Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Men acting like monsters

On Monday morning, I was in the back of the van with Snodgrass. La Netta was up front, and Rosa was in the office. Snodgrass spat on La Netta!

"You spit on me!", La Netta said.

"SHAME ON YOU, SHAWN!", I shouted. I gave a hard slap to his left wrist.

We then took a trip to Target together. We weren't going to go, but I told La Netta I needed pens, so La Netta and Rosa took us all in.

I got my pens, then we stopped around the juice aisle. La Netta, meanwhile, was putting educational books into the shopping cart. I got one bottle of Hawaiian punch.

Emanuel stopped and talked to a lady. He asked her several questions.

"Emanuel!", a coach called.

We made it to the checkout. When it was my turn, the girl at the cash register told me it was $1.09.

"For everything?", I asked.

"Yes", she said.

"Did you get his juice in there?", asked La Netta.

"I did", said the employee.

In other words, I got free Hawaiian punch that day.

When they got out, La Netta grilled Emanuel on what he was asking the lady in the store about. "You were asking her about oral sex", said La Netta.

"I was asking her aboot the Devil", said Emanuel.

"Did Emanuel actually say the words 'oral sex'?", I asked La Netta.

"No, that was a nicer way of putting it", she said. "Emanuel, if you keep talking to the people in stores like this, Lita's going to tell us to just go to the park. And then, James, you won't be able to get your juices."

"I'm hungry", said Emanuel.

"Target was our lunch site for today", said La Netta. "You didn't buy anything there, you don't get anything."

"We're not going to go out of our way to get you a Black & Mild", Rosa said.

At lunch, I sat in the van while the others ate their lunches at Miller's Knots.

Emanuel was at the table with La Netta and the group, discussing a vacation. I heard Emanuel saying, "I'm going to get ice xxxxx at the island".

"Blechhh!", I said.

"I'm getting ice xxxxx!"


"Emanuel", said La Netta, "You know James doesn't like that."

"Sorry", said Emanuel.

"Hey, La Netta", I asked La Netta. "Did Emanuel say it three times or only two times?"

"Just two times", said La Netta.

I walked to the restroom to purge. Emanuel's I-word came out of me in a sour way, me tasting ice xxxxx with the consistency of sour cream.

When I came out, I went back to the van. Emanuel came to talk to me. "Did you have a girlfriend when you were in high school?"

"I never had a girlfriend", I said. "No boyfriends either. I'm bisexual."

"You're bisexual? Really?"


He chatted for several minutes more, going on about nonsensical topics, until he said, "Just a minute", and walked out of the van. He approached a couple of seniors who were smoking.

"Emanuel! No!", a coach called.

"Emanuel!", called the other coach.

Emanuel asked them for Black & Milds, his preferred brand of cigarette.

"Emanuel, you are not going to bum cigarettes off people!", his coaches told him.

Just then, Snodgrass started screaming, "Bxke! Bxke! Bxxxxxxxxxke!"

"A motorcycle", La Netta corrected him.

I walked towards the restroom.

"We're starting drops real soon", said La Netta. "We're starting drops now."

It had been a long day with Emanuel. We resigned ourselves to sitting back in our seats and trying to let off the rough day. Then, all of a sudden, Robin screamed.

Snodgrass screamed back.

Right then and there, Robin head-butted Snodgrass. Snodgrass bit his own hand. Robin ululated. Snodgrass took his hat off -- the baseball cap that says "GOD IS GOOD ALL THE TIME". He threatened Robin with it, then he hit Robin with the cap. He swung it around and hit Robin again. Luckily, the cap didn't hit me.

"It's like Alien vs. Predator back here!", La Netta said.

Before long, La Netta, Rosa and I were all laughing and Robin and Snodgrass' antics. "Ain't nothing you can do but laugh", La Netta said.

Rosa said she'd go to Kennedy Grove to use the restroom.

Meanwhile, Robin and Snodgrass were still at it. They were growling. They were hitting and head-butting each other. We had a fight in which they sounded not too unlike former client Michael "The Monster" Martinez.

Then, Rosa stopped at Taco Bell.

Rosa went into Taco Bell. "Is she only here to use the restroom?", I asked.

"Yes", said La Netta. "You want to go in and get you something?"


I walked into Taco Bell and ordered three soft-shell tacos. I had come with five dollar bills in my pocket that morning. The accidental "discount" on my Target purchase came in handy, as I could afford three tacos, which came out to $3.59.

I came out and reëntered the van. Robin and Snodgrass were done fighting.

"If I waited until I got to Kennedy Grove, I might have peed my pants, and crashed", Rosa said.

They talked about how crazy the growling and fighting was. Then they dropped Snodgrass off, and got Emanuel home early. Then came Ken. Finally, it was my turn.

As I carried in my Taco Bell, I forgot all about my juice and pens from Target.

But when the van pulled up this morning, the first thing I did was carry my Hawaiian punch and pens from the trunk into my group home.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

So stressed out, Part Deux

On Wednesday, Emanuel was rambling on and on. "Did Emanuel say the SC-word?", I asked Rosa.

"No, I didn't", said Emanuel.

"Do you even know what the SC-word is?", she asked.

"Sure. SCXXT!"

"Emanuel!", said Rosa. "And no, he didn't say that word."

We took a trip to Ross in which La Netta pushed Snodgrass' wheelchair.

"Bxxxxxxke!", said Shawn. "Bxke! Bxke!"

"A motorcycle", said La Netta.

"Bxke!", said Shawn again.

"Can you say, 'moto'?", I asked.


"Say 'moto'."




"I think he's going to keep on saying it his way", said La Netta.

Since we were in El Cerrito, I asked to go to Chef's. La Netta took me in.

"Txsty, huh?", a customer said in the store.

"Yes, the food is good here", an employee said.

"Blechhh!", I said.

"I'm sorry you heard that", said La Netta.

I ordered chow mein, hot braised chicken and kung pao chicken. Then I paid for my savory entrées.

"Just a napkin, no frok?", the employee asked me.

"Right", I said. After I counted all my remaining money, I grabbed the Styrofoam.

"Nothing for me", La Netta told the employee.

As we drove to Davis Park, Emanuel talked about the Devil, the Bay Area, basketball players and other usual suspects. Rosa began telling him to just shut up every time he ranted and rambled like this.

We got to Davis Park. I went to the restroom. I purged off "txsty" immediately (couldn't hold it, thinking of the I-word), then did the "frok" and finally all the "bxke"s. That was a lot of words to purge off.

"Look!", said a coach to Emanuel. "There's Benjamin! On the roof! He's missing a leg and part of a wing! What did they do to Benjamin?"

Benjamin is Emanuel's schizophriend, his father's son, who takes the form of a bluejay.

Emanuel started dissing Rosa.

I walked into the van and saw La Netta's face. It was shaking around. "You look overwhelmed", I told La Netta.

"I am", La Netta said.

As we drove to Kennedy Grove, Emanuel took his seatbelt off and reached towards the front.

"Emanuel!", his coach said.

"I'm thirsty", said Emanuel. "I need a drink of water."

