- 3 Pages
“Brenda’s a pig!”
“Roger! Aren’t you two engaged?”
Tim paused mid-sip. “That’s your fiancé you’re talking about.”
“I know, I know.” Roger took a swig of his Red Hook ESB and wiped his mouth on his shirtsleeve. “But she is.”
“She got one of them cute little corkscrew tails on her ass?” asked Tim, invoking the image with his finger.
“No…” Roger cocked his head to the side. “No! But ever since we moved in together I find her doing… things.”
Tim scrunched his eyebrows together. “What kind of things? Pig things? Is she some pig?”
“Got a friend named Charlotte?” asked Michelle. “Is she special?”
“Yeah, she ride the short pig bus?” added Tim with a chuckle.
Roger pursed his lips, grimaced, then came out with it: “I caught her rooting through the garbage.”
“Whaaaa?” Michelle set down her half finished cosmopolitan.
“Rooting?” asked Tim “For what? Truffles?”
“No, no. She said she was looking for something I might have thrown away by mistake, some paper that she had circled an ad in.”
“You don’t recycle? For shame.” Michelle rubbed her right index finger over her left in mock admonishment.
“That’s the thing. I do recycle.”
Tim snubbed his cigarette in the ashtray and a light breeze wafted its dying breath around the corner of the bar. “So… maybe she thought you didn’t.”
“That’s not the point.” Roger looked askance at his reflection in the window. “She … she… while she was rooting through the garbage, I saw her take out a piece of pizza crust… and… and eat it.”
“Ewwwww.” Michelle’s sensibilities were offended.
“Aw, come on Raj. Haven’t you ever had a piece of day old crust out of the box you tossed out?”
“Yeah,” chimed in Michelle, “remember when I caught you rummaging thru the trash can looking for a cigarette butt that wasn’t smoked down to the filter because you were trying to quit and refused to buy another pack?”
Tim rattled his pack of Pall Malls. “Speaking of which, Shell, you owe us like five hundred dollars for all the little ciggies you bummed.”
Michelle smiled. “Bite me.”
“Guys, focus. This is my story.”
“Thanks. No, it was not in the pizza box. It was mixed in with the rest of the garbage.”
“Okay, that is gross.”
“Yeah. My point.”
“But not entirely pig like.” Tim, always the private dick.
“Well, that’s what put the button on it for me.”
“What do you mean?” asked Michelle.
“That act, her rooting through the garbage. That’s all I can call it. Rooting. While she pawed thru the kitchen garbage, she would smell the things she pulled out. Made little grunting sounds.”
“Like when you two have sex?”
Roger blushed. “You know about that?”
“The walls in the summer retreat cabin are thin.”
Everyone nodded their heads. “I thought it was endearing,” said Roger with a shrug.
“So did we, honey,” said Michelle. “So did we.” They all burst out laughing.
Ever since they first met at the insurance agency, Roger, Michelle, and Tim went out every Wednesday night for a drink to shoot the shit. They all had different jobs now except for poor Tim who was still assistant to the director of the company. The three friends knew they worked and played well together and for that reason made a point of setting aside time once a week to catch up, help each other out, drink some beers, and go home drunk.
Jack ordered another round for the table. “So, Raj, what other pig like traits do you notice now?”
“Well, she’s always taking mud baths.”
“You can’t deny a girl her pamper time. I get a mani-pedi every other week.”
“Yeah, that’s okay, but Jes gets a mud bath every week, and wears a mud mask to sleep almost every night.”
Tim paid the waitress for the round of drinks. “Kinda cuts down on the romantic time, huh?”
“No,” Roger paused, then relented. “She likes to do it with the mask on.”
“Do it?” Michelle’s eyes widened. “Like sex?”
“No you idiot, do it like Nike. Yes. Sex.”
“Just making sure we’re all on the same page.”
“Okay, so she’s got a mud fetish. Haven’t heard of that one before, but…”
“But what, Michelle?”
“Well, some women are insecure about their looks. Maybe her wearing her facial, heh, mask to bed makes her feel more beautiful, turns her on. You know.”
“Well, it also has us changing the sheets every day. Or at least me changing the sheets.”
Tim held up his cell phone. “Someone dialed 412.”
“From the mud. Idiots.”
“Oh, is that what the kids are calling it these days? Mud?”
“Fine, story over. I’m done.”
“Raj, Rajish, Roger, my main man. Come on. We’re just kiddin’.”
“You can’t tell us your lady is a pig and expect us to be completely serious about it,” said Michelle, laying her hand on Roger’s.
“Yeah. So there’s the mud, and the rooting, and the grunting. Anything else?”
“She pull some farmer out of a burning house?”
“Well, you know how I never stayed over her place?
“Never even saw it if I remember correctly.”
“That’s right. I finally saw it when I helped her move. It was a pit. I thought it was just because she was packing and tossing things aside. But now, we’ve been living together for 3 months and she hasn’t finished unpacking.”
“So, you got boxes everywhere?”
“Not even. She just emptied the boxes on the floor and now her stuff is everywhere.”
“Maybe it’s like marking her territory?”
Roger said goodnight to Michelle and Tim, poured himself into a cab and directed the driver on the route to take him home. Sinking into the vinyl seat of the Lincoln continental, he felt slightly ashamed for betraying the personal habits of his fiancée. There was a trust that one keeps with their partner. Odd habits remain odd habits but are not subject of discussion. But weren’t her habits a bit off, stranger than most? Roger needed the insight and objectivity of his friends to assure him he wasn’t crazy. His fiancée is a pig. His impending marriage might be in jeopardy.
The cab pulled up to his apartment in Brooklyn Heights, he paid the fare and gave a generous tip to the cabbie for not talking to him on the ride home. There was a light on in the garden apartment but his apartment on the first floor appeared dark. He looked at the building for a while, got his game face on, and entered. There was a light coming from the kitchen-the soft glow of the refrigerator. The apartment was silent except for the occasional sob and sniff of Jes. He closed the door, locked it, put down his bag and coat and went to the kitchen. Just as he was about to ask, “What is it?” the words choked in his mouth. There she was, his fiancée, sitting on the cold tile floor of the kitchen in her panties and facemask, cradling an open package of bacon to her breast and trying to get it to suckle from her teat.
All Roger could think, as he looked pityingly on her from the doorway was: Bacon becomes her, in the soft refrigerator light in the dead of night. Bacon becomes her.