A lifelong friend has changed overnight, and I am deeply, deeply concerned.
Not for him. For myself.
Some backstory: I first met Mr. McSquiggles by the side of a pool. I don’t remember if I was in junior high or high school. I don’t remember if I was at a friend’s house or if I was on vacation with my family. I just remember lying in a lounge chair with my eyes closed, reeking of baby oil and iodine, and being startled by Mr. McSquiggles’ sudden appearance.
Had he always been hovering there, on the inside of my eyelid — my skittish, ghostlike friend? Why couldn’t I look directly at him? Where did he go when I opened my eyes?
I pretended to care about the answers to those questions, but really, I was just happy to know that I now had a more interesting playmate than my brother. (He only wanted to play with his Star Wars figures, which would’ve been fine if he’d had an ounce of imagination. Like, let Han and Luke open a B&B or an intergalactic dress shop — how awesome would that have been? Answer: VERY.)
Anyway. Since we met, Mr. McSquiggles has always had three sides. Sometimes, he’s been strong and squared off, like a pergola fresh from Home Depot’s gardening department:
Sometimes, he’s been a little lopsided, like that same pergola after a hurricane:
And occasionally, he’s been as egalitarian as an equilateral triangle — like a volcano with a gap at the top, ready for that first ooze of lava:
But on Sunday, as I lay in the kiddie pool, enjoying a break in the summer heat, I noted something different. Mr. McSquiggles had a tail:
And I thought, “Yo, Squiggy, what’s up with that? Have you gone all 80s on me, bro?”
And then I thought, “Holy shit, I’m talking to a thing in my eye.”
And then I thought, “I wonder if this is a sign. Like, is McSquiggles trying to tell me something? Is a jaguar approaching? Should I buy a lottery ticket? Do I have cancer?”
But he just floated there, silently shaking his new-found phony-pony.
Seriously, you guys: should I be worried?
UPDATE: I am comforted to learn that roughly 70% of you understand what I’m talking about here.