"There's no water in the front! Now, put your seatbelt on!"

"I need water!"

"You should have gotten water when we stopped at the fast food restaurants!"

"I need water!"

"You should have gotten it earlier!"

"I need water!"

"You should have gotten it earlier! Now, SIT DOWN!"

The coaches told Emanuel we were driving to Kennedy Grove and that he could get some tap water there. As we approached and settled, Emanuel took his seatbelt off before the van stopped.

"You are just stressing me out!", said La Netta.

Emanuel got two cups in the back of the van, one broken, and went out for the water. He returned not complaining about being thirsty anymore.

"Can we have 106?", Emanuel asked as we drove home.

"No, we can't", Rosa told him. 106.1 KMEL would be just too much stress.

Poor La Netta was just more stressed out by the second.

"I'm not from this Bay!", Emanuel said.

"Just knock it off", said Rosa.

"Hey, La Netta?", I said.

"Yes, James", said La Netta.

"Jolene was the perfect member of this group."

"She was. I sure miss her."

"She never caused me any stress."

"Me neither."

I asked La Netta for a shower hug at the end of the day. La Netta was too stressed-out to hug me.

"Tomorrow", she said.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

So stressed out

Today is Jolene's birthday, so I brought along a stuffed animal (a grey cat) that I purchased at Wal-mart to present to her as a birthday present.

As we drove, La Netta and Ernestine were talking about the traffic and how it was so slow. I had to ask La Netta what Ernestine said several times. I was really afraid Ernestine was going to say "mxss".

"You seem so tense this morning", La Netta said.

I really hoped I'd be able to make it to Jolene's house on time to see her, but the traffic was holding us up.

Finally, we reached Jolene's house as we picked up Robin. I walked up to the door.

"Jolene's gone", her staef said.

My heart broke.

"Want me to give her that and tell her her friend gave it to her?", the staff asked.

"Yes", I said.

"What's your name again?"

"James Landau," I said, handing her the stuffed cat.

"James. OK."

"Was she there?", asked La Netta.

"No", I said.

Stan hadn't given Emanuel his money, so we drove to the office where Emanuel could pick his money up. As we drove there, Snodgrass began saying, "Bxke! Bxke!"

I picked my navel in the restroom, then we headed towards Berkeley Marina.

After we left Berkeley Marina, we drove towards the 99-cent store. Snodgrass saw another motorcycle and began saying, "My bxke! Bxke! My bxke!"

"That motorcycle is NOT YOURS", I rebutted Shawn.

We got out of the van, one by one. I got out to spit but accidentally saw Ken, including his watch. Was it a bad time like 10:18?

"La Netta, what time is it?", I asked as we made it into the 99-cent store.

"Why do you ask?", she asked.

"I accidentally saw Ken's watch when I was getting out to spit. I need to make sure it's not 10:18."

"I've got 10:15", she said.

"Oh, no", I said. "Ken, does your watch say 10:18?

"His watch says 10:22."

"So it was 3 minutes ago when I saw his watch?", I asked.

"I told you, it's 10:22."

"But when I saw his watch, that was 10:19, right?"

"I guess", said La Netta. "However, you didn't actually see the time on Ken's watch, did you?"

"Once a watch is within my field of vision, that counts as officially having seen the time."

"Now, when did this start?"

"It's always been this way, La Netta."


"May I hold onto your shopping cart?"


As I looked around for the shopping cart, two things happened. One, Ken talked about some guy "riding his bxke". Two, I saw something in a bin. I looked closer, and saw it was a sheet of stickers of Winnxe the Pooh characters.

"Eeewwwwwww!", I said. I pointed to it.

I picked out Zacky bologna, some mango fruit juice, two bottles of Stars & Stripes (root beer and sweet orange) and a box of Pom Poms.

As I was in the cookie section, I heard Emanuel say, "Let me go get a frok. Are there froks here? I need a frok."

"Is there plastic silverware here?", I asked La Netta.

"Yes, there is", said La Netta.

"I didn't mean in this store, I meant in this area."

"Oh, no."

"I'm going to get a frok", said Emanoel.

Just then, I realized Emanuel meant he was going to buy a plastic frok in the 99-cent store, so he was talking about plastic rather than metal.

"So he was talking about plastic silverware!", I said.

"You what?", asked La Netta.

"It wasn't an I, it was a he."

"I know, but you said you what?"

"I didn't say 'I'" -- I pointed to myself -- "I said 'he'."


"I said he was talking about plastic silverware."

I paid for my stoff, holding on to the cart with my exes closed. Then I paid $5.something for my goodies.

La Netta told me I could open my exes as we approached the van.

"Does Emanuel have plastic silverware?", I asked her.

"No, he doesn't," she said.

As we drove to a restaurant, and then to a lunch site, Snodgrass saw a child on a bicycle. "My bxke!", said Shawn. "Bxke! My bxke!"

"SHAWN!", I shouted. "That bicycle is NOT YOURS!"

"A kid on a bxke", said Ernestine to Shawn.

"We're trying to get him to say 'bicycle' and 'motorcycle'," I explained to Ernestine.

"Oh. A bicycle."

After we got to Vincent Park, I got out in the restroom and began purging off all those "frok"s Emanuel had said.

I saw a dipser, and maimed it with some toilet paper. Next, I got some more toilet paper and left it legless. With my third roll of toilet paper, I picked it up and moved it into the toilet. Then I flushed the toilet.

I picked all the "bxke"s out of my navel, and as I did, I heard La Netta calling me. I shouted, "YES?" back.

I then finished up the dipser, but heard La Netta calling my name again. I zipped my pants up.

She repeated my name. "I'M COMING!", I said.

When I came out, La Netta asked me what was taking so long. I told her about the Winnxe the Pooh, and Snodgrass saying "bxke" all those times, and Ken saying "bxke", and Ernestine repeating Snodgrass' word, and Emanuel saying the F-word. I also mentioned the dipser.

I left back towards the restroom, when I heard a "Whxxps!"

"D'OH!", I said, and slammed my forehead.

"What's wrong?", asked La Netta. "James, come over here and tell me what's wrong."

I told her about the WH-word.

"No one said the WH-word", said La Netta.

"What did I hear?", I asked.

"You heard me."

"What did you say?"

"It wasn't the WH-word."

"If it wasn't the WH-word, what was it?"

"It wasn't the WH-word."

"Could you tell me exactly what it was, so I can be sure you and I heard the same thing?"

"It was the double-O word."

"Oh, OK."

"Did you talk about riding a bicycle?"

"No. You seem stressed."

"Oh, it's just that Snodgrass has been saying that word a lot today."

"But you know what? You were stressed out this morning too?"

"It's just that you two were talking about traffic, and I was afraid someone was going to say the M-word."

"Oh. I see."

We left Vincent Park. I had two pills in my pocket, and still had not purged off the Winnxe the Poohs.

Emanuel insisted we have 106.1 KMEL.

"Ernestine," I said, "I have do do a lot of purging, and I'm afraid if we listen to rap I'm going to hear even more words, so could we please have Star 101.3?"

