[slang] A hole in a wall through which fellatio or masturbation was originally conducted incognito between male homosexuals. Now more popular with heteros.
“Oh, brother. Oh, dear,” she says. “Goodness gracious.”
It’s the hole in the side of the cubic stall. It’s whispering at me Puritanical sweet-nothings.
“What you need right now is a miracle,” she says.
I say, how do you know?
“I have your script right here. That’s how.”
Because my analyst tells me there needs to be a romantic interest. Because without that there’s no literary tension. That’s what he says. It’s either him or my agent. I don’t remember anymore. And so here she is. My emotional unbalancing force. Squatting in the stall next to mine, in the men’s bathroom on the 9th floor of the Rockefeller building. Squeezing her words through a warped, cylindrical perforation just above my right knee. The twenty-first century love of my life. This one transcends electronic mail and chat and mobile phones and text messaging and all that convoluted social fabric offered by the Internet in the form of friendly websites through which you can connect. Facebook. Twitter. Snapchat. Instagram. Chat Roulette. eSpin. Flickr. Orkut. Xanga. This one comes to me through an aperture in a public toilet. Unseen. A blind date. A blind love. Modern romance.
I say, what script? Prescription?
“No. Your script. Your paper script,” she says and jams what looks like a teleplay, flat against the tiny opening.
FADE IN: A TENEMENT BUILDING
On Manhattan’s Lower East Side.
Early morning traffic is audible.
“What you need is a miracle, yes?”
I say, what I need is a few Demerol and a handful of Valium.
I say, what I need is an injection of Botulinum Toxin Type A into the forehead. And maybe right above the corners of the eyes. Crow’s feet are a bitch when you’re adored. Or about to hit martyrdom on live TV.
I say, what I need is some prednisone.
Fludochortisone or some Vitamin D derivative. Steroids.
I say, what I need is that. Not some fleeting miracle.
I say, miracles are for the faithful. Miracles are for the sheep. For the boring.
“Oh dear,” she whispers.
Someone walks into the washroom, clears his throat, spits into the sink, and takes the stall to my left. He drops his pants and lets go. (Millenia ago it’s how Man first unknowingly domesticated plants. Mellons and berry bushes began to grow around latrine areas and we got smart a few thousand years later and saved the seeds instead of eating them.)
She stifles a laugh, then says: “shhh.”
How I feel is, I’m on horseback on my father’s ranch in Del Rio inspecting a 15-mile stretch of the border fence and I come up on three Mexican Army soldiers standing on our side of the land balancing FX-05 Xiuhcoatl assault rifles on their shoulders.
How I feel is, when you take off the plastic wrap from a TV dinner after ten minutes of being zapped by electromagnetic waves and the steam burns holes into the delicate skin on the bottom of your wrist.
The man finishes and cleans himself with toilet paper. The smell of his business is thick with every breath that goes into my lungs. I’m tired of smelling men’s bowels. He pulls up his pants and steps out. He walks straight past the sinks without washing his hands. As he opens the door he pauses and throws back: “You fucking fairy faggots” before he lets the door slam.
What I need now is a miracle.
I say, what’s your name.