Don't Tip The Waiter


He did a shitty job, sat me in the back, didn’t smile, never made small talk or gave me the time. He didn't ask if I wanted coffee, forgot the extra spoon, never told me his name. He didn't read to me the specials, forgot my side of rice, didn't tell me that the plate was extra hot, never offered me dessert.

He failed to recommend a cocktail, never asked about my birthday, overcharged me on the appetizer, wouldn't valet park the car.

He didn't come when I called, never brought the pepper. He let my water glass go dry.

And I ate there alone, because you're gone for good, you don’t call me anymore, you left me raw and bloody, left me all alone to do these things by myself.

The fucking waiter served me lobster cold and chicken out to sea: he forgot to put the dressing on the side.

And I'm never eating at this restaurant again.


Fire Escape


She needed ice for the margaritas, and so she took herself out of the festivity, across the street to her apartment, up the elevator tipsy. The party at Lorraine’s pure fantastic: the guys all funny and the girls good bitches and-


And David was hers and everybody knew it.

The way he took her hand when they walked into the kitchen.

The way he bumped against her while Athena showed the tattoo on her pelvis.

The way all her girl friends wanted him... the way the other guys looked at him like he was in charge.

The way he knew it.

Off the elevator and down the hall, safe from the heatwave temporary, and that secret feeling like school is out for the summer. Heart nodding approval...

yes yes yes

In time to the music from the party, in her head all the while. And this guy? This David? Six warm weeks & counting. When he held her hand.

yes yes yes

Maybe this one might be magic.

yes yes yes

So these dreams, they do come true.

She stood at the freezer, filling the bag, and she could see from her balcony window across to Lorraine’s building, where her David stood on the fire escape in his olive tee, eating Athena’s mouth while she ate his, her breasts squash against his chest, her ass melting in his hands.

And as she watched them slop and bond- yes yes yes- as she broke inside- yes yes- she dropped the bag of ice, her face catching fire, and the cubes scattered the tile and began to be liquid, and she closed her eyes, and she cursed her luck, and she lost her breath, and her stomach went somersault, and her heart departed for warmer climates while her fingers went numb.

And she hated herself for loving it.


Lukedor the Panda Hunter


He poke his long rifle through the bush, white heat of the African sun scorching his neck and-

B L A M!

The panda took it in the gut, black and white and red all over. The bear staggered silly, his knees weak, and finally collapsed on the dusty Serengetti plain. Lukedor, his gun still smoking, turned to his African manservant Makumba, exchanging a dignified high five.

Their celebration didn’t last long- another panda grazing at the foot of the monadnock had stopped at the sound of the gunpowder blast. He locked eyes on Lukedor. And he began to charge.

Makumba- naked as usual- panicked, ran out into the clearing, shouting in godless gibberish and befouling his unpompered buttock. It was just the diversion Lukedor needed: as the panda turned to witness Makumba’s humiliation it slowed its run, and that’s when Lukedor fired, piercing the great beast’s head and neck.

“AIIIIIII-EEEEEE!!!” The wounded bear let out a great bellow, existentially vexed. Still on his feet he turned and ran at the chocolate native.

Makumba fell to the ground, unable to find the sign of the cross, wishing he’d been converted to Christianity.

The panda stood over him, rearing back with his paw, nails sharpened, ready to tear his prey to shreds.

That’s when Lukedor jumped on the animal’s back, his Bossie knife in hand. The bear reared back, and for a moment Lukedor rode him as one would a bronco. Before he was thrown clear he reached 'round and slit the panda’s belly wide, its intestines spilling slow onto a paralyzed Makumba like a can of baked beans being poured down a sink.

Lukedor, heart of aluminum, absolutely unfazed, “I say, chum: might be time to make our way back to bungalow and get some food while the sun is still high. We'll venture out again after our meal and-”

An enormous panda leapt from behind Lukedor, toppling his pith helmet and sending him to the ground. Lukedor whipped his pistol from his belt and pushed it in the bear’s mouth, firing.

The panda’s brains were blown out the back of his head like a fantastic idea, splattering Makumba who was still too petrified to move.

Lukedor got to his feet and restored his pith helmet. He packed his pipe full of tobacco and opium and lit up, his lungs filling with the heavy smoke of success.

“So... wot do you say about lunch?”

Makumba, covered in goo, spat out a few panda teeth, rubbing his belly intently. He had been a man of few words since he had lost his tongue in a rabbit attack, but he took a deep breath and spoke in determined profundo: "Rum."

Lukedor smiled, the mutilated corpses around him going hazy. "Well-spoken, my heathen amigo."