If Two Walk Together, They Be in Agreement

He calls me at my sister’s to see how last Monday evening went–the strangely sober pub crawl through center city Philly. He can see the shrug in my voice. You didn’t get hit on did you. You know I would have…

No I didn’t, and thanks you are kind…

I didn’t get hit on because he follows me everywhere. He leaves me alone only when we’re together, and we don’t see each other anymore. I cast two shadows and people freak.

We chuckle.

I wonder if I should tell him about my early morning search for the R5 in that underground station–my last chance to get back to my sister’s before dawn, a green plastic lei stashed in my jacket pocket; beer breath abated:

March 17, 2003 La Escuela de la Caridad Closes (NENM) Known to its alumnus as “Miss Amarga’s,” La Escuela de la Caridad headmistress Amarga Soledad announced today that the school would no longer be accepting applicants, and would close in 2004. “The school will become a residence once again.”

I had better ask for help finding the R5 if I am drafting fictional articles for The Optic. That small man with a cane ahead.

Sure, I’ll take you there. I offer him some money, he says don’t give it to me in the open, they’ll pick me up for vagrancy. You drink?

Too much.

Let’s sit down by the stairs, last R5 is in an hour. You read the Good Book?

Too little.

Read Amos 3.3. There’s some vodka in the bag. Help yourself.

Workers with jackhammers far down a corridor. For 12:15 this place is hopping. I am not used to being tipsy away from a bar or table.

Talk of sisters, 22 years in the Service. 84. From Seminole. I show him pictures of family and community. My portfolio.

I hope you get the job. Are you a man?

I know I am of that gender, all attempts at fiction aside.

Well let’s live together when you get out here, if your sister doesn’t care for the drinking–mine don’t either. Here take my address.

1:30 am and the suburbs are quiet. At my sister’s await potatoes, cabbage and corned beef.



© Tasso 2003