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  ...presents...                Monster Jennifer,
                            or Celibacy Can Kill You
                                                         by Omega

                      >>> a cDc publication.......1993 <<<
                        -cDc- CULT OF THE DEAD COW -cDc-
 ____       _     ____       _       ____       _     ____       _       ____
|____digital_media____digital_culture____digital_media____digital_culture____|

     Jennifer's sleep was disturbed by something inside her.  At two in the
morning, she woke up and went into the kitchen of her apartment to get
something to eat.

     She got chills staring at the swarm of silverfish on her kitchen floor.
With the lights off, Jennifer could see their shiny slender bodies glisten and
slither in the dark.  Her skin crawled.  She flashed on the light to scare the
insects away, and strike back at them for disrupting her sense of personal
cleanliness.

     Jennifer's appetite was spoiled so she went into the bathroom.  Her spice
racks flanked the mirror above the sink.  Most people keep their spices in the
kitchen, but let's not make too many assumptions.  Jennifer glanced at the
labels and selected three jars.  She drew a hot bath and then threw some
saffron, some nutmeg, and a tablespoon of oregano into the steaming water.

     There were some tools on the ceramic shelf just above the bathtub.  After
sitting down in the warm water, Jennifer began working on herself with one of
the tools.  She was such a sexy girl.  Two different men in her apartment
building had images of her in their minds at that very moment.

     One of the men was masturbating, his member slick and reaching, with a
political talk show on his radio - Rush Limbaugh - and a baseball cap on his
head.

     The second man was asleep, and Jennifer was part of his dream.  They were
both in a large empty dirt lot neighboring a cemetery.  The one square mile
area had been cleared of its trees to make room for more graves.  Jennifer and
the fellow were at opposite ends of the lot, driving towards each other on
motorcycles at 45 miles an hour.

     It was a game, designed to test courage; they sped towards each other and
the first person to turn off of the crash-course lost.  At their combined
speed it could not have taken more than one minute for them to reach each
other, but in the dream they moved with the pace of an  ancient clock's tick.
Their motorcycles were silent.  As Jennifer came within twenty feet of the man
he saw that she wasn't wearing a helmet; her hair was like a stray raincloud
that had wandered down from the overcast sky; it would never protect her head.
When they were fifteen feet from each other they made eye contact, their
expressions challenging each other to continue riding for another split
second.  When they were within ten feet from each other they both turned
simultaneously; suddenly he could hear their motorcycles, and the sound was
deafening.  They had not planned the game well; instead of both turning either
to the right or left, he turned to his right and she turned to her left.  They
crashed into each other.

     Their motorcycles exploded into fragments, and his right side was
paralyzed.  He saw Jennifer's eyes roll away from the ruins of her bike, and
he saw one of her lungs lying on the ground like a fish stolen from its world,
still inhaling and exhaling.  The man's face was immotile and lying on its
side in the dirt, but moving his eyes around he looked for Jennifer's head.
He couldn't find it.  The dream changed.

     Now only the masturbator was thinking about Jennifer.  He removed his
baseball cap - it was getting too hot - and switched off the radio so that he
could concentrate better.  When he ejaculated, Jennifer wasn't even thinking
of him.  He was spent, his mind buzzed in vacuous contentment.  Now no one was
thinking about Jennifer.

     Jennifer became sleepy in the tub, and relaxed.  Then like a pin pressed
into her mind, she began worrying about her financial situation; she got fired
over two weeks ago and would soon be broke.  If only you could send in some
money for her.  But no, she would have to call her mother.  Jennifer became
angry.  She thought of the silverfish.  To calm herself she began imagining a
new tool.  Maybe she could get a stranger to test it so that she wouldn't have
to take the risk again.

     Floating in the corner of the tub was a bay leaf left over from her last
bath.  Jennifer was usually careful to drain her baths, as everyone should be,
but she considered it a good auspice to find some remains from the previous
bath in the tub with her.  Baths were miniature other-worlds, connected to
each other by a language of left-over objects.  When she noticed the bay leaf,
Jennifer thought to herself: "That's there to tell me I'm the richest girl on
earth."  In fact, there was something wonderfully unique about her anatomy.
Lots of people would want to marry her for it.

