Annals of the Flesh: Like Tucker Max, but Less Date-Rapey

“The Abrupt Ending of an Unhealthy Relationship”
by JHM

A few months back I went steady with a loud bitch named Carmen. I didn’t catch her last name. We dated for a few weeks. She drank like a fish and demanded attention, so our usual spot was a karaoke bar on Fourth Avenue. It was three blocks up from my studio apartment. Most nights, she made a scene and screamed incoherently at the microphone. I watched her from the least lit cocktail table or the darkest corner of the bar. I sipped highballs. I smiled in approval. I tolerated her jibber-jabber which bothered most patrons because I knew that eventually she’d need my help and then she’d sleep with me. Sometimes she’d crash into the drum set. Other times, she’d yell, “Hey! Fuck you!” at the bartender because her drink was weak. Either way, the result was the same: I’d close the tab as the bouncer was bouncing her; then we’d stagger the three blocks back to my crib and have sex for hours.

Carmen was the most beautiful girl I’ve ever dated. She was natural; a true blonde, no plastic, fit but well-fed and she weighed a buck fifteen with a C cup. There was a tattoo of Tinkerbelle at the top of her left ass cheek and it made me smile from time to time. We had fun together, but nothing more than that. I knew that the only way we could work it out was if we did the whole Bonnie and Clyde thing, and that was highly unlikely because she worked at Red Lobster and I was in med school.

The breakup was brutal. It ended abruptly. We had returned to my studio from the karaoke bar and I had gone to the bathroom to wash my hands. My ears were nearly bleeding because of Carmen’s unique rendition of I Believe in a Thing Called Love, and I was staring at myself in the mirror. I began wondering about why the fuck I’d been dating a schizoid. Just then I started getting half-a-chub and a full-on woody was in the works. I remembered the reason I was dating a schizoid – the sex was great. I splashed some water on my face and smiled back at me in the mirror. I looked down at my pants and said, “Play like a champion.” Then I left the bathroom.

Before I reached the kitchen, I smelled something kind of flavorful. Once I turned the corner I saw Carmen holding a pan with a massive steak in it. It was about one a.m. and, I’ll admit it, I had the munchies myself. But a 14 ounce non-marinated tri-tip steak wasn’t exactly what I had in mind. “Wow,” I said.”That looks really interesting,” Carmen. Tell me something, were you going to cook some rice and corn as well? I mean, if you’re going to cook a steak the size of a football, don’t you think it deserves some company on the plate? Maybe some potato chips even?”

“Quoi,” she mumbled.

“What was that, drunkie?”

“Steak,” she said.

“Yes. Good. You like steak.”

I walked over to the futon and flipped on the tube. I Love Lucy was on.

At about the time Ricky Ricardo had walked in and said, “Lucy, I’m Home!” I realized that the sizzling sound from the steak had stopped. I turned my head around and looked towards the kitchen. Carmen was standing next to the fridge with her back to me. I got up and walked over. She was holding the steak with both hands over the trash can and eating it like a starved Neanderthal.

“Hey there, Chef Boyardee. Don’t forget to breathe, Carmen. Inhale and exhale, remember? I looked at the steak. It was still raw. “Holy shit, Carmen! You’re a savage! That’s tartare style!” Her eyes and body turned to me but her head didn’t move. She gargled something, but I couldn’t make it out.

“What was that?” I asked her.

For a moment it looked like she was going to take the steak away from her face. But she moved it to the side of her mouth instead. Then she giggled.

“Jesus, lady. You’re drunk. Give me that steak.” I grabbed for it but she backed away and gave me a dirty look. “Listen, Jaws. How about we try this again later? Let’s put the steak back in the pan and throw it in the fridge. Okay?”

She lowered her eyebrows and took the half chewed section of raw meat out of her mouth. For a moment she just stared at me and she looked kind of like a confused T-Rex. So I didn’t move. Then she went crazy. She started screaming and threw the steak at me. It hit me in the chest and fell to the floor in front of the fridge. I looked at my shirt, a white shirt, and there was a square foot of fresh meat juice around the breast pocket. I also notice my half chub was gone. I wasn’t angry. I knew she was drunk and having a tantrum as she had earlier done at the bar. But she was angry, very angry.

“Oh Fuck you!” She yelled at me, “Bitch, bitch, bitch.”  I didn’t say anything. “That’s all you ever do is bitch, bitch, bitch. I’m fucking sick of it.”

I watched her as she stumbled around the studio. “Where’s my purse?!” I kept quiet. She turned around towards me and noticed her purse on the kitchen counter. “I’m sick of this. Fuck you and fuck your steak.” She picked up her purse and walked out of my apartment, slamming the door behind her.

I heard her as she walked up Fourth avenue. She was screaming the jumbled lyrics of a song she had sung just hours before.

I never saw Carmen again.

JHM is an astronaut. He likes people, fiction, adventures in space, Shark Week, baseball, golf, philosophy and listening to the poetry of Tupac Shakur. Jason reads and writes and in San Francisco, California.

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