1. A Day in the Life of Jessica Simpson Begins With…
A whirring electronic toothbrush feels so middle-class. Your mother buys a new one every year around Christmas because she doesn’t know what else to buy you.
This reminds you of the time your mother and the man you call “Uncle Terry” picked you up from the airport after you had visited Paris for a week. They had asked you what your favorite site had been in all of Paris and you replied instantly, “The Sex Museum,” which was six floors of fascinating art and sex memorabilia and included claymation pornography. At this point a buzzing sound erupted from your bag and your mother and “Uncle Terry” exchanged looks. What had you been buying at the sex museum? You were puzzled, too.
You opened the zipper of your bag and realized that somehow your electronic toothbrush had clicked on. Everyone in the car looked relieved.
2. Can You Imagine the Child America’s Most Beautiful Couple Brangelina Will Create?
“You know, I’m getting older, and my biological clock has started ticking,” you told your mother. She raised her eyebrows in excitement and hope. This was the moment she had been waiting for all her life.“I think it’s time I settled down,” you said, “and got a bulldog.”
3. Donald Trump’s Wife Wheels Their Newborn Around Their Apartment in a Golden Pram Complete With Crystal Chandelier, a Present from Ellen Degeneres
You had a transgender roommate with a dishwashing fetish called Crystal who had very high cleaning standards for her roommates. You remember the time she pulled you aside to lecture you about proper methods for washing dishes.
“For example, this plate may look clean,” she said, “but if you hold it to the light you can still see fingerprints and the trace of a bread crumb.”
Later her dog Goopy shit in the hallway. Three hours later you got sick of the smell and cleaned it up yourself while Crystal watched.
4. These Are Photos from Federline’s New Malibu Home. The Décor Is Pretty Tacky so the Photos Must Be Authentic.
Your mother was sure you would love the singing/dancing six foot fluffy Frosty the Snowman she wanted to send you to New York all the way from Scotland but you convinced her otherwise.
Instead she sent you the drunk, obnoxious frog. He hangs above your doorway with a sprig of plastic mistletoe and yells at unsuspecting passersby, “Hey baby, come over here and gimme a kiss. Merry Kissmas. Ha ha ha!” You live in South Brooklyn where people rarely come to visit. The frog makes you feel less lonely.
5. “Halloween Is a Night for Amateurs,” Says Marilyn Manson. “I Dress Up and Feel Dark and Moody All Year, so I Never Wear a Costume on Halloween. I Never Go Out That Night. I Just Stay In and Wait for All the Posers to Go Home.”
“Which house is yours?” your driving instructor asked you when you were seventeen and learning to drive.
“The one that looks like Santa’s grotto,” you said.
Without further questioning, he pulled up to the right house.
6.“I Grew Up In Asia Where Everything Is Made of Snakeskin,” Says Fashionista, Devi Kroell. “Still, I Would Be Reluctant to Use Cute Animals Like Chinchillas.”
Your boy cat’s favorite pastime is to sneak into your underwear drawer and throw your panties into a scattered pile on the floor. Your girl cat often mistakes your folded socks for kittens, and carries them in her mouth, mewing, to the cat basket, nestling them against her fluffy white belly.
7. As Everyone Lifted Their Forks, the Late Afternoon Light Settled Over the Snow, a Lively Hum Rose from Martha Stewart’s Table, and the Horses Neighed in a Chorus
Michael said, “Tofurkey and crackers for Thanksgiving? Next year I’m going to a restaurant.”
8. “I Would Do Little Tricks, Like Put Doughnuts Next to My Bed and Set My Alarm for 3 In the Morning, then Wake Up and Power Them Down, Wiping the Jelly off My Cheek and Go Back to Bed.”—Jason Schwartzman
You always did get nervous about having too many things around the apartment. You are a foreigner in this country and you are always wondering when you will have to leave. For example, you were having six people over for dinner but you only had three porcelain plates. You bought paper plates to make do but the hot tacos burned holes through them and melted cheese and guacamole stuck to the tablecloth.
9. “I’m not gay,” announced Oprah Winfrey. “If I were gay I’d tell you because there’s nothing wrong with being gay.”
You bought British Christmas crackers for your landlady at Christmas. You watched her family pop them open and place the paper hats on their head. Later they read out the bad jokes they found inside. Your landlady was looking at her husband’s paper crown anxiously. “Pink?” she kept saying. “You’re wearing pink.”
10. Now That Lindsay Lohan Has Left the Neighborhood, the Big Question Is: From Whom Will Ex-Neighbors Cher and Matthew Perry Borrow Sugar?
Your mother called to tell you she bought a holiday home in Bulgaria. Her neighbor is a blind woman with no teeth. At night, strange insects crawl on the ceiling. She has to walk through a muddy field to reach an indoor toilet. “Now you have another exciting country to explore,” your mother said to you.
11. Princess Marie Chavel of Greece Poses at Her London Home in a Pink Ball Gown, a Model of Serenity
At the bottom of your closet, a pair of black high heel shoes, you bought thinking they would impress the cute bartender. You walked outside in the winter cold. You tripped over broken concrete. Your heel got stuck in a drain. You sprained your foot. You are not sure why walking in high heels in New York City has not been deigned an Olympic sport but after two minutes of walking in those damn things you went home and changed into sneakers.
12. J. Lo Lives In Chez Lo
Your astrologer said, “You have Virgo in the fourth house. Do you alphabetize your CDs?”
Your mother’s house was so clean and you hate to admit it but you miss that. Your own apartment gets so dusty. Dishes piles up in the sink. You keep finding tufts of cat hair in your bed.
Your mother sent you this year’s Christmas package: an electronic toothbrush with a green and red flashing lights that plays “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.”
Marie Carter is the editor of Word Jig: New Fiction from Scotland and author of forthcoming creative non-fiction book, The Trapeze Diaries (Hanging Loose Press, Spring 2008).