21: You give bananas one last chance.

After you cleaned up your fridge, you turned to the counter upon which there were several bananas. You bought them around the same time as the okra and though, like the okra, they were green once, they are now, like the okra, somewhat black. However, the black-to-yellow ratio is not too imbalanced and you are full of vim and verve and moxie and many other fun words you don’t use often enough. You will give bananas one last chance.

You peel back the ripe, pungent skin and take a bite of the mushy yellow content. It is sickly sweet and has the consistency of, well, overripe bananas. Do overripe bananas really have a comparison? Like chewing on an overripe brain, you imagine! The image of chewing on human brains revolts you, because you are not a zombie, or me, so you spit out the mushy banana mouthful and swear off the cursed fruit forever.

Ah, this is so unfair! That’s not a real chance! That is trying the banana at its worst! That is like taking an exam before you have studied, or years after you have studied and long-forgotten the information. It is like stepping out in your pyjamas while covered with mud when making a first impression! It is like trying a banana before it is ripe, or long after it is ripe! I feel we are not finished with this, in all due fairness and in the name of JUSTICE! BE JUST WILL YOU!?

20: Your neglected refrigerator.

You were a Responsible Human Being one day and ventured out to buy food products so that you would have something to live on other than crackers and expired mayonnaise. “I can do better than this!” you shouted, spitting out mayo-covered cracker bits and hopping to your feet, traipsing to your fridge and wondering if crackers with freezer ice would be better, or perhaps those soy sauce packets? No! You are a Responsible Human Being, Functional and Capable and all that jazz, so out you went to buy groceries.

And, because that functional capable nonsense is a load, and you are a busy human, too busy to cook, that bag of [food=select=okra] is a rotted blackened mess of fungus, and it is time to clean out the fridge.

You start with the mayo, because lard knows it’s still in there.

“Ah,” you say wistfully, “I probably can’t eat this anymore.” But you’re a daring human and you try another platter of crackers. More spitting occurs.

You find some congealed, filmy liquid that was once soup, out that goes! With hesitant fingers and the expression of one who has had something smelly placed under one’s nose – this being literal, of course – you remove a long tube of fungus that was once a cucumber, the petri dish of new life that may have been a tomato, and the rancid bag of salad that is floating in yellow water that was not previously there. Good for you! I’m glad to hear your fridge was so well-stocked with vegetables. I will ignore that you apparently have not eaten any of them.

You find several take-out containers that contain the remainders of meals unfinished, meals you cannot finish now if you have any desire to live. Out they go! You find a piece of cake that you did not eat when you had the chance. “Damn!” you say. “I really wanted cake the other day, too!” Unless you want really stale cake with blue spots, you will let it go.

I realize I should not give you a choice, with that wistful look on your face. “LET IT GO!” I command. Out it goes.

On the fridge door is a block of cheese. “Blue cheese!” I remark.

“It wasn’t always blue,” you admit. Out it goes.

I see you have milk on your door as well. I remind you that milk is not a good source of calcium, being pasteurized and losing the enzyme that would make it even remotely useful, and did you know that much milk is full of pus due to the poor treatment of the cows?

“Apparently,” you say, as the milk in question is extremely lumpy.

“And hormones and antibiotics,” I continue, ever concerned for your health and wellness. You consider this.

“What about yoghurt?” you say. “‘Cause I mean, this milk is about one step away from being yoghurt.”

I urge you, once more, to toss that stuff out.

Atop the lumpy dairy products and hairy vegetables and fruit (you found the strawberries, Dear Goat!) comes stale bread and something neither of us could identify. I feel quite queasy and back away from your garbage. Incidentally, shouldn’t you be throwing these foodstuffs in the compost?

“Oh, the compost! Of course!” you say. You’d forgotten you had one! You remove the pizza box you had balanced precariously atop it and lift the lid.

We scream.

Once you remove the empty cans and containers from your counter top and finish scouring the dishes that once held items that once were food, your kitchen does not look half-bad!

“Time to restock the fridge!” you chuckle. I raise my eyebrows at you. You will learn from this, won’t you?

You return with fresh groceries and pack them into your fridge. You realize you missed something in your clean up.

At the very back, the very darkest corner, you find a mysterious container you haven’t seen for some time. You pop the top, and sitting beneath a pool of white film and blue fungus appears to be the carcass of what was once…

watermelon.

You scream like a wounded animal. Your soul is as black as the okra.

19: You see a movie.

You see a movie, and contemplate the cruel truth that you cannot unsee something once you have seen it, and you cannot get a refund no matter how much you yell at the movie poster. You are a considerate enough human that you know it’s not fair to yell at the ticket window, because plastic is just a material, albeit a slightly toxic one. And you didn’t yell at the ticket sellers either because you know, deep, deep down, that it’s not their fault that the movie sucked.

But honestly! Who is to be held responsible for such awfulness!? Will your hate mail ever make it all the way to the director? Will that envelope you angrily coughed into make its way to the hands of the producers? Will the studio feel the shame your abstract painting was meant to make them feel? Will the actor die in an explosion? No, his stunt double did though. Harsh.

You expected better! Sure, the trailers were garbage, the costumes looked ridiculous, and whatever story you managed to glean in advance was a terrible one at best. But you expected better from [big name director] and [big name actor] and [big name studio] and [concession stand]. And instead, you got that drivel that made you want to puke from your eyes.

“WHAT WAS THE POINT OF IT ALL?!” you wail, wishing back the last two hours of your life. You could have gone jogging or fishing or ridden a camel or something. You could have done something IMPORTANT. You could have not gazed at the face of Bad Screenwriting and had it chuckle meanly at you. Even though IT HAD A ZIT.

