Outside Magazine, July 2007
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
You consider yourself a gentleman, and so it's important, when you wake up with A STRANGER IN YOUR UNDERPANTS one remorseful summer morning, that you manage the matter with due delicacy and grace. What complicates things is that it's not a fellow Homo sapiens you brought home last night but a Dermacentor variabilis, which translates roughly to "moody flesh nibbler," a.k.a. the American dog tick.
Yes, you exercised poor judgment, but it's too late to worry about that. She's already gotten herself attached—way, way too horribly attached—to the tenderest organ known to men. You hate to be caddish, given the intimacies you've already shared, but be honest with yourself: You two simply don't have a future together. Don't be drawn in by that transparent "Oh, but I'm so tiny and vulnerable" routine. She's a parasite, no two ways about it. She knows she's got a good hustle going here, and she won't leave you alone until she's bled you to a husk.
You both could use a drink. Pull that pint of Kentucky Gentleman out of your liquor cabinet (no need to waste the Knob Creek). Take a strong dose yourself, then tilt the lip of the bottle against your little visitor. Hold it there for 90 seconds or so. Give her a nice long slug. Never mind the sting.
Ah, now she's feeling no pain. If her head weren't buried in your special purpose, you'd see a little woozy smile dawning on her face. Head for the bathroom. Take out your trusty Revlon needlenose tweezers. Now get a good grip, close to the jaw, and pull. That's a good girl. Let it go.
Now she's gazing at you, pinched in the tweezers' grasp, her eyes dark with the fury of the scorned. But a quick goodbye is what the occasion calls for. Grab the book of matches on the back of the commode and set her tactfully on fire.