Emanuel flipped the dial and got to the Spanish station. "It's Spanish", he said, "So you won't hear any English words."

Then he flipped back to 106.1 after a few minutes.

"Ernestine, could I please have 101.3 until we get to my house?", I asked.

"How about 94.9? 99.7?", asked Emanuel.


I heard the "little bxtty pieces" song.

When I got home, I purged off all the Winnxe the Poohs and didn't eat until 4:31.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Couldn't get my headphones on

This morning, La Netta and Rosa were listening to KBLX. They were doing a feature called "Bizarre, Amazing but True". Today's was the story of a man to put mayonnaise into a coworker's water bottle and got arrested.

"James", a coach said, "After this they're going to be doing traffic, so get your headphones on."

I got my headphones and CD player out of my red bag and set them in my lap. Then I noticed coins falling out of my pocket.

"My money!", I said. "It's ealling out!"

I saw dollar bills falling out. Snodgrass said "Uh-oh" and started picking them up. I took the bag out of my pocket.

Snodgrass was by now reaching for receipts that were on the floor. "Shawn, let them be", I said.

Shawn handed me my headphones.

I put them back in my lap and put all the coins and dollar bills in my bag. I tried to stuff the bag in my pocket, but coins fell out again.

By now they were wrapping up the segment on the water bottle full of mayonnaise. "Keep your exe on your water bottle", they said.

"Eeeeewwwwwwww!", I screamed.

"You had plenty of time to get your headphones on!", a coach said.

"I was trying to get them on, but money fell out of my bag and Shawn kept screwing with it! I told him to leave my stuff alone, but the kept handing my bag to me and handing my headphones to me!"

"You don't have to sit in back with him. Do you want to move into the middle row?"

"No, I don't want to move."

The rest of the day went on without incident.

Is my time up yet?

Yesterday we were waiting in front of the court house while Rosa went in to pay a ticket. It was yet another traffic ticket for Rosa.

I lifted my sleep mask up and looked around. Then I lifted it down again. When I lifted it back up, I saw Ken standing at the left of the van. I could see his watch.

"What time is it?", I asked La Netta.

"I don't know", she said. "Why?"

"I accidentally saw Ken's watch."

I walked outside and asked him the time. "9:22", said Ken. But when I looked, it was actually 1:42.

"Tell me when it says 9:44", I said.

"OK", Ken said.

"Is it 9:44?", I asked a little later.

"Almost . . . Now it is."

I looked over to assimilate the 9:44. Then it turned 9:45. As I was "breathing in" the 1:45 with my eyes, Ken moved and walked up to La Netta.

"James, Ken don't like that when you look at his watch."

"I know, but I saw it at a bad time", I said.

"You're making Ken uncomfortable . . . see how he's walking away every time you walk up to him?"

I kept on following that 9:45. "I understand that. But I have to look at it."

"Do you want Ken to keep liking you?"

"I do. But occasionally I'm going to accidentally see Ken's watch."

His watch then turned 9:46 and I could stop looking.

Just after it turned 9:46, Ken said, "Whxxps!"

"D'OH!", I said, slapping my forehead with my fist.

"What did I say?", asked Ken.

"You said the WH-word!", I replied. "Did you hear Ken, La Netta?"

"I did", she said.

I climbed back into the van. "D'OH! D'OH! D'OH! D'OH! D'OH! D'OH!"

"How many times do you have to do that?", asked La Netta.

"Until it feels right", I replied.


Rosa came out. She said the line was too long.

"All we have today is the dollar store", said La Netta.

So Rosa decided to go in and get back in line.

Finally, Rosa came out.

We entered the dollar store together. I bought two Stars & Stripes (root beer, kiwi-strawberry) and a Shasta (pineapple).

"Eeeeewwwww!", I said as we strolled down the cookie aisle.

"What?", asked Rosa.

I pointed to some Dipser-man items they had among the Shasta.

When I got back in the van, Snodgrass said, "Yxk!" that would be a third thing to purge off.

Then the van stopped in front of a fast food joint. Rosa asked La Netta to get her order for her.

"And could you get me a frok while you're in there?", asked Rosa.

"OK", said La Netta.

When La Netta came back, I closed my eyes. "Did you remember the frok?", Rosa asked.

We then stopped at Davis Park to eat lunch. I went into the restroom and started by purging off those vacant, menacing eyes from the Dipser-mans.

Then I did "frok", as that was what was really bothering me. I got that one out rather quickly. I then did Snodgrass' "yxk" because it would be quick.

I spat out the phlegm from my cold. Then I did "whxxps", which tasted like whipped cream.

"James, what's taking so you long in there?", asked my friend La Netta.

"Don't you remember?", I said.


"Ken said the WH-word."

I felt the whipped cream coming out as I einished that one up. Then I worked on Dipser-man.

I walked out of the restroom so Robin could use it. I walked around, then asked La Netta whether Robin was still in the restroom.

"Robin never went in", said La Netta.

"How many minuted do I have left in there?", I asked.

"About ten."

"You're taking a really long time. Anything besides the WH-word?"

"Oh. Well, while I was in the dollar store, I saw everyone's favorite superhero."

"Mmmmm. Why do you dislike him?"

"I dislike dipsers."

"That's right." She paused and thought, then asked, "Does he make you purge just because you dislike him? You dislike Shawn, and he don't make you purge."

"Well, he grosses me out", I said.

I walked back and continued with the Dipser-man.

"Is my time up?", I asked La Netta.

"No", she replied.

Finally La Netta said, "We're leaving soon, so start washing your hands now."

I washed my hands and got back into the van.

As we drove home, a rap song started playing. It seemed to say "cudio" four times. Was that "cutxe?"

"They didn't say the C-word?", said La Netta.

"They said 'Arcadio'?"


When I got home, I googled the lyrics: "if you really want to party with me". I learned it was a Busta Rhymes song.

He did say "cutxe", but only once. There were eight lines ending in "studio" and things that rhymed with "studio", and "cutxe-oh" was one of them.

I purged off "cutxe", then finished with the Dipser-mans.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Look! My book!

Snodgrass has a torn-up magazine about resorts or real estate or something in the Bay Area, which he calls a book. This morning he was holding onto it and saying, "My book!" in his usual way.

Emanuel was ranting about the way Stan Man promised him at the other house that he'd give Emanuel money when Emanuel got to my house, and Stan still hadn't come to my house.

Rosa was telling Emanuel that we had waited 10 minutes for Stan and needed to drive on to pick up Robin. Emanuel counterargued that he needed money.

Finally we got Emanuel in the van and were driving off with him going off on his coaches when Stan Man drove by. The driver stopped the van, and Emanuel got out to see Stan. Stan Man gave him his money. We then drove off.

We parked in front of Barnes & Noble for a few minutes, then we all got out . . . everyone except Snodgrass. Snodgrass was fixating over his magazine. "My book!", he said.

"Put that book away!", said Rosa. "What are you doing with that lunchbag?"

"He's putting ot away", I said. "He moved it over there."

"He's moved that lunchbag many times already", said Rosa.

"My book!", squealed Snodgrass.

