Your house was in a partial state of either moving in or moving out. There was a printer by the door, a broken cat post attached from floor to ceiling and some suitcases laying about that were full of pans and books. I can appreciate the idea of wanting to move only with an iron skillet and a bunch of books by people whose ideas seem to be woven into all you think about. You liked Murakami, who I think maybe writes too many words at once, but you also had a thing for Didion which is sort of how we matched in our likes/dislikes: 50/50. But it was the kind of 50/50 that works between two people, where you figure out a way to place the 50 percent you don’t really care for in a bin, maybe not labeled “love”, but at least “something I can now tolerate”. It’s a 50/50 that allowed for Adderall and champagne during an entire afternoon of sex, as well as morning breakfasts in hotel bars where annoyance seems high, but we still skipped in delight to the bathroom, swooning over the other in absence.
That was the first day we met really, in that hotel bar. I mean, we met the previous night, that bled into the hotel morning, dancing (swaying?) to some dark synth in a fake sex dungeon, where your friend slept through most of the night on a bed with a plastic mattress cover. When she woke up at 5am she was manically stoned: a mix of uppers and downers that left her not in a middle ground by more like a small fishing vessel teetering from side-to-side on unexpectedly violent swells.
A few weeks later, we’ll be in this friends apartment as she asks me to hang pictures; in a living room that seemed to have layers of furniture stacked against the wall as if the purpose of furnishing a room was to see how many couches could be between you and the hung artwork. The answer at this point was 2, but that number was going to grow. When I went to the bathroom after hanging some art, your friend yelled, “BRING ME A CAT! THE ONE WITH WHITE SPOTS!” and when I opened the bathroom door there were 3 kittens rummaging around among tattered boxes and various loose clothing items. A skid row of kittens.
In your apartment, though, there was a natural walking stick on the ground that an ex-boyfriend had left. There was some back story and the possibility of a friend of his that was a witch that was going to pick it up at some point. I remember sort of nodding through the witch comment, because I take a Pascal’s Wager on that sort of thing and think best not to make any waves with witches, whether they’re real or not. I had an ex-girlfriend who claimed to have witch-like powers, and when I broke up with here I was later with a friend helping print sections of an abandoned factory and the sickly-sweet smell of a neighboring yeast processing plant made me vomit uncontrollably for the 3 hours we worked. I would help him print a section of floor, and then run to a window and vomit. Repeat. I was convinced it wasn’t the smell of yeast, but a spell had been cast on me by my ex. It ended up it was the yeast.
Back in your apartment. There was a lot of warm afternoon sun across bedsheets. Light cut hot and lazy in that way that southern California light seems to drag its feet and then sucker punch me, but still declares its love in a rumbling sort of way; light through broken windows, with blue-eyed cats hanging out in some ledge/tent contraption that suction cups to the same window as if the cat was sleeping on the face of El Capitan, the cracks in the window fissures in granite that were made some time in the last ice-age. I dislike cats, but am happy to watch the room as a sundial while you tell stories of the guy that smoked crack in the laundry room for many weeks before finally getting kicked out.
We talk about the square root of 2.
You try on dresses.
I swear at one point in those weeks I see you battle-dance a friend of mine, who when you first met thought was trying to roofie you.
Anyway. I'll go ahead and wander back out into this lazy, beautiful disaster of sunlight.