“You ever thought of getting a trial separation from God?”
The question was unexpected given the nature of the evening but I immediately knew exactly where he was going with it. Nevertheless, I played along.
“Maybe, so you can see other people.”
He was starting to sound like the American TV drama we were watching. Drama is relative; more like a soap opera.
“That’ll never work.” I said
“Yes. I forgot. Jesus is the only boy you could be in a long term relationship with. Irony abounds.”
I shot him a dirty look. It would have been more powerful if I had long flowing locks. And was Farrah Fawcett.
“What. Don’t give me that ‘Satan-be-gone’ look. I’m serious.”
I stopped pouring the Pringles and turned to him proper.
“HE is not the problem. That’s not…” three pages of retort swam in my head with no actual direction. “And that’s not irony okay that’s….” still, no actual direction. I graduated top of my class in English Language and Lit; I can debate the merits of everything; I live for philosophy…. I have no idea what to say next. “Can’t we just watch the damn marathon in peace?” I whispered.
He took the bowl back to the sofa with all the other heartburn inducing foods. I wiped my hands free of the Pringles for maybe five minutes. The Pringles was fine. I wasn’t.
“You’re not happy.” He said
“Well it’s not because of HIM,” I rolled my eyes to Heaven, “or… them.” arms outstretched to the world.
“I’m not happy because I’m not happy. I’m twenty-six, I’m allowed.”
It was his turn to roll his eyes; accompanied by a long, laborious sigh.
A woman has just been wheeled into the E.R. A steel spike has gone through her leg and blood is everywhere. Doctors are scrambling because she is anemic. All eyes are glued to the screen but I know our conversation is nowhere near over. God bless DVR.
“It’s just that…. Look honestly, I’m not a true believer.”
“A what?” he almost choked on his Pilsner (he drinks Pilsner. I couldn't script this even if I tried)
“A true believer. I mean, I could turn this on and off anytime I wanted to. And right now I… off. So…”
He arched himself on the couch in full interrogator mode.
“For all of FIVE minutes, dude.”
“I had a crush on him in lower six; except he was a very skinny Indian girl so... no.”
“Okay.” He set himself up for a kill and with a sardonic smile said, “Merlyn”
Merlyn was the shatter point. Merlyn was the reason I knew, nothing made sense. Not this life, not the next, not anything. His actual name wasn’t Merlyn, we just called him that because… well, he had magic in his tongue.
“Merlyn is proof. I’m not a true believer. I just… live for fleeting moments.” I chuckled sadly. Strains of George Michael’s ‘Fast Love’ floats in my mind. There are days I hate my brain.
He reached over, placed his hand on my shoulder and said, “Freelancers welcomed.”
Now some doctor just walked in on two other doctors in a supply closet. We laughed. This always happens in this show and it’s always funny that the each new character always seems surprised that people need to come and go in the sex supply closet. People are funny.
“And what does Religion have to do with anything? You know me better than that.”
He said nothing for a while.
“There’s this party. A house party in the West. Next Thursday night I think. You coming?”
“No, I got choir practice, Thursday.”
He reached for another Pilsner.
[Thus ends the trilogy]