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  • Murder at the DMV

    I’m in line at the DMV and apparently I am outfitted in my magnet apparel attracting those who speak volumes of absolutely nothing. He is of middle-age, over sixty I’d bet. He is wearing a really bad toupee; sort of two-toned in color. I wonder if he puts it on in the dark. I try not to stare; my eyes are drawn to it though. It’s like those women who have facial moles. There always seems to be that one lone protruding hair planted smack dab in the center of the mole. There is little choice; it has to be scrutinized. I watch his mouth move. His words flow easy like the slow, lowering of a zipper. He’s telling me about his car; a 1967 Chevy Impala with rust damage and how he primed the fenders and just finished the job yesterday. I nod; smile, just to be polite. He tells me about the new color choice of turquoise. He talks about the interior having several sizable slits in the naugahyde. He used the hot glue gun to try to pull the slits together. Then he tells of the heavy scent of vomit in the car especially in warm weather when the windows have been up. He’s not sure where the smell came from but he suspects his nephew was experimenting with bottled rye along with some of his under-aged cronies. Says he found an empty bottle tucked in his mother’s hydrangea bush. He adds that he loves the hydrangeas; while in bloom, he can see them from his second floor bedroom window. I nod; realizing that the man still lives at home with his mom. I understand why. His voice is a heavy, droning sort of sound. I sigh. I think of how I’d be willing to peel off all of my clothes in public and roll my naked body in a sizable patch of poison ivy if he’d just shut-up. What makes this guy think I care about the vomit smell in his primed car with the ripped interior? This thought hovers in my mind and I actually hear myself whimper.

    I envision smoke seeping out of the place where his words spill. He’s telling me about his dog; "just a pound mutt" he says. The dog gets out of the house and scours the neighborhood. He digs up the neighbor’s petunias and terrorizes the Shih- Tzu that lives three houses down. He pulls out a flask and offers it to me, “on the Q.T,” he says. I shake my head. He smiles and I wonder if he’s ever seen a dentist. I am trying to tune him out; I feel exhausted. I wish I had a delete button for this conversation and one of those trap doors with a lever that I could yank to send him falling through. I look away so that I don’t make any type of eye contact that might be interrupted as “yeah, I’m all ears; please, do tell me more about your absolutely riveting life.” Miraculously, he has not come up for air since he began his quest to kill me here at the DMV. Apparently he doesn’t need air. I hear him say, “...That’s because of her diabetes.” Someone needs support hose. “She makes the best hog’s head cheese.” “She buys her muumuus in Tijuana.” He says that Mexican food is not his friend. “Take out is the best way to go Mexican; Mom and I always go Mexican on Tuesdays. There’s always a coupon in Sunday’s paper for Tuesday Mexican take-out.” He tells me that the Salvation Army has the best outfits with the most reasonable prices. This explains the lavish array of coral hues in his ultra striped cuffed pants. Orange sherbet short-sleeves reveal the miss-spelled tattoo; “I Love Mon.” His white shoes with large gold buckle add a nice touch to what he believes to be his very in-vogue ensemble. At this moment I feel like I am wearing this man like a bad tattoo.

    My mind wonders to a bus. I conjure the one that was in the movie; the one that was rigged to travel at top rates of speed; no one could stop it. Yeah, I need that bus. I could lure this odd, rambling man out to the curb. The bus traveling at the speed of light would just happen by. That’s when I’d push him along with his lack of air dependency in front of the bus and witness his coral pants being devoured. I’d probably still be able to hear him and his incessant rambling as the wheels roll over and swallow him, squeezing words out of his body. Hmm, might work; but with my luck the headlines would read: “Magnet toting woman pushes “Mon” loving man with synthetic toupee under bus; Exceptional Ensemble Destroyed."

    Oh, hooray! It’s finally his turn. I feel like I’ve been hurled under the bus myself as he waves goodbye. Yeah, yeah, nice chatting with you too, I say to no one. He leaves behind the exhaustive realization that you find out loads about people when they don’t seem to require air. And, it’s no secret that the man has been loyal to his nemeses, and as a result the stench of last night’s Mexican food lingers like thick, red smoke in the air. I contemplate a citizen’s arrest as I consider how this man just got away with murder at the DMV.

    Pamela Wilonski
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