Today began with yesterday.
And an ill-fated piece of chicken.
I sat in a borrowed chair at my own dining room table, supping with a fine selection of Katy's ex-roommates and such, when I speared a ricotta-smeared cut of chicken. I registered the fresh basil, the tomato, something herb-y, and then pain.
Oh, the pain.
A sharp, horrid pain that shot right down the right side of my tongue, where I'd mashed it between my ravenous molars. I shot a panicked look at Jonathan, to my right. I said, "I think I may pass out." I saw quick flashes of bright light. Jonathan looked confused.
Then I just looked straight ahead, focusing hard on my tongue, trying to will the pain away. Meditating on that hunk of pink flesh and muscle, half-panicked that I gnawed a chunk of it off, effectively cannibalizing myself.
Then I ate some decadent, silky chocolate mousse pie, because what the fuck else are you supposed to do when you chaw half your tongue off? Chocolate is the food pyramid's equivalent of Vicodin, I am sure of it.
I woke up this morning instantly aware of my tongue, of my saliva sort of pooling around it. I am a serial teeth-gnasher at night and I did myself no favors during my slumber. The entire right side was sort of...well...scalloped. I stared at myself in the mirror. My tongue was deformed.
And it hurt like hell.
I went to work, conscious of my mangled tongue every long minute of the drive. When David arrived at the office, I felt compelled to explain what happened:
Me: "If I thound funny, it'th becauthe I bit my tongue latht night."
David: "Wow, what were you eating?"
Me: "Thome pretty good pathta."
David: "Well, that's all that matters, then."
Yeah, I gave myself a temporary speech impediment.
After slurring myself through our Monday staff meeting, I went to Costco for an eye exam. While I filled out the paperwork, I noticed a vaguely elderly gentleman with a sort of neo-jheri curl staring at me. Once caught, he blurted out:
"I am so sorry, but you are really beautiful."
Me: (Checking "No" next to Glaucoma) "Um, thank you."
Neo-Jheri Man: And you have really nice skin. Just great skin."
Me: (Checking "No" next to Cataracts) "Thath's really nithe of you. Um, thankths."
N-J Man: "I don't mean to be rude, but are you a model? You look like you could be a European model. You just have grrreat skin!"
Me: (Checking "No" next to Old Guy Hitting On Me) "Uh, no."
I made it through the appointment unscathed and presented my Amex to pay, but alas, it was not allowed.
"You take Vitha?"
Yeah, they took Vitha.
Except for my card was declined...twice. I called the company and they explained that I reported my card lost or stolen....in early August. Which I never did. Because it was right there in my wallet, accounted for. My Vitha, nestled in its little pocket.
After twenty minutes of my spitting out of the right side of my mouth and hassling the call center lady, I convinced her to at least accept the transaction for the sake of my continued sight, especially since one sense was already impaired. Then I was home free.
My last errand of the workday was a trip to mail out approximately 11 large boxes. I stood in line next to a bouncy girl dressed in the color wheel equivalent of Pepto Bismol and a decidedly hairy dude in a festive mix of tie-dye and paisley. And sandals. With socks.
While I stood behind my tower o'boxes, the two of them forged an inexplicable bond and the girl began yammering about Burning Man:
Pinky: "Oh my god! So you've been to Burning Man, too! So you get it! It's all about love and peace and we're out there in the desert just building our own utopia, and when we're in that dome, with the rainbow ribbons flying around, spinning and holding fire, that is what society is supposed to be like. You know? Yeah, exactly. And I just think that people have the wrong view of us, like we're some sort of cult, like a gang or something just out there in the desert. They don't understand our true spirit. It's not like we're all camped out there in these little groups, like, planning bad things to do to people."
Clashing Patterns Man: "So, well, uh, I'll see you there next year..."
Pinky: "Oh, yeah, well, look for our group. We all dress the same--all pink!--and kind of have our own secluded area that we camp in; we're called the Pink Ladies."