Well, that’s enough of that. You move on, you get over things. There are other movies, after all, and many look far more terrible. And then there’s that one that you hope will redeem every cinematic experience of the year.

“IS IT TOO MUCH TO ASK FOR A GOOD STORY?!” you sob.

I hope not. I’ve made a lot of effort for you, punk!

18: Your revised bucket list.

“Ta da!” you say proudly, handing me the list you were working on last we spoke. Quietly, I inconspicuously slide your diary under the nearest piece of furniture. I will have to read your thoughts on how hunky Brad Pitt is another day.

Unfortunately, the nearest piece of furniture was a [desk chair/glass coffee table/otherwise insufficient hiding spot].

“Is that my diary?” you say suspiciously.

“Oh my, what an interesting list!” I say loudly to distract you, and it works! Smugly, you settle in beside me, eager to hear me read your list aloud. So you like to hear me both in writing and in voice? Well, I’m touched.

“My Bucket List”

1) Go jogging.
2) Clean out refrigerator.
3) See a movie.
4) Cook something.
5) Be a hero.
6) Give bananas one last chance.
7) Buy a bucket.

It’s short, but sweet, and it makes me smile. I ask you, though: “Are you sure this is a bucket list? This sounds more like a to-do list.”

“It’s my bucket list for this year,” you explain. “Inspired by me.”

“That’s vague,” I say. You wink.

Well, it certainly is an interesting list. Is there anything you’d like to add to it?

17: Your thoughts on lemons.

Damn lemons! you write. What kind of a fruit are they? Fruits are supposed to be sweet and yummy, like a fresh and juicy watermelon, but these things are sour and sucky! They suck your cheeks right in! Why do these yellow footballs even exist?!
But…
You look from side to side nervously, and add to your entry:
They are the best! When you grate the rind, oh, what a fabulous smell! They have that wonderful lemon-y smell that can’t be beat! Plus they are the colour of the sun and they’re beautiful to look at, and they don’t burn your eyes like the sun does, unless you get lemon juice in them and then they burn in a different way. But lemon juice becomes lemonade, or else adds a citrus touch to your cooking! And with a little pinch of sugar they are sweet as well as tangy, and how many fruits can boast to be tangy? Not bananas, that’s for damn sure! Those damn bananas!
And here you go into a stream of expletives.
Such fruitless passion.

16: You write something.

Gasp! And here I thought I was The Writer. Yet there you are, hunched over a pad of paper, writing out some kind of list. I try to peer over your shoulder, but you are ready for this, and pull closer to the page, shielding the contents from my eyes. Rude!

I take it you are miffed due to my recent absence. I try to reassure you by patting you on the shoulder. You are even more miffed to find that the slimy sensation of my shoulder-patting is due to the fish in my hand.

“Why are you holding a fish?!” you snap.

“Why would I not be?” I respond, puzzled. I play catch with my fish while I wait for you to finish writing.

You take your time, which leaves me impatient. What, oh what could it be? I contemplate the contents of your list. Is it a list of swear words? Those are fun. Don’t forget dumbballs and lardpants. Get creative.

Is it a list of organs in the human body? I know all of those. Don’t forget Red Blob and Slimy Tubes. Those are big ones.

Is it a list of fruit you might enjoy? You really do need to cast your net a little wider here, your pickiness has concerned me more than once. Watermelon is not the be-all end-all of fruit, I promise.

Is it a list of the fish in the sea? Don’t forget this one!

*schwap*

That was me slapping you with my fish. Ho, ho ho, look at your expression! Oh. You’re not pleased. You slam a door in my face that has conveniently appeared betwixt you and me. I suppose I’ll just sneak back in tomorrow to read your list and your latest diary entry. I never did get a chance to see what you thought of lemons.

15: You’ve become overconfident.

Well well well. Seems you are expecting an awful lot from me. You want me to document your life daily? Well, that’s what I do, being the shadow you see behind you most days and have begun to fear. Don’t worry, you! You’re not going crazy at all. I AM stalking you. I’m probably harmless.

But I’ve also been busy stalking her, and him. I have a lot of you to stalk, because You is a ubiquitous term meaning you, you and you, and I have to stalk you all equally or else you’ll feel unloved and start competing with each other, and we don’t need another Hunger Games. How is that for a pop culture reference? It is the last time I will bend to your popping culture. Unless I feel like it. FAIRY TALE MOVIES. Yes, that should bring us up to speed.

So now we move to something more sporadic, depending on how much time I have to transcribe my notes from The Stalking Ledger to The Stalking Document to The Stalking Bl—this innocent blog. Don’t be afraid. I find it sad when you make that face while you’re sleeping. Be happy! You looked very nice today.

Best regards! Wear that blue thing next time. I’ll see you tonight, tomorrow and next week.

13: Your superstition.

It is Friday and you receive this, my thirteenth post. You howl at me.

“WHY TODAY?!” you say. “WHY MUST YOU BE SO TIMELY?!”

I thought you appreciated my timeliness. Why must you be so superstitious?

“It’s bad luck to ask me that!” you moan, tossing salt over your shoulder and kicking a black cat out of your way. “You could curse us all!” you add, murmuring a protective spell under your breath and kicking a dog. That was unnecessary, but you felt bad about the cat and somehow came to the conclusion that this would balance it out. The dog doesn’t appear to agree.

“Bad things happen when Fridays and Thirteens are crossed!” you continue, as the wounded animals sprint out of your path. I can see your point. Bad things can indeed happen. Like terrible movies of that name. I apologize, if only to placate you.

“Just don’t do it again,” you say calmly, ducking around a ladder, drawing a religious symbol, knocking on wood, avoiding the mirror, throwing a closed umbrella out the window, and stomping on a trail of ants.

You are… terribly destructive.