The first morning I slipped off the ladder of my loft bed and landed on my ass. I cried. I cursed my ex-wife. Then I laughed. I flexed my ankles and stood up. My ass didn't fall off. I was whole.


I joined the block association to meet girls. They were all afraid of getting raped and mugged. A police captain came to the meeting and handed out whistles so the victim could blow it and summon neighbours. The girls collected money for brighter lights.

My wife missed me and we started sleeping together. It was just like a new girlfriend. I left early before my son got up, so as not to confuse him.


It was a mild winter with many sunny, springlike days. Time didn't seem to pass. I was separated but I was still sleeping with my wife so I stopped. I needed change. I started sleeping with a girl in Owen Sound. She was heavy and couldn't assume some of the athletic positions I was used to. On the other hand, I didn't have the warmth of Bernie, her previous boyfriend. We had awkward breakfasts on Sunday mornings. I wanted to rush away to visit my son, but I chewed toast and grinned. She smoked.

There was always snow on the ground in Owen Sound. It never seemed to melt or get cleared away. People could ski. It was a resort area. I left and never returned. We spoke on the phone and became friends. You call me. I'll call you. Lose some weight. Develop some warmth.


I went to a party and fell in love. She was quiet and serene, the way my wife had been before she got angry. This girl had a boyfriend, though. Forget him, I told her. I'll show you a good time. Call me in a few weeks, she said. I'm tied up. I waited celibately. Almost. Just my wife a couple of times. She was there. It was convenient. My son saw me leave one morning and I said hello guiltily.

I cleaned my new place, bought some lamps and dishes and a rug. Never again with my wife.

I called the girl I loved but she was still tied up. You're not in love with him, I told her. You're too quiet. I could turn you on, perk you up. Theater, movies, and dance, songs and jokes. I'm terrific. She told me to call in a few months.


I bought some wilder clothing and went to parties and danced for hours. I tried to connect. But the beautiful girls were all taken. And I hated the imperfect ones. One breast smaller than the other. Or else braces. I wanted a beautiful white smile. Now. I didn't want to wait two years for someone's bite to be corrected.

I went back to sleeping with my wife. In the morning my son came in and played on the bed and asked if I was moving back.

Spring came and I had to have extensive dental work. My teeth were okay but the gums had to go. I felt older. My body sagged. I was eating french fries too much, so I started cooking home. Lettuce and tomatoes. I learned macrobiotic cooking. I went to exercise class and took up yoga. My muscle tone changed. I was lean and wiry.


I fell in love with a young, beautiful girl back from Ireland. She told me I had lovely muscles in my arms, a thick chest, flared nostrils, and distinguished features. We ran our bodies gently over our hands. I don't sleep with a man right away, she told me. Fine, take your time. A couple of years, decades, even. I can wait.

She broke the next date. I'm in love with someone else, she said.


I slept with my wife again.
What are you doing here?, my son asked.


I fell in love with a girl who taught history at the University. I want a relationship, I told her. Not just fucking. Communication. I'll try, she said. But I'm busy. I went to protests with her. Marched in the rain. Read the Z magazine with her till three in the morning and fell asleep with a hard-on.


I answered a personal ad in a magazine, a mineralogist who wanted to meet people outside her field. She had nice breasts and a horrible twitch which distorted one side of her face. I started twitching, too.

Are you making fun of me?          N-no, I'm sorry. I can't help it.

We climbed up to my bed and made love on top of the sheets, in time to our twitches. At the end her twitch had stopped. She thanked me profusely.


I began answering lots of ads. None of those sensitive, nubile, whimsical, aesthetic, artistic, and warm ladies mentioned their twitches or problems in the ads. But I discovered them right away. I laid my hand on their foreheads and took away birth marks. I cured stammers and club feet.

By summer I was tired. My apartment was steamy. My wife called and begged me to come over. I refused. I had my last personal to respond to. I was with a girl who wanted to kill her baby and I helped her throw it in the river.


That night I dreamed my wife had bought a gun and shot me. I woke with a pain in my stomach, the sheets red, and realized I was dying.

Whole (?), a. [OE. hole, hol, hal, hool, AS. hal well, sound, healthy; akin to OFries. & OS. hl, D. heel, G. heil, Icel. heill, Sw. hel whole, Dan. heel, Goth. hails well, sound, OIr. cl augury. Cf. Hale, Hail to greet, Heal to cure, Health, Holy.]

1.

Containing the total amount, number, etc.; comprising all the parts; free from deficiency; all; total; entire; as, the whole earth; the whole solar system; the whole army; the whole nation.

"On their whole host I flew unarmed."

Milton.

The whole race of mankind. Shak.

2.

Complete; entire; not defective or imperfect; not broken or fractured; unimpaired; uninjured; integral; as, a whole orange; the egg is whole; the vessel is whole.

My life is yet whole in me. 2 Sam. i. 9.

3.

Possessing, or being in a state of, heath and soundness; healthy; sound; well.

[She] findeth there her friends hole and sound. Chaucer.

They that be whole need not a physician. Matt. ix. 12.

When Sir Lancelot's deadly hurt was whole. Tennyson.

Whole blood. Lawof Descent See under Blood, n., 2. -- Whole note Mus., the note which represents a note of longest duration in common use; a semibreve. -- Whole number Math., a number which is not a fraction or mixed number; an integer. Whole snipe Zool., the common snipe, as distinguished from the smaller jacksnipe. [Prov. Eng.]

Syn. -- All; total; complete; entire; integral; undivided; uninjured; unimpaired; unbroken; healthy. -- Whole, Total, Entire, Complete. When we use the word whole, we refer to a thing as made up of parts, none of which are wanting; as, a whole week; a whole year; the whole creation. When we use the word total, we have reference to all as taken together, and forming a single totality; as, the total amount; the total income. When we speak of a thing as entire, we have no reference to parts at all, but regard the thing as an integer, i. e., continuous or unbroken; as, an entire year; entire prosperity. When we speak of a thing as complete, there is reference to some progress which results in a filling out to some end or object, or a perfected state with no deficiency; as, complete success; a complete victory.

All the whole army stood agazed on him. Shak.

One entire and perfect chrysolite. Shak.

Lest total darkness should by night regain Her old possession, and extinguish life. Milton.

So absolute she seems, And in herself complete. Milton.

 

© Webster 1913.


Whole (?), n.

1.

The entire thing; the entire assemblage of parts; totality; all of a thing, without defect or exception; a thing complete in itself.

"This not the whole of life to live, Nor all of death to die. J. Montgomery.

2.

A regular combination of parts; a system.

Parts answering parts shall slide into a whole. Pope.

Committee of the whole. See under Committee. -- Upon the whole, considering all things; taking everything into account; in view of all the circumstances or conditions.

Syn. -- Totality; total; amount; aggregate; gross.

 

© Webster 1913.

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