I woke up this morning remembering a story I heard about in high school. I can’t remember if it was a news story or just an urban legend. I was about to google it to find out, but I decided not to. I feel like thinking about it instead, and reaching out to other people who might have heard about it too. Without looking it up, this is what I remember:
A popular teenage girl goes to a tanning salon to get a nice tan before her senior prom. She talks the people who work at the salon into letting her do multiple sessions in a row. She spends hours in a tanning bed and literally cooks herself to death. I don’t remember if she dies in the bed or later on that day. I feel like I read about this in the newspaper- I can almost picture the girl, but my mind could also be playing tricks on me. There is also an episode of Bones where a woman is murdered by being locked in a tanning bed, so obviously it’s possible.
Does anyone else remember this story?! What do you think- true story or urban legend?
Every Wednesday night, my husband and I have friends over to our house for dinner. Sometimes we play games, sometimes we make art, but no matter what, every evening ends up in some pretty interesting conversation. We’ve grown close and since most of us are not from Seattle, we’ve become a home away from home for each other. We talk about our lives, what we did that week, and who’s been pissing us off. Sometimes our conversations take on recurring themes and though the evenings come to an end, the topics come right back to life the following Wednesday.
One such topic was sparked by a comment I made one night about not understanding why cannibalism was such a big deal. I get why murder is a big deal, but if the person is already dead, what’s the problem? I told my friends that if we were stranded somewhere together and one of them died, I would have no problem eating that person. They had A LOT of questions for me and this became a popular dinnertime conversation.
A while back, I was visiting my mom in L.A. and I told her about it. I wondered if she would think of me differently. I said “Mom, I’ve thought about this a lot and I feel pretty sure that I could eat a person if I had to. Even someone I knew. So if I die and you’re starving, I just want you to know, it’s totally fine with me if you eat me.”
My mom looked at me smiling and said, “Honey, I don’t need your permission.”
This is a true story. It was told to me by a friend about something that happened to another friend. Like a game of telephone. So it’s true…ish.
Pretty much everything has happened to Jenny. She’s broken most of the bones in her body at one point or another, sliced her foot open on a yacht, and had multiple back surgeries. So on a quiet Tuesday morning, when the car in front of her slammed on its brakes and she, in turn, slammed into it, she wasn’t terribly surprised. Just glad that she had already dropped her daughter off at school. Jenny rolled her neck around and sighed. Another round of physical therapy for sure.
She turned off her car and went to check on the guy she hit and to find out why he had stopped so suddenly. As she got closer, she saw another car in front of his, parked in the right lane. No wonder he had slammed on his brakes! How could this jerk be parked here? This street was practically the freeway. Jenny walked over to the parked car thinking of all the things she wanted to say. She could see someone climbing around inside. “Excuse me!” she called, as she tapped on the driver’s side window. The guy inside spun around and stared at her blankly “hey.”
Jenny glared at him for a moment. “Yeah. Hey. You can’t park here! You just caused an accident.” He turned his head around to look at the cars behind him. “Well,” he said, shrugging his shoulders, “I had no choice. I had to poop, so I pulled over and went in this bucket.” He gestured with his thumb to a bucket in the back seat. Jenny didn’t want to look, but she couldn’t help it. There were two large swirls of poop. She was speechless. After a minute she said, “Um… well, couldn’t you hold it in until you found a gas station? Or at least until you got off the road?” The guy shook his head “Nah. Nah. It was an emergency and I mean, what would you have me do? Poop in my pants? That’s nuts.” He started his car and drove away and all Jenny could do was stare after him. To this day, she lays in bed at night wondering where he is, knowing he’s out there somewhere, driving around with his bucket in the backseat.
I think you should know about this yogurt I ate last night. It was coconut soy delight and the texture was exactly like old, hard, jello. It didn’t taste like anything to me, but I’m sure you would have been able to taste the coconut because you hate it so much. I wish you could have tasted it. I tried to punch up the flavor by adding honey and cinnamon, but it was late and I wasn’t wearing my glasses. I ended up adding honey and black pepper. That did not improve the taste. However, as I said, it was late, I was hungry and I didn’t want to wake anyone by cooking something, so I decided to try and salvage it. Luckily, because of its gelatinous consistency, I was able to scoop off the very top where I had added the pepper and remove almost all of it. I rinsed off my spoon and added more honey and actual cinnamon this time. I grabbed my yogurt and quietly tiptoed out of the kitchen. Just as I was making my way back up the stairs, I knocked over a screwdriver that was on the banister and it fell onto the stairway, bouncing and making a loud bang with each step it hit on its way down to the hardwood floor, where it rolled around for what felt like ten minutes. I just stood there watching it, hoping no one else had heard it. I got back in bed and ate my yogurt quietly. It still tasted terrible to me and I can only imagine what it would have been like for you.
Great going taking down your Facebook page, fucker. I told everybody I was pregnant and you missed it. Well, surprise. I just found out two days ago. I think I’m like 5 or 6 months- it’s hard to tell. I heard you work at Best Buy now. Hook me up! I’m still pissed at you for not giving me that loan, but I’m trying to let it go so you can help me with this shit like a real friend. I feel like you’re always pregnant. Did you and Ramon really mean to have four kids? You always say yes, but anyways, question- What is your favorite drink for when you’re pregnant? Right now all I’m liking is vodka cranberries. Seriously- I drank half a mimosa the other day and then puked it. I don’t know what’s up with me. Oh I remember what I wanted to ask you- How long do you have to wait before the doctor can change the baby’s sex? My sister says mine’s a boy for sure and she’s pissed. She doesn’t want to be an uncle. I really hope you can help me out with being pregnant. I don’t have anyone else. I mean I have my family and I have Derrick, but I don’t want them. I want you to be here. I need groceries and a new blue ray. When can you come? Oh- and where do I get that wheelchair sticker for the car?
Mom. No. We’re not going to the market. I’m not going in. They don’t have anything I like. I’m hungry now and none of that food is ready. I don’t care if it’s on the way. Why can’t you just take me home and then come back?
Mom. Look at me. It’s called consent. Ever heard of it? I said no.
Because! It’s cold in the market and I don’t have a sweater. Mom! You’re not even looking at me. I can’t go in there and I’m not waiting in the car. My phone is dead and your stupid charger has the old iphone chord.
My time is so valuable. You don’t get it. You have so much time. What do you even do? Like what do you do when I’m in my room? Why can’t you go to the market then? You always do this just because you want to spend time with me. I hate spending time.