A Part Of Me Is Lonely Because Parts Of You Are Gone
His name was Pants. They called him ‘Shorts’ for short. Pants had been working at The Prometheus Tupperware And Other Things That Seal Tight Emporium for several months when his boss walked into the office one morning carrying the 19x12x16 inch tight cube shaped goddess that would eventually wind up stealing his heart.
His boss called her the HP Officejet Pro 8600 Plus E-All-In-One-Wireless Color Printer, but Pants would later take to calling her Printy when they were alone, post their somewhat awkwardly coital love making, when her paper tray was still warm from the longing and he’d wiped the cum off his own dick with a shirt.
He’d fallen in love with the new office printer quickly. More quickly than he’d thought reasonably possible. He’d been hurt before, almost recently, by a soft breasted woman who’d promised she’d love him forever but instead of doing that had grown cold and blazingly distant during the last few months of their relationship until finally admitting that she’d been secretly blowing some inglorious meta-fuck who worked at the Fishstick Factory named Don.
“But you work at the Fishstick Factory.” Pants had mumbled, heart cremated and brain ungraciously stunned.
“Yeah. And Don works there too. So what?” She’d told him, sounding slutty. And also maybe confused.
“That’s just great. So where did you two meet?” Pants obviously was not good at listening.
“Goddamn it Pants. You’re such an asshole. I met him at work!”
Pants didn’t think he was the one being the asshole, but she’d left him anyway. That was ten months ago. Pants hadn’t dated much since then. He found it practically impossible to move on. Instead of asking girls out he’d watch them walk by and say things to himself like “It’s better this way.” or “Her tits are too big.” or “It’d never work out.”
As the days of being alone turned into weeks and the weeks ground slowly into months he started wondering things to himself that he had until then never wondered, like “Maybe I’m unlovable.” and “What if I die alone?” and “I wonder if I still remember how to fuck.”.
Pants was drinking heavily and found himself obsessing about the woman who’d left him for Don. They were probably so goddamn happy right now. Why couldn’t he be happy? How could she walk around blowing a guy who smelled like fishsticks all the time? Because she smelled like fishsticks all the time? They did have that in common. Fucking Fishstick Factory. Bringing people together and shit like that. Why couldn’t he meet a nice girl who would love him at work?!
All the women Pants worked with where married or had boyfriends or thought he was nuts. So Pants unbuckled any hope for a beautiful office romance. Until this moment. Today. Right now. As he watched his boss set up the new printer, Pants’ feelings became flooded with erotic arks filled with clumsy desire and raging aardvarks of want. And the way the printer was looking at him, it was almost as if it was feeling these arks filled with aardvark type feelings too. But how could that be? Pants was a man. And this printer was a printer.
“Opposites attract.” he remembered his father never telling him, because Pants’ father rarely spoke to him. But if his father had spoke to him, Pants had once or twice imagined that this was the sort of thing he might say.
“It’s a crazy fucked up world.” Pants thought to himself as he office-casually jogged to the employee bathroom and threw up.
Because shit. It had happened again. When he’d thoroughly managed to convince himself that it would never happen again.
The sexy printer’d bewitched him.
Pants was in love.
2 months later
The affair was sweaty and secret and occasionally disturbing. As it turned out, fucking a shared printer at work without any of your co-workers finding out was more complicated then Pants had thought possible. Romance during work hours was out of the question. You couldn’t just arrange to meet a printer in the utility closet for romantic closet time like you could arrange such things with an ordinary human being. It was the only printer in the office and everyone was constantly printing stuff. Its absence would be noticed. And also being a printer, it didn’t have legs. So it couldn’t just walk into the closet under its own locomotion. It would have to be carried. And to be caught carrying the office printer into a closet, well it would just look weird.
So Pants began staying late at the office after everyone else had left. During business hours he’d send bouquets of flowers from his computer, which Printy would dutifully print out and hold fondly on top of herself next to the place that Pants liked to think was her chest. After hours they’d make love until midnight and when it began to feel as if they might be heading towards a rut Pants began printing porn off the internet and they would fuck while the porn was printing. That seemed to spice things up.
This of course drew the attention of HR because everyone in the office’s computer activity was at all times closely monitored and downloading porn was not only frowned upon, as Pants had understood it to be, it was a real life fire-able offense.
Pants was put on workplace probation and as part of this probation he was no longer allowed to hang around The Prometheus Tupperware And Other Things That Seal Tight Emporium unsupervised. Which erected a cock blocking wall the size of Mark Wallberg’s ego between the love that was felt between Pants and the printer and the ability to physically express that love without being caught.
For seventeen days every day was like Hell. Pants could see Printy from his desk—could hear the cute little sound she’d make when she was printing something out. He could smell her sexy ink scented perfume. But he couldn’t be with her. He couldn’t touch her. I mean, he could touch her, if he made a copy or something like that. But he couldn’t touch her in the way in which he longed to touch her. He wanted to touch her with his penis again. But that wasn’t going to happen, at least not anytime soon. So Pants sat at his desk, hoping that the printer would wait for him and that it was handling their forced separation better than he was.
Pants had never written poetry before but during these first seventeen days of his probation he wrote poems about the printer often. After the completion of each poem Pants would send it off to her softly by pushing the button on his computer marked ‘Print’. In seventeen days he’d written 38 poems.
On the eighteenth day Pants stopped writing poems and instead spent most of the time sobbing. If the first seventeen days were like Hell then the eighteenth day made Hell look like a stripper. That’s the day Tadd returned to the office after being away on a long business trip. The company had sent him to Kansas for awhile where he was either being trained or training other people in the blah blah blah boring whatever type shit that people have to know in order to become an Office Manager.
Tadd had a stupid name and long bangs that made his face look like it was hiding behind a shitty waterfall made out of hair and if that wasn’t bad enough it appeared that he’d immediately set his sites on Pants girl. Or printer. Whatever.
Pants watched as Tadd stood beside the printer talking to the boss. Pants couldn’t hear what was said, but he saw everything. The way Tadd gruffly laid his hand on top of the printer during the conversation and the way he roughly threw open its paper tray when the conversation was over, closed it again, and then went through the methodical motions of unplugging all those things that needed to be unplugged before he up and carried the entire printer, chords and all across the room into his office.
Pants watched as Tadd sat the printer down on his desk as his mind made up little sounds like a grown man’s dress pants zipper being unzipped abrasively as Tadd reached his arm back and closed the door.
And just like that, Pants love affair with the office printer was over. He received an emailed later that day stating that it had come to their attention that people were making non-workplace related copies at work and in order to better diffuse such behavior the printer would now be located in Tadd’s office, where things could be more efficiently monitored.
That was the official reason. But Pants knew this was bullshit. Tadd had fallen for the printer. The printer had left Pants for somebody else that it worked with, just like his old girlfriend had left him for Don.
Pants was inconsolable. And not only that, by the time day nineteen had come and almost gone Pants was fired for sending heartbroken word documents to the printer filled with angry descriptions of the pain the printer was putting him through and how he couldn’t believe that he was being dumped for a guy like Tadd.
“If you want to be with a guy who irons his shirt every day, then so be it. I just hope you have enough class to not allow him to enter you through your back paper feed tray. Because that was supposed to be our special place….”
Tadd of course read these things and ergo: Pants was immediately fired.
Pants collected the poems he’d written for the printer into a manuscript that was eventually published as A Part Of Me Is Lonely Because Parts Of You Are Gone. Because nobody reads poetry anymore, nobody read his book either. Pants still misses that damn printer daily, but like poetry, there’s no money in that, so in between all this missing he also sells cellphones at the Mall.