Youza a Big Fine Woman When You Back that Ass Up!

I like sleeping in the nude.

It isn't a mere dalliance in exhibitionism, but a confirmation of my laziness.

It's hotter than Clay Aiken's balls in a bathhouse parking lot outdoors. So I plunge into the crevices of my couch because I'm too damned pooped to hazily unfold my Serta pullout and scrounge around in a stupor for my pajamas.

So in my dream last night, I find Lindsey Turner sitting on my couch jabberjawing about her childhood in rural Tennessee.

My mind is racked with paranoia. Did I remember to turn over the seat cushions and vigorously Febreeze away the possible asshole-and-balls stench?

Lindsey continues to talk, beaming in her Lindsey Turner way.

I get down on all-fours and frantically begin sniffing the couch cushions.

"Continue recalling your childhood," I say.

"What are you doing?"

I sniff a line of couch, convinced that I smell ass.

"I think I dropped some change or something," I say, continuing to snort line after line.

I can't remember much else.


Changing channels

I am at my parents', my dad's in the recliner watching a sporting event of some sort, and he calls me into the den because Phil is part of the teeming crowd, and the camera has zoomed in on him. My dad shushes everyone in the room as the announcer says, "And now we have a very special message from someone in the crowd," and the camera zooms in on the Jumbotron image of Phil, who starts to say something about a very special woman in his life...

I lean in to the television and try to turn the volume up, but the channel changes. I panic. Everyone in the room is all, "TURN IT BACK!!" I try going back to the channel, but I can't find it anywhere.


Highway (Back) to Hell

I've accepted a new job at Satan's Journal. This time, the powers-that-be wisely divvied up the workload. So instead of filling four different positions, my new title is simply "editorial assistant."

For the first time in a long while, I'm literally twiddling my thumbs and watching YouTube clips of The 700 Club.

I look over to see the new intern Kevid smacking his lips to my friend Ryan about my penchant for Pat Robertson. Of course, I decide to mosey over to the cubicle and proceed to chew his ass out.

Kevid cowers in the corner, shielding his face like I'm some goddamned wife beater. "If you have a problem with my watching Pat Robertson, you should come over and tell me like a fucking adult. Grow some goddamned balls," I tell him.

And I pivot smoothly and decide to clean up the office restroom. What else am I gonna do? I'm watching episodes of The 700 Club for chrissakes.

While scrubbing the toilet, the CEO chums up beside me with a glint in his eye. They've hired yet another intern.

"Be nicer to this one, too," he goes. "I've been talking to Kevid again."

"Well, Kevid is a fucking idiot, so of course, you'd side with him," I tell him, looking up from scrubbing the toilet. "It's the one trait you've managed to a tee: hiring fucking idiots."

The CEO steps back and throws his hands up in mock resignation.

"Bye bye," I say sweetly as he ambles out the door. The acid in my voice could burn the enamels off your molars.

As I look down at the doodoo-encrusted rim, I think to myself, "honestly, didn't I quit this job weeks ago?"

How to Keep a Good Man Down

We're watching a low rent Hedwig and the Angry Inch-esque routine at a dive bar in Manhattan.

It's in the Hedwig vein, but with cheap stage production and characters you wouldn't give two shakes of a rat's ass about. In fact, the lead singer is wearing leather pants that hug his package so tightly, you can easily deduct that he isn't a Jew.

It's basically him jumping around on stage for two-and-a-half-hours with butt-rock guitar riffs worthy of the love child of Scott Stapp and a 4 Non Blondes-era Linda Perry.

Kristin Hall and Matt Anderson are there. And we're all pretty hammered. We're talking about ageism in popular music, and Anderson is using that tattered trump card of "oh, once you hit 40, you need to give up on any hopes of being a respectable musician."

"But that's not true," I tell him. "See that woman over there."

And Kristin and Matt crane their drunken necks in unison.

"Her name is Sharon Jones. I just interviewed her for American Songwriter and she's just now getting famous at 50-years-old."

Sharon Jones, looking very much like the queenly matron of funk-soul that she is, sasses herself with a stereotypical fingersap. We clasp hands like two old friends.

"Whatever she is. Whatever she is," Ms. Jones says.

It doesn't make a lick of sense. But since everyone's shit-faced, it seems to make perfect sense.

And here I become a groveling fan. "I loved you since your last album," I tell her. "I'm coming to see you at River to River this summer, too."

"Okay sweet honeychild," Sharon goes. She gets up from her throne. "Whatever she is, whatever she is."

I shoot Matt a knowing look of "see there" and begin yammering about Sharon's music, which sounds suspiciously lifted from my Nashville Scene Critic's Pick of Sharon Jones' Exit/In concert.

