Buying him that $14 dollar gimlet was the best money I’ve ever spent. He talked shit. I nodded, smiled. He talked trash about her. I nodded, smiled. I win, motherfucker, and you not only know it, but raised a gimlet to it at the beginning of our evening. Cheers.

Tuesday October 07th 2014, 11:10 pm
Filed under: Boozy,can't make that shit up Tags:

Well, I certainly never expected to run into her at the local petrol station. Ten years later, I take no small satisfaction in the fact that I didn’t recognize her, but she did me. Filling gas into my car, slightly overdressed on my way to the new-work-library, where I’m still trying to make sense of the overly and underly formal requirements of my one-third-job for the year (though, one third of the responsibilities, 300% of the work, oddly enough). Two overly cute women walking from the cafe, juice in hand, toward a beat-up white pickup I realize is theirs, parked, blocking the opposite pump. “Of course,” I think, “fucking entitlement” (or something similar). And when the one lifted her sunglasses, lowered her green juice, and asked in an Irish accent, “Caxton?” I couldn’t help but recognize her.

A decade. A fucking decade. Love, loss, better love, non-loss, the job, the girl, himself on the way in 12 weeks, give or take, a book, tenure, a dozen trips hither and thither, some cancer, some death, a couple of poodles. A FUCKING LIFETIME. I emailed the third flatmate, just out of amusement, the Brazilian HR playboy. Yeah, he’s a chef now, which I knew. And married, now. Mazel tov!, I said. To a man, he said. I can’t even find words to express the awesomeness of that. I’ll try. It’s priceless. He only wanted to be happy, rather than being a car dealership owner in Sao Paolo like his father. I thought being a chef was what he meant. Apparently, only half.

So, people, they surprise. They also live a block from you, for a year, when you haven’t seen them in a decade, which is a wee bit creepy. We were here first.

A hyper social day, tomorrow, lunch with one and drinks with another. Feels like London, even as YCTNW is in my third love, New York. “How is she?” asks a dear friend who I’m not a little afraid of, now dean of an Ivy, endowed professor, and edited in chief of a new rag. I’ll get back to you. And I’m not totally clear on how I am, either, but thanks for not asking.

three days
Sunday October 05th 2014, 11:02 pm
Filed under: Boozy,himself Tags:

Three days in to the fellowship, though it seems like it should be more somehow. Two poodles asleep on the floor, though some slight something outside has led to an all-hands-on-deck rush to the door, followed by a series of shakes (apparently the periodicity of the shake is genetic, at the species level. Said the internet, somewhere, once), but they’ll be back to sleep soon enough. A handful of beers floating on top of the sunburn of cyclavia, to the East LA Civic Center and back, a remarkable take-back-the-streets-from-cars moment that I regret I haven’t done before.

Books on what comes next and a rotary sander, the one for this month, the other for not so very many months away. “Preposterously well,” I said, and it’s rather true, though it makes me suspicious and defensive, in case someone asks me to justify it, rationalize it, or sabotage it, to make it less overt. An old flatmate run into, the other old flatmate married a man, and all I can hear is his voice saying “you knew how it would go.” And I did, but from someone who has chosen what he wants to do and who he wants to be in the decade that has intervened, I’m humbled by courage I never had to muster. And his risotto is Italian, just-like-momma-used-to-make awesome. And so it goes.

Not born too late, but born too far west. A classlessness I rely upon but that backfires, occasionally; a landscape impossibly familiar, but not one I’ve ever quite overtly loved. And how to teach him this is only a small part of all that’s there, that the world can be embraced not only in opposition to, not only in anger and rage, not only in despair, but because there are rainbows and autumn and hillsides and the other sides to oceans and sunsets?