"Put that book away. Put that book away!"

Finally, Rosa managed to get Snodgrass out of the van, and the group all walked into Barnes & Noble together. We started out by going to the restrooms (where I extricated my schlong from my zipper), then we looked at the New Age section. I showed La Netta a book called Strange But True. I read La Netta a story from the beginning about a woman who bought a chalk slate for her second-grade son Daniel one day, only to find her toddler scribbling on it. When she went to wash the slate clean, she noticed his doodles were the words "Please pick me up now" or something along those lines. She drove over immediately to the house where her daughter Margaret was staying and found her passed out from gas from a broken heater. She dragged Margaret out of the house and Margaret sooned regained consciousness.

I read the book Communion while La Netta looked at magazines.

Then La Netta came over and asked me if we could gather up Ken and Emanuel. I put the book back and held onto her arm.

La Netta found Ken wandering. After ten more minutes in the bookstore, we left.

"Shawn was very loud in there", said Rosa. "Very loud."

La Netta took me into Chef's, where I ordered chow mein, eggplants with tofu, and fish and shrimp with vegetables. "Just a napkin, no frok?", the lady asked.

"Yes", I replied.

At Vincent Park I purged off the word "frok". When I got back in, Emanuel was rambling about who-knows-what, and he said "ice xxxxx cones".

"Blechhh!", I said.

"What happened?", asked Rosa.

"Emanuel said 'I-word cones!'," I said.

I purged off the I-word, standing in the restroom once again. Then I came back out.

"See what I meant when I said Emanuel threw in random references to the I-word when he was going off?", I asked La Netta.

"Mm-hmm", said La Netta.

We drove off from Vincent Park.

"Looooook!", Snodgrass said as he saw a motorcycle. "Bxke! Look! My bxke! Loooooook! My bxke! Bxke!"

"Shawn!", I said. "That motorcycle is not yours!"

Emanuel was still going on, making it more stressful for everyone (except perhaps Snodgrass). He ranted about growing a few inches taller so he could be a basketball player.

Then Emanuel asked for 106.1 KMEL.

"Today's been so stressful", I said. "Playing rap would make it even more stressful."

So we didn't play rap this time.

Rosa dropped Snodgrass off. Snodgrass was still playing with his magazine.

"This is going to be the last day you bring that book to program", said Rosa.

I picked my navel for all those "bxke"s when I got home, and ate my Chinese food.

Snodgrass' home staff they they can't get him out of the house if he doesn't have his "book" with him. He's more attached to it then he was to that teddy bear he used to carry to program. He throws tantrums when he cant have his magazine. And hearing him say, "Look! My book!" is getting tiresome. God, I hope they get Snodgrass out of this group.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Three quarters of an hour

We were at the office for cooking on Thursday, when I was lying on the couch. I heard Snodgrass saying, "Yxk!"

I thought I would go to the restroom to purge it off, but I kept sitting there lying on the couch. The couch meant I could sleep. Like a bad morning, I had to keep prodding myself to get up, and didn't succeed at it.

Finally, I got up, and as I walked out I heard Kay saying "ice xxxxx".

"BLECHHHH!", I said.

A coach asked me why I said that, and I asked her, "Didn't you hear what Kay said?"

"No", said the coach.

"She said the I-word!"


I then turned to Kay. "Kay, did you say the I-word?"

"I did."

I then walked to the restroom, and started off by purging off Snodgrass' "yxk". Then I embarked on the journey of the I-word.

I thought back to the time David Squibb had said the I-word thrice in the office, including the time I warned nobody to say the I-word and two coaches asked, "What's the I-word?" and David said it.

I tried five times to do a margariny "adolice cradoleam", as that was what it felt like.

I purged and purged, but I just couldn't get it to feel right.

Finally, I did some crystal vanilla ice xxxxx. I got it. Then I washed my hands.

When I got into the van, the coaches told me I had spent about 45 minutes in there.

Luckily for me, we still had time to go to Williams'!

The story behind "sweetxe"

At Wal-mart on Wednesday, La Netta and I were shopping when we heard a parent call her child "sweetxe". I growled.

"Why is it . . . why don't you like that word?", asked La Netta.

"When I was about 6 or 7 or 8", I said, "I didn't like to be called that because I thought it was a term of address for babies. And I aspired to be a big boy."

"I see", said La Netta.

I paid for my Hawaiian limeade berry punch and my two bags of pastel mints and I was out of there.

Ah, sweetxe. That word conjures up so many memories. The earliest distinct memory I have is my parents leaving off for Paris when I was 12. My mother told my sister Elizabeth, "Good-bye, sweetxe, hope to see you soon", then she walked over and said the exact same thing to me.

"Don't call me sweetxe!", I retorted.

"OK", she said.

Then there was the time my mother was cuddling with Alex, when I was also in the room. I was in the computer chair, and she was on the couch, possibly at a laptop. "Sweetxe pies", she said.

"Sweetxe pies?", I asked.

"Yes", she said.

"Who's the other one?", I asked.

"You", Mom said.

"I'm not a sweetxe pie!"

"Then what do I call you? Sourposs?"

"Ich bin sauer", I said. "I am sour."

"Sauer? All right."

"Do you know that in German 'Ich bin sauer' means 'I am pissed off'?"

"No, I didn't know that."

When I was 17, I got my scheduled hepatitis B shot. When I was in the room, the nurse called me sweetxe and I barked at her for calling me by the SW-word. She went out and asked my mother whether I was going to be violent.

Of course, purging off "sweetxe" eventually became too much of a chore. I had to refer to it as "the SW-word". One episode of The Simpsons, the one where Lisa competes in the spelling bee, had Marge calling Lisa sweetxe about twenty times. I had to do so much purging when I was watching that one.

And my mother would call Alex sweetxe when she tucked him in every night. I had to remember to plug my ears. When I moved out of the house, Alex was 17, and my mother was still tucking him in!

One day we had this woman having a field day at CIWP, who handed me back my pill at 11:00 and said, "Here's your pill, sweetxe."

"What did you call me?", I asked.

"Here's your pill, James", she said.

I had to purge before swallowing the pill.

Emanuel and the annual

Tuesday was Emanuel's annual meeting. Emanuel himself was busy sleeping in the van.

"Emanuel!", asked La Netta, waking him up.

"Yes?", said Emanuel.

"Today's your annual. You want to stay at program?"


La Netta asked me if I wanted to stay in the office during Emanuel's annual. Even though we had Barnes & Noble and Trader Joe's on the schedule, I decided I needed some sleep. Plus I liked to stay with La Netta. So I said yes.

Shortly after I walked in with La Netta and spent some time in the restroom, I came out into the couch room to find Emanuel sleeping on the sofa.

"Emanuel's in there", said La Netta. "Do you want to go into the Internet room?"

I sat in the Internet room and sat in the chair. My derrière was deep down touching the chair, while my shoulders were up against the chair and my knees and feet were up in the air, my arms wrapped around them.

I came in at 10:12 and discovered that Emanuel was still on the couch. The meeting was to begin at 10:30.

