What do you think of?

by Lorenzo Piccoli


“Speaking of which, what do you think of when you masturbate?”

“…”

“…”

“What?”

Neither had said a word for the first half hour.  They were doing the mindless monochrome drive up to Region HQ in Joliet again.  In one of the feet’s Gremlins, seized as part of a jeopardy assessment against an AMC dealership five quarters past.

“Look, I think we can presume you masturbate. Something like 98 percent of all men masturbate.  It’s documented. Most of the other 2 percent are impaired in some way. We can forgo the denials.  I masturbate; you masturbate. It happens. We all do it and we all know we all do it and yet no one ever discusses it. It’s an incredibly boring drive, there’s nothing to do, we’re stuck in this embarrassing car – let’s push the envelope. Let’s discuss it.”

“What envelope.?”

“Just what do you think of? Think about it. It’s a very interior time. It’s one of life’s only occasions of real self-sufficiency. It requires nothing outside you. It’s bringing yourself pleasure with nothing but your own mind’s thoughts. Those thoughts reveal a lot about you: what you dream of when you yourself choose and control what you dream.’

“…”

“…”

“Tits.”

“Tits?’

“You asked me.  I’m telling you.”

“That’s it? Tits?”

“What do you want me to say?”

“Just tits? In isolation from anybody? Just abstract tits?”

“All right. Fuck off.”

“You mean just floating there, two tits, in empty space? Or nestled in your hands, or what? Is it always the same tits?”

David Foster Wallace, The Pale King

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