unless a grain of wheat goes into the ground and dies, it remains nothing but a grain of wheat.

when i walk into the party i’m a zombie from this other party i had to hit the night before. regardless, i see him across the room. ping. this doesn’t have to be awkward but of course it is. i go straight up to him, kiss him on both cheeks, ask him how he is doing. he doesn’t introduce me to his date but simply asks, how is r.?


in june i meet r. at his birthday dinner which i have not been invited to. i show up with brother, my cousin and some loud friends. i think i shake his hand when we’re introduced and say, happy birthday and then i turn my attention elsewhere. we barely spoke that night, i tell him later. he says, you were wearing a white blouse. you stood like a man.

after dinner we’re at a bar and i am seated across the table from a girl who strikes me as cute enough, smart enough and quirky. she has a bit of attitude and i like it. so much so that i think she should date my friend d., who is around somewhere. later someone tells me, this used to be r.’s girl. at some point, r. sits next to me. we chat, he seems intent on looking at me straight in the eyes. it’s cool, it’s his birthday and he is right in the middle of getting wasted. when i am about to leave, he says with a tick of his, a forward shrug of his shoulders, i heard youre crazy, why don’t you show me how crazy you are.


i leave LA, somewhere along the way back home. i realize r. is cute and r. is trouble. but then i forget it completely as soon as i land in new york. i date ishmael and the surgeon, juggling between them my unhappiness. otherthan texts as soon as i shake both of these two, and i think, what timing.

which slows to nothing. the first time is the last time. and we stop speaking. for weeks i think about if i ever see him again i will slap him, walk coldly past him, cease his existence with my thoughts, or look frankly, deeply into his eyes and say, i’ve passed judgment on you. i cry over him.


in august, im back in LA. i am still crying. i don’t know why, i barely knew the guy i think. almost the day after i close that door, the surgeon texts me, asking me if i’ve had second thoughts. i call him this time and it is a very short conversation. the answer is no.

r. at every opportunity sits next to me in big groups and asks me personal questions. he speaks differently than anyone else i know and i realize it’s a new york accent that’s been smoothed at the edges. a defector. interesting. one night we are talking in a loud karaoke room. i’m doing blow and smoking cigarettes and drinking whiskey. basically up to no good. he’s talking very seriously and i am thinking, i could take him home tonight. but he gets up and leaves early. goodbye.


when we do end up sleeping together it’s in the broad day light of his room, an open nest perched up high. his place is nicer than i thought it would be. the entire time i am saying fuck-fuck-fuck-fuck and then with one keen thrust, he comes. we are happy. we watch a movie, then we’re exhausted, then we are sad, then i fly back to new york.


he’s well, i tell the spaniard. who actually isn’t as handsome as i remembered. i talk around the room and i leave at 1. i go home and text r. he tells me sweet nothings and i fall asleep. when i wake up, there are texts from r. and texts from otherthan, minutes apart. perhaps in passing, they occupy the same netherworld of all my lovers. i have no idea. i reply to one and not the other.

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