Wednesday, June 15, 2011


There’s this guy.

Growing up, he didn’t have a lot of friends and wasn’t the happiest kid on the block.

When he became an adult, it was easier to make and keep friends for some reason, and to laugh more and become more outgoing and experience comfort and security and self-respect and pride and even love.

It’s true that things can get better with age.

But it’s also true that fate can be a fickle bitch and things can suddenly take a turn for the worse and it doesn’t have to be because of One Big Thing, like a tumor’s been discovered or somebody’s died or the house has burned down. Longtime friendships can just unravel and jobs that seemed permanent can be lost and women who seemed happy can leave in the middle of the day, when you’re at work, and you can become estranged from your firstborn who decides to legally change her last name and everything can just pile up until you realize you’ve become a regular at the neighborhood liquor store and you’re lying to the people who still care enough to ask what you’re up to these days.

So this guy who was loved by family and liked by friends changed. His woman left him and he lost his motivation and became depressed and started isolating himself and drinking and watching insipid reality shows and dipping into his retirement and chatting on his computer with lonely people in other countries who he would promise to meet in real life someday even though he had no intention of doing so. Dirty dishes sat in the sink for days and dirty laundry piled up in the empty room that used to be his daughter’s. His existence became rudderless and monotonous.

Then Fate decided to horn in again and one sunny Saturday the guy got out of bed before noon to meet a female friend for lunch at a neighborhood pub. He found out his friend – whom he had known professionally for years and always thought was more than a little charming and attractive but had a husband and kids – was now husband-less. So very quickly, he started doing whatever he could to spend time with her and get closer to her and straighten up a little bit because everything seemed better when he was with her or about to be with her or even just thinking about her. He was as excited as a puppy when he heard her footsteps on his front stairs. He was anxious for a different life. With her.

She gave him love and laughter and family and hope and a future.

Things are by no means perfect but they’re better than a few years ago when he was falling asleep in his clothes and doing his grocery shopping at Al’s Party Store. He knows he’s not supposed to put all his eggs in one basket and depend so much on another person for his own happiness. But she makes him so damn happy.

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