At 10:30, La Netta came in to get Emanuel off the couch so he could start his meeting. "Emanuel!", she said.

Emanuel just lay on the couch and wouldn't get up.

After several more attempts, La Netta told him his mother was here. Emanuel finally put his shoes on and left the couch open for me.

I lay down and started to rest. I heard what sounded like "txsty". I would have to ask La Netta when the meeting was over.

I heard "ice xxxxx" outside and asked about that. No one had said "ice xxxxx".

Then I heard a "whxxps". No one had said "whxxps" outside.

Meanwhile, arguments were raging in the room where the annual was. I heard Emanuel going off.

Then I heard it: the I-word. Bernard was at program, taken along by Stan and Pia who showed up at the meeting, and he was engaged in a conversation with David Squibb.

"Blechhh!", I said.

I walked out the door and said, "Blechhh! You said the I-word!" Then I ran to the restroom to purge it off.

They had been talking about their favorite flavors of ice xxxxx and their favorite flavors of cake.

When I got out, I asked David if he knew Bernard was a devout Christian who didn't like profanity. I asked because David is always talking about Jesus Christ, his Saviour, so that's one more thing they have in common.

"Yes," said David, "Jesus is my Saviour. I'm blessed. And I prayed for Lamesha."

"Thank you, David", I said.

At the end of the meeting, La Netta came out. Emanuel was telling people he was bipolar like Mike Tyson and aspired to be a great basketball player.

"I know you heard it", I told La Netta.

"Heard what?", she asked.

"The big 'blechhh'."

"I did."

"And you heard the word that lee to it."


"Did they say the T-word?"


"What about the WH-word?"

"They didn't."


"Where would you like to get lunch?"

"I'd like to go to Chef's."

Chef's was on our schedule, but since it was 12:07 when we finally got into the van, La Netta told me that we had missed it.

We were dropping Emanuel off on University.

"James", said La Netta, "Since we missed Chef's, would you like to stop at Grocery Outlet real quick and get something for lunch?"

I replied in the affirmative.

La Netta brought me into Grocery Outlet, where I picked out four piroshkis. We paid for our stuff and then left.

When I got back in the van, I turned to look at the time and I saw Ken up front waving a plastic frok with his hands.

"Eeeewwww!", I said.

"What?", asked Rosa.

I pointed to Ken.

"Ohhhhh", she said.

We stopped at the office, where I purged the plastic silverware off. Then we drove to Vincent Park.

I wanted to get out to spit. I asked La Netta if she was using plastic silverware.

"Ken is", said La Netta.

"But are you?", I asked her.

"Ken's eating with his frok right now", said Rosa.

"But it's safe to look in the middle row, right?"

"Right", said La Netta.

I got out, spat, then walked into the restroom. I purged off "frok" (fadorork, fadorork), and got blood on my hands. I then took my pill.

I asked La Netta for hand sanitizer, and she said she saw blood.

She asked me how it got there and I explained I was scratching my itchy scrotum.

"Wash that off first", said La Netta.

"I did wash it off", I said. "I washed off all I could."

At Vincent Park, Snodgrass saw a motorcycle and began saying, "Bxke!" as we left. Oh god.

I could have gone to both Barnes & Noble and Chef's. But because I chose to say in the office, I didn't get to do either, and I didn't get to fall asleep.

Monday, August 9, 2010

A sunny Miller's Knots day

I was alone in the van, with only Rosa taking the group today. We were at Miller's Knots together. It was sunny weather -- perfect ice xxxxx weather.

I heard a group of boys get out in the van to our right. One of them said to another, "I'm not going to interrupt your ice xxxxx treat."

I let out a loud "BLECHHHHHHH!" and ran out of the van, towards the restroom. I locked the door.

I heard what was either another "ice xxxxx" or an "I see"/"icy". I thought the word "Icee" to myself and imagined Mr. Txstee from Pete & Pete.

I needed to think eecie, mearc cie, mearc cie to myself. Then I chanted "Adolicy, adolice cradoleam, adolice cradoleam" as I purged down there. I thought two more "icy"s to myself and repeated the procedure.

Then I chanted "Adolicy, adolice cradoleam, adolice cradoleam" as I purged down there and "Adolicy, adolice cradoleam, adolice cradoleam" as I purged up here. That got the spoken word out of my system. I tasted a little soupy ice xxxxx as I got "adolice cradoleam", just in case the second word was an "ice xxxxx".

Someone pulled at the door. Luckily, I had locked it. I heard him say, "I need to get in".

I did some rubble-clearing in case there were any "ice"s that I missed. Then I tried to do the original "ice xxxxx". By now my hand was feeling dirty.

I thought back to the tastes of "crispy", crystally vanilla ice xxxxx I could still remember from my childhood. It was from there I did the "adolice cradoleam, adolice cradoleam, adolice cradoleam, adolice cradoleam, adolice cradoleam". I chanted "adolice cradoleam" down there and "adolice cradoleam" up here, and I was done.

I heard people from Stan Man's group home talking outside at the tables. I thought they were talking with Rosa, so I walked over.

"Jaaaaaaaaaames!", I heard Rosa say.

It was from a different direction.

"We're in the van!", yelled Rosa.

I walked over to Rosa's van and hopped back in.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

There Goes My Baby

Yesterday Wanda had Rodney and La Netta had only three people, so La Netta and Wanda combined in case Rodney tried to run again and they needed two coaches to tackle him down.

The radio was on KBLX when we stopped, and my headphones weren't exactly working (I could still hear the radio when they were on), so I asked La Netta if she could change the station before turning the van back on, in case the radio was on traffic when it was turned back on.

La Netta said I could get in the van after the van was turned back on.

So the group socialized at Miller's Knots, then after we were done, I stepped far away from the van.

Once everyone else got back in, I heard the van being turned on. I waited until I was sure La Netta would have changed the station if there was traffic on by now.

I came in and the radio was playing "Single Ladies" by Beyoncé. I asked for my pill.

By now the radio was on a different song, one that went "There goes my baby . . ."

I heard something that sounded like, "I love the way that you be pxking it out".

"Did I hear the P & O words?", I asked La Netta.

La Netta gave me an inconclusive answer. Carl said something that sounded like "pxking it out". I heard "pxking it out" a second time in the song. La Netta told me to look up the lyrics on the Internet.

I pocketed my pill.

"Bxke!", said Snodgrass as a motorcycle passed us. "My bxke! My bxke!"

"That motorcycle is NOT YOURS!", I retorted.

I went into Taco Bell alone and ordered a soft-shell taco, a Crunch Wrap Supreme and a chicken chalupa. Luckily no purge words were heard.

I came back out, and we drove to Jack-in-the-box. La Netta went in, and I joined her because I didn't want to be vulnerable to words (Wanda was no good at listening out for purge words). La Netta invited me to the restroom.

"Who does the song 'There Goes My Baby'?", I asked La Netta.

"Usher", she replied.


I picked my navel in the restroom, then came out.

At Point Pinole, I gave La Netta a lengthy description of the events of Thursday night. She said, "Oh, lord!" both when she heard that Nick was in his pajamdras and when I described the tree touching me.

