Sunday, May 15, 2011

Part 10: The Worst Part

   My feet stand parallel at the top of the slide, one shoe slightly behind the other. This was a ritual of mine.
   After I'm done peeing, I zip up my slacks. Everything I see is everything I lose. Heather had left me a note with the pants. She wrote, "Come back to reality, Leeroy." And she gave me the pants and a tie, so she could choke the breath and manhood out of me even when I wasn't home with her. Oh, my medium-sized American heart.
   The kids sit in a circle and watch me as I pick up an empty bottle of liquor and my suitcase. One of them asks, "Leeroy, where'd you get clothes?"
   "Leeroy, could you tell us a story?"
   They just want me to make some shit up. A pause. I tell them, "All your dreams will come true and you'll marry someone you love and you'll be happy forever."
.   .   .
   The walk to the bus takes forever.
   That lucky drugged up guy lands a few feet away from me in a splatter of blood. So it goes.
   A woman was struck by lightning and burnt to a crisp. God was right; in the end, we can't make a difference.
   That painfully normal lady with the plants crosses over to the fountain.
   Brian still doesn't have any limbs. I still can't remember what Ms. Pigg looks like.
   That guy with the staff stands in the middle of the basketball court, casting spells. What the fuck.
   While I wait for the bus, I contemplate writing a book when I'm not working my 9 to 5. I contemplate living a little. Whatever. All my dreams will come true.
   The bus arrives, and I get on. I'm on my way to an office or a factory or a school. Heather works, but she'd make more money if she were a boy. And if I were smarter, I wouldn't teach. But I'm not as smart as I could be.
   The bus pulls away, and nobody saw, heard from, or cared for Leeroy Jenkins again.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Part 9: The Part Where Leeroy Remembers More

   So somebody wrote these letters to me first. And then I wrote my book on the back of these letters. Ugh. I'm getting too young to do this detective thing. Especially with these work clothes on.
   They're so heavy.
   I found a tie now. Everything I see is everything I lose. It's even heavier than the socks and the shirt. All these weights and wires make a young man tired. The note that came with the tie said, "You'll need to cover your manhood. You'll need to make sure we never see it again. Look in the diner." On the back I wrote, "Remember the promise we made as kids?" I did remember, actually. I don't remember much. I remember lots of boring shit. And I remember the promise. I promised myself I would be extraordinary, and Heather (who I keep reminding myself was my wife) promised the same thing.
   There's a massive line outside the diner. It smells like pie, and I don't smell much anymore. Oh God. It smells like apple pie. Heather used to make apple pie. For the first time in forever, I miss somebody. Oh, my medium sized American heart. A very hairy man stands in line. He's one of  the most interesting looking people I've ever seen.
    "Hey," I say.
   "Hey," he says back, "You found clothes."
   "Yep. They're so heavy."
   "Not cool. Liked you better without clothes ... I mean that in the most normal way possible. You weren't 'normal' without clothes. I guess you still don't have any pants. But that's not unusual these days. You should ditch the work clothes."
    "I can't."

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Part 8: The Extra Ordinary Man

