The next time everyone saw his or her former coworker J. D., it was inside everyone’s darling child Journey. J. D. had been inside everyone for several weeks, and before that J. D. had been a coworker. Journey did not seem to everyone to be a very good darling for J. D. to reside in. J. D. was excessively rule and budget conscious, while Journey cared only about chocolate, budget be damned.
When Jeremy was inside everyone, everyone had at times felt a ping in his or her heart, as if he or she had replaced a two-hundred-year-old painting of Methuselah by an unnamed master of the medium with a half-life-sized photo of the pop star David Bowie by a third-row concertgoer or of the rapper Iggy Azalea by herself. The Methuselah painting seemed like it might be worth $5092, which everyone needed desperately for a down payment on a car, but the Bowie or Iggy photos aroused in everyone a longing for his or her spouse because Bowie’s cheeks and Iggy’s eyes looked like their child Jan’s, which in turn looked like everyone’s spouse’s. Everyone’s spouse had left him or her about six months previously.
The best child to have hosted J. D., everyone figured, would have been Star. Star had a literal heart of gold. On weekends, everyone’s darlings Jody and Journey and Jan sometimes played hide-and-go-seek with Star using a metal detector.
The part of Journey in which J. D. came to reside was the left eye. Journey complained of pain, and everyone tried to clear it. When everyone reached into his or her eye, however, Journey cowered. Everyone pushed Journey to the floor and stared. That is how everyone found J. D.
J. D. was slightly larger than Journey’s pupil. The invader was wearing a plaid jacket and galoshes and was carrying an umbrella. No matter, J. D. was soaked as the way his or her clothes stuck to his or her body attested. Journey’s eyeball was wet.
When everyone stared into Journey’s eye, J. D. stared back. If everyone waved, J. D. did too. If everyone raised a finger, so did J. D.
Everyone grabbed a piece of toast and ate it. So did J. D. Everyone took his or her shoe off and tapped it against his or her head. So did J. D.
J. D. was annoying.
Everyone thought carefully regarding the best means by which to remove the invader. Sharp metal objects like tweezers and forks seemed too dangerous. Fingertips might have worked, but Journey wouldn’t stand for them. Water only seemed to make J. D. wetter. And a toothpick could have introduced a splinter, as everyone knew from the Sermon on the Mount, though everyone was unaware of the sermon’s biblical origin, believing it to be the work of his or her coworker Harvey, who had recited parts of it one Sunday while they were cleaning an office.
The only way for everyone to capture J. D. he or she realized was to join him or her. Everyone instructed Journey to open the left eye as wide as possible. “I’m going in,” everyone said, pushing his or her two hands against Journey’s top and bottom eyelid as everyone tried to squeeze in the right foot.
It was in this manner that Journey ended up with a black eye and bloated face, as Journey later explained to others.
Everyone wants you to read the book on which he or she is working, a novel everyone is writing in order to find the meaning of life, with which everyone’s spouse ran off. But everyone has to finish the novel before everyone can know where the novel begins. In the meantime, there are all these distractions, such as the twelfth-floor window at the office building where everyone works out of which people or maybe just one person keeps jumping or falling--everyone isn’t sure--or everyone’s sexy coworker Sam, whom everyone is struggling valiantly against to keep from becoming a paramour. It’s kind of pitiful, actually, the way everyone keeps begging you to read, sending you e-mails, dropping it into conversation (“I have a book, you know?”), posting links to it on social-networking sites. Everyone figures that if he or she begs enough, you will break down and try it. Everyone is like a dog that way, watching you eat your dinner. The way you handle the dog is to push it away from the table, lock it outside the room. Sometimes, of course, you hand the dog a bite, an inch-sized bit of beef, and that is all everyone is asking for--a bite, that you read just the first line of his or her book. The problem is that you know everyone too well. If you read one line, everyone will beg you to read another. Just one more.
To start from the beginning of the novel, go here.