Thursday, April 26, 2007

crack back

You would be sitting on the couch and watching tv. It is most likely Seinfeld. There would be a heavy odor of cigarettes hanging in the air, but you wouldn’t smell it because your nosed would be stuffed up. you would always have a stuffed up nose. It would be perpetual. Your eyes would be losing focus on the screen, letting it blur into a series of flickering images, each one indecipherable from the next. Boredom would be soaking through you. The world outside, planes and cars and streetlamps and chatter, would fold into a steady hum. The center of the couch, where two cushions meet, would grow weak under the weight of you, and begin to sink. Out of the corner of your conscious a melody breaks into your thoughts, a familiar jingle rings in your skull. And suddenly

You are cracked back to the year 2000 and you are twenty five years old. There is sweat on your face and neck and it shines when the sunlight hits it. your eyes are cross and heavy and slanted and they are cursing a girl standing near your decks, playing the same record over and over again. Her face is in the same shape as yours but some strange dementia has lifted it up some, so she has the upper hand because she’s more awake. You lay down and try to pretend your’e sleeping, hoping that maybe she’ll get lonely and leave your house. You hear her pull back the needle so she can play the song again. She says she is waiting for her ride to pick her up. You are kicking yourself because you didn’t go to bed earlier. You are kicking yourself because you are nice, and generous, and have been awake so long that even though the thought of sex makes your sweaty skin itch. the amphetamine pervert inside of you hoped that maybe this crazy chick would let you touch her tits, so you let her stay after everyone else had gone to bed. And she didn’t let you touch her tit and she still did all your drugs. And you didn’t mind because she was cute and wacky and weird in a curious sort of way. And then she said she had no way to get home. and then you got very tired. And then she was standing near your turntables, fumbling with the tone arm, trying to cue up the same depeche mode single she has been playing non stop for the past hour or so, and all you want to do is go to sleep. And you hear the opening drone of the synthesizer once more, and

You shake yourself back awake and on the tv screen Kramer is twitching and saying something funny. You would wonder to yourself then, whatever happen to that girl? You would remember that she seemed dangerously off kilter, and that she had pretty eyes. That they were dark and quiet and had a sort of dislocated way about them, as if she sometimes didn’t even know she was looking at something. They were seeing a thing, but she didn’t know or didn’t care what it was. You would not remember how she got home that morning. You would not remember ever seeing her again after that. And a sadness would crash softly in your stomach as your realized that maybe doing speed wasn’t the best for her. That maybe she never connected fully, and she is still in san Francisco, trying to find herself in a song over and over again. And it would occur to you, the profound magnitude of sensation that you can have in just one second, is just one of the many facets of life you take for granted. Also, you are not very fond of Depeche Mode.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Trouble Ticket

My internet is boned. I've been trying to get it sorted out all day, in between mooching free wireless from the local café and dropping off my laundry at the ninjitsu folding palace up the block, I’ve been on the phone. i've been on the phone with India. I've been on the phone with robots. I've been on the phone with hold music. Getting to the bottom of my fifteen digit trouble ticket. punching my index finger into the phone, the same sequence of numbers, every single time. All fucking day. I'm desperate for my internet. I need my world wide web. I'm beginning to think I might be addicted.

The nba playoffs are on television. New Jersey at Toronto. Vince carter is getting booed every time he touches the ball. I guess when he split from Toronto it was a bad breakup. I don’t watch the nba much anymore, so I don’t keep up with the gossip, but the announcers are doing nothing less than making an opera of the situation. i don’t really care either way, though I guess I hold a little bit of an allegiance for the nets, being that a lot of my family are in new jersey. Still, I think I want Toronto to win. I mean, why not?

(I have no agenda tonight, and it feels good. I have my laptop and warm techno and a fresh new castle beer. I have the page and the word. I have my phone bill paid. My satellite tv burns out into the living room and the windows are open because its warm outside. The shakes and shivers and the worries of the day are being dragged away in the sound of traffic. Lost in the evening tide. A window of simplicity has been drawn and a remarkable sigh of relief has come over me.)

