I like milk shortcake biscuits. It is a product of CRL Munchies Company, weighs about 85 kg and has a total number of twelve round milk coated deliciousness. I don’t know why I binge eat certain biscuits or biscuits at all, and not just biscuits, candy bars like snickers (albeit I seldom eat chocolates), because it is bad for my teeth. As a matter of fact, I think about my dentist shaking his big round pudgy head at my file held in his sausage fingers whenever I buy anything sugary to eat or smoke.

I cannot remember when I began having toothaches but I know why I have it. It started in primary school when I did nothing but bought Bonky chewing gums with my lunch money, mainly because of the tattoo stickers in it (the one you put on your palms and then pour water on it to make it last longer). When Bonky stopped making chewing gums I switched to Timebomb and chomped endlessly. It did not help much that I skipped brushing, not at night, but in the morning when I was compulsorily meant to after skipping the medically advised “always brush at night.”

Which child skips brushing, where was my mother?

Two parents are crucial, but at the same time my mother stayed with our father for us, but she got tired and left on a certain day that I remember vividly. She dressed up for work, having sneaked her suitcase into the boot of her car the previous night, and stood in front of our block, waiting. I found her there; just as she was about to leave and when she saw me she smiled, sadly.

I saw her smile but didn’t even see the sadness at the time.

“What can I buy for you on my way back from work?” she asked.

“Gala,” I said.

And then she left.

I was happy she left. I hated seeing my parents fight, I don’t remember them being in love. I think it was why I thought they were better separated rather than be miserable together. The only time I saw them united was one Sunday we went out as a family for pepper soup and my mother didn’t smile until we left, turned out we went to the restaurant of the woman that will later be my stepmother.