Fortunato Salazar ~ 504 Charlie 2020

When he sowed, he’d been opti­mistic. Wow. He’d gone to the IHOP and done some seed genet­ics cal­cu­la­tions on a nap­kin. Majestic seed genet­ics cal­cu­la­tions. Now it was October and just look at that front yard. Misery. The cucur­bits could best be described as, what was the word, the word itself was a seed that would ger­mi­nate if only he, Charlie, let it alone to do its erot­ic pre-ger­mi­na­tion thing. Unprepossessing. A half ton at best, each of the pair. And greedy. Each liv­ing being must be true to its essen­tial nature, and the essen­tial nature of the pair of cucur­bits was greed­i­ness; also, they were matuti­nal. Like chin­chillas. Only greedy as well. Stealthy greedy. As a sea­soned grow­er, Charlie had learned patience. He went indoors and hur­ried to get ready for his nanoneu­roin­te­gra­tion sem­i­nar. False dawn, then dawn, then one of the cucur­bits stole off to the branch of Trashy Lingerie that had opened recent­ly in Lexington’s quaint retail dis­trict. The doors of Trashy Lingerie wouldn’t open for anoth­er five hours. Greedily, stealth­ily, the cucur­bit used a form of quan­tum tele­por­ta­tion learned from Charlie and rema­te­ri­al­ized on the oth­er side of the win­dows, among the man­nequins. A flounced ted­dy went miss­ing. A Bad Girl Punk Goth Leather Chest Harness went miss­ing. A lace mousse embroi­dered bra set went miss­ing. Once all the man­nequins were in their birth­day suits, the cucur­bit drew on anoth­er quan­tum tele­por­ta­tion set of notes it had pil­fered from Charlie’s office one ear­ly morn­ing when Charlie was out for a run along the Charlie. All the man­nequins woke up, sen­tient, in booths inside the IHOP. Meanwhile the oth­er cucur­bit made a bee­line for the office of the present author. The present author’s office is a foam pad on a floor with­out floor­ing. Unprepossessing. The cucur­bit, no less greedy than its coun­ter­part, no less stealthy, no less intel­lec­tu­al­ly curi­ous, rema­te­ri­al­ized inside the present author’s frontal lobes. In no time at all the cucur­bit had rewired the cir­cuit­ry of the lat­er­al frontal poles of the present author’s frontal cor­tex. In much the same way, the uni­cel­lu­lar organ­ism M. thana­to­bacil­lus rewires the frontal cor­tex of edi­tors so that they engage in eccen­tric behav­ior such as pub­lish­ing their own sto­ries in the jour­nals they edit. Theodora Oringher was on the present author’s mind because Theodora Oringher had recent­ly opened a branch in Lexington and joined Charlie’s legal team as spe­cial­ists in intel­lec­tu­al prop­er­ty pro­tec­tion. No longer did the present author muse over the com­pli­cat­ed geneal­o­gy of Theodora Oringher. Who had court­ed whom? Who made the first move? None of these ques­tions occu­pied the present author. Now the present author pon­dered the rela­tion­ship between oil futures and the whole­sale cost of foam. He pon­dered the flame that burns the can­dle and the can­dle that feeds the flame. His thoughts were hijacked in the direc­tion of trashy can­dy. In the direc­tion of cos­tumes bulked up with foam. More, though, in the direc­tion of trashy can­dy. And bariatric gur­neys. And mon­ey to wager. And the over under.

~

Fortunato Salazar splits his time between Los Angeles and Berlin, although late­ly he has­n’t been split­ting time but rather wood, at a cab­in in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains gra­cious­ly pro­vid­ed by the Donald S. Carne-Ross Foundation for the Advancement of Translation Studies.