I spoke to my brother today. The black one. Sometimes he just shatters me. he wants to come out this summer, to fill new york with his thunderous presence. He wants to see how bright the night can shine. And I want him to come, I truly do. But to be honest, I'm a little afraid. What me and him can become is not entirely in sync with this city. There isn’t as much room for error here. Its not the right pace; our drawl is too different. Or maybe it is that the city is perfect for our behavior, and I fear the fire will be too fueled. That we will become trapped in it, and then lost. And then what?

But he has to come. I know he does. And I hope he will. it’s a wonder he hasn’t yet. Maybe he hasn’t because he is afraid as well? maybe he thinks our slow, drunken bones cant fight with the stories we live on anymore. The stories that created our lives, our relationship. The girls and the music and the sick feeling in your stomach when the sun came up. The nights that turned to mornings and then afternoon and then night again. The infomercials on television beaming a bright reflection off the mirror. the serpentine conversations that end in screaming and laughter. Maybe he thinks that we are too weak now, too settled. That we don’t have the enthusiasm or patience, to bear such a blind, careless adventure. Maybe the time just isn’t right. Maybe hes just too busy. Maybe he doesn’t think about coming at all.

Who knows really? It is what is it. ill be out there sometime this summer. Another coast of ghost to haunt me. With clean underwear and an open mind, I will have a real good time.

UPDATE: yay! My internet is back up. these ramblings are now a post from the past!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

the wrong tape

i got a scented candle.
"cut grass."
now my office smells like a quiet suburban street.


when i was about 10 years old my mother rented a porn video for me and my friend. im not sure how i convinced her to do it, but it seemed reasonable at the time. back then my friend and i would spend a lot of time in downtown san francisco. the streets were our playground. we would spend our days scouring the gutters for treasure, sneaking into porn shops for a peek, hanging on the corners and in alleys, watching the drug dealers deal and the drug addicts fiend. she worked at a homeless shelter back then, and sometimes i would run into her co-workers while finding trouble in the streets. i think one of them told her that they'd saw us lurking around seedy areas, sneaking into the adult shops, and she'd decided that was too dangerous. So instead of scolding me and telling me not to hang around with perverts, she rented us a porno and told us to watch it in the safety of our home. i dont know if that was the best idea, but thats how it went down in those days.

she came home with it in a brown paper bag and tossed it on the couch in front of us, then went into the kitchen and chain smoked cigarettes. we anxiously put it in the vcr and sat on the floor, eyes wide, staring at the television, hoping for some sort of magic. what we saw was decidedly not magical. not in the least.

it opened with a man laying on a bed, completely naked. there wasnt any sound, just the hiss of silence, and the film was grainy and dark. the production value was definitely lacking. but my friend and i watched intently, almost shivering in our own undeveloped hormones. where are the girls at? i want to see some tits. i want to hear some moans. what is it that grown ups do? i want to share in the excitement.

but it was just the guy, laying there. i think he was reading a magazine or something. we fast forwarded it a bit. lets get to the action! when i hit play the image roared out. we couldnt believe what we were seeing. the same guy was on the screen, and he was still alone, but he was FUCKING A TOMATO. we both doubled over in confusion. what the huh? then we decide to fast forward more (at a very young age i knew that sex with vegetables wasnt my kink) and when i press play: there, looking out at me, is a hairy mans ass, butt cheeks spread wide open, while another man is diving in for some prime anus rimming.

we pressed stop and sat there in a horrible silence. i was stunned. i could hardly believe it. my mother had rented me gay porno.

when brought to her attention she laughed and apologized. she checked the video and realized that instead of getting The Devil in Miss Jones, she had gotten The Devil and Mr. Jones. later on i grew suspicious that maybe she was testing us, seeing how we would respond. but she swore it was a mistake and actually ended up bringing home a straight porno a few nights later. whatever that porno was i forget. it hardly made as lasting an impression as the tomato fucking one.


