Friday, March 12, 2010

Ass, by E. Flanigan

Belief in the Law of Small Numbers: 1. A systematic error in human judgment in which people assume that the pattern of a large population will be replicated in all its subsets. 2. The deep-seated need to see meaning in the ordinary variations that appear in small samples.

We walked up to the house and looked at each other. Actually, I walked and Ray waddled.

“There’s no way it has a bathroom,” I said. “I mean, look at it.”

It looked a million years old.

“This is serious, though,” Ray said, clutching his gut. “I need a shitter pronto.”

“Go for it,” I told him. “I’ll stay out here.”

Ray waddled up the steps with his ass clenched super tight. It was hilarious, but I didn’t say anything. I mean, we’ve all been there.

When he came back out, I was just sitting there chilling. “Did you find one?”

Ray shook his head. “I had to wing it.”

“Man, I don’t wanna know.”

He laughed out loud and sat down in the grass next to me. It was a pretty cold day, but when the sun was out it wasn’t so bad. Things were quiet for a while.

“This is cool.”

“Yeah.” I stretched out and laced my fingers behind my head in the grass. I was seriously considering a nap. But no.

“I can’t believe Doug has a girlfriend,” Ray said.

Great. I squeezed my eyes shut and prayed he’d think I was sleeping.

“Seriously, the guy never washes his hair and he’s like fat and demented. And he’s getting laid. What’s up with that?”

I didn’t answer for a minute. Technically he was correct, Doug was a tool. But then again Ray was kind of a lame-ass.

“And granted she’s kind of nasty, but she’s female,” Ray went on. “I mean, how did that guy get a girlfriend? I can’t get action from anybody. Does it make sense?”

I didn’t want to have this conversation. The day had been moving along nicely before the shitting and things getting all mopey-dopey. But Ray’s a nice kid, he’s got a decent car, and there’s no reason he shouldn’t have a girlfriend. At the very least an ugly one. “Yeah, you’re right, dude,” I said. “Doug is a douche bag.”

Ray got excited and sat up. “I know, he’s a douche bag, right? He’s not even nice to girls, that’s probably why they like him. They’re attracted to assholes.”

He got quiet again for a while. Then, “I just can’t help thinking I’m, like, cursed or something.”

More silence. “I’ve never even gotten a blow job. Just a hand job.”

Damn, I’m not having this conversation. That’s all I could think. I felt bad for the guy, but this whole talk was taking a 90-degree turn toward homo-town, and I don’t live there. Screw that. If he asks for a hand job, I’m gonna kick his ass. So I just kept my eyes shut to look like I was sleeping.

Lying in that position, I actually fell asleep for a minute. When I opened my eyes Ray was still sitting there, hands between his knees and eyes on the ground. Then he looked at me. “This blows.”

“Dude, it will happen for you. Just relax,” I told him. But I knew what he meant. Before I dated Kristin last year, I felt that way—and I don’t even have a car.

Ray didn’t answer me, just kept sitting there all sad.

“You know what, man?” I told him. “There’s no such thing as a losing streak. It’s all just chance. Your time will come.”

He perked up a little. “What? What’s that supposed to mean?”

“It’s like when you flip a quarter. You could land tails, like, 10 times in a row, but the very next flip could be heads.” I could tell I really had his attention, so I said the next part super slow like I was predicting the future. “The next chick you meet ... could be the one you nail.”

Ray sat for a while, thinking. “If you flipped a quarter 10 times and they all landed on heads, the next one would be tails?”

“No, man. It’s random each time. So like, every time is another chance to land on tails.”

Ray was quiet again for a minute. “But if it’s all random, doesn’t that mean the next time could be heads again? It could be tails, but it could be heads?”

I thought about it for a bit and realized Ray was right. He might never get laid. Some people die virgins, and he might be one of them.

We both sat there for a while.

I decided to throw him a bone. “Long story short, you’re going to get laid. I mean, you’re not an asshole. So it’s a foregone conclusion.”

Ray looked at his hands for a while. I hoped I’d said enough to change the subject.

“Thanks, man, you’re alright,” he said finally. “I don’t know what I’d do without a guy like you to talk to.”

He stood up and wiped his hands on his shit-smelling pants.

“Let’s roll.”


Melody Maysonet said...

Wow, your dialogue is super sharp, and I'm still giggling with the image of the guy's tight-ass walk. Nice job. I had no idea you had a talent for writing.

LurkerMonkey said...

I thought this was laugh-out-loud funny at a few parts. And could (I think) have only been written by someone with a teenage boy lurking around the house :)

E. Flanigan said...

Melody, I only write these monthly prompts nowadays, but a long long time ago, I was aiming to be a screenwriter. (Thus, the interest in dialogue.) It's been fun to have an outlet again ....

I usually try to be a little more high-brow, but I've had an emotionally heavy month and this was the result!

E. Flanigan said...

Lurker, you are so right. I have inspiration right under my nose. And not surprisingly, this was his favorite story of mine, LOL. He thought it was the most relatable!?

I'm glad you thought it was funny, it was meant to be. You have to know your audience, and for this story mine was apparently 15-year-old boys. And you. :)

Erica Orloff said...

LOVE IT. My God, but this was REAL. Great voice, E.

Melanie Avila said...

I really liked this too. Great dialogue, as the others said.

The only thing that threw me is for some reason, at first I assumed it was a man and woman (the "I" being female) so when the talk turned sexual I thought he was going to ask her to help him out. Then the homo comment made me realize it was two guys, but I still thought they were adults. I think it's because of the picture that was the prompt.

But once I realized they were two teenage boys I really enjoyed it.