Just A Little Bit

I had to shit on someone to make this money! shrieked Lani, I need you to get me off! Now!

Lani had translucent skin and tiny, spidery veins. Usually, I could find a place to hit her but she’d done some serious damage on a recent coke run, and her reedy voice was getting on my nerves. When I’d first let her stay at my squat, it had worked for me – she tricked and bought me a couple of bags a day in return for the use of my place and my help in getting her a hit. Recently, she’d become more of a pain in the ass than she was worth.

cyanotype diptych by Hal Hirshorn

cyanotype diptych by Hal Hirshorn

Just as I thought I had it, she twitched and blew the shot. Give me yours, she begged, I’ll go out and make more money. I got a Con Edison regular gets off at four. The fact was that I needed a bag of dope to go with the coke she’d brought, or I’d be even sicker, which didn’t mean I didn’t have eyes to do it anyway. She continued pleading for the coke until I finally threw it on the table and stormed out the door. Take the fucking thing, but don’t expect any help from me, I yelled over my shoulder, as I ran down the five flights, ignoring her cursing. Nobody in the building gave a fuck; most of them were squatters like me. I knew if I got rid of Lani I’d have to make some more money to supplement what I received from welfare and a couple of half-assed sugar daddies; I was barely holding on to them because I couldn’t stand being touched any more. For some reason, these guys had some lingering love for me, maybe because they’d known me when I was a kid with wide eyes and the best ass on the strip.

I was broke, junk sick, and getting sicker; I wandered up to Seventh Street, where I still knew a couple of dope fiends who were doing slightly better than I was, and who might turn me on. When I got to the corner of Avenue B, I saw Sandi running down the street in a purple bathrobe. Come on, she said, the spot’s gonna close. Then we gotta go to the West Side, I have a trick for you.

I didn’t know why Sandi was suddenly my fairy godmother and didn’t care. We copped, got off, and were smoking her Newport Lites when she turned and gave me a critical once-over. Look, all this guy likes is tits and I don’t have any and you do, so I’ll bring you over there. But we gotta clean you up, how did you let yourself become such a mess? I didn’t bother to argue. My hair was three different colors and I’d accidentally cut it into a weird mullet; I was dressed in striped seersucker pants I’d found in the garbage and a stained orange Boy’s Club t-shirt. My broken nails were peeling black and purple polish. I hadn’t hit thirty yet and my skin and body were still pretty good, so an instant makeover was not out of the question.

An hour later, I was heading to the West Side wearing a pound of make-up, three tube tops, fishnet tights, and one of Sandi’s ponytails, and I actually didn’t look bad. Sandi had changed from her bathrobe to one of the men’s undershirts she wore as a dress; she was so skinny it didn’t matter what she wore, she always looked like a hot, slutty twelve year old.

The guys name was Drew and he was a fat, spoiled, depressed suburban kid with delusions of becoming a filmmaker. His only roadblocks were sloth, laziness, and a total lack of both talent and motivation. His parents had bought him a loft-like place on Sixth Avenue either to encourage his ambitions or so they wouldn’t have to look at his pimply, pouting face. I think he even had cleaning ladies and cooks, courtesy of a worried grandmother.

How are you, Drew-Drew, Sandi asked brightly. I’ve been too depressed to leave the house. I was supposed to meet my trainer and I blew him off. Do you want some soy chips? I later learned that he was constantly on expensive food and exercise plans, which he never followed. Got any beer? asked Sandi, and he took out some imported crap, and then casually remarked, Might as well get rid of the munchies before I go back to my Zen macrobiotic diet, and arranged several boxes of Godiva chocolates and pirouette cookies on his stained marble covered coffee table. As an afterthought, he threw in a couple of bags of M & M’s. Finally, he noticed me. She’s the one you told me about? he mumbled, reaching back into the fridge and pulling out a six-pack of Pepsi’s. She’s perfect for you! chirped Sandi, surreptitiously shoving beer bottles into her tote bag. I studied the back of the Godiva box so I could locate mocha filled chocolate and avoid jelly. Jelly was too much like food.

Drew pulled out two envelopes, handed one to me and one to Sandi. I also had to throw Sandi something, but that was okay with me; she had come through, big-time. We got down to business, which consisted of me pulling down tube top number one and sitting next to him on the leather couch, while he guzzled soda, stuffed his face with candy, and pulled on my tits. He never looked at me or addressed me in any way. After about twenty minutes of being milked like a cow, he clamped his mouth on my left nipple, sucked like a starving infant, whimpered, and came in his pants. My tit was stained with chocolate nougat and I didn’t want to ruin Sandi’s tube top, but she didn’t seem to care. She’d been leafing through his piles of Architectural Digest and Gourmet, waiting for him to finish so we could spend our earnings.

Sandi had told me that he tires of girls really quickly, but might be good for a few more sessions. He gave me his card – Blowfish Productions, with a drawing of a fish face that looked exactly like his – and told me I could call him in two weeks. At a hundred dollars a pop, each tit was earning an easy fifty, so I was plenty willing to go by his rules.

I saw Blowfish, as I privately called him, three more times. He repeated the scenario exactly the same way, but at the end of the last session he suddenly started yelling at me, accusing me of eating the last mocha-filled Godiva chocolate and throwing empty Pepsi cans at me as I fled. I wound up running into the hallway half naked and realized I’d left my halter top inside. The important thing was that I had my C-note. I rummaged through my bag and found a bandana and a leather collar with which I managed to construct some sort of covering. Luckily, it was hot that day.

When I told Sandi about it, she said that was his way of letting you know he was done with you, but if I waited about six months and used a different name he might pretend not to remember me. There was no chance of his actually forgetting, since each pair of tits was embedded into his genetic make-up. I called him several months later, but he’d changed his number.

Eventually, I got clean and out of the life and came to realize that I was actually a frustrated artist. Not knowing what else to with days that had been spent chasing drugs and money, I wandered into an orientation for something called The Artist’s Way. We broke into small groups, called “clusters”, and shared our longing to create, guided by a series of prompts and exercises. We were encouraged to exchange contact information, and one particularly whiny, obese, pimply, slightly familiar-looking guy immediately gave me his card.

Blowfish Productions.

I didn’t know whether he recognized me without my tits showing, but I raced out of there as quickly as I did the day he threw the Pepsi cans at me; I had all my clothes on this time, and even though I was a lacking a crisp new C-note I finally grasped the fact that fat little rich boy tricks no longer had any control over me. I had an urge to go back and kick his ass but I figured that sooner or later I’d kick all their asses–finally, I had something worth more than my tits. I had art, and, maybe, just a little bit of soul.

-Puma Perl