Saturday, May 16, 2009
A Date To Prom
Hi everyone! Here's the start of a new something or other I've started (maybe a novel?!). Love the comments from this week -- I'm thinking of a post to address all of them. Happy Saturday!
I like words that sound alike but mean different things -- take weak and week. One is a judgment, a word I misspelled in a grade school spelling bee and still have trouble with to this day and week, an increment of time, something you’re glad to be at the end of, finished, done. I lost the spelling bee to Calvin Anderson and years later, living in Detroit, I got interviewed by an FBI agent about his fitness for service and mostly if he was gay. Where did my judgment go? I knew what I knew and yet I fell back on the old Mineral Wells standby, He had a date to prom.
The FBI agent asked if we had a dining room table, the we being me and N, my much older boyfriend at the time. I don’t need to tell you how that ended, not with any, we’re done, let’s be friends speech. More like lingering allergies. From the start, we were a car with the engine light on. We did not have a table of any kind, the only furniture being two couches my friend Andrew gave me. The couches were a little worse for the wear because of frequent visits from our landlord’s cat, Muscles, a fat kitty who loved to claw. The landlords lived in the flat below and filled their place with strange objects that she referred to as “satirical” art. She showed them to me once, truly hideous things, and said that people over forty found them disturbing and often wanted to cry when they saw them because people over forty feared death. This is how you learn to talk, I suppose, if you have gone to the Chicago Institute of Art and now are stuck teaching rich little brats at an elite prep school in Detroit. I pointed out that N was forty-five and she said she never would have guessed which was a lie. N looked all of his age and then some, never having a met a bottle of sunscreen or moisturizer he liked. She told me that she and her husband had been shocked by my arrival, that they hadn’t expected me to be so peppy, a euphemism for our twenty year age difference.