You never can change someone else. But you can, if you work hard enough, blind yourself to those angles and hues in them you deem unacceptable. Sand them through grit, young lover. Recast narcissism as creativity. Recatalogue nastiness as misplaced wit. Turn obtuseness to stoicism. The world can be yours. Just put your eyes out.
Sheila had worked hard to blind herself in order to better love Mickey. Mickey was brilliant, she knew, so too then were his sins, They were anti-matter to what truly mattered. So what if he looked at kiddie porn, or if not technically kiddie porn then at least pornography wherein the young women are attempting to pull off pre-adolescence? Their tiny tits bounce and pigtails flail in thirty second fucked-up MPEGs childhoods. Their thin legs in American Apparel tubesocks bend strangely over their heads as they are drilled on some sad beige sofa in a shitty room—glass and steel shelves, VCR, wires everywhere—by a chubby man and his purple cock. Who cares, Sheila said when she first saw the files in his browser history, when on the same hard drive as this were Mike’s theses and theories, emails and memos the digital proof of his intellect. A plain casts no shadow. The taller the peak, the longer the shadow and more profound its darkness.
Sheila had worked hard to blind herself in order to better love Mickey. But it failed when she met Eric. Eric, who was actually witty, creative and stoic without being a cruel narcissist. Eric tares me, thought Sheila the first time she met him, at Café Barrone. After him, the true weight of things can be measured. This was a very clever thought, she thought. She was with Mike, laptops out. Sheila was in the middle of a lol lmao ttyl conversation on IM with Darcy, her friend from medical school when she heard a gravelly voice ask, “Do you know the password?”
“What?” she said, looking up.
“Do you know the password for the wifi?”
“Oh,” she said, “it’s Cigar. Capital C.”
“Thanks,” said Eric, who to her was still stranger.
Mickey shot her an accusatory look. Sheila turned back to her computer and wrote, “OMG, some hot dude wearing denim just talked to me.”
“Hubba hubba hubba,” replied Darcy, adding a smiley face with a wink (semicolon, close parens).
“LOL,” wrote Sheila, “I wonder what his cock would feel like inside me.”
“I bet it would feel real nice [equal sign, close parens]
Sheila sipped her macchiato but her panties were fully soaked with her pussy juice. She tried playing footsie with Mickey. Who knows? Maybe he could fuck her in the bathroom. But he just grunted and moved his leg. So Sheila discretely frigged herself off, there among the internet moguls and retired Stanford professors, fingers working furiously on her clit, up and down and sometimes around but mostly up and down. She climaxed thinking of Eric.
When she looked back at Mickey, all her hard work of mending his broken fucked up fences, of willfully misreading his jibes, the dyslexia of love, all that had been erased. Instead she saw a scared sad skinny old motherfucker with a Swiss cheese conscience for whom everything fell into two categories: things that glorified him or things that didn’t. A real binary motherfucker, she thought. Mickey had lost all the vestigial charm, that bloom of youth, that had bound Sheila to him initially. By wriggling around she not quite discretely yet not incredibly noticeably—at least not if one wasn’t paying close attention to her and for Sheila this was a given—shimmied out of her dripping fragrant panties. Holding her underwear in one hand, she unbuttoned her white shirt so that when she bent over, her pert tanned breasts could be seen, a fleshy fucky landscape inverted, capped by her purplish nipples.
“I’m going to get another macchiato,” she told Mickey, “you want anything?”
Mickey nodded no, “No,” he nodded.
Hiding her lacy drawers on the far side of her empty demitasse, Sheila scooted the chair back. As she made her way to the counter, she dropped her unders onto Eric’s Dell and let him gander at her tits. “Meet me in the bathroom,” she said, “the password is Cigar.”
A few moments later, the stranger Mickey had eyed suspiciously when he sat down, scooted his chair back and made his way inside. Sheila wasn’t back. But that didn’t concern him. She always takes so long, he thought, foolish woman. He sighed dismissively and went back to work.
Submitted by record producer, Brooklyn