Saturday morning: sitting in a circle. A snug living room, a set of new faces, politics long in the blood; we're up against the currents of whatever seems to be sweeping us all downstream, cluttered with internet news-bites like fish carcasses.
Our hostess is articulate but voice-deaf to any but her own. The words 'my book' re-occur with numbing frequency—she will want more than our words on her radio show.
My partner situated awkwardly, finds his commentary swallowed up in the extra few feet of distance. Never mind, the rhythm has been set in advance of our arrival; any attempts to adjust it or discover an on/off switch fail repeatedly.
He is not one to make it an issue; I, on the other hand, being closer to the 'action' (as it were), get my words out of my head & into the air & keep smacking into the oscillations from our lady of the Book.
I mention 'theater' & what it means to me: getting something off the page and onto its feet. Our Book Lady reacts violently. Oddly, the conversation becomes like playing in two keys at once, or on pianos tuned a half step apart.
The sweet-faced man next to her interposes with some spirit—not without welcome as he happens to be her son—but to the fly on the wall, this could be interpreted as care-giver status in the Ward.
A tiny child on the floor rises up on his unsteady legs just in time to collide with the rotating microphone; all the adults in the room gasp, but he's not hurt, only amused. As the verbiage resumes, he replays the incident using his little paw on the mike to fake-butt his own head with mock expressions of pain.
The home-made kambocha tastes like the bottom of a shoe.
* * *
Saturday afternoon: Buffy the Vampire Slayer streams in, contemplating yet another Staking, but retreats when she recognizes the presence of a Soul. Deep into headphones, I don't hear my timer in the kitchen go off; from the next room partner yells 'Timer!'; I hit pause, dash barefoot down the stairs, deftly remarking in Spike's cockney character voice 'Love me some rising dough, I do...'; get down to the landing, notice cold draft, call upstairs 'Did you leave the side door open for some reason, luv?'; partner answers 'Gross negligence!'; pass the kitchen on to the next landing to close the damn thing; doorknob in hand, get it half-closed; suddenly must pee, necessitating abrupt cross-clamp of thighs to do a 180 to the WC, causing neglected toe-nails to gouge bloody tracks on the lateral side of left foot.
Timer beeps on.