we went to the yankee game yesterday. we got there at the top of the 3rd inning. all the homeruns balls were in the hands of the fans by then. only thing left was a few errors and some pop flyouts. yankees won. yankees won.

we went to a bar across the street from the stadium and had a few shots and a couple beers. the bartenders there dropped my jaw. they were gorgeous in all the right ways. i think i fell in love once, though it could have been all the alcohol.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

our battles

im in the city and its been raining. roaring. and ive been drinking. im getting reminders. they are popping up on my computer screen; like unsolved mysteries. i ignore them. they're just a bother.

tonight at the bar we talked about the state of things. just me and the owner. over shots of irish whiskey. it was slow. things were easy. we had time to kill. (i was supposed to play a movie but i didnt. it was going to be "fight club." when the time came though, it felt too jarring. so i forced myself to forget it. last thing i want to be is a buzzkill. buzzkills are lame.) we discussed the world and we did a shot. we debated the nature of things and did a shot. we pondered the union, the nation, and society. and we did a shot and another and another.

somebody ask, -are you going to play the movie? and someone else says, -can i have a makers mark on the rocks? the whiskey goes fast. more than anything else. people want it neat. they want it over ice. they want it with water. they want with a beer back. i say, -we decided not to play it. dont worry, we'll have an even better one next week. i pull back the tap and pour another stella artios. someone walks in. they wave hello and i wave back.

-how are you? you look great. its been so long... forgive me. what was your name again?

we do another shot and i change the music. we talk about the music that always works the crowd. then we talk about the music that is a challenge, and has to be dropped at just the right time. we talk about ipod playlist. we talk about the most efficient way to make one. (in 2 hour blocks.) we talk about how natural different types of music come to certain groups of people. we ask how is that, and discuss genetic code. (or what little we know of it.) we do more shots.

i scream, -LAST CALL!

we turn the music down, but not all the way off. i begin to cap the bottles. he takes out the trash. someone says, -can i have another beer? and i say of course, then grab their glass and pour it. two people head for the exit. then another. goodbye! have a great night! i wave furiously, happy to see them go, but sad to see them leave. thats what my face says. they leave a good tip. i curse myself for not buying them a round.

he mopped the floors and i poured us a few more. he mentions the civil rights marches and the codes we live by. we recognize, for one last time, our battles. then we slam the shots down our throat. i sweep the room with my eyes. all the glasses are polished. then we left back out into the city. and we shut the gate behind us. these are the hours that make up my day.

Monday, April 16, 2007

dumb things i did as a kid

when i was 8 years old i was living at a foster home in a quiet residential neighborhood in san francisco. it was an older couple that ran it, they must have been in their mid to late 60s. he had false teeth and she wore a wig. one morning before school i was in the bathroom brushing my teeth and splashing water over on my face, when i noticed a can of hairspray sitting above the sink. being the precocious little metrosexual i am, i decided that a healthy dose of hairspray was just what i needed in order to complete my studly transformation from shy, third grade nerd to sexy, third grade hero. what i didnt know was that it wasnt hairspray in a can, but hair remover in a can. after a long 15 minutes of spraying a good half the bottle all over my head, i went to comb out my afro into maximum Billy Dee Williams appeal. needless to say i was the only third grader suffering from massive bald spots for the next two weeks.

at an even earlier age i was living in new jersey with my grandmother. i had been allowed the responsibility of walking home by myself, and usually when i arrived the house would be quiet, with my grandmother still at work and my aunts usually studying or reading in their room. one afternoon i was particularly hungry and decided i would take it upon myself to feed my 7 year old belly. the night before we'd had macaroni and cheese at dinner, and their was still some left, in a plastic bowl, prominently displayed in the middle of the refrigerator. i grabbed it and decided i would heat it up, without any help from the elders in the house, just to prove that i could do things on my own. i lit the gas flame stove and placed the mac n cheese, still in the plastic bowl, directly onto the burner. in a few minutes, i thought, ill not only have warm food, but receive heaps of praise from the family for being so self sufficient. yay! cue to me running around, crying hysterically, as flames from the melting bowl grew to a frightening height in the kitchen. i didnt use the stove again for the next few years.