Then we got in the van. Carl was discussing a celebrity.

". . . exe on her", I heard Carl say.

"Rely on her?", I asked.

"Public exe on her."



"What exactly does that word make you do?", asked La Netta.

"I have to punch myself", I said.

"Punch yourself? Doesn't that hurt?"

"Well, it's really jabbing."

"But aren't a man's testicles sensitive?"

"I don't jab my testicles. It just touches my groin."

"What if you miss?"

"Then I'd just be in pain."

After I hugged our end-of-the-week hug, La Netta and I parted our ways as I carried my Taco Bell into my room. I ziplocked the Taco Bell before purging off "exe on", and then searching the Usher lyrics at lyrics.wikia.com. This is what it gave me:

How you work it baby yea
I love the way that you be pxking it out
Girl give me something to feel on
So please believe we gone be twerking it out

So Usher only said "pxking it out" once. The second time it was "twerking it out".

After two purge rituals, I ate my Taco Bell order.

Run, Rodney, run!

At 8:32 p.m. on Thursday, Rosetta came into my room.

"James, Rodney ran down the street", she said. "We've got to take the car to pick him up, so get dressed."

"I am dressed", I said.

"Put on a coat and a nice pair of shoes."

"This is all I've got."

At 8:33, I walked out, figuring everyone else was dressed. But when I got outside, I saw that Nick was in his pajamdras!

I was eager to purge, and hoped finding Rodney would be cakewalk. Rosetta told us all to go downhill.

There was that tree in front of our house. I couldn't walk next to it.

"Come on!", Rosetta said.

"Let me do things at my own pace!", I rebuffed. "There's the tree!"

"Walk around it!"

So I looked both ways and walked around the car that was parked on the outside of the curb. Then I saw a car coming, so I retreated. When the car had passed, I made it around the parked car, and thus avoided the tree.

"Are we going to pass by Frosty Freeze?", I asked Rosetta.

"No, we aren't", Rosetta replied.

We had to walk down many street and dodge many trees. Rosetta kept saying "come on", and I kept saying "let me do things at my own pace".

"Rosetta?", I said.

"Yes?", she responded.

"When I say, 'Let me do things at my own pace', that means, don't say 'come on'."

"What should I say?"

"'Let's go'?"

"Let's go, then!"

All the while Rosetta was on her cellphone with Quiana.

I turned a corner and felt something in my hair. I looked up and saw a coniferous tree with its branches and needles right next to my head!

I stepped forward and asked if a tree was still touching me. Rosetta said no.

Shortly after my contact with the tree, we saw Quiana pulling up in her car. Quiana said she could take three clients.

"Take Nick", said Rosetta. "Nick's slow."

"Nick, James, and who else wants to go?", asked Quiana.

"I'll go with you", said Bernard. "I'm tired."

So Nick, Bernard and I all came in the van. It was 6:48 when I got in.

"This is a mxss!", Quiana said.

"Eeeewwwwww!", I said.


Quiana kept touch with Rosetta via her cellphone as she drove. I told Quiana about touching the tree.

Bernard, meanwhile, kept complaining about how tired he was.

"I just want to go to sleep so I can get up tomorrow and play some video games!", said Bernard.

"Bernard, you've already told me that many times", said Quiana. "Just calm down."

Quiana stopped someone to ask if he had seen a bald Black man in his forties. He said he hadn't.

"God", prayed Bernard, "Help us find Rodney."

I told Quiana about seeing Nick in his pajamdras.

"I sure hope God will help us find this boy!", said Bernard.

"So do I!", said Quiana.

Quiana stopped at Rodney's grandmother's house. There she spoke with his grandmother, and with a cop. There were six cops patrolling the streets for Rodney.

Finally Quiana said she'd drive us back home. It was 9:16 when we finally got there.

I came out with a bottle of shampoo and Quiana said Rosetta could do my hair for me.

Rosetta eventually returned. She had Rodney with him. Rodney had been found and was in one piece.

When Rosetta got there, she said she'd shampoo my hair but wanted to finish talking to Rodney's grandmother and Quiana first.

I came in again at 10:00. "I'll be with you, just give me one second", said Rosetta.

"Just one minute?"

"One minute."

At 10:05 I came out with the shampoo bottle. Rosetta went in and shampooed my hair. It took until 10:14.

I felt violated that day, touching a tree and being forced to see Nick in his pajamdras just because Rodney had run away. I wanted Rodney to be punished severely for what he did. What did I do to get placed in a group home?

Santina listens to traffix

On Thursday morning, Santina came into my room to make my bed, and I fell out of bed in my usual way and put on my turtleneck. I heard the television on, so I came out to check if it was the news and the news was doing a feature on California's recent overturn of the gay marriage ban on constitutional grounds.

I got back into bed until Santina told me my ride was here. She left the door open.

Did I hear the word "mxss"?

I walked out of my room, without my shoes or sunglasses on, and listened to the television.

"Don't worry about what's on TV!", said Santina. "Worry about getting ready!"

Then I heard something on TV about a car turning over. It was traffic!

"Oh no, traffic!", I said.

"I need the traffic on!", said Santina. "I'm about to get on the freeway!"

I went back into my room and closed the door. I put my shoes on, applied deodorant and combed my hair. Then I put on my sleep mask and sunglasses and picked up my red bag.

I stayed in my room until I was sure the traffic was over. Then I turned off my white sound machine and walked out the door. A commercial was on now.

When I got to the van La Netta asked me what took so long, and I explained that there was traffic on TV.

Our only real site of the day was Fallas Paredes. As I got in, saliva soon accumulated in my mouth.

I closed my eyes and tried to follow La Netta. I thought she was ahead of me, so I walked ahead and saw a handbag. Then I heard La Netta calling my name. She was behind me. I turned back, and she asked, "Are you looking?"

I shook my head.

"Have you been writing in your blog lately?", asked La Netta.

"M-hm", I said.

"What did you write about?"

"Yesta-day", I said with my mouth full of saliva.

"What happened yesterday?"

"Grocery Outlet."

"So it was a good day?"


They began to do a commercial about "delicious" apples and cieers, so I plugged my ears and hummed the last song that had played, "California Gurls" by Katy Perry.

Thinking the commercial must be over, I unplugged my ears.

". . . wine. Yxm!"

I growled and plugged my ears again.

When I unplugged my ears, Cameron Diaz was doing an ad for hair care. She said something about tangles, then -- was it "mxss"?

"Ne'a?", I said.

"Yes?", asked La Netta.

"Did they say the M-word?"

"No, they didn't."

Snodgrass, meanwhile, started squealing. He went ga-ga over the shoes.

"Shawn", said La Netta, "Your voice is too loud."

"Loooooook!", said Baby Shawn. He was screaming before we knew it.

As Shawn's high-pitched voice filled the store, the radio station that filled the store (Movin' 99.7) was back to songs. A rap song came in which the rapper sang that his girlfriend ripped his heart "into little bxtty pieces".

"Rrrrrrr!", I growled.

"Is something wrong?", asked La Netta.

