Death and the Maiden
I bought a toothbrush from a villainous toothbrush salesman on the corner today. I walked up to him slow and steady, like glue running through the fingers of a monkey who does sign language. I looked into his eyes and saw my reflection. I looked good. So good I asked myself out on a date while looking into the toothbrush salesman's eye. This caused a moment of slight awkwardness like when you accidentally spit on a friends lip while speaking and then try to clean it off with your shirt. I politely turned myself down informing the man in the reflection that I was neither gay nor unattached but if I was either, neither, or both I would definitely look him up in the yellow pages. By this time the toothbrush salesman smelled the fishiness of the situation. I had been eating fish. Salmon. And hush puppies (bread balls often eaten with fish but not themselves fishy). He asked me point blank. "Do you or do you not want a . . . " Lost in the subtly of stupidity and the silence of unfinished point blank sentences I says to the salesman. "Why of course. It's for my wife." He didn't believe me for a minute. He saw right through me like an invisible wall that you can see right through without even seeing it. I had to cover my lie with a better lie. "I need it to kill a . . . " I thought that the man was in the business of unfinished sentences and would appreciate the irony of my own subtly. I tried to make a knowing face like I knew that he knew what I was talking about. But instead he said. "What are you talking about man?" I hit him in the face with my briefcase like he was an ex boyfriend, and took the pile of toothbrushes and ran away, throwing a handful of change at his bleeding body. I went home. No more fish breath and a happy wife with a variety of toothbrush choices.