For some reason I was thinking of high school during the first time Carol had dinner at my place. I was thinking of how my classmates and I would always look out of the windows, at the cars passing us, hoping that someone would be doing something sexual. We spent hours in silence, our eyes scanning for a girl giving some guy a blowjob, or a handjob, or at least a guy jerking himself off. There was this one guy in the bus, Todd, who would always yell, “Look at those white pants! I bet she’s wearing a g-banger.” I had no idea what the hell a g-banger was but I’d always nod and say, “Yeah, I bet she is.”
I made Carol pasta and garlic bread and served us both wine.
“I think the world needs to be more positive,” I told her.
“Why? Positivity will get you nowhere.”
“When did you become so jaded?”
“When I realised that things were exactly like the movies and exactly not like the movies.”
“I don’t know,” I said.
“You don’t know what?”
“I don’t know how to reply to that. I mean, we’re pretty lucky.”
She shrugged. She looked at her wine like it was an old friend about to leave for a long, long time. “Some things just don’t turn out the way we want them to.”
I knew what she was hinting at but I pretended not to know. At some point in our phone conversations she suggested that she wanted to be in a relationship and at some point I suggested that I didn’t want to be in one. We debated for a long time about it but nothing about what we said chipped away at our own selfishness.
We drank wine and I said a few things and she said a few things and I knelt her down and did what I had to do with her. In bed, our voices were hushed, as if we were keeping secrets from the world.
Book I’m re-reading: Wild Sheep Chase