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American Dream Serialization (Early Chapters)
Introduction to Jim Chaffee's Studies in Mathematical Pornography by Maurice Stoker
Introduction to Jim Chaffee's Studies in Mathematical Pornography by Tom Bradley
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: American Dream Title Page by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 1 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 2 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 3 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 4 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 5 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 6 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 7 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 8 by Jim Chaffee
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 9 by Jim Chaffee
01-01-2015
Modern Tragedy, or Parodies of Ourselves by Robert Castle
01-11-2014
Totally Enchanté, Dahling by Thor Garcia
01-04-2014
Hastini by Rudy Ravindra
The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 5 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
01-01-2014
Unexpected Pastures by Kim Farleigh
10-01-2013
Nonviolence by Jim Courter
The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 4 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
07-01-2013
The Poet Laureate of Greenville by Al Po
The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part VI by Thor Garcia
The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 3 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
04-01-2013
The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part V by Thor Garcia
The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part IV by Thor Garcia
The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 2 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
01-01-2013
The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part I by Thor Garcia
The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part II by Thor Garcia
The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part III by Thor Garcia
The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 1 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
10-01-2012
DADDY KNOWS WORST: Clown Cowers as Father Flounders! by Thor Garcia
RESURRECTON: Excerpt from Breakfast at Midnight by Louis Armand
Review of The Volcker Virus (Donald Strauss) by Kane X Faucher: Excerpt from the forthcoming Infinite Grey by Kane X Faucher
01-07-2012
Little Red Light by Suvi Mahonen and Luke Waldrip
TEXECUTION: Klown Konfab as Killer Kroaked! by Thor Garcia
Miranda's Poop by Jimmy Grist
Paul Fabulan by Kane X Faucher: Excerpt from the forthcoming Infinite Grey by Kane X Faucher
01-04-2012
Operation Scumbag by Thor Garcia
Take-Out Dick by Holly Day
Patience by Ward Webb
The Moon Hides Behind a Cloud by Barrie Darke
The Golden Limo of Slipback City by Ken Valenti
01-01-2012
Chapter from The Infinite Atrocity by Kane X. Faucher
Support the Troops By Giving Them Posthumous Boners by Tom Bradley
01-10-2011
When Good Pistols Do Bad Things by Kurt Mueller
Corporate Strategies by Bruce Douglas Reeves
The Dead Sea by Kim Farleigh
The Perfect Knot by Ernest Alanki
Girlish by Bob Bartholomew
01-07-2011
The Little Ganges by Joshua Willey
The Invisible World: René Magritte by Nick Bertelson
Honk for Jesus by Mitchell Waldman
01-04-2011
Red's Dead by Eli Richardson
The Memphis Showdown by Gabriel Ricard
Someday Man by John Grochalski
01-01-2011
I Was a Teenage Rent-a-Frankenstein by Tom Bradley
Only Love Can Break Your Heart by Fred Bubbers
10-01-2010
Believe in These Men by Adam Greenfield
The Magnus Effect by Robert Edward Sullivan
Performance Piece by Jim Chaffee
07-01-2010
Injustice for All by D. E. Fredd
The Polysyllogistic Curse by Gary J. Shipley
How It's Done by Anjoli Roy
Ghost Dance by Connor Caddigan
Two in a Van by Pavlo Kravchenko
04-01-2010
Uncreated Creatures by Connor Caddigan
Invisible by Anjoli Roy
One of Us by Sonia Ramos Rossi
Storyteller by Alan McCormick
01-01-2010
Idolatry by Robert Smith
P H I L E M A T O P H I L I A by Traci Chee
They Do! by Al Po
Full TEX Archive
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Routine

By Felipe de Oliveira

condemned

One more day begins. Night badly slept and without dreams. Got up three times to piss. Pissing like an old man these last two weeks. Two or three, not certain. Wake up with face bloated and enormous shadows around the eyes. If I were whiter and shaggier, I'd look like a panda.

Wash my face, piss again and make the bed. Empty the coffee pot and put on water to boil. Return to the room and, while getting ready, think of the little money left in the wallet, enough to buy bread for breakfast. Put on work clothes without tie or jacket, return to the kitchen and pour the hot water into the carafe to heat it. Put more water on to boil, close the carafe and leave for the bakery.

Funny how all these things became a solid routine. Barely notice what I do. Barely notice myself, to be honest. It's as if I were a robot, and these tasks items on an algorithm implanted in my memory. Pure repetition, simple and efficient.

I come back with the bread and set the table. Make the coffee, eat breakfast, grab my things and leave. Ten minutes walk to the subway station, half an hour on a packed train to the other station, ten more minutes walking and, ten floors later, I'm at the office. Good morning, everything's fine, I hear myself saying as I say every work day. It's the same old story every working day. Where is the real utility of the days between Monday and Friday? Work, annoyance, and that vague sensation of life passing as we wither away.

