Know what is worse than having an old sperm bowl lying around your bedroom? Having TWO old sperm bowls lying around your bedroom. I swiftly dump them into the trash and toss them in the sink to soak. Right in time -- my doorbell rings, and it’s Dashiell, coming over a little early for a make-out before the team shows up. But something it distracting me, what is it, what is it . . . oh, NO I forgot to get a new syringe! Rhinda and Quentin will be here any sec. There is only one thing to do.
Trash pick a spermy syringe from my garabage. Vigorously wash it. And boil it. Did I boil it? I am most certainly sure that I would not have allowed a spermy syringe to deliver a fresh batch of sperm into my vagine without BOILING it first. Right?
“DON’T JUDGE ME!” I shout back at Dashiell as I run into my kitchen and dig the syringe from the bucket under my sink. Dashiell waves her long, elegant hands as if to say, “Huh? Whaa? I don’t even speak this language."
I have nothing to worry about -- the thought of me trash picking a spermy syringe out of my trash is actually UNFATHOMABLE to Dashiell. She is physically, emotionally and spiritually unable to comprehend it. It’s as if it didn’t happen. Everyone is happy!
Quentin and Rhonda show up and me and Rhonda make a big, narcissistic deal out of what narcissists we were the other night and make Quentin tell us all about his gaycation in Mexico City. I serve up my leftover Burmese Red Pork Stew and then make coffee because me and Rhonda and Dash are going to see "Contraband" with Mark Wahlberg after insemination. Quentin gets pouty. He wants to go see "Contraband" with Mark Wahlberg, too! Like all gay people, he loves Mark Wahlberg.
“You should come!” We beg him, but Quentin has drag queeny plans he can’t escape from. Being a drag queen takes a lot of commitment and dedication. It’s sort of like ballet.
In my room, Dashiell puts some music on her iPhone and we wait with Rhonda for Quentin’s holler. When it’s all ready to go, I start extra-coaching Rhonda. Ever since I self-inseminated and really FELT what it felt like to get the syringe right up there, I have a slight worry that maybe Rhonda isn’t getting it up there enough. This is actually not true. Rhonda is getting it up there great, it was just a different sensation to do it myself. It felt like I had more control. Now, I’m control-freaking on Rhonda.
“Really get it in there,” I coach, not even sure what I’m talking about. I mean, the syringe is in my vagina, where else is to going to go? “And really hit the plunger,” I urged.
Rhonda gets into position, angles the plunger, and with an awkward motion slaps the syringe into my cervix. “Aaaah!” I screamed.
“Oh god, oh my god, oh my god,” Rhonda was horrified -- HORRIFIED. Imagine how you would feel if you just stabbed your bestie in the cervix? You would feel awful! Rhonda quickly fished it out of my labia, chanting, horrified, “Oh my god oh my god oh my god.”
“Are you okay?” Rhonda was pained, truly more pained than my cervix, which had already moved on. What was it Betty White said about vaginas? "Why do people say 'grow some balls'? Balls are weak and sensitive. If you wanna be tough, grow a vagina. Those things can take a pounding." Yeah, exactly! Now, let’s go watch Mark Wahlberg blow stuff up!
That night I have an amazing dream. Dashiell comes up to me with the widest smile on her face, her anime-eyes all big and swirling blue-green-gray like a mood ring.
“Baby, guess what?” she says. “You’re pregnant!” Her voice in my dream was just like in real life, my favorite sound, and her face was perfectly her, and it was all so real! It stays with me all the day. I bring it to acupunture where the acupuncturist with the cool bowl haircut and esoteric mystical tattoos pokes a trio of needles into my belly and then sinks a few into my ears.
Quickly my body feels hot and alive, electric. The center of the sensation is deep inside me, it’s my uterus, and it feels so lush and throbbing I don’t know how I’m going to take it for the next half-hour, lying back in my recliner with the shimmery new age music playing. I count my breaths to sort of mellow out, and it works. I’m in that half-awake, half-asleep blissful acupuncture state, feeling like there is a magical cat purring deep inside me.
It suddenly occurs to me that I can TOTALLY have a baby. This body can do that. I think I doubt it a lot. I’m impatient, and get discouraged easily. It’s why I don’t have a driver’s license. I don’t like learning new things. If I can’t already do something just innately, from birth, through some kind of luck, I’m not interested.
Maybe I had some feelings like that about these baby efforts, but in a surge as powerful and physical as whatever wild thing is happening to my uterus, I know it. It feels awesome. I imagine telling Dashiell: I’m pregnant! I get excited at that eventuality, how much fun it will be, how I will be leaping out of my skin to tell her, how much I’ll savor it.
After acupuncture, still in a bit of a dream state, I take BART to the East Bay to do a reading at Pegasus Books. It’s a group reading, and I ask if I can go first. I have to get home and get inseminated! “Sure!” Says the guy running the reading. “Have you met Art Noose? She’s pregnant!”
Art Noose is a writer from Pittsburgh who has made a zillion zines and lives at the Cyberpunk Apocalypse Writer’s Collective. She’s hella punk, and hella pregnant.
“Whoooooa,” I say, as if I am beholding a marvel, and perhaps I am. “Can I ask you -- how did you do it?”
Art Noose answers my question even though I accidentally insulted her by suggesting she was from Philadelphia and not Pittsburgh. You guys, don’t do that! It’s like thinking someone from San Francisco is from Los Angeles. Or maybe more like suggesting a hardcore dumpster diver is in fact a trust fund beneficiary.
Art Noose told me all about her donor, a red hot punk rock jailbird faggot. Poor Art Noose had to wait for him to get out of the clink before she could start trying to get preggers! Her story was totally amazing. It took her a long time, and she used a basal thermometer and tracked her temperature and got knocked up during an intense Pittsburgh heat wave over the summer. She’s younger than me, but not by a ton. I left the reading totally inspired by Art Noose and her awesomely pregnant belly.
That night, after insemination, I had another vivid dream. In it, I was sitting on the toilet in the giant punk warehouse where I lived, exclaiming to a friend sitting in a wheelchair outside the open bathroom door that I had a ton of cervical mucus.
“Look!” said the dream me, apparently as shameless on the astral plane as in waking life. I brandished a fat wad of toilet paper shining with gobs of cervical mucus. “Awesome! I’m ovulating!” I wake up thinking this has GOT to be a positive omen for that night’s insemination.
In fact, that night’s insemination was awfully special, for it was the site of mine and Dashiell’s first fight!
NEXT WEEK: Me and Dashiell’s first fight!