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( A n d Yo u r C h e w ) Callie Koenig

When War Pig slides the high-gauged septum ring out of his nose (hiding it in his freshly pierced navel), removes the skull and cross bones flask from his back pocket and goes to work at his “grown-up” job...

Assimilation has begun and it started with...does anyone know your real name?

When the Players Club member turns down the 12” subs in the trunk, removes the switches and then sells his tricked-out rice burner to buy the highest safety rated SUV on the market that he can load his wife, daughters, and their customized bicycles into...

Assimilation trades your slammed Civic for tiny fingerprints on un-tinted backseat windows.

When he asks one high day along the river when he’ll feel like an “adult,” and the only answer to give (the obvious but difficult one) is the answer he finds when his family funds his road to sobriety... Assimilation abuses you more than the substances you craved until you thank her for the abuse. When she takes down the duck-face selfies, stops posting about politics she doesn’t understand, and instead sets her sonogram photo as her profile picture, posts about her abnormal food cravings and, after nine months, uploads hourly pictures of her new “toy”...

Assimilation doesn’t reach everyone.

When he quits packing his lip, stops spending every weekend watching ESPN while pounding Bud Lights, removes the hats (representing his favorite teams) which successfully hid his thinning hair, and takes a razor to what is left... Assimilation steals your hair (and your chew) but leaves you with a beautiful wife and baby boy. When the “real world” pressures her to cut off her mohawk (returning her to wallflower status), take the ring out of her lip and go to bed hours before 3 a.m.... Assimilation cuts off the “balls” you found in an attempt to be seen. When they begin to tattoo names like “Mason,” “Emma” and “Isabella” on their bodies instead of butterflies, skulls and band emblems... 30

Assimilation changes your priorities to something more permanent.

Profile for Apeiron Review

Apeiron Review | Summer 2015  

The summer issue of Apeiron Review, a Philadelphia-based literary magazine, is ready for you and a glass of your favorite beverage. Cool off...

Apeiron Review | Summer 2015  

The summer issue of Apeiron Review, a Philadelphia-based literary magazine, is ready for you and a glass of your favorite beverage. Cool off...