A beautiful, delicate morning graces Oxford, Ohio. The sun is shining through the windows of the president’s mansion. The birds and the trees sing in the morning light. On a large, regal king bed someone is stirring. Ivy jumps out of bed, careful not to land on Gregory in his trundle.

She delicately slips off his periwinkle nightcap, and, as the morning breeze kisses his dome with a chill, he awakes. He bursts from the fetal position over to his record player. He chooses a record to fill the morning with glorious music (It was the Spice Girls again today). He prances around in his birthday suit, dancing with warm summer air.

He bursts through the beaded curtain leading to his personal bathroom where he glides to the bathtub. He uses his bedazzled thermometer to make sure the water is a cozy 145 degrees Fahrenheit (his internal temperature). As the water bubbles next to him, he sits criss cross applesauce as he begins to apply shaving cream to his head, face, and entire body. Ivy, knowing her cue, trots on in, straight razor in mouth, to give Greg his daily “shavey wavey.”

After a brief bath, Ivy and him hop out and get dressed. He goes through the house, saying good morning to the trees, the birds, the windows, the refrigerator, the dungeon, the hardwood floors, Renate’s stasis chamber, and finally the kitchen.

Greg sniffs the morning air, still in its warmth. He hears the trees ebb and flow outside of the open bay windows. “A perfect morning” he whispers to himself. He reaches into the freezer (or ice box, which he sometimes still calls it) to grab a nourishment cube to satiate him for the foreseeable future. He consumes it quickly.

Greg gallops from the kitchen to the front door. He takes a quick glance to the left at his vanity mirror as he does every morning, “He’s got gusto,” he whispers, “He’s got gusto!”

bertrant@miamioh.edu

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