     Sleep became irresistible.  Jennifer stood up in the tub, her smooth skin
glistening with a fine pale film.  The ends of her hair were curly and dark
with moisture, while the hair closer to her scalp was still dry and straight.
A thousand drops of water fell off her body as she stepped over the edge of
the tub onto the bath mat.  She did not slip and break her neck.  But she did
decide not to bother draining the bath, and to go directly to sleep instead.
She knew this was foolish.

     Jennifer fell asleep and dreamed that one of the silverfish crawled into
bed and seduced her.  The tiny movements of its snaking, segmented abdomen
mesmerized her.

     "You always have salad and coffee," Jennifer told one of her friends at
the City Cafe, where she ate lunch.  "Black coffee and Thousand Island
dressing.  I don't like the sound of that combination."

     The other woman, whose name was Samantha, stared at her.

     "You people from New York sure have strange habits," Jennifer concluded.
After staring for several moments more, Samantha said, "My husband is dying of
AIDS."

     Jennifer felt uncomfortable in the taxi on the way home.  The driver
never stopped staring at her through the rearview mirror.  She held out a five
dollar bill to him when the ride was over.  He didn't reach for the money, he
just gazed at her.  "Look, Miss, I'm only going to ask you this once.  I don't
usually proposition my customers, but if I asked you to do something with me,
say, like..."

     "No!"  She dropped the bill on the front seat and stepped out of the cab,
then ascended the stairs of her apartment building.

     At her apartment door, Jennifer realized she left her keys in the taxi.
She got an extra door key from the apartment manager, but when she called the
cab company - and she called four times that evening to make sure - they
reported that no keys had been turned in.  The driver had apparently decided t
keep the keys.

     Jennifer's sleep was torn open from the inside.  She awoke up at about
two in the morning and went into the kitchen of her apartment.

     Even though she expected to find silverfish on the floor, the sight of
their wisping tails and antennae still made her shudder.  She switched on the
light, but this time it did not faze all the insects; some continued
scrounging around the kitchen.  Would poison spray work?  Roach motels?
Jennifer decided to ask the apartment manager to call an exterminator the next
day - in addition to hiring someone to change her lock.

     Jennifer went into the bathroom, and found the water from the night
before still in the tub.  It was completely still.  It looked more like a
solid mass of milky quartz than water.  This water was  petrified, and a line
of extinct movement rested on the surface of it in the form of a thin layer of
soap.  The tools on the ceramic shelf stared into the water with Jennifer, and
while she looked embarrassed and a little guilty - she had given in to her
laziness the night before - the tools looked aggressive.  Threatening.  They
wanted to plunge into the water and strip it of its hydrogen, reducing it to
pure air.  At one edge of the tub Jennifer saw the bay leaf, which looked more
like a dark stain by now than a leaf.

     "My husband is dying of AIDS, and you're complaining about my salad
dressing.  Jennifer, you are the most stupid, careless person I know.  Your
amazing body will never make up for that."

     When Jennifer was really young she fell off her kiddy stool one night
during dinner.  When she hit the linoleum floor she felt like everything hated
her - the kiddy stool, the floor, her throbbing shoulder - the whole world.
And then her father yelled at her for being so clumsy.

     Several years later, her father shoved her across the kitchen.  He was
angry at her for something, she never remembered what.  Jennifer fell and her
forehead banged against the handle of the cabinet under the sink.  Her skin
was torn open, and she needed eight stitches.  The scar would be visible for
the rest of her life.  As if to make up for the tragedy and the blemish it
would leave on her, her body began developing in a delightfully unpredictable
way.  Even the weirdos who work at condom factories never imagined this.

     When Jennifer was in the eighth grade - her parents had divorced and she
was living with her mother - a letter from the school arrived for her Mom.  It
reported that Jennifer would not be allowed into high school next year because
her grades were so miserable.  Jennifer felt like a complete failure.  She was
one, scholastically.  But for the life of her she couldn't figure out why.
The fact that she genuinely tried to get good grades made Jennifer's
disappointment in herself acute.

     Her Mom said, "Why don't you try sleeping with your teachers?"

     Jennifer asked, "Couldn't you do it for me, Mommy?"
  
     "He has AIDS?  Oh my God, Samantha, I'm sorry.  I had no idea.  I feel so
callous.  I would never have thought he was sleeping with someone besides you.
And a man?  No wonder you feel terrible; that shows you weren't satisfying
him.  I'll bet you feel really guilty, because it's your fault he has AIDS; he
wouldn't have wanted to sleep around if you'd been good enough.  If I were
you, I'd feel like shit.  And to top it all off, you're probably going to get
AIDS now."

