustrated by Level 4, as it had too many slabs of wood and ice. I decided to examine the motivations of the Angry Birds and saw purple voluptuous caterpillars lounge about on straw mats demanding more nourishment. “We’re living the extreme lifestyle!” declared one of the caterpillars, a straw in its little mouth, ingesting industrial nectar. “Why not?” asked another, multitasking, feeding spoons of sugar and sand to the illiterate walking wounded. The birds of longing fluttered down to the straw mats and admired the ethos of the purple voluptuous caterpillars. “Upon what intellectual theory have you based your way of living?” asked one of the birds, an egret wearing a tasteful suede overcoat. “We follow the ways of the impala,” said the caterpillars quickly, looking up at a clay impala replica at the top of the hill, sunlight shining flatly off of its kiln-baked surface. “What are the ways of the impala?” asked one of the birds, a parrot, way too quickly. The caterpillars looked at the bird suspiciously and went silent. The other birds looked at the parrot with disdain. “We have been longing for this knowledge and you had to compromise our position. Do you know how many weeks of planning and preparation went into this operation?” As the parrot’s eyes were pecked out by the Angry Birds, I entered the kitchen, seeing purple voluptuous caterpillars crawling over the ‘Puree’ button on the blender, and I decided that I wanted to make dinner for a number of neighbors and cats in the apartment complex. The cats were more interested in my culinary efforts, and I decided that I would reward them with a basket full of slippers made out of mice (the toes of the slippers being especially tasty).  I then slept a few more hours, and now I’m back to work on Monday, doing whatever it is that I do.

Bio: Eric Suhem lives in California and enjoys the qualities of his vegetable juicer.

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