Pussy Wag*n by Taylor Christine

Today, I’m bringing out a second installment in the Josephine the Dragon saga (which is a really lame way to describe it). These stories tend to be a little heartwarming, a little humorous, a little awesome. Maybe a lot awesome? Maybe. Yeah. Probably.

These stories are written by Taylor Christine, and are a lot of fun. I first heard these stories at an open mic, and am happy to bring them to the blog in written form. Enjoy.

You can follow Taylor on Twitter with @taylorkolky.


Pussy Wag*n

When Josephine the Dragon was in high school, she didn’t participate in extracurricular activities. She hated the dull hum of the fluorescent lights. She hated the monotonous scheduling that woke her up at 6:30 every morning to the unchanging, unforgiving curriculum which put her to sleep. Josephine had imagination. She had humor. But most importantly, she had answers. The thing about high school is that it never asked her the right questions. Until one morning.

On the community board near the auditorium, Josephine read a flyer that said, “WHAT CAN YOU DO?” It was an invitation to participate in the school’s talent show. Josephine thought of a million talents that would not go well on a stage. She could tie water balloons very gracefully for someone with claws. She knew the words to three different rap songs. She was great at catching things after she had dropped them.

A human girl stood alongside Josephine and stared at the flyers, too. “Are you thinking about performing?” She asked Josephine.

“Yes,” said Josephine, “But I don’t think I have any talents that belong on a stage.”

“I’m not sure I do either,” the girl said, “But there’s something very appealing about a free-for-all. I’m sure we’ll figure something out.”

Josephine turned towards the girl. “Do you want to do an act together? We could figure something cool out together!”

The girl introduced herself as Katie the Human, and she said she would love to.

Every day after school Katie would come to Josephine’s house, and they would practice a variety of skills in her driveway. The two ended up putting on a show together that involved juggling plastic bowling pins they found in Josephine’s garage. All while dancing on tap shoes they made by pushing metal tacks into the bottom of their sneakers. The whole show finished off with a small, controlled blast of fire from Josephine’s nostrils. Much to the surprise of the both of them-they got pretty good. They really started adjusting to tapping a good rhythm out of those tacks, and they started juggling and dancing at the same time within a few weeks. They got so good that Josephine approached Katie with a new idea, just days before the talent show.

She said, “Katie. I am so proud of what we have created together. Within a few weeks we’ve put together a tapping, bowling pin tossing, and fire breathing masterpiece that everyone is going to want to see. Are you sure you want to waste it on our school? Do we really want to put our heart and soul out to a crowd of the parents of the children we have to deal with every day at that bitter institution?”

Katie’s eyes widened, and Josephine could tell she didn’t like the sound of that, but Josephine continued.

“Let’s leave it behind, Katie. We could be a two girl show-join a traveling circus. I know there are people out there that need our resourcefulness, our innovation and creativity. We don’t need to be convenient for our school, we don’t need to be convenient for extracurricular activities, and we were not born to make our parents proud. We are here to be alive. If you go with me, we can drive off into the sunset like Beyoncé and Lady Gaga. And find all the people and things that allow us to connect in all the ways we always knew we were capable of. Do you ever feel homesick, Katie? Do you ever think that maybe you haven’t found your real home yet?”

Katie did not take Josephine’s hand. Katie went home. Josephine was heartbroken. And she thought that if a complete stranger who was willing to put together a circus act in her garage didn’t want to run away with her, then no one would.

The next day at school, Josephine didn’t see Katie in the hallways. She didn’t show up at Josephine’s driveway after school. Instead, Josephine used their practice space to sit and weep. Depression kept Josephine in her bed for the next two days. And, when her mother asked her what she needed to get better, Josephine just kept saying that she was “too sick for soup”.

On the day of the talent show, Josephine left her bed. She may not have a partner in crime to run away with, but she wasn’t going to miss the one day she had been looking forward to for weeks. Josephine felt like it was all she had.

The auditorium was packed with a mesh of outdoor chairs set for the moms, dads, aunts, uncles, and cousins of the community. She watched a freshman play the Star-Spangled Banner as the first act. She watched an old friend do a magic trick. Josephine wondered if it would be funny, if she pretended to faint when her and Katie’s names were called. She could stand up and wait until all of the attention was on her. And then, she’d squeeze through her row until BOOM, she falls, hitting as many plastic chairs as she could on her way down-shocking everyone. A stretcher could even be involved if she committed to being unconscious for long enough. Josephine knew that it could be a satisfying distraction, but decided against it. Katie and Josephine were up soon and she had no ideas.

Without two performers, Josephine had no act. Maybe this was a good time to stop acting. To stop juggling, to stop putting on a show.

Suddenly, their names were called and a spotlight hit Josephine. Another spotlight wandered around, looking for the other performer. Josephine stood. She pointed and said, “Me, yes me, it will be me tonight.” And both lights took to her. She could feel the heat of the extra light, she could feel everyone’s eyes on her. It was too bright to look back into them.

“I will be performing a haiku for you all tonight.”

She counted with her fingers behind the microphone,

“Don’t censor your hate
Love for yourself will always
Be uncorrupted”

Josephine looked at her hands–five syllables, she had done it! On the spot, she had come up with a haiku and from her heart, at that. She went up to perform an act, but instead performed honesty. She reflected on her own words and never wanted to forget them. She wanted to read a book with the same title, she wanted a tattoo of it. She wanted a religion to follow based on it. She smiled behind the microphone, waiting for a standing ovation.

The crowd was silent.

The man behind the spotlight waved his hand to tell Josephine, “Keep going!”

They still wanted her to fill the 10 minute time slot, but Josephine had already said all that her heart had to say. It was just concentrated into 17 syllables. There was awkward, random clapping from the crowd and discomfort, as everyone was unsure if her performance was over. This told Josephine that she needed to make a very, very dramatic exit. This was something that Josephine was very good at.

She walked to a podium that sat on the stage and ducked underneath it. Several people thought she was hiding out of embarrassment, and laughed at her. She dug around in a basket of high school podium-type junk. She grabbed the thickest, smelliest permanent marker she could find. Sharpie. Extra duty. Felt tip. It was perfect. She walked back to the microphone like she was going to say something, but turned her back to the audience instead. She forced open her wings, and stretched them into the most fantastic display she could manage. The microphone was knocked over by the wind, purely by accident, but she liked the way the microphone hit the ground with a bang. She liked the high-pitched feedback which caused everyone to flinch. Children screamed. It was her soundtrack of destruction. Josephine was ready for her big exit.

She opened the marker. She wrote “pussy” on her left wing and “wagon” on her right, and then she pushed off the ground. She flew off the stage and above the crowd. The wind of her wings batted everyone around, and children continued to scream. The stage lights swung in all kinds of directions. Josephine hovered for a moment to look down at the chaos.

She didn’t feel the need to apologize.

Josephine flew out of the auditorium with the ruthlessness of Uma Thurman, but with a vitality that was uniquely Josephine.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s