Look, babe, I already explained t’ya more than once. When I get outta here, I’m going to make you tremble and throb with” — he searched for just the right words — “stupendous passion!”
“Yeah, well, you told me a lot of things.” Samantha tried not to scowl (Moderne Chicke magazine warned that it causes wrinkles) as she meticulously filed her nails, shifting them in the light to make sure they were even. She scrutinized her sleek legs as they emerged from under the short red skirt, and then, a bit awkwardly in the cramped hospital visitor’s chair, crossed them and wiggled the top one up and down. It looked pretty good. Her sheer stockings with the little embedded sparkles fit perfectly, and she was fairly sure that her shiny silver high-heeled shoes were cute. “You said all kinds of romantic stuff, Joey, but I’m still waiting.”
“Hell, dollface, you can’t blame me for falling off a ladder, can you?” He adjusted one of the tubes taped to his arm, as though to emphasize the merciless fate that dogged him. “I mean I was just trying to unclog my roof gutter, and anybody could have …”
“Yeah, but anybody didn’t. You did. And I can’t either blame you for falling out your bedroom window a month earlier when you were trying to — what the hell were you trying to do? — fix something. Me sitting right there, ready to — I mean feeling affectionate and all — and you were more interested in fixing something! Jeez, if you hadn’t fallen into that big stinky bush that your big stinky dog likes to pee in, you would’ve broken your head instead of your —”
“Look, I told you. We’re going to be like magic bunnies, you and me. When I get better I’m going to make your whole body vibrate like a tuning fork, and —”
She didn’t appear to be listening. “Y’know, Joey, it’s supposed to be us girls who’re so afraid of gravity, things collapsing and all.” She examined her nails from yet another angle, and gave a little swipe with the file. “But gravity seems to be catching up with you a lot faster than me.”
He laughed. “Say, that’s good! But there’s nothing collapsing on me, babe. Wait till you get a load of my epic physique.” He said this without a trace of irony. “Why, when I get out of the hospital I’m going to show you what fooling around really means. Those other guys have nothing on me! I have the bod, I have the talent — I should write a book about it, I tell ya.”
Samantha tucked the nail file away in her sequin-spangled handbag. Nobody’s fool, she regarded him with open skepticism. “Talent, huh? And then there was the time before that, when you ran over your own foot with your car. I woulda said that was physically impossible, but you managed it somehow. I guess you do have a talent — for being clumsy.”
“Me clumsy? Bite your tongue!” He made exaggerated tongue-biting motions with his mouth to illustrate the concept. “Why I’m the very essence of grace, as you’re going to discover” — he leered at her — “to your delight, as soon as I get better. I’m strong and I’m supple.” He flexed his un-tubed arm, waving it in the air to demonstrate its suppleness. “Look, I realize you’re probably only being this negative to cover your embarrassment, I mean at being infatuated with me and all” — he glared a warning as she stifled what sounded like a guffaw — “but I keep explaining that I’m not just another boy-toy. I wrote the book, get it?”
“I thought you just said you oughta write a book, now you wrote it already? Fast work!” She stood up and smoothed her short skirt, which, being made of vinyl, didn’t really require much smoothing. “Y’know, Joey, I don’t actually know if you’re a world-class lover like you been sayin’ since we started dating. And at this rate — this accident rate — I don’t know if I’ll ever know. Every time we’re about to — something happens and you end up in the hospital.” She had a sudden insight, a way to apply a practical test. “Say, have you ever actually had a real girlfriend?”
“Me?” He burst out laughing at the preposterousness of the question. “A girlfriend?” — he emphasized the “A” — “You mean like one? I’ve had hundreds of them. And all of them tingling with desire and … whatchacallit … fulsome-fillment! Hundreds of them. Why, I’m — I’m — experienced at love!”
She couldn’t hide the suspicion on her face. “Joey, you sure you didn’t just imagine all them girlfriends? You know you sound like a jackass sometimes. You sure you’re not just experienced at — jactation?”
This crass tale contains crude references to sex, tasteless clothing, and bodily injuries. If you’re a minor…or possibly prim, proper, prudish, or priggish…or a Hipster Fashionista or perhaps a High-Artsy Literatus Non-Afflatus, then stop reading now!
If your dictionary doesn’t cover jactation (some don’t), or you’re too lazy to look it up, or you prefer my [cough] worthier lexicographic skills, click here.