History of Imperial Measurement


Nigel went to Nordstrom and bought a shirt for $129.  He felt good about this purchase because this shirt was going to help him get laid later on that evening.

Later on that evening, while Nigel was moving his penis back and forth inside a woman he met at a bar, he thought about some things: I parked my car in a loading zone; and the Fukada account status report is due Monday; and this woman has very flat teeth; and it was a good idea to buy this shirt.

Nigel had an orgasm and went to sleep.  The next morning he woke up and looked at her.  She said her name was 'Julia.'  At the bar last night, he set down his car keys to expose the BMW key chain.  She smiled.  They talked about Cancun, and how crazy it can get there.  Then they talked about Rio, and also how crazy it can get there.

All walls start to look the same after awhile.  It was Sunday.  The sunrise was a weak pink.  Julia's apartment looked very similar to other women's—the framed pictures of graduation, the spines of thought provoking books read a fifth of the way, the excessively adorned pillows, the permeated smell of perfume and cleaning supplies—and Nigel became irritated at himself because he just fucked the same type of person again.

After work on Monday, Nigel checked his phone to see if Julia called; she didn't.  Nigel went to a bar and had four Grey Gooses on the rocks.  He placed his chin on the damp bar and looked into the glass; it looked like clear streams running down some crystal mountain.  He finished the last glass with an acidy belch.  He went home and researched Cambodia online.  Later on that night, he went to the balcony of his loft and tried to spit on people.  He called Tom.

"Bro," he said.

"Bra," Tom said.

"What's up bro?"

"I'm wearing a fucking sombrero bra," Tom said.

Tom was naked except for a sombrero.  He was nursing two tequilas and watching a rerun of Friends.  Tom was a financial analyst; so was Nigel.  Once they had sex with the same woman at the same time.  It cost them $2000.  At one point, their testicles were only an inch apart.  Intimacy cannot be measured by a ruler.

"Let's go to Cambodia," Nigel said.

"Bra," Tom said.

"Bro."

"That place is fucked with bugs bra," Tom said; and so ended the conversation about moving to Cambodia to forget it all.  Nigel went back to the balcony, collected notable amount of phlegm from the back of his throat, and spit it out as far as he could.  He gathered it landed at least twelve feet from the base of the building.  He thought of the million dried gumdrops spotting pavement around this world—how a useless gesture like spitting can embed itself into eternity.

The next morning Nigel didn't feel particularly chirpy.  Only when he noticed a missed call from Julia did he cheer up a little.  Julia's high-pitched message conveyed, well into the second minute, that she wanted to see him again.  The past is a flat pattern.  Nigel grinned, waited a masculine five hours, and called her back.  

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