i dont really remember the age i was at, but there was an incident of me jumping from a tree with a plastic bag, and then an umbrella, both in an attempt to parachute, or glide to the ground, in a feathery like manner. both ended up with me being injured.

i once used all my mothers lipstick on my face at the same time. she was thrilled at that.

i would go the length of entire blocks, jumping from roof to roof. most of the buildings were 3 or more stories high. im surprised i didnt kill myself.

one time, when i was 3 or so, i threw every piece of my mothers clothes out of our 4th story apartment window, just to watch them float to the ground. again, she was thrilled beyond belief.

i could go on and on...

Saturday, April 14, 2007

7 under par

its the weekend. do bloggers take weekends off? do they post short quips summerizing their liesure? youtube videos? a brief synopsis of their plans? whats the etiquette here?

oh man, this is the funniest shit ive read in a while.

today i havent done anything. nothing at all. well, i played some tiger woods golf on my xbox. i never play video games, but for some reason today seemed like the day to break that rule. so ive been running holes on the back 9 for the last few hours. im like, 7 under par. to those not in the know, thats pretty fucking good.

in other news:

so i guess the guy that created Girls Gone Wild had his house broken into and was made to put a dildo in his ass while saying, "you are watching boys gone wild." someone videotaped it (most likely while pointing a gun to his head) and threatened to use the tape as blackmail. there are a few obvious flaws to that plan. But one that reallly baffled me.

why is the Girls Gone Wild guy going to care if someone has a videotape of his sodomizing himself. i imagine the conversation when the tape leaked would have went something like this:

Public: So you put a dildo in your ass and said, "welcome to boys gone wild." what do you have to say about that?

Girls Gone Wild guy: well you know, i had a gun pointed to my head. whatcha gonna do?

and that would have been the end of that. what, is he supposed to be threatened that people will think hes gay? hes the guy that created Girls Gone Wild, no one even cares if hes gay. he could be the recipient of a "Best Double Anal With 100 Man Bukkake Finish at a Construction Site" award, and hed still be the mastermind behind commercially exploiting a largly unexplored perversion in the typical straight male. he made a billion dollars by identifying with heterosexual men. like i said, i dont think anyone cares if hes gay.

i have to wonder how many days one has to be up in order to concoct such an incredibly stupid idea. that has to be some serious meth amphetamine. or crack. one of the two. i mean, because you would have had to been up at least 3 days before you thought to yourself, "you know what would be a good idea?" and then hatched such an idiotic scheme. then you would have to have been up an additional 3 days to actually go through with this foolish arrangement.

but the kicker is how he got caught. apparently he is quite the conman. his angle is to talk his way into the circles of high society and then simply borrow thousands of dollars from them with no intention of paying it back. i dont know how long you can pull this kind of stunt off, but it seems plausible, so ill go along with it. (still it baffle me that he can be clever enough to fool his way into the homes of the rich, yet conjured up such a mindless plan for quick money.)

i guess one night he was at some exclusive party at a penthouse above the Hard Rock Cafe in las vegas. he was on ectasy or something and divulged to nikki hilton, of all people, how he had video taped the Girls Gone Wild guy humiliating himself. of course nikki tells paris, who then, in a surprising moment of clarity, goes to the police. he got snitched on by paris hilton. THEE girl gone wild.

how fucking dumb is that?

