Cigarette Burn Girl

I'm a superhero who burns people with cigarette butts. I only burn people who are already having a bad day so they can blame me for it, that's why I'm a hero. When I am done burning people I sit down and I cross my legs and I wink, sometimes I eat a cookie. When I stay home the world gets cranky. I have a nemesis. His name is Hank. Read all about me! Cigarette Burn Girl!

Monday, May 30, 2011

What's next?

My drive home was filled with visions of Hank and Vandido working together to ruin my life. Could it be possible that Hank was building an army? The smoldering ash from my Hopscotch burnt a hole in my fingernail and sent me swerving off the road. 
As I waited for Hemophilia Towing Company to arrive and save the day, I flipped through the pages of Shelly Vonavier's "masterpiece," No You Can't. The first entry contained the following instructions:

It is important to never get upset. If you do get upset, it is important to punish yourself for your feelings. Try grating the palm of your hand with a cheese grater or stuffing hamburgers up your nose. 

If Hank subscribed to this method of "self-help," I worried to think what his ultimate goal was for the world. Did he seek to punish the people I sought to help? And if so, what would this do for our hypothetical relationship?
Obviously, the only thing I could think of to do was to capture and interrogate Mr. Flup. 

Friday, February 11, 2011


Dear Cigarette Burn Girl,

Are there places in you like a beehive that throb and buzz?
I can feel the insects trying to escape me
Like a horse trying to swim
My heart twists like an oreo
Are there places in you like a pair of lungs that shrink and expand?
I can feel my breath trying to escape me
Like a turtle trying to flip
My heart sinks like a bathtub toy
Are there places in you like a robot that jerk and twitch?
I can feel the ghost trying to enter me
Like pushing a stroller up a hill
My heart breaks like a kit-kat bar
Are there places in you that hurt like a small funeral?
I can feel my love trying to scream out
Like a baby falling out of its crib
My heart tears like a piece of aluminum foil
Where are you?


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Author

I made my way over to Ovarian Mountain in my coughing car with few miles left, headed to the author's house. The roads around the base were thick from the oil spill. I sped up to avoid some baby ducklings and pulled up to a stoplight only to see Shelly Vonavier's navy blue Hameroo in my rearview mirror. I slammed on the breaks and immediately got out of the car. I suppose at the time I wanted to start something with this bitch. Her stupid car, her sunglasses, her fucking book. Part of me wanted to photograph her for Bitch Century Magazine. The other part wanted to say, "So I'll meet you at your house then?"
By the time we got to the house it was dark. She served up microwaved curry meatloaf and pink wine. I toasted: to the inevitable gloom that is our nights. And so we heard the blizzard roaring outside and the smoke from my Hopscotches made a cozy nest beside my head as we feathered out the rest of the evening, saying one thing, meaning the other.
Finally, it was time to ask her: Did you ever sign an autograph for a man named Victor Vandido? And who can forget a name like that.
"I vaguely remember him. He had eyes like an abused coyote and his favorite number was six. He showed up with a large plastic man with shrunken elephant ears and a little pink round fellow about three weeks ago."

Thursday, January 27, 2011


Despite my failure to retrieve any information at Hush, I still had one clue left to go on- the address on the driver's license. I parked a block away and stupidly left my car underneath a weeping willow. The house was a mint green color that reminded me of dirty toothpaste around my bathroom sink. There was a "For Sale" sign planted crookedly in the front yard and the house was completely bare. Dead end, I thought, but reached for the doorknob anyway. I'm not the type of girl to let something like a lock stand in my way, nor am I the type to be able to pick a lock, but I am the type to break a window. When I walked in the front door, a small package sat glaring at me in the foyer, wrapped in snowman paper. I tore the paper off and saw the partially revealed cover of Hank's favorite self-help book, titled No You Can't, a guide for punishing one's self. I am not the type of girl to believe in coincidences. On the inside of the cover I found a note from the author:

