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August 29, 2016
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A detailed account of my girlfriend's dress routine.

7:02: Feminine smartphone alarm chimes—an ethereal tune from a harp. She turns it off.

7:05: Feminine smartphone alarm chimes—an ethereal tune from a harp. She turns it off.

7:07:Feminine smartphone alarm chimes—an ethereal tune from a harp. She lays silent. I reach for the phone … The oceans of time I’ve waited to be alone with it. I run my fingers across its pink, pliant rubbery body case. “There’s a kind of silence that carries into the afterlife,” I say to the device. “I’ll make you immortal, a deconstructionist work of art.” But she quiets it.

7:09: Takes out her mouth guard.

7:10: Her clammy slab of leg releases its ponderance on my back because it has nowhere else to go in our Manhattan rental. Like we’re waking in a bed in a room inside John Malkovich’s head. Or a Keebler Elf treehouse.

7:20: Showers sitting down. Water is so hot it could kill syphilis.

7:24: She asks me to make coffee but not too strong the way she likes it—just dark enough you can tell it’s coffee and not fracking water but tastes like it.

7:50: She opens the bathroom door and steam rolls out like a smoke bomb released during a riot.Condensation drips from ceiling causing water damage. The walls look like the apartment Trainspotting.

8:00: She produces a swollen makeup bag like a makeup artist carried for The Lord of the Rings movies.

8:20: Applies artificial tanner to legs. Because of it, bathtub looks like a graham cracker.

8:25: Then proceeds to apply baby powder in between legs to reduce sweaty friction. With applied tanner and powder, legs look like a couple of funnel cakes from a carnival.

8:30: Proceeds to blow-dry her hair as I clean out clumps of it from the bathtub. Hair-dryer is fried and sounds like a leaf blower. Cap piece from hair-dryer hits the ground and rolls towards front door because our building is slanting like it’s from Beetlejuice. She picks up cap piece and re-attaches. She repeats this process three more times.

8:45:Slips on shoes. Vagina exposed.

8:47: Proceeds to walk towards bedroom. Walks past a nest of shoes, hair-ties, tampons, and ice cream sandwich wrappers colonizing near the futon. She tracks powder everywhere from the recent application adding to what’s already on the ground. Floor looks like we package cocaine in 1985 south Miami.

8:57: I hear, “Seriously, am I fat?” from the bedroom. After a beat, she scuttles out in her panties, stops, and looks down at them. “Do I have a camel toe?” she asks. I look down. “She’s only snacking,” I say. “If your panties were one size smaller, they’d be gone before lunch.” No, I didn’t say that.

9:10: I walk into the bedroom and a tumult of dresses are strewn everywhere like the FBI has a warrant to search our premises for drugs and she’s dumping the secret stash at the last minute.

9:20: Fully dressed,she disappears into the bathroom. Moments later, I hear, “Are my eyes too close together?” “Sometimes you only see yourself and you have problems with direction in your life, but other than that, no,” I say.

9:25: I walk into the bathroom and she’s jiggling the flesh on her hip. “Yup. There it is,” she says to herself. She’ll stop on the sidewalk and do it again a few more times on her way to the train.

9:30: At the front door,headphones in, phone in hand, she blows me kiss goodbye but stops, turns her backside to me and asks, “Can you see any powder?”

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