- 11 December 2002
- No. 2,717 (cartoon)
- Im in pain.
Pain is just a state of mind.
It can also be a deep, bleeding gash in my arm.
- 12 December 2002
- The Musicians Private DNA
- I ran into a famous musician when I was in the kitchen gobbling up the leftover salmon at Lindas party. I never particularly enjoyed the musicians music; hes one of those people whose fame comes from being famous, not from doing good work. Since we had nothing to say to each other, thats what we said.
When I mentioned the unencounter to Linda, she said I should have asked the musician about his gloves.
What gloves? I asked.
Linda explained that the musician was worried about someone stealing his DNA. He wore thin, synthetic gloves to keep every trace of his DNA off dishes and doorknobs. [The gloves are almost transparent; thats why I didnt see them.] Hes obsessed that someones going to make genetic copies of him.
That certainly is a frightening possibility, I agreed.
And theres more, she added. Check out the big, hairy, neckless anthropoid standing in the corner. Thats his personal assistant-cum-bodyguard. I bet you cant guess what he has in the fat aluminum briefcase.
I bet youre right, I admitted. Automatic pistols? Harmonicas? Worse?
Thats where the musician keeps bags full of every bit of urine, phlegm, and shit that came out of him since he left his house, she said. Plus every napkin, every piece of newspaper, and every sheet of toilet paper hes touched today. And maybe even a harmonica, too.
Linda and I agreed that the musicians extraordinary steps to prevent more creatures like him from ever being created are an invaluable, albeit bizarre, service to generations yet unborn. Too bad we still have to listen to him.
- 13 December 2002
- Eluding the Evil, Stocking-stealing Demons
- At 12:49 I put my dirty clothesincluding five pair of socksinto the labs washing machine. By 13:37, all my clean, damp laundryincluding ten sockswas hanging on the labs clothesline. As I gazed at the drying socks, I wondered how they managed to elude the evil, stocking-stealing demons that feed off my laundry.
- 14 December 2002
- Thinking Like a Kindergartner
- I went to a holiday party last night, and met a charming woman named Sandy. Shes the first kindergarten teacher Ive met since I said goodbye to mine several decades ago.
After chatting for a while, she apologized for her behavior. Im afraid I think like a kindergartner.
What a coincidence, I replied cheerfully, so do I.
We spent hours playing with our food, making faces, blowing bubbles in our drinks, and laughing at the stupid grownups. Except for a little spat when I selfishly refused to share one of my toys, it was a lovely evening.
- 15 December 2002
- Grey, Frozen Rain
- Im in Flint, Michigan, of all places. Its morbidly grey here, beyond any hope, and colder than the bloated cadavers that litter the violent, postindustrial landscape. What is it about the inexplicable magnetism of Flint that leads people to live in a place where frozen rain accumulates into mountainous piles of sludge?
- 16 December 2002
- My Box of Dreams
- My mother asked me about my dreams. I told here that I didnt have any dreams; I explained that I had learned to thoroughly enjoy the present. I added that dreams were good investments for young people, and that Id realized my dream by living a wonderfully rewarding life.
You certainly did have lots of dreams when you were a boy, she said. Do you remember keeping them in one of Roscos old cigar boxes by your bed?
Id forgotten about that, I replied. What ever happened to that box?
I finally threw it out like you told me to, she said.
It turns out that my box of dreams was part of a large collection of childhood memorabilia shed preserved. It took me years to convince here that Id never, ever want to look at my old toys, school papers, favorite clothes, or other childhood relics again.
Although Im curious what my unrealized childhood dreams were, Im glad theyre gone. Im having too much fun living today to be distracted by dreaming, or by the past.
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©2002 David Glenn Rinehart