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> Dated a girl Jenny / Walking around the town in the summer, stopped at a Life is Good store, she let go that it was time to revert to being friends / Was sad / Understood it was reasonable and that I was lucky to still have her as a friend
Things I had trouble with after the break-up:
A sore throat
The depletion of my sex drive
Lack of motivation for exercise
Inability to focus on the book I was reading
The imagination of her with other boys
Nothing lasted more than a week except the depleted sex drive, specifically the inability to be aroused to the point of ejaculation, which I decided was not a problem; using this pretext I have excused myself from romantic activity and have therefore enjoyed getting to bed earlier and for some reason being perceived as “sweet”.
WISDOM I HAVE GAINED
If you judge by the end, nothing means anything; if you judge by the now, everything means something; if you judge by the then, anything means everything.
You can hold your heart in your hands, but you cannot then put your hands in your pocket.
When you reflect on an old embarrassing mistake you have learned nothing if you think, “How stupid I was.” This is the truth:
“How stupid I am.”
Anthony and I are walking down the shopping strip to the diner. The weather is ideal, as it always is when I desire it; the sky is two-thirds ocean blue and one-third multilayered clouds, the temperature requires a sweater and nothing more, and the breeze is present without intruding. My luck in uncontrollable factors is such that I wonder why God does not cut the suggestions and simply drop funny notes for me at work. Six months and three weeks ago I was preparing a parfait of favorite foods for Lisa’s birthday. I was in want of an apricot. The market only had prunes. I was considering how to work around this issue– not really– when my luck brought the apricots to my door in the form of a package of dried fruit, my favorite, from mother. Nine weeks from now I will be arranging a Friday night so that I can perform with my jazz sextet and meet Frank to see a show. The jazz quintet will be scheduled for the later slot, making it impossible for me to join Frank, until the group before us suffers three tardy members and we are forced to play early. Anthony is asking me a question.
“You know what I was thinking about the other day?”
“You remember that short time when you and me both had a thing for Lisa?”
^ Liked Jenny / Jenny friends with Lisa / Got to know Lisa / Liked Lisa a little / Started with Jenny
“What do you feel about her now?”
“She is good.”
“I told her the other day your joke about french fries. She thought it was funny.”
Several times before Lisa has recalled to me stories about myself that Anthony has told her, which is flattering and convenient, allowing me to be the center of attention without drawing focus to myself, but for principles’ sake I must say,
“I know I’m a funny guy, but…”
“I hope you guys can find something else to talk about–”
“– Except me.”
“Haha! Yeah, dude.”
He was laughing.
~~~~~ :-) ~~~~~ :-) ~~~~~
FROM A PAST CONVERSATION
ME. We can walk this way a little.
HER. Okay :).
ME. Are you cold?
HER. Nope. I don’t really get cold.
ME. That’s convenient.
HER. Tomorrow’s gonna suck.
HER. I have a ten-hour shift.
ME. Oy! What ab–
HER. You sound cold.
HER. Your voice. [Rubbing my arm] What did you think of the show?
ME. I liked it, I liked it a lot. Did you?
HER. Why did you like it?
ME. Eh– I just, enjoyed it.
HER. But like, how? Which character?
ME. Ih- it, appealed to me. I related to it.
HER, smiling. Mm.
HER. That’s such a “you” answer.
HER, still smiling. I think I know something.
HER. I think you have emotions you don’t talk about.
ME. Wow. Maybe you will be the first woman-psychologist.
HER, laughing. !!!
She was laughing.
~~~~~ ~~~~~ ~~~~~
At a certain age one ought to have a store that one can own emotionally, a store where one knows all the ins-and-outs of the products and services, whether it is a Bloomingdale’s or a Barns & Noble or a Bottle King or a Home Depot, or so on, and so on.
Lisa and I will be strolling down the path from the water to the edifice. I am anticipating her pregnancy as we enjoy a restful silence. Tomorrow I will have the talk with her father. What absurd luck. I instigate a dialogue.
“Maybe we can drop by FAO Schwarz for a bite on the way back.”
FAO Schwarz is her favorite. She smiles. “What will you have?” I do not have a sweet tooth. I answer her question.
A brief flurry of wind causes her hair to flow behind her. So, I think. A goddess. The air settles and we continue down the path. The sky is overcast like a dome and now the calmer wind is eerily suggestive so that gusts of it send leaves dancing below us in ellipses as though they are greeting or blockading our passage. Finally we approach the structure. This is what it said:
Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door
And I tried to be cynical, and I tried to be grave, but I could not prevent myself from standing at the foot of that monument and knowing I had been given everything I was promised.