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by Ian Birnbaum
TO: Magical Councils Co.
FROM: Ian C. Birnbaum
Were I a lesser man, I might tell you just what I thought of your mother’s (eager but ultimately unsatisfying) sexual performance last night. Or I might tell you that I hope you acquire the AIDS virus via a violent anal molestation by an enraged silverback gorilla. Alas, as I am a man of character and aplomb, I will mention neither these nor other petty attacks on your sad, lonely characters.
I am writing to you because it has come to my attention that you have all been having some fun at my expense. What I had originally imagined to be an unhappy string of coincidences has now clearly become an engineered attack upon my good fortunes. And, although the magical man or woman who hatched the plan to jinx me with a devastatingly bad luck is to be commended on their comedic schadenfreude, I feel that the joke has carried on for long enough.
Since your childish voodoo began three days ago, I have suffered, to a greater or lesser extent, terrible luck at every moment, both day and night.
On Saturday morning, I drove an hour south to Fort Worth to pick up ingredients for my latest homebrew project – a nice scotch ale. After battling through rush-hour caliber traffic at 2 p.m. on a Saturday, I began brewing. At seemingly random intervals the brew would boil over, apparently in a measured effort to catch me while I was in the bathroom and to scare living hell out of my cat (who then puked on the carpet, thank you). Having my thermometer spontaneously shatter, scattering glass, lead, and mercury into the beer mere seconds before it was finally completed was a particularly evil finishing touch.
On Sunday afternoon I spent 15 minutes arguing with a retarded toll booth attendant who insisted that I had "stolen a toll ticket", whatever that means. She was so busy attempting to wink at me with her one lazy eye that her supervisor had to sprint across the freeway to the booth, allow me to pass and then, presumably, up her medication.
And yesterday, as I was driving my motorcycle past Elm and Congress, a horrific gust of wind rose up and yanked my new iPod nano straight out of my pocket. How wind managed to achieve such dexterity I’m sure I don’t know, but watching as $200 of hardware and music memory floated for an instant before crashing into the street behind my rear tire is a horror I’ll not soon forget.
Indeed, every time, over the last few days, that it has rained only for the five minutes that I’m taking out the trash; that I somehow managed to cut myself 34 times while shaving; that all of the pages of a brand new book tore from the binding and dropped onto the floor; that the 8-ball would rather spontaneously explode like a small black grenade than obediently drop into the chosen corner pocket; – every time, I knew it was you.
Whoever you are: stop. Lift the curse of unluckiness. Please. The only thing distracting me from actively contemplating suicide is the thought of one day finding you, force-feeding you three gallons of gasoline, then punching you in the gut and lighting a match.