Sunday, December 28, 2008

Slipping into Toothlessness


It’s midwinter, you’re at the desolate tundra called the Jersey shore and you’re quietly slipping into toothlessness.

It all starts with a missed shower or two. It’s just too cold to peel off all of those layers. Besides, you’re not going to see anyone anyway. Bathe tomorrow. (That can be your big “Tuesday” plan! Yippee!)

You could comb your hair at least, but grooming seems like wasted movement. Shit you’d grow a beard if you could (warms your face, I hear). Sure, you shave your legs once in a blue moon, because you never know who you’ll meet at the local dive bar on Friday night. (Oh wait you do know who you’ll meet: a big, fat nobody. Because if there was a big, fat someone here for you, you would have stumbled across him by now.)

No the locals don’t even like you much let alone hang with you. They find you suspicious…what’s your deal anyway? And that’s just fine with you. Let them think you’re weird lest you wind up tied up to a rusty pipe in a basement.

You own 2 robes. One is dangerously cozy but pretty damn ugly. A pale grey-green, the color of a bored soul. The other one is your dress-up silky red robe for fancy occasions, like visits from friends (which happens never because winter) or walking my dashing young date to the door after a steamy night of raucous sex. 

You don’t wear the red robe often. 

Going to sleep at 10 seems reasonable because sleep is where the real action is anyway — but you can’t go to sleep any earlier than 10 because then your ass is getting up at the cold crack of dawn…you don’t want that. Because you’re not a farmer. Are you a fucking farmer? No, you are not.

Matching socks, a thing of the past. (Again who’s checking?) Folding clothes, pretty unnecessary if you think about it. A balled up t-shirt is going to look the same after you put it on, give it an hour. Same with jeans. Why have we been folding clothing all these years? Slaves to monotony.

You eye up the UPS man in a way that makes both of you uncomfortable. It’s not that sexy come hither look but more of a schoolyard pervy stare. (Maybe he should think twice before dressing like such a slut, you think. Or do you say it? Then does he ask, “What did you say?” and do you respond, “Nothing. Long winter.”?)

Late one night, you teach yourself how to pee like a guy so you don’t have to sit on a cold toilet seat. After several unsuccessful attempts, you think you’ve nailed it. You’re surprised by the pride you feel about this quiet accomplishment.

You sweep the front step (in your bored soul robe) while reliving an argument you had with a bank teller a few days ago. “Yeah, well I don’t like your attitude either missy,” you mutter. The local cops drive by and wave, including the cute one who looks like Father Karras from The Exorcist. You find this sexy for what reason? But you do.

While changing your sheets (because wine), you discover chocolate chips from god-knows-when. You eat them, tentatively at first. But then oh yeah, still delicious…another quiet victory.

Brush your teeth twice a day thy say? Once, if you’re lucky, mouth. Your hair grows longer than the nights. You wear gloves with the tips cut off, not for irony’s sake. There’s always sand on you somewhere, in your ears, between your toes. You’re weather worn. You’re an actual beach bum.

How hobo will you go, you ask yourself in a dimly lit mirror one night? Maybe you’ll lose a front tooth like the drunk dude up the street and just not give a fuck. What the hell…you got others right? Life isn’t a beauty contest. Teeth are for stars and presidents anyway.

 Homeless Chic

1 comment:

Anthony DeVito said...