and then he whispered "don't worry my little minx, my Welsh peep. My Mexican lover, my precious little piece of trash. my gorgeous cock and tail..." His words brushed my ears, his lips did not move. He never seemed to finish these sentences. Lips unmoving, but eyes moving across the bar: I observed his wandering in the mirror over the barkeep's bottles, as if the reflection, and all it contained, weren't as important as what was in the foreground. The thoughts, like the sounds that carried them, drifted off into the noise of the room we were in, a place that until a few weeks ago allowed smoking. The bar smelled disgusting, like rotting beer, a stench the freshly burned tobacco of twenty active cigarettes used to mask. I was beginning to regret that I secretly supported the idea of banning smoking, even though everyone, including my boyfriend, loved to smoke in bars, and they all despised Michael Bloomberg on a personal level for trampling on their hard-earned civil right to smoke in bars.
He got the Welsh part right, even though he was Irish, by descent, short and thick. He called me Mexican because Jonno calls me minxito. I called him "crazy".
Aaron was looking around. He'd been doing this since we met, and the intensity of his gaze was impossible to miss, particularly when he directed it elsewhere. His look was a high beam on a moving vehicle. You either ran out of its way or accepted being smashed head on.
A little later, after we'd had a few more, he looked at me, winded, and yelled "FUCK YOU. I already did my tapdance solo! Now I'm going home to take a nap." It was 3.12am. He liked to take four hour naps this time of the day, the night, and so "nap" was a very accurate term, especially if you include "go home and have sex with boyfriend or anyone else from bar or sex buddies" as one of the activities included in "nap".
It occurred to me that his days, his nights, were always like this. Blocks of time rendered in a way I never understood. I could not have built a schedule of his day. Meetings happened at 11:30pm. He rose at 6am, after going to sleep at 3am. He ordered breakfast at 5.30pm. He would shop for soap at 8.30am. I could not determine how he acquired anything, because he always seemed to be shopping in the early morning or the middle of the night, when shops were closed. I never knew if he got seven hours of sleep a day, by breaking his bedtime up throughout the day, or if he needed only a few hours.
Being the inquisitive soul I am, I would ask him detailed, yes-or-no questions about these incongruities. His stare was undisturbed. I would do every manipulation I could conveive: I cajoled him, I acted exasperated, I kidded him, I became actually exasperated, I shouted, and once, when I was recovering from a hangover and he told me he wasn't hungry for breakfast, at 7.30am, after we had woke up, I cried. But I never got any answer. No certainty.
At first, I thought that Aaron was attempting to free himself from all accountability with respect to schedules of any sort. At the time, I had all sorts of friends who avoided this kind of responsibility (be on time, make a confirmed date, whatever), and so I quickly noticed that Aaron was quite different. Aaron never avoided responsibility for anything. It was as if he was not touched by our quaint conventions of how to organize our days, and our nights, and so he made it up.
It's just like Laurie Anderson said, that night we sat next to her on-stage, while she was performing. Isn't life just a lot of bad art? Too many writers. People die in no logical order.
I looked down. The edge of her spotlight traced my pink Missy E Adidas. (Props to the queers, yo). The pink stripes glittered, like ruby slippers, while the rest of my body was safely in the dark. But I became frightened that my clothing was not suitably interesting enough to be in the spotlight, and that at any moment, my shoes would become the subject of her attention (they were only reflecting all over the stage), and she would look at the rest of my attire and think this is exactly what I'm talking about. Knowing her stream-of-consciousness style, I became concerned she would simply verbalize her thought (the thought I imagined her having, keep up speedy). I probably looked appropriately fierce for the Brooklyn Academy of Music crowd, but I hadn't planned my outfit for this kind of attention, so I defaulted to "I'm not good enough to be onstage" mode. The lesson: when you have front row tickets, dress as if you were going to be onstage. And create a mental clearing or something, so you can just jump right into the show!
She had a story of her terrier: after encountering vultures, the dog got his nose off the ground and kept it in the sky. He had learned that death had come from above. They can come from above. It made me remember that when people attacked us on September 11th, 2001, it felt like it came out of the blue. Literally, the big blue sky, the big blue Hudson River. When I was looking at the towers burn, between 9am and 10am that morning, for some reason my memory was telling me that we had somehow caused it through declaring war. But that was backwards-time again. We didn't declare any wars until later. Strangely enough, it didn't seem to matter at that moment. Time had broken open, and the future was causing the past. Again.
The effects weren't limited to acts of terrorism or our global military deployment. It would infect my love life. But if you've been reading my entries about my boyfriend, Aaron, you know all about that.
I've told you this hundreds of times, but this image, for me, doesn't occur to me as if it's from a movie.
Oliver, back off my man Jake G or I'll take you down. Gang signs to my welsh peeps.
ps all work in this domain is copyright chad the minx.