This dog is not impressed.
This dog is not impressed.
Best day of the year! #vscocam #junemountain @junemountain
A panda who appears confused and disoriented, holding an eye shadow brush.
I still know how. #notpaleo
Going to the DMV where I live > going to the DMV anywhere else. 🗻 🚙
My own personal New Year’s resolution.
Albie bought a giraffe costume from a woman with pink eyeshadow on the Home Shopping Channel. It was almost midnight and she had him on the air to talk about his purchase.
“I bought the giraffe one,” Albie whispered into the mouthpiece. He didn’t want to wake his wife. She was asleep in the den, neck oddly cocked, a small spot of drool seeping from her mouth onto a decorative wool pillow; he was in the bathroom, clutching the old blue phone, its corkscrew cord pulled beneath the closed door. “I bought the extra large one.”
He heard the woman laugh coarsely, a laugh merely biding time till its next cigarette.
“You know, Mister Jennings, that’s the great thing about these costumes! They’re one size fits all!” she said, spitting exclamation marks.
“That’s right,” another woman chimed in.
Warm against his ear, Albie recognized the new voice. It belonged to a spokeswoman known for her massive cloud of fussy hair. Albie watched the channel often, when he couldn’t fall to sleep, and without fail this woman always appeared, selling merchandise—dangerous-looking blenders, fizzy therapeutic bath salts, tribal masks—with her hair blown out toward the ceiling. Her name was Tina Winchell and she was Albie’s favorite.
“Unless it’s for a child,” she continued, “because what we haven’t mentioned yet, Marisol, is that these plush, adorable, cute-as-a-button outfits also come in a baby size. Folks, your little one will be in heaven, I swear.” She held up a tiny black-and-white panda costume. Stubby, rounded ears poked from its hood.
“No. No, it’s for me,” Albie said. “It’s not for a child.”
“Tell us what makes you so excited about the giraffe,” Marisol asked, blinking her pink-rimmed lids into the black eye of the studio camera.
Albie swallowed and looked at the receiver in his hand.
“Well, okay,” he started. “I have to admit that I’ve bought a lot of stuff from the channel over the years. I got the record player with the built-in police scanner. I mean, I watch all the time. And, yeah, so I bought that machine.” Albie fiddled with a button on his pajama shirt, nervously unbuttoning and buttoning it. “But, you know, it kind of made me feel like I was living in a dangerous city. I thought I’d like it. I didn’t realize people were getting mugged just a few blocks away from my home though. And we’d listen to the scanner sometimes—my wife Quinn and me—and I’d just be like, ‘Honey, we need to get away from the window, you heard what just happened on Redwood Avenue!’ That’s literally three blocks over from us.”
The women looked at each other with wilted smiles. Marisol was vaguely petting a squirrel outfit on the display table.
“And I bought a painting of a lobster once, but I forget the artist’s name. I just thought it was a good piece of work. And I bought the age-defying bath and body set for Quinn. I think she liked that, although I wouldn’t really say she needs to look youn—Oh! And I bought one of those machines that’s shaped like a butterfly. It’s the one that you’re supposed to use for just four minutes a day to get perfect abdominals.”
Albie cleared his throat and put a hand along his forehead.
“I gotta be honest with you though. It’s been in the garage ever since it arrived. I’m a bit embarrassed about that! But there it is.”
“Well, Tina! We’ve got ourselves a fan here, don’t we?”
“I’m a big fan,” Albie said. “Anyways, I’m tall myself and the giraffe costume looks like it’s well-made and I think I might like to wear it all the time. I’ve been trying a lot of things, buying a lot of things I guess and I never really end up using them. But this—this I can just put on.”
“My, oh my,” Tina Winchell said. “I really think you’re going to be pleased with it. Now, just look at the bottom of your screen, folks!”
“Look at those numbers!” Marisol howled. “Wow! These are just flying out of here! We’ve got a frog, a koala, a monkey. Tina, I think you had your eye on the tiger, did you not? Oh, and I want to remind you all that these prices are simply not going to last!”
“You are absolutely right, Marisol. It’s incredible. This is our best deal of the night by far! Thank you for calling in, Mister Jennings,” Tina Winchell said. “I really hope the giraffe makes you happy.”
“Thank you. I hope it makes me happy too,” Albie said. He added, “I guess I’ve been a little sad,” but the call had already been disconnected and the women didn’t hear him.
Albie went back into the den where the volume was on mute and his wife was still asleep on the sofa. The glow of the screen radiated blue against his stubbly face. He watched the women on TV, once again smiling, laughing and airing their straight white teeth into dark living rooms across the country. He imagined they were talking about him; how charming he had been on air; how he was their newest, most favorite caller ever. Albie bit his lower lip and watched closely as their mouths moved. He watched until the camera finally cut away to a set of plastic knives that could cut through aluminum cans.