In the novel, each chapter begins with a section taken from one of the many writings tucked inside the trunk that doubles as Kerry’s coffee table. The passage below is one of the last stories entered into Kerry’s black notebook.
It was Tuesday night and I was home alone. It was too cold outside and too warm inside. Charlie Parker was playing the saxophone and I was playing with the various forms of hair I could find on my body.
I had dreadlocked the hair on my toes, a few patches on my legs, and my big pubic mop, and had begun focusing on my nipple hairs. They stood coiled black, and obscenely proud, strewn across the death pale backdrop of my Irish potato skin. It was an embarrassing scene. I felt like reaching for a shirt though nobody was inside my apartment, and I thought about my days of cigarettes, and watching clocks, and T.V., and masturbating to early morning workout shows, and how I ever even managed to hold conversations with people, and how sad it all really was.
And then I lit my nipple hair on fire. I started on the right side lighting individually at the ends, watching them flam and fizzle out in an orderly fashion. I was brushing the ash into my belly button, and everything was going fine until about midway through the left nipple when one hair got rebellious and decided to spread across the remaining forest. That mother-fucker took a good chunk of my nipple (long pause) which made me fall backwards, hitting my head on the table behind me, which knocked me out and caused a loud sound which made my landlady call the police, who called the paramedics who, upon finding me on the floor, brought me here to this hospital, with doctors and nurses that proceeded to laugh uncontrollably, while calling every psychiatrist in the city down to see me.
By, Kerry Ryan Magann