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  • Paul Davidson

I Swallowed Ink

I swallowed ink, and have lived to tell the tale.

I was probably 12. I was sitting on the couch watching television. I was chewing on the end of a Bic pen, happily chew-chew-chewing away. Somewhere around the time that Chuck Woolery gave his trademark “we’re back in two and two”, I tasted a strange taste in my mouth.

Aren’t those sense memories wonderful? Chuck Woolery and a strange taste in my mouth. (I’ll leave that one alone for now.)

When I pulled the Bic pen from my mouth, a stream of ink followed. I placed my fingers in my mouth, removed them, and saw that they were covered in stark blue ink. I absolutely freaked. I ran to my mother’s room and with my mouth wide open, blue ink dripping from all corners, said something like:

“Aaaah jussssffffbbb sfffalllowwwwed chhhhink!”

Although she had no idea what I was saying, she could obviously see the fountain of goo spilling forth from thee’s mouth and (like mother, like son), absolutely freaked.

“Oh my god, what did you do!?”

“Aaaah jussssffffbbb sfffalllowwwwwed chhhhink!”

I pulled my “invisible” retainer from my mouth (invisible, my ass) and I showed that it, too, had been stained bright blue.

“Maaaaaah reccchhaaainer!”

“Forget about your retainer! What did you do!?”

I just pointed to my mouth as my mother frantically searched the house. Pulling books off shelves, looking for that elusive You’ve Just Been Poisoned: The Next Five Steps book that, maybe existed in her head, but in the reality of the situation, didn’t exist at all.

She called my father, she called our neighbor, she called the doctor and called the hospital. She called and called and called and called (four calls) and eventually got her answer.

1. Rinse mouth out with water. 2. Rinse mouth out with water, again. 3. Take pen away from adolescent. 4. Slap adolescent. 5. Remove adolescent’s retainer, throw in garbage, ask “What did you do?” four more times.

In the end, I learned an extremely lesson that dark day during my childhood. Swallowing ink totally won’t kill you. You could swallow a whole Bic pen’s ink reservoir and probably not even get poisoned. You can even use such information years later in college when you’re bet $150 to swallow a Bic pen’s ink reservoir and become quickly known as “that ink-swallowing guy.”

My stomach hurts just thinking about it.

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