A neverending bad day for you.
Shelly Vonavier

Monday, January 24, 2011

Bar Hopping

Sick of waking up in the middle of the night wondering if someone was outside my house and needing a beer, I decided to show Victor Vandido's picture around the local bars. Hush was widely known for housing some disturbing characters late into the night, so I started there. Lighting two hopscotches on my way there, I heard a familiar laugh behind me. I turned around and saw Mr. Flup and a skinny redhead walking arm in arm down the black carpeted sidewalk. The booming bass coming from inside Hush made Mr. Flup begin to walk in rhythm. I felt more alone than ever as they passed me by, not even bothering to recognize me as a threat. In my head I thought of the cigarette fireworks display I put on during a prison baseball game resulting in third degree burns on 7 out of the 10 victims, who of course woke up relieved and eager to turn their lives around. Inside Hush, the bartender, Tommy, called me over to him, spilling everywhere.
"You better be careful," he told me quickly, "I saw Hank going into the men's room earlier. I think the pink fellow is here too, what's his name?"
"Seems like business is good."
"Oh yeah," he said, "Just look at the celebrities!" he pointed at the wall behind him which contained photos of most of the cast of Everyday Heros, a show about firemen. "Oh sorry," he said. "I didn't mean to insult you."
"Have you seen this man?" I said, showing him Victor Vandido's driver's license.
"No, I think I would remember him. Curious, does he have a face?"
"He won't when I'm done with him."
"I'll have wine. Blue." (fictional world)
Just then, Hank stumbled out of the men's room onto the dance floor, his plastic feet sliding on the spilled beer. Mr. Flup hurried over to offer him a shoulder, causing both of them to tip over. To my utter surprise, Hank began weeping. The crowd formed a circle around him as he pointed directionless into the air screaming "I'll get you, Vandido!" I snuck out the back, reflecting on the night's events. Was it possible that Victor Vandido was insulting Hank with his kind words? And if Hank and I had a common enemy, would that make us friends? I briefly thought of kissing Hank on the ear before stopping to burn a cat in a tree.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Victor Vandido

After realizing the cloaked figure selling cologne and gold chains on the corner of Monroe and Elm was the same stranger who left me with the words "Get well soon"over three years ago, I grabbed my binoculars and made my way past the antique jewelry shop. He was gone! Was I losing my mind? 

It gets worse. The next day I was buying a pack of smokes at the mini mart, which is an essential part of my career, and they were out of the Hopscotch brand I usually buy so I had to get Don Quixotes (fictional world) and I was so upset I started cussing. Then I turned around and slammed into the strong sent of cologne and the dark fabric of the cloak and heard the words "God bless you" when I hadn't even sneezed. When I turned around to follow, he had disappeared into the aisles of liquor and other adult commodities. It was just then that I noticed I had left my driver's license at the counter, and when I returned for it, the cashier pulled out two; one was mine, and the other had a picture of the cloaked figure, his face covered, with the name "Victor Vandido" next to it. After a moment of wondering if he ever got carded, I stealthily grabbed both driver's licenses and hurried out the door. Who was this man who always seemed to know the most insulting thing to say, and why was he following me? Did this have something to do with Hank? 

Later, in the bathtub, I lit up a Don Quixote and began making a list of the strange things that had happened lately, hoping they would lead me to an answer:
1. Mr. Flup buys a gym membership
2. Someone writes the word "Tomorrow" in the dirt on my superhero car
3. The mini mart runs out of Hopscotches 
4. Victor Vandido reappears

It was an inconclusive list of unrelated events. Or was it? 

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Monroe Blvd

I was driving my inconspicuous superhero car (i.e. piece of junk) down the frosted Monroe Blvd when I came across a particular looking white van with a crest painted on the side of a large creature waltzing with a round shadow of a figure. I pulled up to the stoplight and saw Hank in the driver's seat wearing his Prada sunglasses. This was serious. I looked away, hoping he wouldn't see me, but when I looked back he was already getting out of the car. I slammed on the gas, hitting a goose on my way past the antique shops. I checked my rear view mirror and Hank was hanging onto the bumper of my car, his mouth filled with asphalt. Behind him was Mr. Flup in the van giving me the finger. The road merged and I narrowly missed a stroller as I came to the antique jewelry shop on the corner of Elm St. Outside, a black cloaked figure stood selling cologne and gold chains at a reduced price. I recognized him, but I couldn't quite put my finger on it... CBG fans, please help! Where did I meet this man? And what was he doing in the middle of my car chase scene?