Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The other woman

She zeroed in on the place his other girlfriend was from. His old but maybe new girlfriend. Closer and closer: Little Peconic Bay. Detected by the brain of her computer, the impersonal PO box had her living in this body of water—it must be the geographical center of town. Closer and closer: Little Peconic Bay. Closer and closer seemed to mean deeper and deeper, the screen all blue. Was I diving now? Would I find her at the bottom of the bay, meet her soul there? She must be deeper than me. She would never look for me on a cold blue screen, diving into that hard electric bay. She was from another country, her life had to have more meaning than mine ever could. Damn it. She won when she was born. Check and mate. Russia.
This scared me the most about cheating. As much as I hate myself mostly because of my looks, pat a good narcissist on its head, it wasn't that she was better looking than me. Or even the possibility she could perform tricks in bed, foreign tricks, passed from untold generations and guarded like a vaginal national treasure, gleaming. What most crippled was this: that she was deeper. Rather, that he thought she was deeper. That he thought of her and thought of peaceful things, of Ansel Adam prints and batting eyelashes. Of them standing together in a field, with a rusty barrel or wheelbarrow or barn in the back and her saying “Oh. Let me take out my camera”. Of her taking a picture and him holding a pose, happily. That her life has more meaning, I cringe. She might be the first in her family to go to college—insta-meaning. Worse: she attends graduation, makes an appointment to have her hair done before, makes a day of it. She could probably even get away with an updo. A swooping, kempt updo. In her world, there are deep breaths , there are “There, there's”, the word nice has a life. Nice time, nice earrings, nice breeze. Commemerations. She calls a few friends. Maybe she picks up a cake. Probably, someone makes her a cake. Probably, there is more than one friend in on the baking of the cake. They talk beforehand: “We should really get N a cake”. “Oh, I was going to bake one. My grandmothers recipe, from Germany-German chocolate.” For her, even the cake becomes a thing. Has a life. Her cake has more of a life than I. And I, my mantra is “forget forget goodbye goodbye”.

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