I don’t want the staff to pick for me.
I go to the other side of the store, looking for a good remainder.
I don’t even like getting books for Christmas.
I don’t want anyone to make a selection for me.
I don’t want to wear underwear bought by my mother.
I prefer to cut my own meat.
I don’t want to smoke a cigarette lit by a stranger.
I don’t want to wear a tie that’s been chosen by a friend.
I don’t want to use a fork that’s been in someone else’s mouth.
I can’t share a tooth brush, can you?
I’m like Madonna: if it were up to me, I’d just as soon sit on a brand new toilet.
I’d just as well not flush for you; and whenever I forget, I regret it.
I’d just as well clean up after myself. And I sure as hell don’t want to clean up after you.
I don’t want to smell another man’s breath on my wife, but that’s something else, isn’t it?
I’m sorta funny that way, but I’d prefer not to share my cookies.
I’d just as well leave my leftovers left over, and not picked over.
I like being on my own.
I never liked tearing my sandwich in two, not even for my friend.
I never liked it as a kid when another kid mooched my potato chips.
I’ll take the check, just the same. Thank you kindly.
I don’t want to be alone, but I want to be left alone.
I don’t like it when someone sips my drink or wants to try my dessert.
I couldn’t bear it if my wife ate my ice.
I just don’t trust a man who can’t dress himself. I’m just saying.
I’d prefer to wipe my own nose.
I don’t want anyone to pick things off my plate. I’m like a dog; I snarl.
Now, if you don’t mind, I’ll get back to work.
[David Lohrey was born on the Hudson River but grew up on the Mississippi in Memphis. He currently teaches in Tokyo. He has reviewed books for The Los Angeles Times and The Orange County Register, has been a member of the Dramatists Guild in New York, and he is currently writing a memoir of his years living on the Persian Gulf. His latest book, The Other Is Oneself: Postcolonial Identity in a Century of War: 20th Century African and American Writers Respond to Survival and Genocide, is available on Amazon. A book of his poetry, entitled “Machiavelli’s Backyard” is soon to be released.]