The Last Word
My Cyber Rep By Chris
Tharp Illustration By Michael Roy
The Internet is the modern day window to the world. It also shines a light on blackouts from the previous night. Too many times it’s gone down like this: I come to, steaming. The day’s light slices through the window and stabs the back of my eyes. My stomach gurgles and groans as I sit up in bed, trying to figure out just where the hell I am. Home ... of course. I stand, wobbly on my feet, catching myself on the wall as I stagger toward the kitchen. My lips are cracked and my mouth is a desert wasteland. Water. STAT. My ears hiss and my bones ache and my head feels like something peed in it. Welcome to another hangover in Busan. I reach in the refrigerator, snatch the cheap plastic bottle, and frantically unscrew the cap. I briefly search for a cup before aborting the mission and electing to chug. I exhale in deep satisfaction as I feel the cool liquid soothe my desiccated insides. Much better. I take another swig. Things aren’t so bad now, are they? Spirits buoyed, I scan the room. My jeans are crumpled on the floor with the wallet stuffed inside the back pocket; the end of 58 HAPS_Oct/Nov 2014
the still-looped belt sticks out like a dead dog’s tongue. A sad, errant shoe lies on its side next to the bathroom, far from the jumble of its companions near the front door. My cat sits on a chair and stares at me with hard, contemptuous eyes, like she can discern the waves of guilt radiating from my pores. I then glance toward my desk, with its piles of books, papers and pens and my computer monitor sitting on top. The monitor. The glowing screen. I feel my blood go cold and my stomach drop. Oh dear. What did I write on Facebook last night? • • • I am mouthy. I am mouthy when I’m sober and even mouthier when I’m drunk. I have always been an opinionated bastard, even as a little kid. The deeply held conviction that I am right most of the time has only increased with age, and - surprise surprise - booze tends to amplify it. It expands it, warps it, pounds it out and transforms it into burning, magnesium-hot, righteous indignation.
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