“Bist du cool?”

The toilet is the best place to read things. I don’t keep books in there, so I take my literary cues from various sundry items—soaps, tissue boxes, contact solution and the like. As a result of limited resources, I tend to reread a lot of things. BUT NOT TODAY MY FRIENDS.

I picked up the tiny pot of pomade that I still regret spending $18 on (highway robbery, see!?) only to find even TINIER writing on the side. It said this:

“A Funky Gunk That Rocks!: Be a master manipulator. Are you cool?”


My hair gel just asked me if I was cool. Like lightning, I rewound my morning. In my mind’s eye, the horrible reenactment. Oh god. Oh god.

  1. Woke up to someone scratching my back. “Where am I.” It was my friend Jess. Oh! Right! I slept on her futon. She was leaving, but said I could stay. Rolled over. Sudden queasiness. Was I still drunk? Yes.
  2. Jamie called. Or called Jamie? Don’t remember. Told him he could have “danced with sexy ladies” at the bar last night and I wouldn’t have cared. Patted self on back for being cool girlfriend. Stumbled into Jess’ bathroom. Brushed teeth with finger.
  3. Looked at playing cards strewn about kitchen table. Remembered game of Kings with Pakistani college students.
  4. Still on with Jame, stumbled down concrete steps to parking lot, debating existence of organic Hot Pockets. As I reached the sidewalk of the busiest street in town, Jamie found this. Broke out into wheezing laughter, doubled over, next to many passing cars.
  5. Jamie said, “Did you upload pictures of some Pakistani guys to Facebook?”
  6. Wobbled into Maag Pharmacy to purchase a single ticket for the 7 p.m. performance of “The Nutcracker” at ISU.
  7. Called coworker to say I wouldn’t be able to make it to dinner because the matinee time was sold out, and I had purchased a single ticket for the 7 p.m. performance of “The Nutcracker” at ISU.
  8. Drove to a place advertised as having “The Best Biscuits and Gravy in Town!” It is now a barber shop.
  9. Drove to known open diner, Oliver’s. Sat at counter. Alone. Ordered OJ and large plate of biscuits and gravy. Ate all three while telling construction workers things like “I work for the TV channel,” and “I just woke up on somebody’s futon.”
  10. Drove to video rental store. Rented season 1 disc 3 of “Modern Family.”
  11. Drove home listening to science comedy hour on NPR affiliate.
  12. Went to bathroom. Read pomade jar.

Before I put the jar down, I turned it over to read the description translations in other languages, snorting at the German: “Bist du cool?”

Nein, Herr Pomade. Nein.


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