The mayor called for an investigation into the amount of horseshit that’s been accumulating on Central Park West as of late. ‘It’s a veritable dumping ground,’ one disgusted resident said. ‘It’s a lot of shit,’ the mayor was quoted as saying. ‘I meant caca or crap. You know what I meant,’ he added. Anyway the mayor said they’d be starting a proper investigation. The right agency or investigative body would be called upon to proceed. In this case, the Department of Sanitation, but there were suggestions of a new agency potentially being formed. Code name: the Shit Squad.
Twenty minutes passed. The doctor had been testing Carmela with small cuts. She screamed in agony each time. She was feeling everything, and she could especially feel every slit, stealing that initial resolve. Cut by cut, her screams grew louder and louder, her worry deeper and deeper. This was not as simple as death. This was not a clean sacrifice. She kept herself from pushing for what felt like hours until, with a final scream, her body took over.
When Z. was away at a psychoanalytic conference in Rome, her patient D. came into her home office for his Tuesday-afternoon therapy appointment. He probably sat in her waiting room for a couple of minutes, then walked into her office and looked at her desk, her drawers, her black record book where she writes down payments. She had a lot of cash hidden in the left cover.
He was sprawled and cornered against his nightstand and tethered to the mattress by a tangle of bedclothes. Sleep anchored him, making it hard to stop his arms from thrashing. Blood and fire gagged his throat, blocking the scream. Panicked children. Mothers, naked, keening.
The Analyst stares into the steam of his green tea. Some of the more proactive flakes escape a tear in the frail nylon sachet, wending to the surface, a morning Rorschach for no one to interpret.
The first of his five patients for the day is out in the waiting room, flicking through one of the old copies of the LRB fanned out on the scuffed coffee table with splintered legs. After all, the Analyst wanted to make and maintain the right impression — urbane, intellectual, and playful were three adjectives he hoped crossed some folks’ minds some of the time.