v u l v a l i c i o u s
one sided conversations
"tell me about yourself," i say. you start talking, and it's not much to go on. but it's a start.
"i'm an asshole. you love assholes. you always, always date assholes."
(i nod; it's true)
"i have a good sense of direction. i read a lot. i write and draw and play music, but not enough to really be a writer or an artist or a musician. i'm a nerd."
"what are you doing right now? like, if i wanted to meet you, where would you be?"
(i say this aloud to myself, because you don't exist. we're having this conversation outside of time. in the world of what's possible instead of what's happened. i'm talking, but it's not me. you're talking, but you aren't real yet. we are fictionalized. the best versions of ourselves.)
"it's what...8 o'clock on a thursday?" you ask. "i probably just ate dinner and i'm sitting at home reading a book."
"jesus, you eat dinner before 8 o'clock? are you an old person?"
"yes. i'm 74. good luck meeting me before i die."
"whatever, it's thursday. most people eat dinner before 8 o'clock on a thursday."
"if you weren't home, where would you be?" i ask. i'm hopeful. you're gonna turn up somewhere, right? "like, where would i actually meet you if i wanted to? tonight?"
"umm. nowhere, i don't exist. and if i did, i'd be at home. reading." (i wait. you sigh.) "fine. i'm buying groceries."
"how am i supposed to meet you, then?"
"we'll meet at a birthday party. seriously, don't skip any parties. and the next one you go to, just look at everyone like: is it you?"
"you're creepy. i mean, you are having this conversation with yourself."
we're driving over the bridge and there are two fires: one on the coast and one on the opposite side of the road. i think about what started them; i wonder if it will rain tonight.
"i'm aware this isn't real," i say. your hand is on my knee. such a tender gesture.
"thank god, i was starting to get worried."
"shut up, asshole."
"whatever. you love assholes."