Thursday, May 01, 2014


"Do you paint?" asked my crepuscular dinner companion at the table.

He'd arrived just as twilight settled into the living room; the time of evening when we turn on all the lamps. When he strolled in the door I noticed that he'd dressed thoughtfully for the occasion in a crisp starched white shirt and neatly creased jeans.  A well worn brown leather belt with a hammered metal buckle completed the ensemble. I lucked out on the seating arrangement and was placed next to him.

"No!" I said emphatically, "Why do you ask?"

The room was dim, lit only by fluttering candles and a few shafts of left-over light from the kitchen. We were washed in a grayish glow from the stone fireplace and the yellow lamps made us all look slightly jaundiced. His hair was steely gray, a little lighter at the temples than the back. Outside, the shadows grew deeper by the minute.

I set my fork down on the white dinner plate and turned to look into his deep blue eyes, inky in the soft light. His sleeves were rolled up and I could see the hair on his arms.

"Your claret nails and yellow striped socks led me to think you had a sensitivity to, something about the ensemble." He was groping for conversation. I was embarrassed about the socks. At my age, few people notice what I wear even when I look like Dr. Seuss and oddly, as I've aged, I have taken on a Seuss-like look, which surprises me every time I pass a mirror.

Just for a change, I thought for a moment before I spoke. Instead of a "cat in the hat" thingie, I reeled off a bit of colorful haiku I'd been working on. He got the haiku instantly; I could see the comprehension in his eyes. I had a new friend.

1 comment:

  1. What is this? Fiction? If not, I want this guy!