Fred Melton: “Paranormal Paranoia”

Paranormal Paranoia

As a thrice-divorced, somewhat bald and possibly paunchy forty-seven-year-old man living in a basement, I’m proof cancer doesn’t always kill (in spite of a lack of maternal love) with proper vigilance put in place.
_____Early detection, and the help of an Asian pedicurist and her Tao cheese grater, conquered carbuncular carcinoma of both my big toes. Contracted weekly visits: $43.99 (cash only).
_____Last year, a genticulated sarcoma burrowed into me with the determination of a one-armed well-digger. Cure? Hoffa-style yoga and onanism. This, of course, my mother did not appreciate despite WebMD documentation that success skyrockets if self-flagellation is performed before a priest during Easter Mass—which most certainly occurred. Twice.
_____Two months ago, I expected to perish from pineal gland obnubilation, a clouding of that testicular-like nub perched atop my amygdala—that scrotal blob, when locked and loaded, causes otherwise well-adjusted white males, like myself, to spray lead and mayhem throughout movie theaters, usually matinees, and across gay bars, long after Happy Hour. Prevention? Percolated free-range coffee enemas.
_____Until last night, I thought my long-term prognosis was excellent.
_____Around ten, not one minute after plopping down in my Yoda jammies and party hat, bottle of Gray Goose squeezed betwixt my loins, just as a tightee-whitee’d-look-a-like Joel Osteen charged across a rented big screen TV toward a Brazilian jujitsu submission demon, my mother goes ape-shit. Yes, I may have used her credit card for this once-in-a-lifetime-pay-for-view cage fight, but she’s the one who left her purse wide open.
_____However you look at it—and I’ve looked at it all day through the lens of weed—she had no right to yank open the door to her basement and scream, “I’m gonna kill you, you motherfucker.”
_____Something’s amiss.
_____Vigilance is to be increased—followed by purchase of a Taser.



Fred Melton has work published in Best American Mystery Stories 2002, Jabberwock Review, Passages North, Front Range Review, Oyez Review, Bellingham Review and Talking River Review, as well as other magazines.


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