". . . little bxtty pieces", the song repeated.

"Rrrrrrrrr!", I growled again.

Snodgrass was still screaming.

When I got out, I spat.

"What was going on?", asked La Netta.

"That song said 'rip my heart into little B-word pieces'," I said.

"Could you actually hear the radio above Shawn?"

"Yes, I could."

"I couldn't."

"So you didn't hear the rapper sing that?"

"I didn't."

When we got to Pinole Valley Park, I went into the outhouse. I started with the "bxtty"s (a snap), then did the "yxm" (it took about nine tries). I then did any later "mxss"es I may have heard before getting to the traffic word.

Some guys were talking outside. Did they say "ice xxxxx" twice?

"La Netta?", I came out to ask.

"Yes, James?", she replied.

"Did they say the I-word?"

"No, they didn't."

I walked back in.

I continued purging off "mxss". This slough was taking forever.

I heard a knock.

I zipped my pants and opened the door to find a J.W. employee standing outside. I let him in and he siphoned all the gunk in the toilet out in the trunk.

"What's taking you so long?", asked La Netta.

"It was the M-word", I said.

"Where'd you hear that?"

"When the television was doing traffic this morning."

"So that was what took you so long?"

"No, I didn't start purging until I got into this outhouse. I was waiting in my room until the traffic was over."


I then went back in to finish.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Checking out the Berkeley Trader Joe's

Today we drove over to Berkeley and parked in the underground parking lot in front of their Trader Joe's.

I went in and the whole thing looked like Berkeley Farms in its style and layout. With the Trader Joe's elowers, of course.

I held onto La Netta's arm. "Did they say the I-word?", I asked her.

"No", said La Netta.

A little later . . . "Did I hear the C-word in this song?"

"No", La Netta said. "Are you OK?"

"Yes", I told her.

We stopped in front of their dried fruit. No rambutans or mangosteens. I told La Netta Stan hadn't dropped by to give me my money.

"Who can name the title and artist?", I asked as a song played on the Intercom.

"Pass", said La Netta.

After ascertaining that no one else knew, I said, "This is 'Michelle' by the Beatles".

"Oh", said La Netta. "Do you like this song?"


"Yxk!", I heard Snodgrass say.

"Ewwwwwww!", I said.

We then stopped by somewhere that was giving free samples. "Would you like their nuts and blueberries?", asked La Netta.

"Can't swallow", I said.

"Oh, that's too bad. What happened?"

"Snodgrass said the Y-word."

"That's too bad."

As we left the store, La Netta asked me, "So what did you think of this Trader Joe's?"

"It was awesome!", I replied. "Very Berkeley."


"Now all we need is a cashier with dreadlocks and nine nose rings."

"They had that? I didn't even notice."

"No, I said, 'Now all we need is . . .'"


We then drove over in front of Grocery Outlet.

"Let me count my money", I said.

I counted six quarters, then several dimes and some nickels. "I have enough for two piroshkis", I said.

Once we got to the frozen foods, La Netta said, "I'm going to buy you two piroshkis."

"I have the money for them", I said.

"I was going to buy them for you . . ."

"Oh yeah. For giving that speech."


I put two in the cart.

"So I guess you changed your mind?", said La Netta.

"Changed my mind?" I looked. "Oh! You already bought two!" Her two piroshkis were up in the top of the cart, the place where toddlers sit. The song "Baby, I'm Yours" by Barbara Lewis played on the Intercom.

"Ice xxxxx coaches", I heard a little kid say as we visited the candy section.

"Blechhh!", I said.

"Ice xxxxx coaches."


"Ice xxxxx coaches."


La Netta paid for my piroshkis as well as her own goodies. As we stepped out, I overheard a man telling a woman, "Napkins, froks, paper plates . . ."

"Rrrrrrr!", I growled.

I was really in a wreck as we got to Davis Park. I decided to do the word "froks" first.

Then I did rubble-clearing with words like "nice", before completing three quick "adolice cradoleam" rituals. I tasted cold, so they were easy to do.

And finally, Snodgrass' "yxk": "yadoluk, yadoluk".

I walked back into the van and put my sleep mask on.

"I'm ready for my pill", I said.

"What about the hand sanitizer?", asked La Netta.

"May I have some hand sanitizer first?"

La Netta poured it into my hands.

After rubbing 125 times, back and forth, I received my pill from La Netta. I swallowed it, then sat there for the rest of the time. We talked about school uniforms and smoking weed or drinking at parks.

We dropped off Snodgrass (having dropped Ken off early today), and then headed towards my house.

"Hug for my shower?", I asked La Netta.

"You had a shower?", she asked.

"You didn't notice my new clothes?"

"I did notice! Good job!"

We hugged in a wet way, then she walked me into the house and I ate two great piroshkis.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Crack shot

Yesterday, La Netta announced that we would go into JC Penney's inside Hilltop Mall, and then drive around to Wal-mart. It sounded good to me, as long as we didn't run out of time for Wal-mart, because I needed juices.

We walked into JC Penney's, where I spent most of my time with my eyes closed. While we were there, Shawn Snodgrass said, "Yxk!"

"You said, 'Yxk'?", asked La Netta.

La Netta announced she would enter the shoe section.

"Ooh, Snodgrass is going to like that", I said.

Before long, I heard Snodgrass shouting, "Looooook!"

He was soon in heaven in the shoe section, saying "shoe".

La Netta paid for her stuff, and next we entered a store that played rap. La Netta looked around for shoes.

"La Netta", I asked during the second song, "Can we go somewhere next that doesn't play rap?"

"I don't think we're going anywhere else that plays rap today", said La Netta.

We then drove around to Wal-mart, where I bought two Hawaiian punches. I was going to get one Hawaiian punch and one Tampico, but Rosa said that the last remaining Tampico was "busted".

After making our purchases, we drove over to Miller's Knots with the gospel station called The Light playing. The DJ said, "I'm going to scxxt out of here . . ."

"Rrrrrrrr!", I growled.

"What happened?", asked La Netta.

"Didn't you hear the radio?", I asked. Rosa turned the radio off.

"No", said La Netta.

"The woman . . . The DJ said, 'I'm going to do the SC-word out of here'."

"I thought she said, 'I'm going to shoot out of here'," said Rosa.

"I heard her say 'shoot'", said La Netta.

Rosa and La Netta told me when we landed at Miller's Knots that we were "here". I then got out and purged off the "yxk"s and the "scxxt out of here".

When I came back, I sat sedentarily in the van for several minutes. I felt so comfortable and warm in the van.

Then the coaches told me we would take a walk in the park. I talked with my friend La Netta as we walked. They pushed Snodgrass.

Soon we got to a sign that showed six species of bird native to the area, as well as three plant species. On the upper left and upper right were pictures of people at Miller's Knots.

"Oooh, they need to replace this picture", said Rosa.

La Netta and I didn't understand why.

Rosa pointed to the picture on the upper left. It showed a man and a woman on the dock. Upon closer inspection, I noticed that the woman (who had a posterior shot) had her shorts sagging down and her butt could be seen.

La Netta and I laughed and laughed.