Friday, April 13, 2007

the great unwind

i wake up at 11 am and its straight to the office. do not pass go. do not collect $200. i sit in front of my computer and i compose eloquent promises i genuinely intend to keep. i mediate between parties. i reply and forward emails. i ignore calls and i text people. i put my head in my hands and sigh, then look up at the ceiling, at the cracked paint and the light fixture, hoping it reveals something to me i havent seen before. it never does. its always the same.

then, after the morning has faded into the afternoon, and the afternoon has sunk into early evening, i head to the bar. i prep my fruit and put pourers on all my bottles. i arrange my juices (standards in the front, uncommon mixers towards the back) and make sure we are all stocked on bottled beers and wine. at 5 we open for happy hour, i make sure the book im reading (Baldwin, Another Country) is at the end of the bar, just in case its so slow i have to entertain myself. At about 8 i make myself a cocktail. i change it up a lot (yesterday it was a chocolate martini, the day before a brazilian mojito) so as not to get bored. i pretend im friends with everyone, smiling, interested, hanging on every word. i flirt. i make jokes. i try to understand. i do a shot before i holler out last call. my stomach growls violently. i hardly ever eat during my shift.

i get home at the darkest hours. i creep in quietly. for a moment i stare at my girlfriend while she sleeps. (she is always asleep.) the gentle heaving of her body. the soft snoring. the stillness of her. then i go back to the office. i do not pass go. i do not collect $200. i roll myself a spliff. i pour myself a glass of wine or unscrew a beer, then i check my email, sometimes doing a bit of last minute work. i read a few movie reviews, maybe an article or two. i pore over the words written by friends ive never met, faces that perhaps ill never see. i unwind, absorbing it all, my past and my future, every hour in the day. i let the clock strike 5am. then 5.30. i let my head fall back and stare at the ceiling, at the cracks in the paint and the light fixture, hoping it reveals something to me ive never seen before. it never does. its always the same.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

rollin my own

this is one of my shorter days, as i must sling the drinks this evening, so this post wont be long, but at least it will be. its raining in new york, possibly gods way of mourning vonneguts death, possibly just too much condensation accumulated in the sky. either way the streets are drenched. so it goes.

im out of cigarettes but my coffee is warm. cant have it all i guess. i smoke loose tobacco, meaning i roll my own smokes. its become my method of choice over the last few years; i hardly ever buy traditional packs of cigarettes any more. i wish i had some clever philosophy behind this decision, but in truth, its because loose tobacco is cheaper, plus i can use it to roll spliffs, the method in which i smoke my trees. it also comes in handy when someone ask if they can bum a smoke. i shrug my shoulders and hold up my cigarette, displaying its limp, dented features, and explain that i roll my own. usually they curse under their breath and move on to the next person, but if they agree to having a rolled one, its common we have a small conversation about the joys of loose leaf, bonding over our shared preference, smug in the unique obscurity of it. cigarette hipsters. cancer douchebags. call us what you will.

ive never been loyal to one brand of cigarette until now. when i began smoking casually, back in the final days of high school, it was for the lightheaded rush i got. the deceptive sensation of feeling high that would last all of 90 seconds before crashing then needing a nap. in those days i think i smoked Newports, the minty death most of my high school buddies enjoyed. eventually i moved on to Marlboro lights, then Mediums, and finally the infamous Reds. i would buy a pack and it could last me an entire week. i was hardly committed to the venture back then. it was just something i thought made me look cool.

then a few girls i was seeing got me more involved in the practice. drugs were a big part of it too. everyone knows a cigarette taste better when your high, and life back then was all about getting high, especially with cute girls that smoked cigarettes. by the time i was a regular smoker, buying my own packs two times or more a week, the habit of lighting up after doing a line was practically second nature. i spent most of my days waiting for just that moment. i still wasnt dedicated to one brand though, i smoked whatever was available to me. i was a nicotine slut, a whore for anything with a filter. i didnt care how wide, long, brown, white, light, ultra-light, or chemical free it was, if it fit between my lips and produced ash, then i would smoke it.

i even had this one girlfriend (man, she gave the best head) that smoked Virginia Slims. you know, the really long and comically thin cigarettes you see people smoking on billboards, but never anyone smoking on the street. she would buy them by the carton, the first person id ever met to do so, and suck them down as if they gave her super powers. at least a pack a day. and we were only 19 or so. i would smoke her slims all the time, hyper aware of how feminine they looked dangling from my mouth, yet gloating in the idea that i was puffing on a stick so delicate and uncommon, it was as if i belonged to some exclusive club, albeit an exclusive club inhabited largely by old white women wearing mink stoles, but an exclusive club nonetheless.

