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Literary Trumpery
Thursday, July 6, 2006   |    Fiction


by John Harnetiaux

People say I’m crazy, but I think it’s just because I’m doing what I’m doing. They often tell me that I’m a bit of a cold character, but I’ve assured them it is only because sometimes, without warning, I become a Popsicle.

A woman I dated once said that I was brittle and heartless, but I figured it was because I was a peanut-butter cookie at the time, left out in the cold on a winter’s night.

My friends have said that I have bad fashion taste, probably because I eat my socks when I go to parties.

I’ve been told by many that I have a magnetic personality, but who wouldn’t if they had a giant magnet in place of lower intestines?

Once, a doctor told me I was depressed, but I assured him it was only because I had wrinkled my freshly ironed shirt.

No one seems to understand me, but I have a feeling it has to do with me being axiomatic set theory.

At work, I could often hear my colleagues whisper to each other, saying that I had a lot of issues. I don’t blame them for thinking so, as I openly carried around abortion, racism, U.S. foreign policy, and metaphysical conundrums in my pockets.

I become frustrated when my family calls me a dirty liar because they of all people should know that I bathe once (sometimes twice) a day.

My mother used to accuse me of being a smart-ass, but I have assured her over and over again that I have seen no sign of intelligence from my rectum.

Once, while giving me advice, my mentor suggested that I look inside myself. I tried in the mirror but I couldn’t see past my tonsils.

People say I mince words, but when I’m feeling lazy or I’m pressed for time I just put them in a food processor.

I used to wonder why people called me a snake in the grass; a “guy in the grass” would be a little more accurate.

My neighbor complains about me being too loud at night, always suggesting, “Why don’t you try putting yourself in someone else’s shoes for a change?” But every time I go to people’s houses to pull them out of their shoes, they scream and yell at me.

My wife says she can never figure out what I’m thinking. Well how could she (what with the electromagnetic telepathic force-field I’ve installed into my brain and all)?

After people meet me, they usually say that I’m a little off-kilter, and the reason is obvious: I play bagpipes when I introduce myself to someone for the first time.

John Harnetiaux lives in Japan, where he eats a majority of his meals with two thin pieces of wood called "chopsticks." He often refers to his friends as "homeboys," and his last name is undeniably French. He likes water-slide parks, too.