We eventually ended up where we started, and took a drive to our homes. Rosa talked about driving me home solo on Thursday, the day I had given the speech.

"I got to James' house and some little kids were playing in Stan's backyard", said Rosa. "And I asked James, 'Are those someone's friends?', and James said he didn't know. And they had their bxkes in the yard. And I told Stan, and Stan was really angry, and told the little kids to get out of his house, and the little girl got on her bxke and rode away."

When I got in my house, I picked my navel, then fell on my bed.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Logaesthesia Q & A

When I discussed my Hayward CIWP speech on the 4thkingdom board, I got a lot of new questions. Here are the questions and my responses:

>>I'm curious, does tasting certain food make you think of certain words or does it only go one way?

To answer your question, I don't think about the word "destiny" when I drink Crystal Geyser Juice Squeeze or the word "doodle" when I eat macaroni or the word "scxxt" when I eat carrots. It only works one way.

>>When you think words, do you taste them? Or do you have to hear it?

I can actually get the taste just by thinking a word. But only when I hear or read it is it officially inside of me. When I hear/read the word, the taste lingers.

>>So do you not like those tastes? Of oatmeal and the frozen dessert and carrots? Like maybe if the SC-word tasted like something else, it wouldn't be a purge word?

There are some purge words with tastes I like, like the word "wxry", which tastes of rotisserie chicken. It's usually what the word means or its phonological similarity to other words that makes it a purge word.

Some words, however, just made me feel strange, which is how "wxry" and "city" (no longer a purge word, although "C-tibank" is) and "bxtty" (tastes like little snatches of bread) became purge words. Sometimes there was an overpowering taste I needed to get out of me.

And a few words are purge words just because of their taste. The word "cutxe", which tastes like phlegm, is the best example of this. Also there is Petex (the diminutive of Peter, as in Petex Pablo), which gives me the sensation of a runny nose. Totally unpleasant.

>>How long after hearing a purge word do you have until you have to purge? Do you have to do it immediately or do you have some leeway time? If so, how much? Have you ever attempted not purging after hearing a word? What happened if you did?

I can hold in a purge word indefinitely. However, I can't swallow until I've purged off all my words. If I happen to swallow before purging (or before I finish purging), then I have to do the ritual twice instead of once. If I swallow a second time, I have to do the ritual four times. If I swallow a third time, I have to do it eight times. Then sixteen, then thirty-two . . .

Sometimes I hear a word and then repetitions of the word accumulate. For instance, if someone says "mxss" and then I hear someone else say "message" before I've purged it off, I have to purge off the "message" before I can do "mxss". Or when people say "keep an exe on", it's every time I hear the /ai/ sound (my, nice, time, side, night, white, might, fine, find, mind, kind, by, I, etc.) It also accumulates when I think the words to myself after hearing them. Because of this, I'd like to purge sooner rather than later. With the word "pajxmxs", thinking the mispronounced singular form to myself will mean a very long and tangled session of purging, so when someone says "pajxmxs", I need to get to a restroom right away.

>>Have your purge words always been the same? even from a young age? Do they ever change? Do you get new ones? Can a word that didn't bother you before begin to bother you?

My purge words have changed many times over the years. "Oops" and then soon after "whxxps" started bothering me when I was 15. Later I dropped "oops" and now it's just "whxxps". The last word to be added was "axx oxxx the pxxxx", when I was 21. (I'm 30 now.) "Scxxt" wasn't added until I had the misfortune of sharing the third grade with Rebecca Warren, a girl who was very bitchy and especially hated boys. She frequently told me "Scxxt!" when I was in her way. "Ice xxxxx" became a purge word at 14, after too many incidents of my little brother's ice xxxxx drxpping.

Many words that were purge words in the past have been dropped. When I was little, "wolf", "guide", "George", "chief", "Mr.", "money" and "snake" were all purge words. More recently dropped purge words include "strike", "smash", "quarter", "Disney" and "hike".

>>What effect does thinking the purge word have on you? Are you able to not think about them? When you write a story like this, did you not just think of the words several times? Do you say them in your head?

Even though I do taste it, thinking the purge word doesn't "poison" me -- unless, that is, I've already heard or read the word and haven't purged it off yet. I do think the words to myself when I think about them, it's true.

Until I was 21, I had to think a purge word backwards for each time I thought it forwards, even if I hadn't heard the word yet. If I had thought "mxss" to myself 90 times, for instance, then before I thought 90 "ssem"s to myself someone said "mxss", I would have to think "ssem" to myself 90 times, then purge 90 times, then purge a ninety-first time for the word that was actually said. But it's gotten better.

>>When did you first discover that you had the urge to purge? As a teenager? preteen? younger?

It started in kindergarten. We learned the song "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly". The word "goat" (which tasted of Pop Tart) got caught in my throat every time I heard it and I had to scrape my nails over my throat and then flick them out of my mouth. "Dipser" soon followed. Later, when I was in the second grade, the ritual went deeper and the words got caught all the way down in the lowest unbifurcated part of my body, i.e. my groin.

>>Do you have words that are the opposite of purge words? Words that make you feel inexplicably good?

No, but I do have some words I like hearing because of the taste they give me. I like the word "sum" because of the sweet yogurty taste it gives me. My favorite taste of all is "franchise", which tastes like fried chicken.

>>What is your opinion on the words "moist" and "tuna"?

"Moist" tastes as if someone is drizzling grape juice. "Tuna", not surprisingly, tastes like tuna.

>>When you see the edited form of your purge words.. for instance, when your word filter catches them and changes them for you.. do you still taste them? Do you ever still have to purge when they're edited like that?

I still taste them, but soon it goes away. The word is not officially inside of me. And no, I've never had to purge just from seeing an edited form, although there have been times when the load time was too slow and I saw the uncensored form before Greasemonkey changed it to "whxxps" or "ice xxxxx" or whatever. I had to purge then.

>>I've seen you talk about La Netta quite a bit.. when you say she is your "coach", what does that mean exactly? What does she do with you/how often is she with you, things like that?

Coaches are with their clients the whole day at program. Coaches drive the clients around and take them into stores, restaurants and lunch sites. They help clients change diapers or count money. They stop clients from hurting another client, or misbehaving in stores, or trying to get out of the van when the van's still moving.

>>How often do food names taste like other things? Does "oranges" taste like an orange, or something else? How about other foods? I saw that you said tuna tastes like tuna, but is that always or usually the case, or only sometimes?

All the foods I've tasted have corresponding words that taste like them, so "orange" does taste like an orange, and "spinach" does taste like "spinach", and "cookie" does taste like cookies. With foods I haven't tasted (soft-serve ice xxxxx, lemongrass, poi) or foods I learned about and developed a word-taste for before I tasted the food (coffee, beer, wine). The word "softxe" tastes like frozen yogurt, "lemongrass" tastes like parsley with lemon juice, and "poi" tastes like dough. Before I tasted coffee, I imagined it tasted like hot chocolate, so "coffee" tastes like hot chocolate. Similarly, "beer" tastes like root beer and "wine" tastes like grape juice.