By Andrew Boulton
Do not call me a liar. But.
I took off my boot tonight and saw, not my own, but Tilda Swinton’s toe.
(Do not ask me how I know it was Tilda Swinton’s toe. If you saw it you would know at once it was Tilda Swinton’s toe.)
I asked it what it was doing, there on my foot, but being a toe, it gave no excuses.
I rang my girlfriend to tell her about Tilda Swinton’s toe appearing where my toe should have been, but she told me she couldn’t talk and asked if I could transfer her the forty pounds I still owed her from the weekend.
I spent a few minutes looking for the tiny calculator I needed to log onto to my bank, oddly forgetting the business with my toe.
Later that night, my girlfriend texted me to say she really needed that forty pounds and if she’d known how flakey with money I was, she would never have let me fuck her in that child’s spaceship ride at the arcade. I sent her a picture of Tilda Swinton’s toe.
Now I am in a bath, trying to see if I can submerge every part of my body except the foreign toe, but my nose is too big and my bath is too small to make it work.
The phone rings while I am in the bath, and rather than answering I try to predict which ring will be the last one. Like always, I wager impossible consequences on my success. If it is this ring, I shall resign from my job. If it is this ring, I shall threaten a politician on social media.
I look at Tilda Swinton’s toe, haughty and slender on my milky monkey’s foot. It does not seem surprised to be here. It does not seem unhappy amongst these fatter, commoner toes.
I suspect my other toes are trying to impress Tilda Swinton’s toe. Wiggling provocatively or stretching themselves out until they cramp.
For a while, I try to find a way to get in touch with Tilda Swinton. Ask her if she has my old toe. Maybe find out if she knows why this is happening.
But then the door opens, and my girlfriend’s brother is there, and his fists are curled like dead spiders. I know he will hit me, just not how hard or how many times or where.
I tell him I don’t have any money or anything he could take that would be as good as money, and then he notices that I somehow have Tilda Swinton’s toe and decides, not unreasonably, it must be worth something.
So we sit in my kitchen, passing a cigarette between us, while he holds an ice cube against the very bottom of Tilda Swinton’s toe to numb the skin.
My girlfriend’s brother is amputating Tilda Swinton’s toe. But, please, do not call me a liar.