At the edge of the suburban-green field, inside the White Castle, Socrates and Plato hold either end of the broom. Ovid bends nearly in half but it isn’t flexible enough to squeak under without bumping his manboobs.
“Too many Slyders!!!” the philosophers cry out in unison, and double over in hysterical laughter.
“I, Kashmir, am not impressed. I shall slip under easy-breezy as a miracle.”
And I do! Of course I do! I am about to inherit the Oprah Show! I am Kashmir, free and gorgeous as a nineteen-year old named Kashmir! I float under as if levitating inches above the ground!
Really I don’t feel gorgeous at all. TYRA will have nothing to do with me now that she’s on this mission, which has made me fall hard in love with her. Also, she keeps asking the Charming Man for philosophical advice, which really irks me, because he keeps saying things like “We’ve all had our buttons pushed to the point where we feel like we need to stab people in the face, but in the end the buttons belong to us: we are the ones who must deal with and take ownership of them. The more we take responsibility for our own buttons, the more we sew them tightly onto our stylish pea coats instead of letting them be pushed, the less tender they will be.”
“Exactly,” Kathy says. “That’s it exactly. That’s like, totally the philosophy behind my Animalfits™.”
“What the fuck? What the fuck does that mean? Kathy, explain to me in your own words what that means.”
“Oh Kashmir, it’s beyond words. Duh. You have to be…connected with the Universe to get it.”
Tyra nods in a faux-intelligent way, but it’s clearly just a front for lust.
She wanders off and shoves her face in in a to-go box of Slyders like it’s a trough, fighting off the plus-sized models with flailing backhands. Why can’t she see that she’s just like me, insecure and desperate; why can’t she see that we are twins? All she’s got on her mind is gorging. It’s part of our “Oprah destruction training.” We’ve stopped at every Burger King along the way. Her ass is getting beyond plus-sized.
puddin’ asks if she can please have an iceburg salad please, no dressing.
TYRA says: “Nu-uhh, Girlfriend. You’ll eat another cheeseburger and orgasm all over it. And you won’t vomit it up this time. We’re marching toward my dream, Girlfriend. Do you understand?”
puddin’ slinks off into the corner, bitching into her voice recorder; Caravaggio and a wave of tiny animals following in her wake.
“Sorry pud, It’s Slyders or nothing,” says Plato. “This is the awesome thing that happens to geniuses who are totally too smart to believe in God. We get to hang out at White Castle, talk existentialism, and eat Slyders all our lives! And Slyders are like crack! And existentialism is like crack!”
“God is not like crack—I don’t get how people get so addicted. He’s more like that Pinch-Punch thing you just gave me: mean and vile. We are totally not grieving our separation from Him like we’re supposed to,” says Socrates. “How can one grieve when there are Slyders everywhere you turn, just waiting to be thrown in the microwave?”
“Limbo, however, is the least joyous pastime on earth,” says Ovid. “Plus it just makes me feel old and fat. That’s the only part of the deal that sucks.”
“People, people, shut the fuck up; it’s mandatory viewing time.”
I put on the MANAGER nametag and the MANAGER hat and tell everybody to sit their bitch asses down while I set up the projector. Two hundred hours and six boxes of Slyders later, Ovid says:
“I like the part where Caravaggio tears out all of his hair while he’s flying the kite. But the rest is crap. Plus the sex scenes are nasty. What’s going on with his balls?”
“It’s all crap because it’s art,” says Plato. “Art is not life. Art is so fucking lowly. I’m going back to my cave now to gorge myself on Slyders until I fall into a restless, pornographic sleep. I’m dreaming of Bette Midler rubbing Slyders all over her frontside tonight. Slyders are all I dream about.”
TYRA says: “I totally know how you feel; me, too,” and her eyes bulge with empathy like plus-sized marbles.
TYRA has never said that to me. But she will, oh, she will.
Ch. 1 here
Ch. 2 here
Ch. 3 here
Ch. 4 here
Ch. 5 here
Ch. 6 here
Ch. 7 here
Ch. 8 here
Ch. 9 here
Ch. 10 here
Ch. 11 here
Ch. 12 here
Ch. 13 here
Ch. 14 here
Ch. 15 here
Ch. 16 here
Ch. 17 here
Ch. 18 here
Ch. 19 here
Ch. 20 here
Ch. 21 here
Ch. 22 here
Ch. 23 here