i changed my brand constantly. for various reasons. because i wanted to try something new. because they were on sale. because i was trying to change my luck. because i was bored with the brand i was smoking. when i got to new york i began smoking parliments. for one it seemed the brand of choice among my age group (and lord knows im desperate to fit in), plus it had that cool recessed filter. i dont really know what function that recessed filter filled, but it was still kinda cool. you cant deny that.

these days though, im rolling my own. there is a ritual to it that i revel in. and it doesnt taste to bad either. if you ask me, ill roll you one, no worries. im generous like that. for real though. .i am.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

time spent well wasted

there really isnt much to add. i woke up at 11am. i put on some sweats, made some coffee, did the dishes.

some packages were delivered and i signed for them. the downstairs neighbor was at the door, checking the mail. he grunted a hello and i nodded to him gravely. we didnt share any pleasentries beyond that.

i did some work and smoked a few cigarettes. no one has really called. its been fairly silent in the office today. just the muted sounds of tapping on my keyboard and the dull roar of traffic from outside the window. there were a few emails and some internet chatting, and ive been slaving away at designing a sales sheet, but beyond that the afternoon has been somewhat hushed. i like it enough, but it makes me nervous.

one of my partners came over to pick up one of the packages that had been delivered. he just passed a kidney stone and was prescribed some oxycodone, which he brought along with him. i packed him a bowl of weed and he left a few pills on my desk. at around 5 i started drinking wine and popped one. then two. now the quiet massage of narcotics is beginning to sweep through me, polishing my boredom into a gleaming monument of time spent well wasted.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Flying Black Sayonara

let me preface this entire post be declaring that i am not fleshing these words out on a word document, but instead typing directly into the create post window. this means that there will be plenty of spelling errors and letters that are lower case but shouldnt be. there will be a suspicious absence of apostrophes and no sentences will start with a capital. it will be a mess, sure, but it will be a natural mess. huh. 'natural mess.' that sounds like a euphemism for poo.
in any case

damn, ive been busy. the busy has had me on the top ropes recently. It fools me into getting up there, laying still on the mat, pretending to be practically unconscious, then lets me jump off in my patented “Flying Black Sayonara” move, [teeth bared, legs crossed casually, elbow jutting out in attack formation], then quickly rolls out of the way, letting me slam down hard on the spring loaded floor. just as I clear my head from the abrupt impact, gathering together all my scattered wits, the busy lifts me up to my feet then swings me for the ropes, which I bounce back from involuntarily, projecting myself, and namely, my unprotected neck, into his stiff, waiting forearm. at this point, if I'm lucky, the busy usually collapses on my weak, incoherent body, hooks my leg up, and lets the ref beat out a 3 count on the mat. Lately though, I find hes been climbing out of the ring and into the audience, where he begins grabbing any available chairs... Its been brutal. i hate the busy.

but today is sort of my day off. i mean, i have been working all day, and rather hard if i dont say so myself, but ive been working for the company, which has just become an extension of my entire being. it is me and it is my existence. i AM the company. so doing company task, which this morning has entailed explaining to a label how i feel about their low soundscan numbers and having a breif brainstorming session on how we can increase album awareness, then speaking to another label, then a sales rep, about setting up an instore at Virgin Union Square, then outlining some ideas on a promotion that may or may not involve 3 labels simultaneously, is just as simple as living and breathing. it is what i do.

Here are some things i've been excited about:

The Panda Bear album - its called "Perfect Pitch," and it sounds like finding god. well, maybe that was a little over dramatic, but it is a special experience nonetheless. it sounds as if the Beach Boys went to the jungles of South America with a laptop and a guitar and wrote a special poem to the heavens then recorded themselves reciting it while high on peyote. its awesome. check it out.

