07:42 18 Feb 2003

Ah...what a beautiful day. The sun is shining, the children are laughing and playing, and a pair of scrawny magpies are fighting over a half-rotten piece of hedgehog in my backyard. An earthly slice of paradise. I clamber out of bed to my feet, naked as the day I was born, kick over a few empty beer and wine bottles on my way to the clothes rack, and toss my beloved terrycloth robe around my shoulders.

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Rest of the mundane routine goes off as planned (at least, the way God wanted it to go down): the toilet paper is rough, the tea scalding, the toast burnt, the milk full of curds, and the shower water a lukewarm, low-pressure soup. All those nice little annoyances that help to convince you that perfection does not really belong in the natural order.

I stand there before the mirror, unclothed again, beaming proudly at my hirsute, flipped-image doppelgänger. Just one more thing to take care of, I think to myself as I run my hand along my bristly jawline. I don't plan to take it all off, just clear-cut the timber from each sideburn to the point of my chin, and create a nice little manicured face-garden from the depths of the black forest. For you plain-speaking philistines out there, I want me one o' them goatee whisker-styles.

First come the nail scissors: annoying, but painless. Now it's time for the lather...but wait! Where is my shaving cream? Oh, that's right...I don't shave. At least, I haven't since the Christmas holidays. No matter, I'll just use hot water and some liquid hand soap. Surely that won't make a difference.

Surely.

I get about three or four strokes with the safety razor before I notice the right side of my face is sticky with the old "red red krovvy" like I've been emulating my old Vampire LARPing days. "Shit!" I mutter under my breath as I pause to rinse the blood from my face before it clots, and look around the room for anything handy to cap the crimson geyser.

There's nothing --- nobody has bothered to buy hand tissues this week for our suite bathroom. Somewhat resigned by this discovery, I make a move for my towel but slip on the wet tiles and crack my nose a good one against the edge of the sink. My descending weight takes the towel down along with its accompanying wall peg (right on the nape of my neck).

I lie there, stunned for several seconds (ears ringing!), then stand up, bracing myself against the sink. Okay, no biggie, I think. No chipped teeth, nose doesn't feel broken, just a bit br -- ! My internal monologue comes to a screeching halt as I look back in the mirror. I have a pencil-thick rivulet of blood streaming down my lip to join the other erupting volcano a half-inch above my jaw.

This morning is not turning out very well at all.

I undauntedly finish the hack job as best as I can, wiping blood with the left hand and shearing the rest of my naked bare flesh with the plastic-shielded blade in my right. Okay...I might actually survive this. Now for the throat. Hmm, seems I'm getting the hang --

"*FUCK*"

-- I whine as steel meets dermal sublayer yet again. This time, right on my Adam's apple, which doesn't seem to be clotting up very well. I am starting to look like a dinner party for bulimic mosquitoes.

Well, I finish, so to speak, in that I've taken off as much hair as I've wanted (and enough skin in the process) The wounds finally seal up and dry, but not before my undersized bath-towel turns a nice shade of smoked salmon from all the sanguine matter pouring out of my pores and sinuses. I pull on my clothes and accessories, then notice I have about all of three minutes to rush outside and climb on the bus, unless I feel like coming in an hour later today. Which, given the prevalence of Murphy's Law in my dormitory, seems not at all a good idea.

My other roommates, not to mention our cleaning lady, are going to have a fit once they see the animal sacrifice I left on the walls. But at least it's a hell of a lot cooler (and marginally less disgusting) than leaving pubic hair in the shower drain.