what’s my name?

I took Arpeggio to the car wash for the first time today. For those of you just joining us, “Peggy” is my trusty steed, my 1993 Ford Tempo. I took Peggy to the car wash because she’s been thinking dirty thoughts, and also because she had egg all over her. Somebody egged my car in Saint John, New Brunswick.

It wasn’t even Hallowe’en. Peggy was just sitting there on Park Hill Drive, wheels turned into the curb, minding her own business. And then some jerks decided that their idea of a perfect parabola was the arc of an egg through the crisp autumn air.

I came outside in the morning to start her up and there was egg running the whole way down my rear window. Bits of shell and yolk were scattered across the roof of the car. Based on the angle of impact, I’m calling it a drive-by.

Could you imagine if I ever get hold of the person who egged my car. I will grab him or her by the shirt and say “Listen fucker, are you part of the problem or part of the solution. How long does it take you to poop your own weight.”

So today as I was leaving the car wash I drove through the parking lot of the Riverside gas station. A teenaged boy was pumping regular fuel into a Ford F-150 pickup. I rolled down my window and pulled up beside him.

I said, “Dude. Your mom’s hot.”

He looked up. “Hey don’t talk about my mom like that.”

“I’m just sayin’ dude. Your mom is smokin’.”

“Shut up!”

I rolled up my window. Then I pulled out onto Route 10 and hit the gas.

The car wash did a good job of making my car wet and sparkly. But it didn’t even clean off all the egg. In my rear view mirror I could still clearly see the egg-stain down my back window.

Eggs are some sticky shit. I’m now thinking that an egg might be used as a substitute for glue in certain situations. Are you having trouble getting your gig posters to stay up on telephone poles? Throw an egg at them. Do you have an aversion to licking postage stamps? Why not just dip the stamps in an egg instead.

You could theoretically use an egg to help your identity stick in a person’s memory. The next time you meet somebody who has forgotten your name, throw an egg right at their face. Make it a rotten one. Crack it over their silly head and say, “Remember my name now? What’s my name now, asshole? Philip Clark, you’re goddamn right.”

These were my thoughts as I cruised down Route 10 in my trusty chariot Arpeggio, alias Peggy-Eggy the egg-splattered auto.

Riding shotgun with me was the ghost of a dead chicken–the spirit of all things unhatched–the phantom of that which was and that which shall never be.

I turned to the chicken and said, “So tell me something. Have you ever fallen in love with someone you shouldn’t have fallen in love with?”

“Bok bok bok,” said the chicken in the passenger seat.

“Don’t give me that, you bastard. I know you speak English.” I was fumbling to open a gum wrapper with one hand. “Care for some Trident?”

“Bok b’gok,” said the chicken. He reached out his wing and accepted the piece of gum.

Pretty soon I was lost in thought again. I guess I must have been talking to myself without being aware of it. “Hmm…but if it calls for two cups of sugar… Wouldn’t you think that would be way too sweet?…”

“You are way too sweet for me, handsome.”

The chicken in my passenger seat had been replaced by Victoria Principal, circa 1984. She said in her low, sultry voice, “Hello.”

“Oh, no. Not you again.” I pulled over to the side of the road and stopped. “Get the fuck out of my car right now.”

Victoria Principal with her full, shiny lips made a pouty face. “Why are you always so mean to me.”

“I don’t care whose mom you are,” I said. “Get out. You’re not riding in this car.”

I prodded her perfectly-shaped calf with the toe of my sneaker.

“I’ve got a bone to pick with you,” said Victoria. “It’s a pretty big bone.”

“Why don’t you go pick somebody else’s bone, sugar,” I said with a sneer.

“Oooh. You are such a bastard.” Victoria Principal balled her right hand into a fist and drew it back and then punched me right in the face.

“Owwwww.” I slumped back against the car door. My head bumped against the window. “That hurt.”

“Well it serves you right.”

“You skank. I’m gonna have a black eye for sure now.” I held my hand over my eye. “I can’t believe you.”

