One night around Christmas of 2000 I came home from a double-duty day at work, bleary eyed and cottonmouthed, long after midnight had passed. I sat down in the cramped living room of the two-bedroom apartment where I lived with three other people, cracked open a beer, and clicked the TV on. I winced--someone had left the volume turned up again--and hurriedly muted it. But the damage had already been done: my roommates had carelessly left both bedroom doors ajar, and the bedrooms open onto the living room. I prepared for grumbles and groans, began to think of a suitable apology for sleepy people--but one of my roommates beat me to it. From the lefthand bedroom, I heard my roommate John speaking in a conversational tone of voice:


"Sorry. We're going now, I didn't hafta to fuck your goldfish, but I can get good discounts."

I tittered at this random bit of somniloquism. Then John's girlfriend Chelsea, lying in the bed next to him, chimed in. They began carrying on something resembling a conversation!


Chelsea: "...unh...okay, go. But...I don't want the sausage."

John: "Like the tiger? ROWR!" (At this point, John made a clawing motion with his fist.)

Chelsea: "Only on the finance plan. He had Tourette's outages." (Or something about Tourette's, she mumbled this last.)

I decided maybe I should intervene. So I got up and crossed the living room to their bedroom door. As I walked through their doorway, John sat bolt upright in bed and violently thrust his pillow at me.


John: "Here...here, I want you to have this."

Me (after a pregnant pause): "Umm...okay. What is it?"

John: "It's a script. Take it and read it; if you like it you can eat it."

At this point I was trying hard not to laugh, and I thought it might be fun to play along.


Me (taking pillow): "Okay, but what if what if I don't like it? Can I give it to my agent?"

John: "Not unless she is THX certified."

Me (snorting and trying to hold back a mighty guffaw): "No, no, that won't be a problem. G'night, John."

John: "Goodnight, Mom." (I should note here that I am not, nor have I ever been, a woman.)

I handed the pillow to Chelsea, who had since stopped talking. She grabbed it and hugged it to her abdomen. To this day, neither of them remembers having an extended conversation that night. My roommate, listening in the other room, heard much of the conversation, and between the two of us we were able to piece together what you read here.

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