   I'm sitting down in Foo Foods, the same place I met and forgot Ms. Pigg. Brian Bunderson sits across from me in all his limbless beauty. Watching him eat is like watching porn. It's disgusting, it's exploitation, and yet it's strangely entertaining. He looks up from his food, squints at me, and says, "You found a shirt."
   It's true. I've found a blue work shirt to go with my dress socks. They're so heavy. They have weights in them, but no matter how hard I try, I can't get rid of the weights. They're so heavy.
   Hey, so, Brian, tell me about yourself, why don't you have limbs?
   "Well, society tries to get rid of your limbs anyway, Leeroy."
   Oh, right. I know what you're saying. The sky is blue.
   "So, I figured, I might as well get rid of them myself, so at least I made the choice to do it."
   Sometimes, my Mom made me dinner. I'm just going through the motions with this conversation.
   "So, tell me about yourself Leeroy."
   "Tell me. Why'd you all of a sudden start wearing clothes. Hell, for that matter, when'd you stop?"
   "Um." I play with my noodles a little bit with my right hand. My left hand has a note with the words "I am the Extra Ordinary Man" on the front and "You'll need 7 of these" on the back. "Um." I repeat.
   "Look, Leeroy," Brian says, "You were just waiting for your turn to talk. What's the matter with you?"
   I pause. "Well. See that old man over there, destroying his food? He's obviously high as nuts. Why in the world does he need to be high as nuts to enjoy himself? Why can't he just enjoy himself?"
   "Um." It was Brian's turn.
   I continue. "Nobody loves anybody, Brian. Nobody loves anybody, and everybody fucks everybody. My life was exactly the same, as far as I can remember. I don't remember much, but I have nightmares about it every night. I don't sleep, I dream. I had a wife and a kid. I was fond of my wife. I loved my kid. I was writing a book. And then I couldn't take that mediocrity anymore, so I ran away and stopped wearing clothes. And now some asshole has found pages of my book and is leaving notes for me on the back of the pages. I can't remember, but I think I know who it is. And this asshole is leaving me work clothes. I bet it's a woman."
   "I like women."
   "So do I."
   Brian thinks for a second. "Are you sure you wrote the book first? Or could you have written on the back of the notes people were leaving you afterwords, to exercise your demons or something?"
   "I-." Wait. I can't breathe. Everything I see is everything I lose.
   Brian's right.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Part 7: The Part Where Leeroy Contemplates Becoming a Superhero

   It was a cold and windy night when I woke up and I realized that I'm not very important. I reached -
   My eyes open. A metallic screeching pierces the afternoon sky. I get up and wander in its general direction, but am stopped in my tracks by a spunky girl drugged up to her forehead. She had precious little of herself left. I liked that.
   I asked her where I could get some drugs (yes, I actually asked her where i could get some "drugs") and the first thing she asked was "are my eyes red?" The next thing she asked was "what the fuck was that?" as a bee flew by her face. The final thing she said was "look for Charlie Sheen."
   So I looked. Luckily, Charlie Sheen is winning, so it didn't take long to find him. It's never hard to find people who win. I asked him for some coke, and he said sure. He reminded me that he ate coke for breakfast. Then he reminded me he ate coke for second breakfast. Then he said he was winning and assured me that he also ate coke for elevencies, dinner, and supper.
   I searched again for the metallic noise ("why is it so loud right now?") and stumbled across a man and a woman trying to steal an ATM. For one blissful, coked up moment, I contemplated fighting the crime. I thought about flying. I thought about super strength and super intelligence and super attractiveness. I could even have my own superhero name, "The Naked Man." But then I remembered something. I remembered I'm not that important.
   So I just walked away.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Part 6: Leeroy Remembers Something

   The donkeys are back. They're eating their food. The food the dog and I pissed in. Poor bastards.
   I sit and think for a while. I think really hard, but I can't remember anything about my book or about my family or about my past. I look at the paper, but it still says "everything I see is everything I lose." No more. No less.
   One of the donkeys starts making a disgusting gurgling noise, and then vomits up a piece of paper. Of course he does. I know it's the note the messenger left me. It has to be. I wait for the note to dry off a bit and then pick it up.
   There's something poetic in that. The dogs will piss in the bowls of the asses, but the asses will just throw it right back up for the dogs to eat. And the dogs will enjoy it.
   Sure enough, the paper has my handwriting on the front. It says, "... Christians, porn stars and butchers all wear love like a bad teenage film star." Whatever that means. The world hadn't changed much. On the back it says, in chickenscratch notation, "look up."
    I did.
    There were socks hanging from the ceiling. I take them. Big old dress socks. What the Hell do I do with these?
    A fire alarm sends me outside. The fire doesn't scare me much. Some people set fires just to kill things. Somebody in the crowd does scare me a bit. This guy doesn't have any limbs. After a while, I realize he's staring back at me.
    "Uh." I say.
    "You don't have any arms."
    "You're naked except for-"
    "You don't have any legs."
    "You're naked except for a pair of dress socks. You're the naked guy."
    "It's a fashion statement."
    "A lack of limbs is a way of life."
    "So, uh. How do you..."
    "I roll."
    "... Nice. My name's Leeroy."

