Saturday, January 27, 2007

He was tall, wiry and Bronx-to-riches chic. From the neck up: Danish frames, meticulous bedhead and a carefully cultivated three-day growth. From the neck down: body-skimming black, crisp and lean.

"You have beautiful hair," he murmured, fingering one copper ringlet so it coiled around his pinky just so. Bold, considering we had only just met.

Then he grabbed a fistful of my locks, in that gentle-aggressive way men learn watching Guiding Light on the home-sick days of their youth, and leaned in close to inhale.

"I don't recognize the scent, but I like it. Very... feminine."


His smile was practiced, almost predatory (to a trained eye, at least). No doubt it earned him an enviable rate of return. I knew of his reputation -- he was good, really good. But not my style.

"Come see me Saturday," he said. "I've got a busy weekend but I promise, if you come I'll be all yours." Any other woman would have leapt at this offer; I knew it and clearly so did he.

"Thanks," I shrugged, "but I'm already with someone." I must admit I felt empowered.

It was my eyebrow that got me out of this one, as it often does, cocking slightly to signal 'enough.' His grin held, but his eyes narrowed. This man was neither attuned nor accustomed to "No."

"Here's my number, in case you change your mind." His card was slick and overstated; no surprises there. I accepted it graciously, careful not to dismiss -- you never know when you might need someone, after all -- and we went our separate ways.

That Saturday I arrived to warmth and smiles from my faithful J. We took some time to get reacquainted before I peeled off my sweater and gently unwound my braids. And finally, as I yielded to those trusted, knowing hands, came the question I'd been waiting months to hear:

"Cut and color, same as always?"

Happy five-year anniversary to Jessica, my one and only.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

It's just been one of those days. One of those days when your office building catches fire just as you're on the verge on a creative breakthrough, and you have to abandon your Adobe Illustrator document and the idea that went (quite literally) up in smoke when the alarm started to wail, and you forget to grab your scarf and your gym bag with the $140 (totally meltable) Asics inside, and none of the firemen is even remotely sexy, and when Officer Moustache finally gives you the all-clear with two chubby thumbs up you climb seven flights of stairs in four-inch heels and then stop for a pee before getting back to work, only to realize that your underwear has been inside-out since 7:30 a.m.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

have you met my boyfriend?

I know this guy -- a close friend, actually -- who's rather in touch with his intuition. He likes to interpret his dreams. All of them. There was a period several years ago when he would call me each and every morning with a elaborate account of the goings on in dreamland the night before, asking me to decipher the meaning in flaming midgets or the color puce as they pertained to his fate. Finally I bought him a dream interpretation book at my local head shop so he might learn to figure things out on his own.

And I created a monster. A monster with a journal by his bed and a 'clairvoyant' confidence so inflated it threatens to burst at any time. His favorite joke: "I'm so good at divining the future... I can do it in my sleep!" Har. Har. Haaaaaaarrrrrr.

A couple weeks ago, just after the new year began, my friend sent me this e-mail:

"The other night I had a dream about you, and in it I learned that in 2007 you will come to date a young man named James. I believe James is slightly younger than you (but not scandalously so), he is Jewish, with dark brown hair that is somewhat more than wavy and somewhat less than curly. His hair is a bit unkempt and his bangs sometimes hang over his eyes. James is about six feet tall and lanky and I believe excelled at an alternative sport, perhaps ultimate frisbee. James often does not shave for a day or two, in the fashionable way of young men in their late 20's, and he can present himself thusly at his job (yes, he's employed), which I presume but did not clearly see must be a non-profit organization. Here's the kicker: James is French, or of French descent.

"So, you're all set."

I replied:

"Non-profit, you say? I hope James has le trust fund, 'cause baby likes her Neiman's -- and none of that after-season sale business either ;)

(A joke, of course. I have never visited Neiman Marcus, except to use the bathroom once. But I did buy a winter coat for $16 last week at Old Navy (where they probably know me by name) and I've been telling everyone in town about my great big bargain ever since.)

"Thank you for this glimpse into my future -- I hope it proves more accurate than your premonition last June in which G and I lived happily ever after. I'll allow for some margin of error this time and try to muster optimism for suitors with any and all foreign accents, and names that begin with the letter J."

So I'm putting out an A.P.B. for my dream guy, hatched by the psyche of someone who knows me at least as well as I know myself. That may be even better than a dream of my own.

Tall. Dark. Foreign. Five-o'clock shadow and frisbee in hand. If you see him, kindly send him my way.

Monday, January 08, 2007

What time is it? How long have I been asleep? It's 2007? Jesus Christ, I hope somebody's been seeing to my bills.

So I've been gone for a while. Oh, thanks, but I don't really want to talk about it. The CliffsNotes: Someone I loved did a very bad thing. I'd give it an 8.5 on a 10-point scale of interpersonal transgressions. And I went through what I'll call my Dorothy Gale period: Sort of lost, trying to comprehend how I came to land in such a mess, how I would find my way out, how the systemic failure of heart, brain and courage can allow a person to create so much pain, or to absorb it. I'm almost back now... only I didn't hitch a ride in some magic balloon, I had to hoof it all the way from the Land of Blahhhhhs. (If I'd only had a train...)

Here's my silver lining: It wasn't the end of me, so I must be stronger. Now's my time to fashion the lessons of this personal apocalypse into tools that'll save me down the line. I'm resourceful that way; practical, creative... I'm the relationship MacGyver.

If anyone is reading this... thank you for your patience. I'll be home soon.