"Lamewad!" He burst out. I was in the kitchen, but I could practically hear the spit flying out of his mouth and hitting the flat screen. And again: "Effin' lamewad! I swear to god!"
"Jojo," I yelled. "Be nice to your friends." I brought in a couple of Keystone Lights poured into cold beer glasses. But it was just Jojo sitting there in front of the TV all by himself, yelling "lamewad!" at nobody but himself. Or possibly the oafish humanoid monkey attempting to teleport using a giant banana.
I had this horrible moment then. It wasn't my husband of ten months, Jojo, sitting there on the couch in the sticky summer heat, but a giant monkey. An ape, really, to be scientifically accurate. There wasn't a lot of difference, because both were trying their goddamndest to use a giant banana as a teleportation device, a function for which it was clearly not designed.
Or was it? "Well, smack my ass and call me Judy," I said, as the cartoon TV monkey finally ambled successfully onto his banana platform and the peel zipped up around him. He reappeared in a new scene, on a different banana platform.
"You know," I said, still standing there with two freezing glasses of beer raining condensation on the carpet, "You're pretty good at that."
Jojo grunted. He pressed pause for a moment, flashed me a quick, feral smile, scratched under the left armpit of his well-worn Def Leppard shirt, and went back to his game. I set one of the glasses of Keystone on the coffee table in front of him, and took the other one back to the kitchen. Then I thought better of it and set that one on the coffee table too. He'd drink it himself, even if I'd meant it for some mythical friend who I thought was being pegged as a lamewad.
I went back into the kitchen for a while and rinsed dishes, put them away in the dishwasher where I couldn't see any remaining grime. I got out a pint glass of my own and rooted around in the back of the pantry where the good beer was. I poured a bottle of Newcastle, making sure to leave a nice little head on it. Jojo always says Newcastle tastes like banana. So I hide it behind the Health Valley cookies.
During this process, I could hear:
"What the fuck was that?
And, of course, "Lamewad! Your ass is grass!"
I went back in after draining a good third of my glass of Newcastle, wondering for the thousandth time whether it was a mistake to marry your roommate in Reno when you were both drunk and knew, knew there were no other options, ever. Especially when he is clearly a lout.
The lout was still sitting there in front of the video game, his little gorilla jumping around in palm trees, collecting some kind of coins or coconuts or whatever greedy task was assigned at the outset of the game.
A lush green jungle surrounded him. The steam was almost palpable, the cheery little critters so vivid and the random booby traps so shocking in their suddenness as they deprived him of all of his hard-won bananas. His life force meter was almost drained to the bottom. An insistent warning began. Beep. Beep. Beep. It was almost over; I'd have the TV to myself. And I heard something else, something from Jojo; an almost primatelike hideous screech.
I started this piece because I really wanted to use the word "lamewad." This piece is also inspired by the fact that we had a case of unwanted leftover cans of Keystone Light in our fridge from a party two weeks ago, and finally drank the last ones last night. The problem was, I would drink one, and just not want another one. Blech.