Friday, March 18, 2011

Part 5: The Part Where Leeroy Meets Lucky the Dog

   My eyes open. The hay in front of me blurs, then clears. I'm awake and in the petting zoo and the carnival is outside blasting its false happiness.
   I really have to pee.
   Outside, bearded women and men with lobster hands invite themselves to a torture party as disgustingly normal people laugh at their strangeness. Beautiful.
   I really have to pee. And the peeing sound is only making it worse.
   Wait. The donkey's are outside right now. What's the peeing sound?
   It's a dog proudly peeing all over the donkey's food. Awesome. We look at each other, at odds with our respective simplicity, nakedness, and imperfection. You know, dogs are man's best friend for a reason. A dog will throw his arms around you, if that's what you need. Isn't that always what we need? For a while we sit, him peeing a river and me just watching. Eventually, he lowers his leg. An awkward pause. Then he turns and trots out the door. Everything I see is everything I lose. I could use a friend.
   Where's Ms. Pigg? I haven't talked to her in ages. Once she goes, she's gone. I need to find her. And find out who's leaving me messages. What is in here that I'm supposed to find? Goodness, I need to pee.
   I stand up, hop down from my hay, and pee in the donkey's food. Sorry, little dog, but this place is mine.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Part 4: Leeroy's Dream, Leeroy's Mission

    Hopefully, this will be the longest thought I ever write down. Being a Jenkins, I'm generally of the opinion that the shorter is sweeter. In any case, I'll get you to the story.
   My pencil wavers over the paper. I can't think of anything. Nothing. Heather sits across the table with little Karen in her arms, frowning at me. I was fond of Heather, but I was not in love. I wasn't happy, either. The only person I loved anymore was Karen."What's the matter with you?" Heather asks. "I can't think of anything," I say, "Is Karen doing ok?" She frowns, "Of course. What's the matter?"
   "Are you happy?"
   "Are you content with this ... I don't know ... blessed mediocrity? This slowly building disaster?"
   Heather's eyes narrow. "What happened to you?" She stands, stiff, and then turns to head out the door. She walked away, and I just watched her. Karen is looking at me over her shoulder. I smile, and shift my focus to the paper again, but I'm scared. What was the story about? Finding myself?
   I don't remember anyt-
   My eyes open. I don't sleep, I dream. I'm shaking, but I'm numb besides.
   The leaves blur, and then clear. I sit up and rub my eyes. It's freezing. I climb out of the tunnel slide, walk to the other slide to complete my pissing ritual, and then look around. The kids are back, sitting with their mittens and their beanies, waiting for me to speak.
   Being naked has it's perks. This will sound rather creepy, but kids love the "strange." They want to hear about it, they want me to tell them another story. Though I would never admit it, I really enjoy the attention they give. They just want to hear me talk! Besides, it lets me try to remember my book, or just make shit up if I can't remember anything. I sometimes get really dramatic, swinging my arms and raising my voice. You know, a guy has got to keep himself warm.
   So, what's the story this time? The kids are waiting. I begin, "Once upon a time, there was a man that lost everything." The kids smile and clap. They love that one, they love that the man redeems himself in the end. Whatever. I continue, "He loved his child (that's you guys!), he loved his daughter very-."
   Something flutters by my ear. I snatch it out of the air. It's a piece of paper. A piece of paper with my handwriting on it. I feel my eyes widen. "Holy shit." The scrap reads "everything I see is everything I lose." I don't remember anything, and nothing reminds me. A line from my book. From the sound of it, the world hadn't changed much. My face was warming up.
   "What's the matter with you, Mr. Bestever?" I'm startled out of my thought. "What? Oh right. Just something I found."
   "There's something on the back," the kids say. I turn the paper over. It's a chickenscratch note.
         In the animal shelter, with the donkeys.
   "What's it say, Mr. Bestever?"
   "Uh, the man redeems himself in the end. And my name's Leeroy."
   I leap off the playground and sprint in the direction of the shelter, whooping and shouting the whole way. It's freezing. My shriveled manhood raises a few pedestrian eyebrows. Whatever. The stoplight seems like it will never change ("Stay on the path"), and the man next to me is carrying a staff. What a delightful day.
   "What's that for?" I ask.
   "Magic." He says.
   "Oh, right. Well, uh, you should get that thing calibrated. Sometimes it takes something to bring out the best of you."
   The light changes, I sprint away towards the shelter.
   Leeroy, you're crazy. Who's leaving you messages? How do they know lines from your book?
   Shut up, Leeroy. Who cares?