"And didn't you know, she's in movie produced by Oprah? I just touched hands with a woman who's touched the hands of Oprah."

I reach under the table and bust out a roll of Saran Wrap, only to begin mummifying both of my hands in clear plastic.


A complete misunderstanding of history

I'm at work, in a newer, more high-tech building (think a more blue-grey version of the HQ in CSI: Miami), going up the elevator, when who but my third-grade best friend Christy Gogle gets on. We apparently work together. She tells me that my co-worker H. is annoyed with me. I don't understand how H. could be annoyed with me; she'd been acting perfectly normal to me! Christy says she's fine now, but she had been really fed up with how I'd been making proofs.

Talk about passive-aggressive.

Then Christy mentions that Anne Frank is doing a book signing downstairs. "Or Ahn-na Frahnk, as what's-her-face would say!" we say simultaneously, referring to the way eighth-grade teacher Mrs. Sharp demanded her class pronounce the historic icon's name.

I get to my desk (by the window!) and put my stuff down, only to head back to the elevator to go down to catch Anne Frank before she leaves. I'm wrestling with cloudy dream facts in my head: Isn't Anne Frank dead? How did she die? Old age? If she's not dead, shouldn't she be really old?

I step out of the elevator into the lobby and see people lined up, all headed toward a table in the middle of the room. Behind the table is Regina Spektor with a mustache — thick and beautiful, with alternating streaks of grey and white — and I think to myself, This can't be the real Anne Frank; this must be her daughter or something. She is hawking some sort of chick lit, with pink curly writing on the cover.


Pueblo Waltz

There's a gay Mexican orgy going down in my bedroom.

Limbs are flying in every which direction, appendages flapping with a wet thhack, thaack thaack...there's also the smell of suspiciously sweet seaweed.

I stand there in the corner, my mouth utterly agog. Who are these people? More importantly, who gave them permission to have a Mexican orgy in my bedroom?

"Look at the chulo, papi," one submissive bottom goes.

I don't know these people from Adam, but I decide to join in. The vocal Mexican guy cringes as I bend over to kiss him.

There's suddenly a loud rap at the door.

"FBI. This is the FBI."

The gay Mexicans dart like mad little ducks, trying to find their clothes. Appendages are flapping, but this time in a not so pleasurable way.

I usher them out my bedroom window ("Wouldn't the house be surrounded by FBI," my rational mind thinks) and slowly open the bedroom door.

"Were there gay Mexicans in your room?" a plainclothes officer asks through the door crack.

"Um, no," I say, biting my bottom lip.

At this point, a visually distraught Mexican woman barges into my room. She's shaking all over.

"Oi, mis ninos," she warbles over and over again.

I point to the FBI agent with a look of what's-up-with-her.

"Oh. That's their mother. These gay Mexicans go across the country, breaking into residential houses and performing sex acts on each other for pornographic Web sites."

I look contemplatively out the window. Should I tell them? But by that same card, it would implicate me in some way, right?

I guess I learned my lesson. The next time strangers are having sex in my bedroom, I won't join in.


Get Behind the Mule

Tom Waits, the mangy old recluse with a voice hardened by molasses and rusty nails, is gracing Middle Tennessee State University's Murphy Center with his presence.

And as any good Waits-o-phile knows, the man rarely makes public appearances. He almost makes J.D. Salinger look like Kiki Preston.

But there's Tom Waits in the flesh. He looks very much like the '70s era Blue Valentine cover, brimming with a raw sexuality and dangerous masculinity. I just want him to pin me against his baby blue corvette a la his Valentine harem, and whisper filthy nothings in my ear.

Instead, Mr. Waits flirts with my roommate, Kevin, licking his lips like a dirty old man while singing about "Chocolate Jesus."

Dejected, I leave Murphy Center in search of cheap booze and nicotine. But the campus doesn't look anything like MTSU as I remembered it.

For starters, there's an Applebee's* right in the middle of campus. I try to find my back to Mr. Waits. (When I left he was playing 'Big in Japan,' wonderfully ironic in its own way since the concert was so sparsely attended.)

But I keep having copious amounts of trouble finding my way back. The bread crumbs didn't work.

I end up in a landfill, tramping through muck as neatly scrubbed Chinese workers shovel away blocks of human feces.

I begin to cry, crumpling up in a pile of shit and smearing it across my forehead for full dramatic effect.

"I need to see Tom Waits," I bemoan, my face literally covered in shit.

The neatly scrubbed Chinese worker laughs her cruel little laugh. Even though she shovels shit for a living, her white suit looks almost heavenly.

*Why do I always dream about Applebee's?