Hi, I Like To Cut MyselfCommentary • people • Opinion • ISSUE 42•03 • Jan 18, 2006 By Kim LeClerc When I encounter people on the street or in the supermarket or at school, the first things they notice, I'm convinced, are the self-inflicted cuts and scars on my body. And sure, I can see how it might seem, at first glance, like I devote all my time to slashing and carving my skin. But nothing could be further from the truth. For starters, I love to read. Be it fiction, nonfiction, health pamphlets warning against the dangers of self-mutilationI'll read just about anything I can get my hands on. I guess I have an addictive personality, because once I pick up a book, or anything that's sharp, you practically have to wrestle me to the ground to get me to put it down. It's hard to explain, but the pleasure I get from books goes much deeper than just the words on the page. I love the way a book feels when I wrap my hands around it. That familiar smell that only a book has. Also, I very much enjoy how a single page, when held firmly between the index finger and thumb and pulled sharply against the flesh, can create a small, deeply satisfying cut. And I love movies, too. Especially dramas like Girl, Interrupted, The Virgin Suicides, and Secretary. Although if I had to choose, I'd probably have to say that my favorite movie of all time is Edward Scissorhands.Okay, I know what you're thinking: Kim enjoys sappy, sentimental chick flicksbig surprise! Well, would you guess just by looking at me that I also happen to love slasher films? Yes, you heard me right! Hellraiser, Halloween, A Nightmare On Elm StreetI love them all! It's funny, movies like that weren't always my cup of tea. When I was younger, sometime before entering my turbulent teenage years, I used to have a real hard time with the sight of blood. I guess I grew out of it, because nowadays, that stuff doesn't even make me flinch.I also absolutely adore cooking. After a long, stressful day, there's nothing I look forward to more than rolling up my sleeves, grabbing a real sharp knife from the kitchen drawer, and eventually slicing up some vegetables for a tasty stir-fry. Maybe it's the fragrant aroma of fresh herbs and spices sizzling on the stove that calms the spirit and makes the cares and worries of the day slip away. I wouldn't know. Usually, I'm in the bathroom cleaning my cuts while dinner's cooking. That reminds me of another one of my favorite pastimes: gardening! For me, gardening is just like therapy, except that, with gardening, I'm usually all alone, so no one is there to ask me why I carved "Help me" into my arm. Another thing you'd never guess about me is that I'm learning how to sew! Sure, it was frustrating at first, and yes, there were a few times when I got upset with the lack of progress I was making and responded by jabbing the needle repeatedly into my thigh, but I think I'm starting to get the hang of it. It was worth it, too. Now, I don't have to go to the tailor every time I need one of my skirts hemmed, or to the hospital every time I need stitches. And that's only the beginning. I mean, I haven't even gotten to how much I like burning myself!