Joel Golby writes hellaciously pretentious little love stories about about dildos and dead grandpas over at tinylittlelovestories. Last year for Valentine’s Day he got a bunch of writers to contribute bits for a VALENSTRAVAGANZA. I wrote three. This year I was ordered to write one or less than one:
Michael Smythe learned the fine art of ‘fingering’ off Stephen Hoarsley in the year above. You remember fingering, right? It was new to Smythe. “Stick your index finger up her,” said Hoarsley, a 15-year-old man who ate chips in the park with girls on a semi-regular basis, “and then you get to eat chips in the park with girls on a semi-regular basis.”
The rules set out by self-proclaimed “ladies’ dude” Hoarsley gave no room for creativity: no substitutions were allowed, finger-wise. Dexterity was not The Thing, here. “Do not go off-road, little man,” he said, hitting Smythe on the back of his school blazer, upsetting his orange Tango. “Do not do that thing, little buddo.”
Two hours later Smythe pricked his index finger on a palm frond during a school excursion to a botanically weird garden. As the nurse bandaged it up all horrifying and ET Phone Home, all Smythe could do was stare near catatonically at this totally unfair turn of events, finger-wise. A week later he lost both God and his finger to sepsis and gangrene and the 14-year-old amputee was now pointlessly at a school dance amidst a miasma of Lynx. He was sans fingering finger and basically, and let us put this delicately, had no clue whatsoever w/r/t vaginas nor the humans they came attached to.
Despite this, Elizabeth Ainsley and her glitter lipgloss were inexplicably all up against him, armfuls of thigh bursting out of £3.99 H&M hotpants, while Smythe’s tiny erection cowered in the band of his Spider-Man boxer shorts. His medically delicate hand was held awkwardly aloft. Bored and desperate she later got off with the digitally complete Jeremy Coughlin, and our hero Smythe – never able to skip bases in order to hit his home run, nor apparently physically able to do a perfunctory Google – died resolutely unlaid at the age of 48. Local obituarists deleted the line about choking on a chip in the park, citing “a bit Mama Cass” in their internal memos.
Elsewhere on the internet I’m writing a fortnightly column on indie publishers and books for PlanetNotion. We’re four down and I’ve talked about death-themed children’s books, adopting fears from Woody Allen movies, and dousing myself in book ink. Go read.