There is a part of my body that always seems to get me in trouble. It”s not a very large organ, but none-the-less it seems to affect my life in an enormous way. Here”s some hints to its origin Bodily fluids go in and out of it, it”s a couple inches in diameter and it”s necessary for biological survival.

Paul Wong
Twin Peaks<br><br>Elizabeth Pensler

If your mind lives in the gutter (like mine) than before you make your guess you need to move many feet north. It”s my mouth, the small orifice three quarters of the way down from the top of head, which words, food and breath pass through on a daily basis. Everyone has a mouth. If a person was missing some kind of mouth they would die, but my mouth is unique because it works separately from my brain.

Over the years, more and more, it”s become its own being an uncontrollable entity. It”s been giving me problems since I learned how to do that dreadful thing that happens to all of us when we hit the tender age of 2 talk! Due to all the problems it has ensued upon me, I have made an executive decision to sue my mouth. If a child can sue their parents, if the woman who spilled hot coffee all over her lap can sue McDonald”s, then by-gonnit I can sue my mouth. Here”s the relevant evidence that I have collected over the years for the impending case:

Prosecution wants to enter evidence A. At the age of five the defendant, her mouth, would insult obese women by asking the ever ignorant question are you pregnant? Smokers didn”t get away easy either because they would receive a long speech on the dangers of smoking or how they were going to die from cancer.

Entering school just antagonized the enemy. It gave it the ultimate freedom to back talk, insult and offend endless amounts of people, including teachers.

My mouth also got me in many fights with my friends I would tell friend A that friend B said she was ugly, stupid or obnoxious. In turn, that one small comment, that one small sentence, became the fire that lit the explosion because a massive brawl always followed.

Since my mouth likes to go on and on, I manage to get in fights with not just my friends, but random strangers as well. People are very perceptive of my mouth and its ability to argue and disagree. Those around me make it their business to aggravate and assault me just to see a volatile reaction.

For example, my grandmother said to me, “Why don”t you become a nurse instead of a doctor It”s too stressful of a job for women.” This sexist statement sent my mouth into a volcanic eruption of “How can you say that?” My grandmother walked away from the fight after my 20-minute speech on how this isn”t 1945 and women have moved out of the kitchen. She seemed totally unaffected, and feminist ideology became the fuel for many fires to set-off my mouth.

It was on an early morning in middle school that I called a male teacher, for no good reason at all “A sexist pig!” Shortly after that I tried to wage a sexual harassment suit on my many male contemporaries on behalf of an acquaintance, which managed to do nothing, but blow up in my face and throw me in the middle of a gender crossfire.

Then there is the deadly activity of asking me a question. Most people will walk away from an inappropriate question or laugh and blush, but I take all questions very seriously.

A fellow classmate of mine asked, “Do women wear underwear with panty hose?” The girl sitting next to me covered her mouth and looked at the ground. But I immediately sought to give a complete, educated answer to the question “Some women wear underwear with panty hose, but other women don”t like the lines underwear makes …” I created a virtual paradigm on “When women wear underwear.” This isn”t just information that one willingly submits without coercion or pressure, however, my mouth knows no limit

Due to these outbreaks, I spent most of my youth learning to control every single word that came out of the enemy. It was a constant struggle between good and bad right versus wrong.

College was just another road to the merciless path of speech. Unlike before where my teachers told me not to talk, not to raise my hand and not to participate, in college it was condoned and even encouraged. I must have gone too far because one of my discussion classes became a virtual circus.

On one occasion, the Graduate Student Instructor made me move my desk to the front of the class, right next to his, to prevent me from conversing with my classmates. This is after he asked me repeatedly to stop coming to discussion because I was too disruptive. In defense of my mouth, I was just trying to help the other students understand the concepts.

Some students feel great discomfort talking in lecture, but I have the opposite problem. I can”t control my need to voice my opinion. I sit there while the professor teaches and these thoughts pop into my mind and I just want to express them. I spend much energy controlling that need to comment, that need to ask. Even when I am in a bad mood, I am tired and I decide emphatically that I am not going to talk. Before I know it, my mouth has ran away with the baton and is finishing the marathon.

As well as my voice being a problem, my presence has become a point of conflict. It just always seems that I always share the minority opinion on all matters of discussion. When my “club” gets together to vote on pressed topics, the group gets annoyed with the endless comments that are spewed from my mouth. A five-minute discussion will turn into a two-hour meeting on account of my large mouth.

In order to keep this case down to a minimum of a page, I refuse to let my mouth defend itself. It”s not that my mouth couldn”t defend itself or wouldn”t defend itself, it”s just that this lawsuit would turn into a 5,000 page novel. I want to apologize to all those I have already offended, aggravated or disturbed and for all those in the future that I will meet and encounter … watch out.

If you can relate to Elizabeth”s talking predicament or if you want to bitch and complain about her mouth and how it has caused you to enter psychiatric treatment, then please send a little whistle to her email epensler@umich.edu

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