I languish from nine to six, with an hour break for lunch, in a traineeship that pays badly and demands much. By the way, I sincerely believe that traineeships are the modern regime of slavery. What better way within the law of having someone work more for less pay than an employee? Well, its no longer important. Have been in this one year. With time, we grow accustomed and end up arranging our own compensations.

condemned

Client collections, late product tests and reports, all this clogging my email inbox and my arteries. The heart comes to beat without rythym. Incompetence has no pardon. To err might be human, but incompetence is an unforgiveable thing. Nor does God forgive it. There go Adam and Eve: incompetence in resisting temptation. At least that is what the Bible says.

I don't believe in the Bible. I consider myself a free thinker. Like a sheep, I've already followed plenty of bullshit ideology and philosophy. Already fucked me plenty. Took punches. Was almost arrested. This all before I was eighteen. Today, I'm almost petit bourgeois. At least I have the caution and alleged impartiality of one.

Answers for the damned emails. Collect from one, threaten another, apologize to a third. My "chief" — a simulacrum bimbo who'd come on to you at a disco only to step aside and leave you in the lurch — spends her work hours watching YouTube. The office administrator barfs up a double entendre every five minutes. I feel like an alien. That's probably why we never made true contact with any: the human being is the major proof that there is no intelligent life here.

The chair is low and the support soft. I have to climb above the keyboard in order to write. Pangs of hunger. The air conditioning freezes me to the bone. It's ten thirty. I still have two working hours ahead, at least, before I can eat lunch. My back aches. I have no remedy. Don't know if I'll eat at the Subway in the shopping center or the self-service two blocks up.

From the open window I hear the sound of tires burning rubber. Someone braking. Something thuds. Somebody screams. And, bang, everybody in the office runs for the windows. I don't need to run, having one beside me. I stand and open the window wide. There below, stretched out on the ground, a body. A thick string of blood oozes with a snail's pace.

It's a man. I see him well. It is a man. He has gray hair. He has fallen on the ground in a strange position, kind of odd. It's a position of… of… all messed up, swear to God. A crowd has formed around the scene. Bystanders. Motivated only by the morbid curiousity of seeing a new piece of meat to swell the statistics. Soon it will become the news of the moment, no one will speak of anything else. Not for the rest of the day. Maybe for those close, fifteen, twenty minutes. Then, all forgotten.

He, the dead man, doesn't wear chic clothes. He wears a short checked flannel shirt, jeans and a pair of rough brown boots I imagine are well-worn. My mind travels. I see him with strong hands, crooked fingers and coarse skin. I imagine a tired appearance, ten or fifteen years beyond his real age. I imagine a thin wedding band, a bit bent, of gold spotted with time, on the left hand.

condemned

I imagine a woman, who, like him, also is weary. A woman who, like him, also has rough clothing, rough ways, rough soul. A woman who gave birth to two children, who takes in washing and ironing. I imagine this woman in the house, washing clothes by hand in a concrete tank while the children, a boy and a girl, take care of the house and the cooking before school. A small family, with a limited life. Rough. But, after all, a family.

I like family. I have a big family — father, mother, sister, brother-in-law and cousins, all in the same house. Many problems. But it is good. Is family. For real. It's cozy and noisy as a family ought to be. He, the dead man, didn't have a noisy family. I think not.

– What's going on?

It's Aristeu. He is the only other person in the office who doesn't act retarded — Yes, I have my moments of arrogance, and fuck those who don't. He was out, at the local office for licensed engineers, paying a fee. The office deals with electronic engineering. Reports and opinions.

I like Aristeu. He is kind of rough. Like me. Like that fallen man there. The blood still oozes. A military police vehicle soon arrives.

– I think they ran over him.

– When?

– Just now.

Silence. Another vehicle arrives. It's from the coroner's office. The evil-fated meat wagon, in rough terms. He sighs — Aristeu, not the dead man. We watch the body being collected. There are still people hanging around.

I think of the family. And when they receive the news? And the funeral? And the succession of days after that? Almost feel their pain. Almost. A woman no longer has a husband who warmed her at night beneath the covers. A girl no longer has a father to scold her and love her. A boy no longer has the man on whom he modeled himself and who guided him in lessons.

Man becomes statistic. Man becomes news. A good man dies. It would be comic if not tragic. Besides, it's neither comic nor tragic: it's ironic. Especially when there are so many sons of bitches who could have gotten fucked in his place. Like my boss.

Aristeu sighs.

– What shit.

I sigh.

– So it is.

I sit down again in the low chair with a soft back. It's nine past eleven. My back aches. I have no rememdy. Soon I forget about the man. And me.

condemned

Translation Luiz Mendes Junior and Jim Chaffee

© Luiz Mendes Junior and Jim Chaffee 2008