Jason and his Wandering Mind

July 9, 2008
By Raymond Lantz, Henderson, NV

Jason stood next to his father humming a tune while his father placed their food order. Jason lazily gazed around the Burger Hut looking at the other consumers of processed meats. There was the old frizzy lady who lived down the street, Jason’s dad once said that she was married to her twenty cats, but Jason was pretty sure she wasn’t a polygamist. Across from her sat a fat man in a suit who was laughing extremely loudly at something his “friend” had said all while inhaling five cheeseburgers. His “friend” looked like a twenty-something Swiss model that was carrying her weight in jewelry, which isn’t saying much. Jason raised his index finger and thumb into the air, closed his right eye, and began squishing the two of them together, trying in vain to make two normal sized people. Beside Ms. Cat and the odd couple there was no one else in the lobby. Bored with the lack of people, Jason turned back to the counter.

Jason’s father had just finished their order of two cheeseburgers, one fry, and two drinks. Jason grabbed this drink and sat down at an empty table while his father waited for the food. He made sure that he picked a table that faced the back of Mr. Giggles so Jason wouldn’t upchuck his food. The only thing bad about the table was that it gave him a clear view of the frizzy lady who was busy shoving napkins into her purse when she thought no one was looking. She also pulled something green out of her purse gave it a sniff and then shoved it back. Catnip, that’s weird.

A hissing started to come from behind the counter, which no one else seemed to notice beside Jason. It steadily grew louder and louder and was followed by a rustling sound like something was moving on the ground behind the counter. Immediately Jason understood what it was and was glad that things were about to get more interesting considering that he hadn’t met one that hissed before. From over the counter slithered a snake that was made of patchwork cloth and had two buttons for eyes. As he slithered over Jason guessed that the snake was at least nine feet in length. The multi-fabriced snake slid into the booth next to Jason and coiled itself up till it was eye level with him. From his seat the snake stared at Jason and Jason stared at the snake, neither budging an inch. His father came to the table with the tray of food and sat across from Jason.

“Is it an old one or a new one?” asked his father, seeing that Jason was staring very angrily at nothing.

“A new one. It’s a snake made out of cloth,” answered Jason not taking his eyes off the snake.

“A snake! Made out of cloth! God that’s boring. My third one was a whale and that thing was the size of a bus. Phhh! A snake. That whale wasn’t just a whale either it was a cabaret whale, I mean it wore a little lacey thing,” said his dad, attracting some attention from thin and grossly fatter. “Tell your snake that I think he’s boring.”

Still looking at the snake Jason said, “ My dad thinks that you are very boring and that you should be a stripping whale.”

To which the snake replied, “ Tell your father that he has horrible taste in whales because I know for a fact that that whale is male.”

Refusing to relay that message Jason asked, “ So what can you do? The other two had some sort of ability, what’s yours?”

“Unparalleled pessimism.”

“Man you are boring.”

Jason turned away from the snake and began to eat his food, which was starting to get cold. Assuming that he and his father were crazies the other carnivores of the lobby when back to their meat treats. Jason took a couple of bites from his burger during which the snakes eyes never left Jason.

“What do you think the chances are that that meat came from a sane cow?” asked the snake breaking the silence.

“What?” said Jason as he choked down some burger.

“I was just saying. It’s got to be fifty-fifty? Not all cows are sane right?”

Turning to his father, Jason said, “I think I need to take a wiz.”

His father mumbled something from his maybe-not-so-sane meat filled mouth. Jason got up and proceeded to the bathroom, choking down the rest of the burger in his mouth. He went up to a urinal, unzipped his fly, and began to do his business only see the patchwork snake slither through the door and begin to roll around on the floor.

“I just want you to know that I am here for you. If you begin to feel your brain sizzle at all let me know,” said the snake that was busy rolling around on the filth-covered floor.

“Thanks so much. You know I think my dad was right when he said that you were lame. At least the second one could open jars,” replied Jason as he zipped up his fly and began to wash his hands.

“Did you ever wonder what that .01% of germs are that lotion and cleaning products can’t clean is? I think it’s E.Coli and the Black Plague and stuff like that, what about you?” asked the snake who was beginning to accumulate an impressive amount of dirt.

“I don’t know, why would you even think about stuff like that?”

“Because for the past thirty seconds you’ve been washing your hands in brown water…”

“Oh, gross!”

“… and I was just thinking that you may have gotten one of those germs lotion can’t get rid of.”

Jason began vigorously scrubbing his hands with the cardboard-like paper towels, trying to remove the faucet gunk that had fixed itself to his hand. The snake had finished rolling around on the floor and when into a stall and began drinking out of the toilet.

“You know for someone who preaches the danger off insane meat and the inefficiency of cleaning products you sure do some disgusting things,” said Jason as he got the last of the gunk off his hands, which were now red from friction.

“Oh please, you know as well as I do that I exist only in your mind. So it not really me doing these things, you’re making me do them. I have no control over my own actions,” said the snake through a mouth half filled with toilet water.

“I think you’re lying,” said Jason as he turned to face the snake . “I remember that the first one said that you guys were separate from my mind, that I really have no control over you.”

“Ahh, who told you that? That just ruins all the plans I had to screw with you. I hate it when I’m not the first one to visit a kid. You suck,” said the snake as he slithered up the toilet and coiled him in the bowl.

“So I suppose I should ask your name since I doubt this will be the last time I see you. Is it Obsessive-Compulsive Sam?” asked Jason who was now leaning against the bathroom wall.

“No jerk. My name is Syme. And how well do you think the staff of this eating establishment clean the walls of the bathroom? Hold on, what do you think the customer do to the walls of the bathroom?”

“Oh, gross”

“So, is your brain sizzling yet?”

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.

Swoon Reads

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!