Short Story Library 2009

I took up smoking to lose the weight that I’d gained when I quit smoking earlier on.

Then I began chewing gum, big wads of it, every time I wanted a cigarette and I was able to quit again but I always had a full cheek of Double Bubble.

Pinch yourself between the thumb and forefinger each time you have a craving the hypnotist told me. It’s good for food, gum & smokes he said. Soon I was off the gum and the skin on my left hand where I pinched had turned an ugly black which spread.

I saw my doctor at a party. That looks real bad he whispered after looking at my hand, come see me first thing in the morning. I don’t like the looks of that one bit he said later on in the evening in hushed tones that scared me.

I left the party and had my wife wait in the car while I ran into the 7-11. That’s not good for you she said as I lit up a smoke and put the Twinkies and gum on the dash. You ought to see someone about these weaknesses she ragged. I pinched my hand as she spoke and then I told her that I’d already scheduled a doctor’s appointment for the morning. Good she said and rolled down her window to let the smoke out.

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