Lockdown Riff

My roommate Tina masturbates to old MTV videos – Poison, Def Leppard – all the time, maybe it’s the hair or those tight tight pants, there she goes again, she says she wants to be a rock star’s guitar, a frontman’s microphone, but I don’t want to see that, I just want to watch Eddie Van Halen conjure electric magic with his Frankenstrat, oh yuck, the guitar has morphed, now it’s a Tina-strat, he’s plucking those Tina-strings, I can’t unsee it, she’s ruined Panama for me, why won’t she just finish? oh great, now all the microphones are shaped like her head, dammit, she’s spoiled Whitesnake, too! so I think I should tell her she’s not the star of the show, never has been, I have to find a new apartment, and she tells me she wants Tommy Lee to play her like a drum, did not need to know that, then an army of Tina-butts invades the stage, how could she do that to Mötley Crüe, is nothing sacred?! so I stick my fingers in my ears and hum with Bon Jovi to drown out her noises – No! Not Bon Jovi! – I’m not even looking at her, I’m squinching my eyes against the blasphemy of a Tina-shaped microphone quivering so close to Jon’s schoolboy pout, yikes, she’s really going at it now, I gotta turn off the TV, yes it’s a drastic maneuver, but I have to take the offensive, she’s a masturbatory menace, what is she even doing? uh-oh, her orgasm-face threatens, pushes me to hurry, but I am not going to touch that remote controller, there’s no telling what she’s done with it, I’ll have to go old-school, dive across the room and kick the TV off its stand in a crescendo of crystallized hairspray and shredded spandex – sweet metal jesus, I’m too late – all the glam gods screech and pixelate into the ether as thousands of amplified Tina-O’s erupt out of our apartment, probably contaminating the entire video macrocosm, and now she’s glaring at me, saying what are you looking at?



Myna Chang’s stories have been featured in X-R-A-Y Lit Mag, New World Writing, Bending Genres, and Writers Resist. Her writing has been nominated for Best Small Fictions and Best Microfiction, and she is the winner of the 2020 Lascaux Prize in Creative Nonfiction. Read more at MynaChang.com or @MynaChang.

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