Twelve Things You Will Do
By Kristina Mahler

twelve things you will do this month

1. You will give a spectacular blow-job. You will do so whilst making worshipful eye contact as if you are looking into the face of God himself. You will hum and bob and play that thing like a goddamn musical instrument. You will say over and over to yourself, make your mouth a wet cave. Your teeth will disappear into your gums. Your mouth is a wet cave hidden in a warm tropical sea. Your hair will be pulled back into a loose ponytail in a gesture that you will briefly consider loving. And then the cave will flood.

2. You will write a song on your guitar and you will feel pretty proud of it and think, “hey maybe I’m not as hopeless at this music thing as I thought I was”. A couple hours later when you are driving in the car with your mother listening to 99.9 the Buzz you will hear a Green Day song and you will realize, “shit, I wrote a Green Day song.”

3. You will suspect 3 people you know currently want to sleep with you but you will not do anything about it because you don’t want to sleep with any of them. Instead you will have sex with 3 different people and then avoid all of them. Then you will vow to never sleep with anyone who can sing or play an instrument or even hold an instrument or ride a bicycle or have a tattoo or has ever thought of getting a tattoo.

4. You will read everything around you as a sign. The way old women on the bus look at you. The way animals and men behave around you. You will pay special attention to your horoscope and you will wake up to read it at 6am the day it is posted. You will try and read the ashes in your ashtray like tea leaves.

5. You will Google the following things: Nick Carter kissing a dolphin, the city of Detroit, Portugese Man of War, Shakira, bloodhounds, what is a hantavirus?, Do I have a hantavirus? Is suicide illegal in Canada? And why are bees dying?

6. You will spend a lot of time thinking about the following 3 images. Stevie Nicks in the live video of Rhiannon from 1981 where she is all glassy-eyes and quivering voice and she does this weird finger wave thing at Mic Fleetwood and then goes around and hugs all of her back-up singers. You will think of that picture of Amy Winehouse when she is running to the courthouse during her husband’s trial. And in her 2 emaciated chicken-like hands she is clutching packets of McDonalds Nugget Sauce. You will imagine the sound of her cheap doorknocker earrings clacking against her head and the soft pat of her dirty ballet slippers running on London cobblestones. You will be reminded of that time when Courtney Love lifted up her shirt on a New York City street and let a crackhead suck on her boob and let the paparazzi photograph it.

7. You will try and devise the appropriate punishment for sleeping with someone who has a girlfriend. You will measure and weigh the appropriate factors of the circumstance: how long they have been together, whether they have cheated on each other, and whether or not you were drunk. You will decide the appropriate punishment for this situation is to lie down on the metro floor during rush hour and let people walk over your face and body for between 15 and 20 minutes. But you will not do that, because that would just be crazy.

8. You will ride the metro home from work on one of those days when everyone is covered in a blanket of sweat and you are all smushed together like over boiled pasta. A lady will get on the metro with a small herd of children. One of the older girls will stand next to you and you will look at each other. She will silently ask you if this shit is the same forever, and you will silently answer that yes, it is. And you will let the girl doze off as she leans against your arm, with her mouth slightly open, until the sound of the metro doors jerk her awake.

9. You will sit on your parents couch late into Sunday evening and cradle your dog like a baby. You will stroke his little ears and notice how they lay flat against his head like a rabbit’s ears. The existence of this small and perfect thing will comfort you. You will whisper all your secrets to him. Then your dog will look deep into your eyes and you will imagine his voice saying “I know you did drugs last night.”

10. You will look at yourself in the mirror and think about fear and the heightening of senses. You will remember hearing once that all human beings possess the strength to crush their own teeth with the force of their jaws. But it is physically impossible because of the instinct of self- preservation which you will begin to think you were born without. You will think about the fact that sharks do not have ribcages and can be crushed by their own weight when they are not underwater.

11. You will be overcome by a surge of what can only be considered genius as you sit at your desk at work. You will lean your head back slightly, and close your eyes and in 20 minutes you will say to yourself, “well, that was a dumb idea.”

12. You will lay on your back in the brittle, brown grass during your lunch break on a day when everything is irreparable. You will feel like there is a drought happening inside your chest and your hands will begin to wither and atrophy at your sides like the branches of a forgotten house plant. And you will pray for boredom the way farmers pray for rain.


kristina mahler lives in montreal