I wanted to write something brilliant and profound this weekend, but the heat and humidity in Boston was prohibitive. On Saturday, my apartment was 90 degrees Fahrenheit with a humidity of Oh-Who-Cares-Anyway? It was one of those days that meteorologist Dick Albert used to refer to as “a case of the muggies.” It’s a slow disaster. You envision tossing your less-than-useless warm-blooded body into the harbor, but that would take effort, so you just eat popsicles and watch the veins in your arms swell like firehoses.
I escaped for a couple of hours to a café to write. The place was packed tight with other heat refugees and their smells. I scored a small table, but was wedged between two couples. The couple on my left did not speak, but smiled into each other’s loving gazes as they entwined and then re-entwined their fingers endlessly. Endlessly. From the edge of my vision, I was witness to a good 45 minutes of finger entwinement. It was the manual equivalent of the “I love you more”/”No, I love you more” argument spun into an infinite, real-time, looping gif that can’t be closed, ever.
What do you do with that? There’s no law against being an insufferably adorable couple, apparently.
Well, you could turn and be distracted by the couple to the right. The guy was seated right next to me. I couldn’t catch a glance without being very obvious about it, so I can’t comment on him except to say that he had a tall-guy voice, and that he seemed to let the woman do the talking. And the woman – who was seated across from me, was talking non-stop, seemingly about the guy’s troubled relationship – with someone else.
Again – what can you do? As far as I know, I do not have the right to stand and condemn this blatantly obvious manipulation/seduction/ego-twaddling that was happening within arm’s length. I just know that when she twisted her hair around a finger and said “You know, you can definitely stay at my place for as long as you need to – to… clear your head,” that was my cue to knock back my latte and leg it out of there.
Back into the sweaty, hive-like busy streets of Back Bay. I bought new living room drapes. Then I went home, put the drapes up, took another shower, had a popsicle, watched the drapes drape. Because that’s all I had in me.