living and working
in san francisco.
send puppies to:
at gmail dot com.
She keeps talking about her boyfriend—using that dusty term: boyfriend—and I guess a silent alarm only now starts going off because I finally know what everyone else seems to have known for months: I have one too.
I never wanted to call any man a boyfriend I couldn’t see more with, more being this future world with wedding cake and enough money to make both people feel safe all the time. I never wanted a boyfriend after my last boyfriend, and never like I wanted my last boyfriend. Probably because of my last boyfriend. That’s how these things work: try, date, love, hurt, anger, break, disperse. Evaporate. Ghost town. You leave even yourself.
But then someone breaks in. You’re strangers and you both need an apartment and then suddenly, you’re not strangers. You share more than an address and a toaster. You have the same keys to the same place but miss the moment when one of you quits bringing your own set. There is no before and after. This is just your life, this—this thing without a name, a spot on the map of your life. You are here. And that’s it.
Maybe you’re like us, and some switch gets hit that you can’t see. And one of you thinks you’re a couple and the other thinks you’re this something that just feels nice, like petting a stranger’s dog and then walking away. I’m the pet-the-dog variety. I didn’t know we were a couple until someone—the someone being him—told me. And then that moment, the light bulb: the not walking away.
There are so many people we can love while we’re here, and extraordinarily enough, even those who will love us in return. But only a select few people will be kind enough to put up with our unique brands of confusion—so few people who will be patient enough to say, I thought we talked about this when you ask if you’re a couple, if this thing has a name, if you’re wanted. So few people will say yes, and actually show you how that yes stays a yes every day, and lead you into the next phase of your life.