My Name Is Penis

It wasn’t always. Originally: Greg. Short for Gregory. But Penis is long for itself. I had never really had a girlfriend before and so when she started calling me Penis, I thought, why rock the boat? I don’t remember when I first saw her. I work from home and don’t go out very often. When I do go out: a weird fog. Everything there but also not. I had seen her around, I guess. She says I perv-smiled at her once in the grocery line and that I was buying canned beets, which is strange because I basically live on frozen burritos. I checked my cabinets for these beets: nada. But she insists this is our story. The next day she waved to me from the M60 bus stop and said that I gave her a little nod-shrug-thing-like-I-was-so-cool. Maybe that happened? It was probably just…I get these spasms in my neck sometimes like a centipede crawled into my mouth when I was asleep and then starts freaking out because it doesn’t want to be there anymore than I want it there. But when I did notice her, cleanly and clearly, at the Ethiopian water charity coffee shop, she seemed like someone I had already been grotesque and awk awk awkward around but who kept talking to me anyway like it was normal and therefore she was safe. I was safe. The reason she stood out from the fog was because she was looking at my penis. Pointedly. For ten whole long hard minutes, she said. When I finally focused on the phenomenon of this young+woman+near usual human averages of size and shape+looking at me=impossible singularity, the singularity winked at me! A woman had never winked at me before. I—my penis—went chubby. She noticed the new tautness of my inseam because she was ogling the place where you would notice. Her eyes went cartoony and buggy almost like a wolf when a nurse walks past. She shimmied her shoulders back a little, pinked because I was beet red, stepped little cat steps over to where I was dumbstruck, chair stuck, and gave me her name. It’s funny how life works. I was only at the Ethiopian water charity coffee shop because a mouse had crawled into the water tank of my espresso machine at my apartment. It didn’t drown. The mouse was standing on its mouse feet like it expected something decent of me and I did that decent thing but screamed a little and hid after. I couldn’t bear to use the machine for a while and so was loosed into the world, into fate! A few months after we started dating she stopped calling me Greg and started calling me Penis. It’s not that my penis is huge or anything. It is, she assures me, thoroughly average. But I am kind of a big guy, halfway between muscly and doughy because I do crunches and push-ups at home but not all the time and also eat sticks of butter more than a person usually does, and tall, so I always thought in relation to my body my penis looked shrimpy. I’m insecure about it when I remember to be. One night—a two-sticks-of-butter night—I thought, since she likes penises so much that she should have access to a more impressive specimen. I told her all sad puppy like that maybe we should find someone with a really big penis on Craigslist and I should just watch her have sex with him, or maybe just be playing a video game really loudly in the other room and that would be our love life, and I’d be okay with that, because I just want her to be happy, and by be happy I did mean that but also meant: not leave me. She said a lot of sweet things then, like that I was her favorite penis, the dearest penis of her heart… sappy penis stuff like that. I believe her when I don’t remember not to. She’s tall,—for a hobbit—her breasts are sorta boat-shaped, and her hips are really narrow. Her hair is thin and sometimes I can see her scalp. Her thighs touch, which she suddenly started worrying about out of nowhere a year ago. So she’s not a model, but I prefer her shape now to other shapes. I like her so much that the porn I watch has become really boring unless the girl looks a little like her. So I guess that’s how she feels about my thoroughly average penis. She’s known plenty of other penises. A couple of months before we met, a penis she liked took her on a box of English peas in the storage room of the restaurant where she works but then pretended it never happened. He didn’t ignore her or anything. He just treated her exactly the same as every body else. He was big on high-fives. The next day he high-fived her and then high-fived the bartender and the bookkeeper too. I told her that’s not how a penis should behave. She said she knew my penis was different. She said she knew right away in the Ethiopian water charity coffee shop. She moved in a couple months ago. When she comes through the door she says Hello Penis! finds me at my computer and then puts her hand there. Once—this is a scary story—when she was messing with the sunflowers on our balcony, she slipped. We live on the eighth floor, and she was standing on a step ladder because sunflowers get really tall. She went right over the edge but caught the railing with one hand. Her mouth was open. Her breathing heavy. I could see all the way down her blouse to the little bows that are stuck to the underwear she buys. I thrust my penis out to her. Oh dear penis! she said and my penis pulled her to safety. That never happened. But if it does, I will be ready. Hello, Penis.

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