So…Theo’s whole nudist dream thing, that was hella weird, right? Like, I’m not the only one who thinks he’s an A-minus pop quiz away from renouncing clothing, rejecting modern society, and running off to live in a tree-hugger colony in the forest, am I? And what’s the deal with him ignoring the fuck out of my pregnancy? How much more proof does he need that El Cassetto is real and knocking motherfuckers up? A double-blindfold test? Publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal? Is Rothgar a good name for my baby if it’s a boy? Leelee if it’s a girl?
I need to vent like a mofo. Bundling myself up in my quilt (fuck you, Fundoshi Mandate, I’m chilly!), I type out a couple of SuperMegaUpdates on my computer:
evil_ernie > my best friend l33t_master is shredded like cheddar and hung like steele and looks better naked than he ever looked dressed
evil_ernie > theres a cassette tape knocking peeps up and my friends think im full of shit
evil_ernie > and Im not going to win fifty bucks
evil_ernie > fuck el cassetto and all the pain it’s caused me
evil_ernie > cry for evil_ernie
I lean back in my chair and sulk, letting my computer monitor burn a rectangular square of light into my retinas. I send Dicklord the usual barrage of chat messages, but he doesn’t respond. This goes on for several minutes. Then I get a DM:
sodacanhero > evil_ernie > I believe you.
sodacanhero > evil_ernie > Download to my place so that we can talk in private. No bacon.
I know what you’re thinking. Someone under the dubious screen name “sodacanhero” wants me to download to their place so we can talk in private. Spare me the Dangers of Trusting Online Strangers speech. I’m perfectly aware that what lies at the other end of the chat is likely a middle-aged erection aimed squarely at my profile icon. But beggars can’t be choosers. If there’s a chance this guy can offer any insight into my predicament, I’m going to check it out. No credit card numbers or bank pins—I’m not trusting anyone. I’m being cautiously optimistic. I’ll bring protection.
evil_ernie > sodacanhero > when?
sodacanhero > evil_ernie > No time like the present.
sodacanhero > evil_ernie > Meet me at the soda machine.
sodacanhero > evil_ernie > Come alone.
Okay, I’m definitely bringing protection, the obvious choice being a handgun or, at the very least, a rusted-nail-two-by-four. Looking around my bedroom, though, there’s not a whole lot that I can weaponize at a moment’s notice. How come I never played baseball as a kid? A motherfucking steel bat would be perfect right about now. Maybe one of Janny Boy’s barbells—or a katana blade from Theo’s mom’s yoga studio, because you know she gets up to some kinky naked martial arts shit in there between clients.
In the end, convenience wins out. My grandparents are whittling away dinnertime power hour in the living room, Gramps with his feet up on the recliner, Grams’ cardboard cutout resting next to him. The two of them look like department store mannequins illuminated by the unnatural LED glow of the TV. It’s no sweat slipping wordless beside Gramps, casually snatching his cane, and hurrying back to my room. A moment later—quilt off, towel on—I’m downloading into what looks like an Internet cafe after hours. I brandish the fuck out of Gramps’ cane, squint into the semi-darkness, begin walking toward the soda machine at the far end of the room.