Bubble Butt

Illustration by Juliana Neufeld

Illustration by Juliana Neufeld

by Vivek Shraya

We are junior scientists with our microscopes. We discover what mitosis and meiosis look like under the lens. But the real focus is always on each other, specifically each other’s body parts: Krissy Bell’s huge breasts, Zack Mason’s huge biceps, Travis Reeves’ supposedly small penis. And Mr. Mitchell’s bum.

Mr. Mitchell is my gym teacher and he is perfect. His polo shirts stretch over his heroic shoulders and chest, as though they were tailored for his body alone. All the women teachers seem to smile just a little bigger when he talks to them. Even his supposed flaws are attractive, like the way his forehead shines where his sandy hair has begun to recede. But his real gift is behind him.

I have never really paid attention to any bum before, but Mr. Mitchell’s is hard to ignore, especially in the tight blue jeans he wears. It is magnetic. Juicy even. Just the right amount of lift and bounce. Lisa Tober calls it (and him) “Bubble Butt.”

This fascination with my gym teacher’s bum has led to an intense curiosity about what kind of underwear he wears. I approach him when he is sitting on the bench, legs open, and find any excuse to engage him in conversation.

How was your weekend Mr. Mitchell?

Can’t believe it’s still snowing, eh, Mr Mitchell?

Are you going to supervise the school dance Mr. Mitchell?

He always responds with a cocky ease and I smile and nod, waiting for him to blink or look away after the socially appropriate amount of eye contact has ended, so that I can steal a peek up his shorts, an image I will summon later that night.

On the day he catches me peeking, he is wearing boxers with little dogs on them.

Vivek Shraya is a Toronto-based multimedia artist, working in the mediums of music, performance, literature and film. This story is from God Loves Hair, his first collection of short stories.