     The second man began dreaming about Jennifer again.  This time she was
sitting in a garden, on the edge of a large marble fountain.  Shiny white
lotus blossoms were on the water behind her, bubbling in the light reflecting
on them.  Jennifer's hair looked radiant.  Her dark brown eyes were turned
away from him as he looked at her, and waited for her to say something.  He
stared at every point on her body like she was diagrammed on graph paper.  Her
fingernails weren't painted.  Her stomach was empty.

     She looked up at him, and there was a ladybug crawling on her lower lip.
She didn't notice this; he ground his teeth in frustration.

     Apprehensive about the bath water, Jennifer shut the bathroom door.  She
took a sleeping bag out of her bedroom closet, and slept inside that.  With
the zipper almost completely closed, she didn't dream of anything.

     "Jennifer, look, it's your fault you left the keys in the cab.  I'll call
the locksmith for you, but you have to pay for it.  It's your fault."

     "Yeah, yeah, yeah.  But what about the bugs?  The silverfishes?  You
can't say that they're my fault."

     "No?  I'm not so sure.  No one else in the building has complained about
any.  Are you sure they're there?  Have you seen them yourself?"

     "Yes!  I see them every goddamn night."

     "Are you sure?  You're not just imagining them or anything, are you?
You're not hysterical?"

     "Get serious."

     "No one else has complained about them!  Not even your next door
neighbor."

     "Oh, for chrissake, that guy probably isn't hygienic enough for insects.
And he wouldn't notice them unless they crawled out of his TV screen; all he
does all day is watch sports and listen to Rush Limbaugh."

     Matter of fact, there were other things he did as well.  He hung out at
the YMCA and local gyms, periodically approaching beginning weight lifters and
swimmers to offer helpful tips, or crumbs of humor.  He went to beaches and
infiltrated volleyball games.  In the middle of an otherwise normal game the
members of a team would collectively realize that a total stranger just served
for them; they'd whisper to each other,  "Who is this guy?"

     "I don't know!"

     "Well, who did he come with?"  And no one would know.  But they'd let him
keep playing because of his strong serves and his good cooperation with the
team. He'd invariably leave before having to answer any direct and revealing
questions.

     Occasionally at the YMCA he'd approach a stranger in a locker room,
asking to borrow an extra pair of shorts or socks, or offering some of his
own.  And once in a while when he was alone in the locker room with a young
boy or an adolescent, he'd walk over and occupy the neighboring locker.  At
some point he'd reach over and put his hand on his neighbor's body, then offer
to exchange sexual favors with him.  More often than not the other person
would accept.  Even if he was customarily straight, or had never had sex
before.

     But when he wasn't engaged in any of these activities, the guy was at
home watching sports or listening to Rush Limbaugh.

     An agency sent over an exterminator.  He walked around Jennifer's apart-
with a red hose that had a metal tank at one end and a shiny silver nozzle at
the other.  The tank hung over his muscular shoulder on black nylon straps.
He sprayed around the edges of the carpets, in all the corners, under
dressers, under the sink, and behind the toilet.

     "Oh, excuse me, mister?  Could you unplug the drain in the bathtub?"

     The Exterminator looked up at Jennifer, then down at the bathtub filled
with murky dead water.

     "I'd really appreciate it.  You have to reach in and take the plug out of
the drain.  Please..."

     He reached out, then hesitated; he saw a pair of large aquatic snails
gliding slowly along the bottom of the tub.  He looked up at the strange
woman.  She was anxious, shifting, but he felt something special about her.
He shrugged, then plunged his hand into the liquid.  The drain had looked
closer than it was; his whole arm got wet, right up to the shoulder.  When the
last of the water, silty and dark, had swirled down the drain, the snails were
gone.

     "Thanks so much!  I really appreciate you doing that for me."

     The Exterminator smiled.

     "Mom!  I met a man I really like."

     "Have you met any men you don't like?"

     "Gee, that's really funny, Mom.  Seriously though, he's a really fine
person."

     "Congratulations, there are only three of them in existence.  Actually
I'm happy for you.  I hate men right now.  Did I tell you I'm becoming a
lesbian?"

     "You're kidding."

     "No, I'm finally going to do it.  I haven't found the necessary
literature yet, but I hope to soon.  So tell me about Prince Charming."

