Here I Am: Hi

by Paul A. Toth

"Mr. Nash, please introduce yourself."

I hate it when the judge asks that question, that magnifying glass of a request that zooms me into dust, microbes, atoms. How many cases have I lost deciding how to say my name, ruining my focus? Every case, in fact. I am sick of it. Sick of it, I am. Of it, I am sick.

I might say, "My name is Thomas Nash, sir." Simple. To the point. Polite. "Thomas Nash, ma'am." Even simpler, "Thomas Nash." Or, "Tom Nash," you could do that. But that's as far as you can go in that direction -- unless I use an initial: "T. Nash."

But judges like to hear "Your Honor." Lord Above, they love those two words. "Your Honor, Your Honor, let me kiss your ass with honor." You have to figure that out, too. "Your Honor, I am Thomas Nash." That's one choice. "Thomas Nash, Your Honor." There's option number two. And if you want to get fancy, you might try, "I am, Your Honor, Thomas Nash."

What if I said nothing? Here I am: Hi.


"Please, Mr. Nash, introduce yourself!"

Look at me: I am so much more than my name.

Five o'clock and here I am still standing here. The bailiff helps me to the door. He is a nice man.

"Please go now, Mr. Nash," he says.

I tell him, "How about, 'Please, now, go, Mr. Nash?'"

"That'll work, too," he says. "Just get the hell out of here."
PAUL A. TOTH lives in Michigan. His fiction has appeared in The Barcelona Review, Exquisite Corpse, Small Spiral Notebook, The Blue Moon Review, and others. A short film based on Fizz has been directed by special effects wiz John Tissavary (The Matrix). Toth is currently at work on a new novel. For more information and complete credits, please see
The Adirondack Review