Reflections By The Poole: How To Feel Bad | Live Wire Radio

This edition of Reflections by The Poole is from Live Wire Radio Episode 217, which also features This is How author Augusten Burroughs, Oregonian music editor Ryan White, and music from Portland's Radiation City. 


How to Feel Bad
by Scott Poole


If it’s a sunny day,
and you are walking along the bay
hand in hand with your dearest love,
with sailboats cruising by on
a smooth jazz infused breeze
and you, by some chance,
just happen to stick your foot
in a huge bucket
of warm and fragrant fish guts,

you should feel bad about this.

Don't look
for the good side, Pollyanna.
There is no good side
to soaking your leg mid-calf
in 5 gallons of unimaginable goo
that smells the same as
being sewn into a month-old carcass
of a whale on hot August afternoon.

You're not helping yourself
pretending to be on a romantic lark,
or casually starting a fashion trend.
You won't soon be revered
on a Paris runway
swinging this chum bucket about,
spraying slop on Joan Rivers
and the editor of Vogue.

You aren't the Lewis and Clark
of unique foot skin treatments
and there will be no Orthopedic Sacajawea
to point west in the bow of your shoe.

And don't try to pretend
that the horrific vessel of slime
that is now your lower left extremity
doesn't feel like it’s being
digested by something
living down there,
possibly by the thousands.

When people ask you
why your foot is in a bucket
of fish guts
don't say
"Oh it's a great accessory." or
"You mean, this old thing."

And I really must tell you
turning the bucket over on your head
to take away from the attention on your foot
is really the direct opposite of any wise decision.

No matter how you play it off,
no one will be impressed
with your Frankenstein robot dance moves.
Your reenactment of a Gilligan's island episode
will be amateur at best,
and the Professor and Mary Anne won't be rushing
to give you a sensory deprivation study.

And no amount of personal affirmations
will help,
no amount of "I'm great" and "I'm too good for this to happen."
can save you,
you could be 4'8'' wearing a nuns's habit,
with an Albanian accent, first name Mother,
last name Teresa
and you still be standing in very horrible
world of wrong.

It's ok to feel bad about this. Go ahead.

And take your foot
of the bucket.