Monday, November 15, 2010

Part 2 of eating yourself

I am reposting this from Jacvan tail. Scary Insane, gross , yet intriguing too

Reflections on eating oneself - part 2 of 3

Sat 13 Nov 2010, 18:04

32 Comment(s) Report Abuse Up until that point I could convince myself that not a single moment was truly real, but the THUNK of the hand hitting the sink… Man, it hit me right under the ribs.

Buddy looked up at me.
“Come around on Wednesday,” he nodded at the sink. “We’re having stew, and some red wine.”

I left my new shoes lying in the puke on the floor and squelched out of his place in my socks. By the time I made it home, I already knew nothing would stop me from going over there again on Wednesday.

His house was crowded. People were sitting on the floor, leaning against the walls, drinking, smoking, talking, laughing. Those who couldn’t find space inside had spilled out into the small garden. It was quieter here, but not much. And everyone seemed to be talking about Buddy and The Hand. They all had their opinions and explanations for their opinions, and reasons for their explanations.

Buddy let them talk.

“It’s good for them,” he said. “It makes them feel needed and useful.”

We were in the kitchen where Buddy was awkwardly adding some more stock and herbs to the stew with his one hand. Baby potatoes, carrots, aubergines, and of course the hand – deboned –were quietly simmering. It smelled surprisingly good.
“I didn’t know you had so many friends,” I remarked.

He snorted. “Friends, huh? Some I’ve met on blogs, others in the bar or at the hospital. We get along fine but it’s usually very superficial – I think they’re really here so that they can go home and tell their family and friends about this poor guy they’ve been supporting… Oh, hell, that’s life, eh?”

I helped him to carry the big pot to the table in the dining room. Buddy banged on it with a ladle, and the people stood closer.

“You are here to share in my pain, in my misfortune,” he said. “You are here to tell me to look on the bright side; that this too, shall pass, and that I will come out of this a better and stronger man.”

He looked around. Some of the women were wiping tears from their eyes.

“You are here because we share a precious bond – the bond of having being hurt, of knowing that we will be hurt again. Most of you carry you scars on the inside, but…” he paused, and then held his stump up high, “I carry mine on the outside.”

I looked around. Everybody was looking at the reddish-purple stump as if in a trance. Buddy let the silence swell.

“But!” he roared into them. “I will not let my pain, my guilt, or my regrets consume me! I will not allow them to gnaw at me through the years! I will rip them from my flesh, and swallow them! They will nourish me instead!”

Some heads nodded sagely. Others looked down at their feet, and I suddenly wondered how many of them had puked all over their shoes the way I did. And then I wondered what Buddy had done with all the shoes, but the clang of the ladle on the pot again, pulled me back.

“Come,” he said quietly then, “come, and share in my pain.” And he held out paper plates to stretching hands.

We drank beer outside under a makhuhla tree and smoked. Buddy had finished a large helping of his stew, and seemed content to just sit and stare into the night.

“So,” he said after a while, “why didn’t you eat? It was a damn good stew if I must say so myself.”
I shook my head. “I don’t know where that hand had been,” I joked.

Buddy smiled. “You remember that waitress with the ass to die for?”

I nodded.

“Well, the night before you and I went to the bar, she had asked me to walk her home.”
He took another swig of beer, lit another smoke.

“She asked me in for a night cap. I followed her in. We were jawing on the couch when the front door opened and this bouncer guy walked in. He walked straight over to me, knocked the glass out of my hand, and pulled me up by the hair.”

Buddy squinted at me through the smoke.

“You have all these thoughts flying through your head, much like those coloured ping-pong balls in a lotto machine. It’s always the one number, the one thought you didn’t think of that comes up.

“Her name is Cheryl,” he sighed. “And she came over to us when he called her. She had this sly smile, and I remember her teeth seemed very white and very big.”

To be continued.

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