My Mind Gives Blow Jobs

A woman’s OCD makes her picture things she’d rather not

My obsessive-compulsive, obscene thoughts come to a halt when I’m faced with confrontation. That’s the only positive of my anxiety, and the only reason why the police officer who pulled me over on PCH for texting and driving (although I was not texting) is not right now arresting me.

Before today, I used to think if I was ever pulled over, I’d seduce the middle aged officer, make him willingly pull down his awkward blue pants, the stuffed pockets relieved to finally obey gravity. I’d drink in his hardened face and find a delicate or unfortunate feature to reverse my feelings of self-pity and reflect them back onto his hairy mole, his wall eyes, his ambiguous eyebrows, his fourth chin.

But I’m a feminist. I wouldn’t open my throat wide for any pig, but that doesn’t stop my mind from repeating the visual. Blow, blow, blow, blow. Everything in even numbers. And if I happen to bite off the head, I’d have to chew, chew, chew, chew — two muscle movements per mouth side.

My head is violent; it’s all filled up with infernal introspections. Even when I’m in love, even when I’m making love, it’s an act of violence, an act of destruction, a stride in the direction of my entropic ending. I never even notice the flashing red, white, and blue strobe lights spilling patriotically into my rear-view mirror, announcing I must inevitably surrender my life savings to the city. How long had he been back there before I saw him? I pull over and roll down my window, my leg shaking, my sicko fantasy long dumped from my accessible memory.

“Do you know why I pulled you over?”

No.
 “You were looking at your phone as you drove past me. Were you texting?”

No.
 “Where you headed?”

Work.
 “Where’s work?”

A community college.

Doesn’t he know I’m a good person? Doesn’t he care that I’m on my way to tutor a hundred grammatically-deaf-and-blind students who would fail basic English, and then their lives, without me? Doesn’t he know about my shitty childhood? Can’t he detect on my face the stress of being a victim of abuse? Why didn’t I buy a bumper sticker to indicate my tragic past before this? “Abused on Board.” My eyes water, and I’m reminded I have a vagina. But wait, I take that back. I’m a feminist.

Officer Sansenbach does ask if I am “okay” when he sees I’m crying. “Yes, I’m okay,” my vagina speaks in blubbering staccato. Why do people ask if you’re okay? Why does a police officer ask that after just handing me a ticket? Of course I’m okay, as okay as the entitled community college students of Orange County are when I tell them I can’t edit their papers or do their homework or wipe their asses when they shit on themselves.

This officer is in his 60s at least, and of course he has to find the real, hardened criminal: someone going 20 miles per hour in traffic, flirting occasionally with her cell phone screen. He doesn’t even mention the smell of bud that’s been wafting around in my car the past few days because of one baggie, one little baggie my ex-sister-in-law gave me for babysitting. My first baggie.

I call my brother instantly after driving away from the law, whose penis doesn’t land within inches of my reluctant but willing-if-he-were-a-hotter-officer mouth. It is my act of rebellious irony to use my phone a mere moment after leaving the cacophonous cop car, its top blaring disco lights. I also need to dump on my brother. What do I do about this ticket? How can I appeal it? Why was I born? Why didn’t Dad twist my neck wrong when he pulled me out of Mom’s cavern so I could live the Gatsby dream of dying young and covered in fluid?

My brother is helpful; he’s still grateful that I let him borrow my car for a week and drove him around Sunday. He offers to pay for part of my ticket when he gets his paycheck.

“No, dude. But thanks for offering,” I say, masculinely.

He offers me money now, but last night it was bud. If he would’ve remembered to give it to me then, it would’ve been my second baggie. Ironically, my ex-sister-in-law, who gave me my first baggie, was married to this very brother. Why did they divorce again?

That night, he offered, “You can have it. I’m not gonna smoke for a while till I get my new place. And when I do, I’m gonna do wax.”

“What’s that?” I asked.

“Something stupid white people do,” he said, laughing a little under his breath.

The following morning, I’m on the phone with him about my ticket, listening calmly: “Just pay the ticket. It’s not worth contesting. Take a day off of work, go to the courthouse, pay the fee,” he says. My masculine exterior begins to crumble as I tear up again at his doomsday forecast.

I decide to contest my ticket against his advice because of the various ticket kick-it articles I dangerously skim while driving to work after getting the ticket.

My boss greets me warmly when I arrive: “What happened to all the beautiful makeup? I’ve gotten so used to it!” Bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch. I mean…(What’s a non-gendered insult?)…Ass hole, ass hole! My recent ex-boyfriend, who I still have to work with on Mondays, looks up at the disaster of a face I’m wearing. Why did I take off my makeup the night before? I had the opportunity to say, “Today’s face, brought to you by last night’s makeup!” But I missed my chance and chose healthy skin over beauty. Never again.

My boss is fixated on my imperfections, her eyes puffy and mean and French-Canadian. I slip in awkwardly, “I just got a ticket,” but she ignores my explanation, probably for the best. I didn’t even do anything cool to get a ticket; I was acting like a teenager, not a daredevil. My ex looks over at me too, probably pleased that for the first Monday since we broke up, my face is a mess, and I just saw him two nights before. He thinks I’ve been bawling over him when in fact, I didn’t do my makeup to prove to myself that I don’t even have to dress up for him to miss me.

My lack of makeup has also proved convenient for getting pulled over and crying; there’s no mascara dribble racing down to my jawline, no way for my ex to detect any post-break-up sadness. On the other hand, he got his left ear pierced recently, and I laugh inside at the silver hoop that screams breakup makeover. He looks like a member of ‘N Sync when they were trying to make a comeback.

We interact with each other once at work. He spills coffee on a table, and I say something about how clumsy he is. Later on during a tutoring session, I look up at the door to see who’s walking in, and it’s him, staring right at me…Oh my God. He definitely thinks I miss him. I don’t, really. I just occasionally think about drunk texting him and asking him if he wants to fuck, fuck me. No strings attached. Oh God, I’m desperate. Or maybe it’s another obsessive-compulsive fantasy, a creepy image that pops in my head that I know I’d never act on. He’s not even attractive without his beard.

I finally leave work and head to my car. Before driving off, I wrestle with my backpack for my water bottle and feel it leaking from the top. Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit. I pull all of my papers out of my bag. Only one of them is drenched and a little torn. It’s my ticket. Is this you, subconscious? Are you acting out?

I put the papers down on the passenger seat and seal my leaking bottle. I pull out a granola bar from my bag and start munching as the engine of my Hyundai passive-aggressively snarls at me. I keep my phone in my lap to stay. I’m taking PCH back, and there’s no need to use up data by checking it. There’s also a soaking wet paper that drips another reason why I shouldn’t. I’m still driving distractedly, but it’s much harder to scroll, like, or comment food, and a granola bar is not pretty enough to post on Instagram — even with a filter on it. I notice a drive- thru Starbucks to my right on PCH. I’ve never seen it before. It’s nice. I pass it and slow down as the cars in front of me slow to a stop in traffic. Is it legal to check my phone with the brake pedal pressed down all the way? I shouldn’t risk it. There might be a cop around, one too ugly to blow (blow, blow, blow). Even if it’s only in my mind.

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