Before I grew this spacesuit I was trim. I saw it in a doctor's report: "The subject is an athletic-appearing white male in no apparent distress." I was thirty six. Now I wheeze after sex.
I want to be lean as whole grain linguini fresh-squeezed from a pasta machine, but I don’t want to leave this screen except for snail mail and cigarettes. When flamed in a spectrophotometer I want my hair and nails free of toxic wavelengths, this sleeping bag around my hips devoid of carcinogenic benzenes. But I don't want to be healthy bad enough to change, to rock this pleasant homeostasis, so I cover wardrobe mirrors with paper to neck-level, try to accept myself at face value.
II A Royal Excuse
Hawaiians once believed that mana was proportional to mass, so royalty were encouraged to overeat, confirming Newton's laws before they knew Europeans thought it gauche to serve Captain Cooke stew.
It's sad their kings and queens died young of heart disease from poi-filled arteries. But is this such a bad thing? Look how long Prince Charles has waited to be king.
Backstage at the Roxy tongue-in-ear signals coke-and-screw, quick tryst with the leggy brunette who won't let me see her naked in the morning light despite her perfect breasts and soap-smooth skin. Such modesty! She's the girl I'd marry if I were thinner (and she drug-free).
I can always score in Palm Springs among the rich and prematurely wrinkled who spread it for the sun before they knew what ultraviolet could do. Sadly, there's no re-Barbification to undergo to heal their ravaged skin.
With just a set of four-star keys I snare these ultraviolet casualties beside their five-star pools and palms, these fiftyish bleached-blondes lavished with jewels to misdirect my eye from what they failed to protect. Their passionate grip on coquetry while growing old ungracefully I find grotesquely charming, poor solar mummies preening for a stiff, their Colgate smiles still disarming.
"Gems never let me down the way men do," says Gretchen. "You should try a cock-ring" Betty says. "Or a vacuum pump" says Doris. "Huh?" "Oh, never mind!" they laugh in chorus, nests emptied of their captors, these clawless, monied raptors, packing Viagra for the older horses.
IV Design Flaws
One problem with bipedal vertebrates is that our inside's too much outside, organs barely wrapped in flesh like newspaper around day-old fish then hung upon a spinal column like a scarecrow on a stake. If we had rigid exoskeletons like bugs we'd all have the same shape no matter how overweight.
A roach who overeats can molt from a trailer to a luxury coach without losing his figure. Its symmetry returns, the amber curves, the plated abdomen rock-hard, the same thin legs and arms much stronger than they look. Oh that I were a beetle on parade, my uniform cinched tight beneath gold braid!
V The Book of Lard
An angel appeared to me in robes of cheese with crisp tortilla wings, plump though severe. His wagging jowls decreed:
"You shall have a son and name him 'Lard.' He shall lounge like an elephant seal before the big screen television and slurp sugary cereal all day (with whole milk). He shall be driven to school and excused from PE. He shall eat chicken livers wrapped in bacon and scoop the yolk from deviled eggs, leaving the shiny whites behind like toilet bowls. You will raise him like a veal calf, endurance slight and posture slack, weak muscles marbled in delicious fat. Behold, when he comes of age, the ignorant will judge him for his sedentary style, mocking his inner peace as "fat denial" with videos of coronaries crammed with sludge and a surgeon general's warning slapped on fudge. But he shall overcome them by his word:
"Bears run over thirty mph despite their fat. I'm smart as Einstein and quick as a cat. Lord Death will just as surely suck your marrow. Why put on airs because your coffin's narrow? Diet and exercise are overrated. Car crash tomorrow!-- sated or unsated."