Comics by Michael Lowell Teague (Best of The Rest)
We have chosen optimism. It snuck up on us one day while we were taking a shower. Don’t know how it got in the house. Maybe it jimmied a window. All I know is, I was toweling off, and there it was—not staring at my privates or anything like that, because that is not what this is about. This is about turning a frown upside down. This is about making lemonade when life hands you lemons. Optimism means going back to my original hair color. Wearing more slimming pants that take ten years off my age. That’s what this is about.
How do you get a girl to date you? This baffles me. How do you get them to go to dark places with you where you can kiss them on the mouth? How do you get them to recline on flat surfaces? Or even return your phone calls? I’ve never once had a girl return a phone call, even though my phone number is insanely easy to remember.
Cats are wonderful people, except when they lock me out of the house and stare at me through the window blinds like I am a stranger. They should all get Academy Awards for that look—that what-the-hell-is-your-trip look when you are trying to break into your own house. Cats are wonderful except when they do crap like that.
That looks like human food on the floor. Almost... I mean—if you stand far away, it almost looks like human food you would like to eat. If you squint really hard, and make your eyes go blurry, then you could pretend those black things on it are berries or something. You would have to squint super hard, though, so it looks like they aren’t moving. Moving black things on food raises issues. It could be the wind making them move, of course. This is a drafty hallway. I think I saw someone open a door earlier. Someone’s going to eat that. It would be good food for you. Or I could help you eat it if you are not hungry.
Someone wrote on my piece of paper when I went to the bathroom. I left my piece of paper on the bench and somebody wrote on it while I was wringing out my weasel. What’s this world coming to? I mean they took a pen, (not a pencil, mind you) and messed it up. And this was a really good piece of paper, because it didn’t have any blue lines on it or binder holes or perforations for tearing. This piece of paper was given to me by a guy who is dead now. A guy who was viciously mauled to death by dogs. I wish I knew who this idiot was so I could tell him that.
I need the love of a good woman. Someone to monitor my sodium intake and keep me from getting hit in the chest from bricks with mud and bugs on them. A good woman can keep me hydrated, keep me from picking at my skin until an internal organ is exposed. When there’s blood under your fingernails, you need to know why. That’s where a good woman comes in.
I want to give you pills and put you to sleep. While you are asleep, I will perform extensive gum and dental surgery in your mouth, surgery that, if conducted by conventional means with extensive office visits, would take years. I will complete this surgery in mere hours, and at a fraction of the cost. While you are anesthetized, I will enter your dreams and appear to you as a stranger on a crowded bus. Twice you will refuse me when I offer you my seat. When I ask you a third time, you will accept. At no point will you glance behind me and look through the back window of the moving bus. I cannot stress this strongly enough: Do not look through the back window of the bus. When you reach the street with no name—not the first street with no name but the second—you will get off the bus. At which point, you will awaken in a dewy field. Children will be heard playing nearby on a playground. One of them will hand you my bill.
Michael Jackson told me to look at the man in the mirror and ask him to change his ways, but this mirror guy is not listening so good. He has a hand tied to his head for reasons that are not entirely clear to me. He is constantly trying to see his hand out of the corner of his eye, so it’s really hard making eye contact with him. Personally, I think talking to this guy is a waste of time. God knows this guy’s ways need changing, but I am not burning a lot of calories on this clown.
They call it a children’s hospital, but it looks like a regular size hospital to me. Never been in a children’s hospital, but I don’t think I would have to bend down to get through the door. The part I don’t get are all the cars on the parking lot. Children should not be driving cars to hospitals, especially if they are sick. I don’t want to be on any street where a kid is driving him or herself to the hospital.
Ain’t no city buses run all the way out to the lingerie modeling place. There are four bus lines in this town, and not a damn one of them will put you anywhere near the lingerie modeling place. I don’t own a car. And even if I did own a car I couldn’t afford the gas. I’ve got a bone to pick with the city planners. Newsflash: How am I supposed to reduce my carbon footprint if I have to get a car just so I can see lingerie models? How’s that good for the planet, wise guys?
Been singin’ since the world began. Been singin’ ‘bout the workin’ man who built this land. Built it up from dirt. Built it up from mantle and molten core to dirt, and then from dirt to what sits on dirt, rolls in it, shakes it off like a three-day bug, and then rolls in it some more, coz there ain’t no payday except where there’s dirt. I sing ‘bout what’s not right. ‘Bout what’s wrong with what’s not right. Been swingin’ a hammer for the man since the world was born. Been workin’ for the man in those shiny glass towers. The ones with those electric closets that go up and down inside. Been swingin’ a hammer since before there was electric closets.
Pregnant chicks are always giving me the eye. Some of them would be datable if they weren’t so messed up. Don’t date fat chicks. Don’t care if they have a written excuse or not. Lose that spare tire and we’ll talk.
We are young and attractive and we don’t have to listen to you anymore! You ruined this world, and we are going to make it right! So get out of the way, old guy! You had your chance and now we’re goin’ ta fix what you messed up! We are young and attractive and we’ve had enough of your old and unattractive bull poop!
I want David Crosby to have my babies. I want him to be the father of my brood. I want to impregnate him and watch his belly get as big as a thing of Jiffy Pop Popcorn. And when it explodes, the brood will eat him like baby spiders eat their mother. Really love his music. Really.
Someone needs to tell you this, and since I am the only quadruped in this forest with a voice box, I will tell you, even though what I have to say is something you won’t want to hear. Everyone is getting tired of your little miss prima donna act. It looks like you were poured into those designer jeans—and don’t you let everyone know it! You might be able to eat anything you want and never gain an ounce, but you could afford to lose some attitude.
Dare’s a curse on dat baby in yore belly. Dat baby’s goin’ ta brung a world of hurt down on yore head. Don’t wanna see yore face ‘round hare no more. Never darken my doorstep wid dat bad seed ‘gain. Don’t wanna see no horseless carriage rollin’ by my winder wid dat baby’s head stick out givin’ me da stink eye. Don’t need no trouble what dat baby’s brungin’.
What white liquid comes from my belly is yummy. You can put sugar in it, freeze it, and eat it as a dessert. Apart from that, I don’t know if my legs are broken or if I’m just challenged in some way. Apart from the edible bodily fluid business, I’m rather confused.
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