Wednesday, February 14, 2007

And Suddenly The World Wasn't a Cold, Dark Place

The snow fell softly and persistently. It was the kind of snow perfect for snowmen. Big flakes. Rich and juicy and filled with moisture. The snow fell beneath the streetlights and the headlights of cars passing down the long avenue. Imagine taking the world between your hands and shaking it widely. Imagine the snow rising from the landscape and filling the night, only to settle back down and disturbing it again and again. That was New England. That was the night. We drove past the pond, and below the low hanging gray moon, silhouetted by fir trees and barren oaks, parents were teaching their children to skate. Down past the bowling alley, offerings of galactic bowling enticed the leaguers, potheads, and teenagers out for a Friday night.

We entered the restaurant and sat down. We gathered around the table and ordered Guinness. The waiter was an effeminate chap, portly and friendly with rosy cheeks. He took pride in his job and did it well. He was just the type you’d imagine in such a posh joint. We ordered our meals.

“So, Balls, when are you moving to Denver?" Dylan asked.

“As soon as I buy a pick-up truck. I’m taking the dog, throwing my stuff in the bed, and heading out,” Said Balls.

Everyone's moving to Denver these days.

Will Sean be there when you get there?”

“Not sure. He’s got stuff to work out with his wife.”

“It turns out getting married to a girl for her fake boobs on April Fools day didn’t work out,” Balls said to me.

“I guess not,” I said, smiling.

Our meals had arrived. I’d ordered the maple-glazed roast duck. It was a fine meal.

“Say… this spinach is fantastic,” I said.

Dylan made a senseless bukkake joke.

Jacqueline’s eyes bulged. We all laughed.

Dylan was having great success with senseless bukkake jokes.

We finished our meals, put cash on the table, and Dylan and I went out for a smoke. The panorama of colonial New England homes in the distance made me think of life in the 1800’s, sitting around an old Prussian stove with chicken bones on the floor, children playing some sort of game that involved wooden pegs, and so on.

Everyone left the restaurant.

It was cold and lively and warm outside. And suddenly in the night we made plans. And suddenly the night sky was gray. And suddenly we were the crazy flowers blooming beneath the streetlights as car headlights shot down the long avenue. And suddenly the world wasn't a cold, dark place.