Sunday, October 02, 2005

white rabbit

At some point in the last decade, I was told that, for the sake of good luck, on the first day of every new month, the first thing I should say is "white rabbit." Where did I get this idea? I have no idea. It sounds so ridiculous that this is the first time I can even remember admitting it to someone. The real ridiculous part of it, of course, is that I actually do it. Yesterday morning found me in the kitchen wiping sleep out of my eyes and, before answering the phone to say hello, muttering, "White rabbit, white rabbit."

More than that, it seems like the first day of every month was basically designed to remind you of how little your life has changed since the last one. So much has happened, but nothing has changed. At least, for me, in this ostensibly "romantic" relationship with Robert, the first of a new month offers a reason for me to reflect upon the fact that another 30 days have passed and we still live in different countries with no plans to change that. In short, it provides the perfect occasion for me to beat the romance out of said relationship.
Conversation (always) unfolds like this:
Sarah: I can't even conceive of how I've spent two and a half years like this.
Robert: I know. You are desperate to get engaged.
Sarah: No, no, it's not even that. It's just this feeling of waiting, endlessly. Endlessly! Where is the end?
Robert: I wish I were there this weekend.
Sarah: Why aren't you?
Robert: I'm going to (choose a country on the other side of the Atlantic) tomorrow.
Sarah: Do you want us to be together? What is the plan?
Robert: (silence)

Oh god, it's horrible, isn't it? These go-nowhere throw-downs, I don't know why I bother, we've had the same conversation so many times. I feel like a crazy puppet, playing a role that I'm no longer in control of. I'm spending the day writing a paper on Proust and Paul De Man and the role of reading in Swann's Way. "In truth, each reader is, when he reads, the actual reader of himself."


Blogger Thomas said...

Greetings from Houston.

4:34 PM  
Anonymous camille said...

you should write a book. it will not be cathartic. it will open up old wounds which will stay open until your final appearance on the oprah show. you will wish you never wrote it, but then the oprah audience will clap and squeal with glee as the cameras pan over to a beaming robert in the front row, craddling your new born as your toddle stares blankly at you with a brightly colored baby gap cardigan and a half eated Nestle's crisp in his messy hands...then you will feel some mix of glee and confusion.
life and its component parts. now available.

10:18 PM  

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