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One day last week we had a foosball machine delivered to our house by mistake. Dad took it down in the basement right away with help from his old partner, Gilbert the Frenchman, only he's not from France but from some colony of France or so he says. Gilbert pronounces his name like your trying to shush someone and it makes my teeth buzz in my head.

"Szzheeeel-bair," he mouths slowly to me every time he comes in our house with his weird hairy eyebrows and wet red lips spitting and looking like he's some girl in a lip gloss commercial on TV or in Zit Head's Barbie collection that I accidentally painted half of them red and half of them blue and used for hockey men on a frozen mud puddle a long, long time ago way back when I was only seven.

I try sayin' his name that way but that rattling of my jaw hurts so much that I just call him Gill, like what's on the side of a fish's head. He kinda' looks like a fish, sorta. An ugly fish.

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