“He’s willing to surgically remove the finger!” I yelled to The Suitor from my desk.  He’s in the kitchen pounding our chicken between sheets of plastic wrap.  Tonight I’m making a mock-lasagna with thin layers of chicken (marinated in basil, red pepper flakes, and Oliviers & Co. basil olive oil) nestled into a lasagna pan filled with tomato sauce and part-skim ricotta, doused with a sloppy layer of part-skim mozzarella.   Others might call this chicken parm.  Others aren’t trying to avoid carbs.  Mock-lasagna, thank you very much.

“Well good for him,” The Suitor replied weakly.
“His finger!” I continued to shout.  “FINGERRR.”  I was met with no response.  Some guy from San Antonio emailed me today, asking for my help in getting him noticed.  “He says he’s going to tattoo one of his fingers with a permanent advertisement,” I repeated earlier.
“Yeah, people do that these days, are willing to tattoo some company’s logo on their forehead for coin.”  He didn’t say “coin,” at all.  He just pointed to his forehead, the lines of it wrinkling as he looked up at me from his desk.  Coin is a good word, but if you stare at it too long, you wonder if you spelled it correctly. 

Well, it can’t just be any old finger, I thought.  I mean, for starters, he had better keep his hands moisturized, his cuticles pushed back, his nails buffed to a man-shine.  If you’re going to advertise on someone’s body, and all they’re offering up is one finger, it better be something in the middle.  A pointer finger would be good, too, but the middle finger has the most real estate.  People all but ignore your thumbs.   Then I thought back to the people who advertise on their foreheads.  I wondered if you’d notice their eyebrows more.  And certainly, there would have to be some proprietary agreement, a non-competition clause, prohibiting any additional tattoos on the face.  You wouldn’t want your audience to give that face a partial skim and miss your banner. 

So Mr. Finger, I have learned, is not just offering up a finger upon which one may advertise via tattoo, but after thirty days of wearing the tattoo, he claims he will have said finger surgically removed and given to the highest bidder.  Man, what happened to the good ol’ days when people were auctioning off grilled cheese sandwiches?



  1. I find all body ads remarkably disturbing, but especially anyone willing to remove their tattooed finger for money.

    Who wants to buy a surgically removed finger anyway? It's not like you could just set it on a corner of your desk, maybe in some fancy wooden finger holder. That shite has to be kept in formaldehyde to keep it from rotting. Ugh. No rotten fingers on my desk, thank you very much.

  2. What happened to the days of people working for money? I know some people that work harder at not working than I do working.

  3. Okay – so I'm a mom. When I see those kids with tattoos up over their necks, and the holes in their ears big enough to put pennies in, I feel faint and slightly nauseaus. Do they never want to grow up and get a real job? Do they realize the cost of plastic surgery to repair the damage? I like the tattoos from Cracker Jack – be wild for a day – don't make a life-long commitment before all your brain cells are formed.

  4. I'm trying to figure out what this guy is after, though. I don't see what selling your finger has to do with getting a "second chance" or proving to the world that you are not your past. Is it just for the money, then? The notoriety? The 15 minutes of fame?

    Hmmm . . . I'm guessing some sort of reality show or indie documentary is in the works.

  5. THAT is so not worth coin. I could never lose my finger because then I couldn't play the clarinet. (I realize how dorky that sounds but I don't care.)

  6. Oh my lord. This is pure insanity. Like that family that named their child ESPN, or Britney having another child.

    Though, in all of this, I think you should get to keep the finger after giving him this press. Ewwwww.

  7. I used to babysit for Olivier's daughter. He was just transitioning from Occitane (which he co-founded) to O&Co and I was one of his guinea pigs for his various olive oil creations. Sigh. THERE'S a relationship that I was a complete fool to let fade away…

  8. Yeah, well, good luck to him in finding a surgeon who would be willing to remove a perfectly healthy finger. [My in-depth experience with physicians tells me that this will be very difficult. Of course, there is the rare exception, like that Ob/Gyn who carved his initials onto a patient's abdomen.] I think this guy is just trying to get attention.

  9. Don't mean to over-post, but I also wanted to tell you that I liked the play on "part-skim" (as in cheese) and "partial skim" (as in glance). Also liked the reference to "Sloppy Firsts" and "Second Helpings" in your mock-plagiarism post. Quite clever.

  10. Okay, everybody is focusing on the chopped off appendage. I'm hungry for grilled cheese. What exactly does this say about me???? (One thing I know – it means grilled cheese for dinner tonight. And maybe I'll see God.)

  11. I NEED this mock lasagna. (Even the finger couldn't distract me) If I followed the recipe-ish thingy above….would it get me there?

  12. Weird but novel. Extremely weird. I've written/illustrated a picture story about a couple who "work at not working" (as a commenter noted above) and they reference that eBay toast-selling item.

  13. What's with the cheese today? I'm reading your new book(!)while scanning and helping customers at this RFID LI library. My co-worker and friend arrives yapping about cheese doodles. Not part-skim. Then she yells how some HS seniors threw cheese at her car. I asked if she would have liked that frozen 16-pound turkey tossed instead.Her reply? Cheese. But she wouldn't mind scanning that turkey. Whatever happened to quiet libraries?

  14. Eeewwww!!!! Is that even legal? I agree with M.D. – I don't think any decent doctor would agree to it.

  15. Thanks for the recipe .. it sounds great.
    And of course the rest of the post is top notch!

  16. uh…how did he come up with this 'brilliant' idea???

    BTW You sound happy in Austin – I've been meaning to write a comment for a while. Good for you! I wish you and Phil only the very best.

  17. I'm with Buffy — the recipe (or thought of it) has got me salivating. Can you share the particulars?

  18. Ewww – it's people like him that make me glad my door has locks on it. He sounds insane personally.

    That lasagna sounds good though – mmmm

    Do you miss NY?

  19. St. Helena Olive Oil Co also has a fantastic Basil EVOO. They also have orange, lemon and jalapeno…super yummy.

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