Having a day off and finally being able to get some work done. huh?

waking up at 8 this morning and going to a diner to get breakfast. the french toast was perfect and i layed the syrup on thick. then i came home and fell back to sleep on the couch. i woke up and the busy was tickling my feet.

having Borat, Children of Men, The Science of Sleep, and The Prestige coming up in my Netflix queue. im hoping they are better than Running With Scissors, which was remarkably uninteresting. i dont see how you can make a movie about a gay kid with a schizophrenic mother living in a wacky mansion with a psychologist that studies poo uninteresting, but they managed to do it, despite a decent performance from Annette Benning [who, ultimately, im not concerned with at all.]

the sun. the wind. the park. frisbee.

Monday, April 09, 2007

this time, its personal

im totally going to start posting every day. starting right... NOW!

i swear. its gonna be crazy. its going to be riot in the streets crazy. urine in the kitchen sink crazy. giraffes in jeans crazy (and thats crazy. can you imagine? a giraffe, in jeans!).

it all starts today, the madness. the insanity. the unhinged spectacle that is this here ignored corner of the internet.

so you know, grab your meds, go to the bathroom, and buckle up, because this ride is about to get WILD!

right now, i uh.. i gotta go to work. so i cant type much. but tomorrow, OH BOY!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Sunday, April 01, 2007

The Toll it Takes

When I woke up this morning she was gone. The house was quiet and empty, and I walked around it aimlessly for a moment, considering its loneliness. I hadn’t seen her the night before; she was sleeping by the time I stumbled home. When I’d walked through our bedroom I heard her moan, I’d woken her with my clumsy fumbling, and I went over to her, leaning heavily, and kissed her on the neck and whispered, ‘go back to sleep.’

It’s been like that the past few nights. We hardly see each other anymore.

I heard her come home, the downstairs door slamming itself and the creaks and whines of the stairs as she ascended to our apartment, and opened the door for her, standing there half naked, smiling and tired, rubbing sleep from my eyes. She held a huge bag, household supplies, and looked weary and distant. We said hello and I kissed her forehead then grabbed the bag and set it down at our feet. Then I announced I was going to a coffee shop and asked if she wanted anything. Her bangs fell before her eyes and she spit some air upward, pushing them away. Then she took off her jacket and hung it on the door. No, she said, I’m ok.

I ordered a large double shot red eye and smoked a cigarette on the way back. I thought of her the whole time, channeling my desire for her breath, her body, her innocence. Id felt this change between us; she had felt it too, like a secret had formed. A secret we both understood but were afraid to reveal. And I guess that is how it is with a lot of couples who love each other but don’t know what that love truly entails. That aren’t sure of the depth of their connection, and take for granted that they are physically there with each other, and can touch one another, and fill the capacity of each other’s lives. Couples live and breathe the existence of two, and suddenly it occurs to them that they are no longer just themselves anymore, that they are a unit, that the moves they make, no matter which way, drag the other with them, and that the wounds and scars they may have may not even be theirs, the sadness and joy they feel may not even be their own, they are now a dull abstraction, experiencing a life beyond what they lead. A life of theirs, but also of another’s.

She was doing the dishes when I walked back in. I went over to her and held her waist, staring at her head while she stared at the running water and the soapsuds on a plate, slowly sliding down into the drain as she scrubbed purposefully. I waited for her to say something but she didn’t, so I kissed her ear softly and waited some more.

I have three days off next week, I said. She said that’s great and there was a heavy shrug in her voice. The dishes piled into a rack to dry, some still had the scum of detergent on them but I let them sit, it seemed unimportant. I turned her to me and I could see her eyes and heart silent and suffocating. I kissed her lips, never letting go of her waist, and she leaned toward me, letting her whole body sigh. The light from the sky, gray and overcast, spilled into the kitchen. I thought about work and money. Her breast heaved softly against my chest. Her embrace was limp and hesitant. I rested my head on hers, afraid to let go, of what it would mean if I let go. We stood there tangled awkwardly. The day seemed bleak and still.

I’ve got to get ready for work, I said.
Creative Commons License
:gray matters: by jkg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at