Avery calls me up and says Mattilda, I figured it out.
You figured what out?
I figured it out, Mattilda, I figured it out, I figured it out, I figured it out!
Honey, you are coked out of your mind.
Mattilda, who isn’t, who isn't? I know you're always talking about how everyone in Boston is totally apathetic and I'm like the worst example of that I mean I don't even have a political bone in my body. Although wait, I was a PoliSci major for 10 minutes. But I didn't even know what was going on. I thought PoliSci was science. With geology at least you get to look at something. Mattilda, there are so many problems, Mattilda, so many problems and I know you know that I know I know I know, Mattilda. So, what was I saying, what was I saying, Mattilda? Oh, oh – I still don't fucking know what's going on, but I thought of the perfect idea, something we can do together, oh, maybe I shouldn't say it on the phone.
Are you teasing me?
Mattilda, it's true, I have to wait at the haunted house for a few deliveries, but maybe we can get together later, and I'll tell you my idea. I think you'll like it. I think you'll really like it. Really really. I’m sure. I’m really sure. Okay?
When we finally get together, it’s the end of the day I mean the beginning and Avery and I are at Bertucci's because I'm still trying to get her to eat. She looks around to make sure no one’s paying attention and then says listen, Mattilda, listen: Remember when we went to Star Market last night to get contact lens solution? Yes, last night, that was last night! Okay, so I was looking around at everyone looking at you. Everyone. And no one, no one at all, no one was looking at me. You see what I mean?
Mattilda, don't play coy with me, coy decoy, you're the one who likes to call it bargain shopping. No one was looking at me, get it?
Oh, okay, yes, yes, I get it. Bargain shopping realness.
Yes, yes, bargain shopping realness — you got it, Mattilda, you got it. So are you ready?
I’m always ready for bargain shopping.
I knew it, Mattilda, I knew it! And, you're right about something else —I should smoke pot more often, I didn’t realize I could be so hungry, even though there isn't any fucking cheese in this pizza it’s delicious, almost as delicious as you and here's my example, it's cold out, right? Really fucking freezing-your-tits-off cold. So what do people need, people outside? People stuck the fuck outside in this fucking freezing cold. Sleeping bags, right?
Sure, sleeping bags, sure, why not? But where are we going to get a bunch of sleeping bags?
Mattilda, obviously you haven't been to Allston, Cambridge, Brookline — there are plenty of places to get sleeping bags, Sleeping Booty.
Sleeping Beauty, I love it.
Booty, Mattilda, booty. Give me a kiss.
Usually I'm so focused on my own bargain shopping, studying everyone’s reactions while I yawn and pretend to be oh-so-relaxed. Wait, did I tell you how relaxed I am? Honey, I could almost fall asleep right here I’m just so comfortable.
Everyone looks at my hair, but then there’s the moment when they look away and that’s when I drop some 50-dollar vitamins into my bag.
But it’s so much easier when all I have to do is take in the attention, right? And whenever someone starts to glance in Avery's direction, all I have to do is ask a stupid question or act like I'm about to take something, and boom, all eyes are on me.
Eight sleeping bags in one afternoon, honey – we can't help adding up the prices on the labels, just to see, and it's more than $800. Okay, goodbye evidence. Hello homeless shelter. Let’s just drop these off outside, okay?
Remember Drugstore Cowboy? I watched that movie three times in high school. I just thought it was the most glamorous thing, driving around and stealing pills from drugstores and then watching tiny people float around in the clouds. I don’t think there’s any other movie I’ve seen three times, except The Unbelievable Truth, where in the beginning two girls are lying in the grass looking up at the sky and talking to one another and that’s kind of how I feel in the car with Avery, doing another bump of coke and this is our movie, shot from inside a cream-colored Mercedes. Avery, what’s this color called? Anyway, inside it’s brown. Reddish-brown. There must be a more sophisticated name for that, too. Leather, of course, because what kind of luxury could you have without your sweaty ass on some dead animal skin?
Breathe deep and let your head roll back and then step outside like you don’t even notice the cameras on you because that’s just the way it always is. Serious high-level undercover runway with all these mirrors, every store has mirrors, even if they’re just selling sporting gear, what is all this gear for? Bug smearer. Rain fearer. Forty-degrees-below-zero mirror, perfect to check my hair, my forty-degrees-below-zero rain gear hair smear fearer here, turn, I almost want to wave but don’t worry, honey, I’m not going to give it away.
Are they really playing “Highway to Hell”? Don’t look at the cameras. Yawn again. Turn. Okay, Avery’s out the door. Pose. Turn. Let the lights blend into your eyes. Runway runaway.
Avery doesn't care about the cameras, she says as long as she does it fast, and no one notices, they'll never check the footage. Maybe at big department stores they have people actually watching, but not anywhere else.
Another bump? Of course, darling, of course. You always know how to provide.