I’m fat. Let’s just get that out of the way. I have a hard time fitting in places, and you know what I mean about that. Places are meant for smaller kinds than me. I can’t put my butt in a chair without sending it crashing to the floor. The steps I take make pictures rattle on the walls, and I’ve fixed bent steel frames by leaning on them. Doors fly off their hinges at my smallest nudge.
Everything people use is so damned fragile. People, too. I don’t give hugs or shake hands. I stand very still while people get affectionate, trying not to break them. I can do that too easily.
I don’t know why, but it’s the same with feelings. Guess I’m just big and hard all over, but I don’t talk much. Never can tell what’s a sensitive thing that I’m not supposed to mention; better off being quiet than saying wrong things and making people cry.
If I did what was easy and true for me, I’d have gone into comedy right away. I’d have stuck with the kind of people who can deal with roughhouse. Instead, I took a job at an office and told myself to keep practicing violin. Saddest thing you ever saw, me with my hands on this damned magical instrument, moving the tips of my fingers, slowly, to try and make a note of music before one of the strings gives out with that high, pleading, sorry sound.
People don’t like me. It’s a thing that happens, I think, when they can tell you don’t really need them. Especially as a girl. People get sooo pissed off at you, for not needing them, when you’re a girl. They don’t like you to be good at shoveling and lifting heavy things. It’s embarrassing, to them and to you. You’re supposed to be one of the fragile things people are used to protecting. You’re not supposed to have, like, not a vulnerable bone in your whole body. You’re not supposed to be so big and hard to move out of the way.
I didn’t think of it as magic. I was big, I made things break, and people didn’t like me. That’s just the way things were. But one day when I was taking a walk around my block, this dude bumped into me. Skinny guy, too. I don’t know how fast he must’ve been going, but when he hit me he flew backwards thirty feet and got knocked out. I started saying “Fuck, fuck, fuck!” Because I hate when that happens, and some poor little schmuck has to go to the hospital.
I went over to see if I could help him out, but he’d crapped his pants and it made me gag, so I moved away from him. I don’t even have a phone – they’re so easy to break and just a waste of money. I thought about going to knock on somebody’s door in the neighborhood, but then the guy came to and was gasping and stunned and asking me what happened.
“Um, you fell down,” I said, and left it at that.
The dude looked at me in the familiar angry way, and I thought fuck again, because of course he was going to be the type of dude who blamed me for letting him run into me full-force.
“I don’t fall down,” he announced, and I laughed.
“I don’t fall down!” He said again. He stood up. Some loose crap splattered down the leg of his shorts and onto the bright white sidewalk. He stared at the poo with slow horror, his face turning red, and looked at me. We paused, both of us between breaths and wondering whether the other one was going to laugh or cry. I decided things, finally, by laughing. Really hard.
Little dude went the other way on it, and started to cry. “It’s not funny!” He screeched. “I’m unstoppable! I’m unstoppable! I don’t fall!”
And when I didn’t stop laughing, he tried, like a dumbass, to tackle me. He was fast, this guy. I could feel his hands balled into fists trying to hit me and bouncing off, and trying to hit me and bouncing off, moving from my gut to my tits to my chin, even to my ass and back so fast I wasn’t sure I was imagining. He might’ve hit me hard, but I’m big. I never stopped laughing.
Finally he got me good, right in the mouth. I mean, my mouth was open. He literally got his fist in my mouth and hit the uvula at the back of my throat, making me vomit. Now that pissed me off. It’s hard for me to find cute clothes and some of the puke got on my blouse. Usually I feel bad hitting people, even dudes when they hit me first, because they’re all such sad saps who can’t hurt me anyway. Not this day. I lifted the skinny prick up over my head and threw him at the sidewalk. Concrete splashed up like water in a pool and the dude was groaning and holding his head, but I wasn’t sure I was done with him. I put my foot on his chest.
“You do fall down,” I smirked. “And you can be stopped. I stopped you. That’s the truth, so remember it. Susie McMally can stop you. Get the fuck outta here, before I break your face.”
He left in such a jiffy that he turned about invisible.