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The Accident by Mike Lafontaine

I am not crazy – although I am not well. I have obsessive–compulsive disorder. I engage in compulsive behavior. I cannot leave the house without first ensuring the spaces on each side of the toilet paper roll are even. The mat in the bathroom must be placed to line up with the bathroom wall. I have to continually check the taps, locks and all doors are closed before I leave the house. If I do not do these things I become anxious and even then I sometimes have to return home if it feels like I haven’t checked something.

I was not always this way. I was a normal kid, my parents did not have any of my problems as far as I could tell, they died in a car accident when I came home after semester break my freshman year.

I was the driver.

I did not think people actually died in car accidents except in literature or in action films. I was in a coma for a very long time. I came out of it. They did not.

Therefore, I drink a lot.

Usually a bottle of red wine a night or some bourbon (Blanton’s is my favorite) sometimes I have a few beers but it’s usually a bottle of wine. It makes me very happy (my therapist can’t understand how I vary these things and not the others and therefore she thinks my condition is a symptom of my response to the lack of control I felt over my parents dying the way they did) I will not step into a car or ride a bus. Trains are okay, but people make me mad too easy – so I tend to avoid them.

I don’t like smoking but I do it anyway as that’s what I used to do before my parents died. I usually write down my feelings. I have filled up a few journals using a fountain pen.

I usually write until my hand hurts or I get thirsty or hungry or I have to take my medication. I take Paroxetine 60mg daily and I have to have Prazosin which helps with the nightmares. I take a small dose 0.5mg of Clonazepam the white ones – I want the green ones that’s what Xander my dorm roommate used to take but my doctor wont prescribe me them.

I think Xander got straight A’s that semester after the accident. I thought that was only when your roommate committed suicide – I am not sure, he didn’t seem that bright to me.

I hope I get better soon as I am very lonely, my girlfriend Jennifer won’t come and see me anymore, she broke up with me right after the accident she said it’s just too sad to see me like this – she used to say I was charming and sweet and now – well, it’s all too much.

I think she thinks that losing her virginity to me who turned out to be a crazy person was bad luck or something – she has a whole new group of friends now.

I know I will get better. I just have to let the doctors prescribe me different medications, I don’t like it, but they say it will help.

I watch a lot of television mostly talk shows, although I can’t concentrate on them for very long, it’s mostly a bunch of people arguing with each other as to who is more American than the other, so I just let the images drift past me until I fall asleep.


about the author:

Michael Lafontaine was educated at Macquarie University, Sydney Australia. He currently lives in Newtown, Sydney and shares custody with his ex-girlfriend of a rescue dog called Lloyd. He is the Editor-In-Chief of Vending Machine Press and has a new book of short stories “Please Dont Argue With Me, Okay?” available here & here.

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