     "He's extremely handsome - I'd even say statuesque; he has an amazing
smile, and he's an exterminator."

     There usually seemed something very gender-based about the components of
Jennifer's reality, but on her first date with the Exterminator she found her
male and female distinctions melting.

     When the Exterminator removed Jennifer's clothes, he found one of her
tools working on her body.  She had forgotten it was there.

     "Oh.  It's new.  I designed it myself.  What do you think?"

     Jennifer tried to ask only yes-or-no questions with the Exterminator,
since he was a mute, but in this case she slipped.  The man didn't scrawl a
note on his pad of paper; he didn't know what to write.  He thought the tool
looked like a cross between a lobster and a totem pole, and smelled like salt
water taffy.  He just stared.

     "Want to see me turn it on?"  She quipped, "It could turn you on."  He
half shrugged.

     Eager to excite him, Jennifer turned the new tool on full blast - which
she promised herself she would get someone else to do first, since she wasn't
sure it was safe.  But she courageously merged the untested tool - straining
in its own parameters - with her Feature, which the Exterminator had longed to
see since they first met.  It was an amazing thing.  It was.

     Suddenly Jennifer had to close her eyes, and she exhaled sharply.  The
Exterminator's mouth fell open.  For a second he was hypnotized, then he ran
out of the apartment.

     "Wait!"  she called out, but he was already gone.  Jennifer tore the tool
away from everything and hurled it against the wall.  She cried.

     A few minutes later, she heard a key click in the front door.  She
remembered the taxi driver; the lock had not been changed yet.  As she reached
for the telephone, Jennifer heard footsteps in the living room.  Then she
heard the drain in the bathtub start to vomit.

     The first time Jennifer met Samantha was at the City Cafe.  It was lunch
hour, and the place was so crowded Jennifer had to sit at a half-occupied
table.  The woman already sitting there, Samantha, was eating a salad which
had things that looked like glass marbles all over it.  After the two ate in
silence for a few minutes, Samantha spoke to Jennifer.  "Um, excuse me.  Do
you mind if I ask how you got that scar on your forehead?"

     "Well, I'm sorry, but it's something I don't really like to talk about."

     "Sort of like the Eighties?"

     "Only not quite as trivial."  And then Jennifer noticed that Samantha,
too, had a scar on her forehead.

     When the Exterminator was a boy, he was constantly sent to day care
centers.  One of the centers was a commercial farm where the kids were used
illegally for child labor, which the center managers had a different name for.
The kids had to clean out stables, feed and wash the animals, and so on.
These tasks lasted for the whole day.  The Exterminator was once out in a
grazing field surrounded by two dozen sheep.  It was sunny and the air was
clear.  The night before he had been up crying well into the night because his
parents were fighting, but now - out in the field, away from everyone - the
boy felt safe and overwhelmingly happy.  He got down on all fours, pretended
to be a sheep.  He rubbed against the animals and bleated, then even tried
eating grass.  He didn't like the center's managers.  He took every
opportunity to go out with the sheep and pretend to be an animal like them.

     After leaving Jennifer's apartment, the Exterminator drove up the coast,
looking at cows grazing in their fields.

     Jennifer was standing naked and gripping her telephone when the taxi
driver appeared at her bedroom door.  She was astonished.  "I'm sorry.  I
didn't want to do this.  Look, I'm sorry you're naked.  These are for you."

     He handed her a dozen red roses and something bleeding in white butcher's
paper.

     "It's a heart."

     "Thank you."

     "You're amazing."

     "Thanks."

     "And hermaphroditic: you have both male and female genitals."

     "I know."

     "Amazing."

     Jennifer spent the following Monday in job interviews.  When she came
home in the afternoon, she found a message from her father on the answering
machine.  His voice was apprehensive and tired.  She had not spoken to him in
twelve years.

     She borrowed a friend's car and drove to the place where he asked her to
meet him.  It was the lake where some parts of the city got their water, and
where fishermen went to fish.  She walked down from the area with the bait
shop and the snack shop to the docks, where dozens of low horsepower boats
were tied up.  Almost all the boats had returned from out on the lake; it was
late afternoon and soon it would be too dark to fish.  Jennifer saw her
father's boat emerge from behind a distant peninsula.  It took four minutes
for the boat to reach the dock - she noticed her teeth were clenched - and
Jennifer wasn't completely sure it was him until he uttered her name.  She was
surprised by how old he looked; he had never aged in her imagination.

