Thursday, October 3, 2013
oooh baby, it's a wild world
I could never call Shelley a girlfriend. We were friends with benefits long before that term came into vogue. Our relationship, however it might be described, was one of those leftovers from the 60s and 70s when we accepted a lot of normality to relationships--having male and female lovers as a regular course, the occasional fuck with a good friend that neither took seriously, dating both a daughter and then sleeping with her mother (I didn't but I knew a few guys who had), even becoming friends with ex-lovers--that scandelize my teenage and young adult students. When we saw each other last summer, after an absence of over 20 years, it was almost as if the decades and their attendant baggage hadn't elapsed. She was older, heavier, weighed down with medication, but so was I, and we clung to one another like drowning sailors to flotsom. Her adult children, watching us, could only have wondered what we used to be like back when we liked each other.
I'm reminded of her because I heard Cat Stevens singing "Wild World" this morning. That was one of the songs we used to sing together on long drives. We traveled around together a lot in the mid-80s, all over the east coast, and although neither of us had voices that lent themselves to singing, there were certain songs that we sang to each other regularly: "Me and Julio," "Brass in Pocket," a few others. Their words didn't have any meaning beyond our liking the sounds that came out.