Then I jumped on top of her and we started making out all over the front seat.

Victoria Principal was kissing and sucking my neck, biting my shoulder and my earlobes. “Ohh god. Oh, yes. Take me, lover.” A film of hot steam crawled across the car windows.

I grabbed her legs and threw them up in the air and stuck my head up under her short little leather skirt. Victoria Principal leaned back and ran her fingers through her thick, lustrous hair. “Oh my god… oh god yes. No one does it like you do.”

I reached down to unbuckle my belt and unzip my fly while doing my magical finger trick.

“Oh yessss…. Oh wait… wait,” she panted. She reached down on the floor to grab her stylish designer purse. “I don’t know if I have anything with me.”

I reached down between my legs and tried to find the lever to pull my seat back. “Check the glove compartment.”

“Ha ha. Check it yourself, sucker.”

That was not a low sultry voice.

“Bok bok.”

Sweet Jesus. I pulled up my zipper. Victoria Principal had turned back into a chicken.

I slumped forward and sighed, my arms resting on the steering wheel.

“Why do you do these things to me?” I said.

“Because you’re fun to play with,” said the chicken.

“You lousy bird.”

I started up the car, put it into gear and eased back onto the highway.

“Listen,” said the chicken.

I glanced over. The chicken was looking at me with his sideways chicken eye.

“Yeah, what.”

“Tonight you will have a dream,” said the chicken. “You will dream that you are in a serious car accident. Your body will be mangled and you will die. Your funeral service will be held in an ancient church of the Druids. At your funeral service, I will be sitting right there in the front pew, laughing at you.”

“That’s not fuckin’ funny,” I said.

“Oh yes it is,” He said. “It’s very funny. Hahahaha. AHHH, hahahahaha.”

I slammed on the brakes right in the middle of Route 10. I leaned over to pop open the glove compartment. I reached inside and grabbed a ball-peen hammer and raised my arm and swung the hammer down on the chicken’s skull as hard as I could.

The hammer travelled through thin air and smacked against the soft fabric of the bucket seat. The chicken had vanished.

My grandmother used to keep kittens in the basement. I saw something that I hadn’t noticed before. A little dish sat on the basement floor right beside the woodpile. The dish had smiling cat faces drawn all over it.

The thought occurred to me that I might take this dish upstairs and use it to feed Vickers from. But with the very next stroke of the axe, a chunk of log went flying. The log landed on top of the dish and smashed it to pieces.

7 thoughts on “what’s my name?

  1. my car was egged once too. It was something like Winnipeg, 1998. I was self-righteous and naive, and in my green passion I left a long, nasty and graphic message on the answering machine of a girl whom my boyfriend had cheated on me with. Fuck him, I thought, but fuck her too. She lived with her parents, and by the dozens of broken shells crushed over the entire car the next morning, my guess is the whole family heard the message too. She worked at Hooters. Perhaps she picked up a carton after her shift?

    Winnipeggers are notorious eggers. I have at least six personal stories about drive-by egg incidents. At least Peggy isn’t in Winnipeg, where she might get pelted on a regular basis.

  2. Phil, I’m sorry that Peggy got egged. That’s just *nasty*. As for the rest… This is why I read your stuff. Brilliant. Morgan Fairchild – yeah, I can see that. Write that novel, Phil. If anyone can do it in a month, you can.

  3. Hi P

    That last post was really funny and great. Such neat disjunctive jumps.

    Sounds like you’re doing fine. Thinkin’ of you bud.

    (also glad yer not jumpin’ outta moving cars too much lately..)

    It’s kind of interesting down here at the studio recently – actually kind of busy.

    Feel free to call if you are in town > it’d be fun.

    Good class this year . . smart group.


  4. Dang it Phil..i want some of what you take for that cold. Nobody ever could tell stories like you could. From one topic to the next in one thought yet it still seems to all fit together..hee hee.

    Your cuzin,


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