“You’re too honest. You need to start keeping that shit in your head. It’s fucked up.” He’s not even looking at me anymore. Just down and away.
“Is it really a problem?”
“If you want friends or a boyfriend. Don’t you have a filter? You just don’t have any control over what you say.”
“I do.” I sound like a kicked puppy and I know it. “I just don’t want to lie.”
“Then don’t fucking say anything.” He looks up. “Come on, you look like you’re going to cry.”
“SEE! Thats what I mean. Any other person would’ve just said no and been done.”
…All the posts about how ghetto/much of a shithole Rochester is. It’s really not that bad. Except where I live…
He laughs and doesn’t believe me.
“tell me more.” And the way he says it, jokingly is infuriating.
“We live above a bar in an apartment with a door that doesn’t really lock. The screen was taken out of the door months ago and never replaced with glass. Our landlord is an ass and won’t fix anything. I can’t walk to my own door without stepping on glass. I can’t go to sleep at night without hearing gunshots or fighting.”
“Sounds awful.” But he doesn’t mean it. He’s talking to me in that annoying patronizing way. Like a teacher talking to a student making excuses for missing homework. He’s not my teacher any more. He shouldn’t be a bastard.
“I’m serious. I live in the ghetto. I’m afraid to go out alone at night.”
“Well come home.” And I know he’s saying it seriously now. He wants me to come home and grow up and start acting like an adult. Like the nice responsible woman I should be. He wants me to stop running away and stop ignoring people when I think I’m getting a little too uncomfortable with the situation.
“You know I’m not going too.” I’m answering all his unasked questions. I wont come home. I wont grow up. I wont go back to him. It was never really him in the first place. And he knows that.
He says he misses me and I hate him just a little bit. I say I know and we hang up and he goes back to the class he should be teaching and I go back to sitting alone in my bed eating cold leftovers.
Perhaps I should explain that none of this is in anyway in order of occurrence. Sometimes life seems like it’s a consecutive series of events, one thing after the other after the other. And sometimes it doesn’t. For instance, today I woke up, took a (cold) shower, brushed my teeth and got dressed. That is a consecutive series of events. Last weekend I went home and spent time with a guy I’ve liked forever, but that feels like it could’ve been yesterday or even this morning. And I know I spent time with my family after seeing him, but that feels like it was weeks ago. And the drive from Somerville to Rochester, which happened just after I saw that guy again feels like it never happened at all. So yes, I know the actual order of events, and maybe my history is a little revisionist, but life doesn’t happen in an ordered series of events because one thing may leave a lasting impression on you while something else doesn’t.
And it’s also not in order because I queue everything.
Our water is fucking cold. Maybe the landlord turned our heater down because the rent is late. I don’t know, but shaving my legs is becoming a hassle and my hair feels like it just wont come clean. We don’t regulate our heat. The apartment is baking all the time. Just feels like a fucking sauna. And it’s so cold outside that the windows fog up at night. Everything smells like cigarettes. It would even if my roommate didn’t smoke. The walls may have been white at some point.
She talks about Texas or Tennessee. Anywhere is better than here.
I lie and tell him I can’t sleep because I’m not used to sharing a bed and maybe thats not all a lie but really I can’t sleep because I’ve waited almost two years to lay down next to him and it’s everything I really thought it would be and he’s not trying anything even though I know he wants too and he doesn’t understand how much more that makes me like him just as a person because what kind of boy doesn’t try to touch a pretty girl lying down next to him wearing his clothes to sleep in?