     "I didn't catch shit out there."

     "Being a father isn't the only thing you're bad at?"

     This surprised him.  "No, I guess not."

     They looked at each other for a long time.  He put down the heavy tackle
box that he was holding.  He was standing between Jennifer and the lake, and
directly behind him she could see a school of bass in the water.  They were
large; the largest among them weighed eight pounds, but they were like ghost
fish.  Their movement was impossible to follow under the rippling waves that
reflected the sunset.  Their silvery, curving outlines contained shadows, and
they appeared, then vanished, and reappeared again as if in quantum leaps.

     "Why did you ask me to come here?"  Staring at her feet, he wiped his
mouth with his sleeve and then looked up at her.  "I wanted to say that I did
what I had to do.  I mean refusing to see you those times, and everything."

     "That's all over with.  Mom and I have forgotten you.  You don't have any
right to try to change anything."

     He looked away, then nodded.  "All right.  Then I guess don't tell her I
saw you, right?"

     "Yeah."  After a moment he shrugged.  She turned to leave.

     He was thirty feet across the gym wearing a black tank top.  His shoulder
and arms, his strong neck, and the visible portion of his densely-haired chest
were all glazed with a light sweat.  They made eye contact through a jungle of
Mr. Universe weight lifting contraptions serviceable to every muscle in the
body.  Almost.  He followed him into the locker room.

     It was ten thirty in the morning.  Rush Limbaugh was over, and there were
no other people in the gym.  In the locker room there were ten vacant shower
stalls, five long, low benches, and two guys wearing tank tops.  They faced
each other.  The Rush fan put the palm of his hand against the other guy's
breast.  The other guy closed his eyes; one of his hands, by an instinct for
closeness, moved to the Rush fan's waist.  The Rush fan slid his hand slowly
and purposefully down the other guy's chest over his tight, flat stomach
muscles; then down further to his soft and hardening genitals.  The other guy
opened his eyes, and they kissed.

     "So what's your name?  What do you do?"  the Rush fan asked when they
were done.  He was lying down on a bench with the other guy sitting up beside
him, his hand resting on the Rush fan's lap.

     "Paul.  And I don't want to tell what I do."  Paul smiled.

     "Why not?"

     "'Cause it's stupid."

     The Rush fan sat up.  "What do you mean?"

     "It's not me.  What we did just now, that's me."

     "Everything you do is you."

     "Christ, I hope not," Paul said.  "I have a wife who loves me.  Do you
love me?  Yes, Samantha, I love you.  Then every lunch hour while she's off at
the City Cafe with her catty friends I'm at Bob or Paul or Stan's house
tearing up condoms like they're made of smoke.  If everything I do is me, then
I'm eighty percent lies."

     When the Rush fan left, Paul stayed in the locker room.  Sitting on the
bench alone and still naked, he removed a monkey wrench from his gym bag and
began licking it.  He pressed it to his fillings, and tasted its metal deeply.
Paul couldn't bring himself to warn the Rush fan that he had AIDS.  It wasn't
selfish avoidance on his part: he simply could not put the words together.

     "So what's happening with your Exterminator, Sugar?"

     "Oh, that ended.  It was just a fling."

     "Really?  You sounded so enthused."

     "We all make mistakes.  But I've found someone else!  He drives a cab
part time, but he's also a brilliant electrician.  He's helping me with my,
you know, electronics projects."

     Jennifer's mother paused.

     "Well, I just hope you see your gynecologist regularly."

     "Oh, Mother!  You know I don't need a gynecologist for that.  I need a
surrealist."

     "Jenn, it's not smart to be as sexual as you are.  Sex is dangerous these
days."

     "Mom: celibacy can kill you just as easily as any disease."

     "As if you'd ever find out, right?"

     Jennifer did not mention that she met with her father.

     That night when she went into the kitchen, she did not see a single
silverfish.

 _______  __________________________________________________________________
/ _   _ \|Demon Roach Undrgrnd.806/794-4362|Kingdom of Shit.....806/794-1842|
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 [ x x ] |Ripco................312/528-5020|Moody Loners w/Guns.415/221-8608|
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   (U)   |==================================================================|
  .ooM   |Copr. 1993 cDc communications by Omega               01/01/93-#202|
\_______/|All Rights Drooled Away.                 SIX GLORIOUS YEARS of cDc|