What’s the most impressive thing you’ve ever seen a doctor do?
She fell madly in love with me, or at least she said she did. I certainly fell for her, and, if you could see and talk to her you would know why. On the other hand, if you could see and talk to me …
I was so smitten by this kitten (sic) that I wrote a story about our meeting at a local pub, starting with what I imagined she was thinking when she saw me at the bar:
Oh Lord, he looks like he just came from the gym. I hope he doesn’t smell as bad as he dresses. And a drinker too. Nuts. My ex was a drunk, and I won’t get involved with another no matter how charming he is. I’ve seen what booze can do to man’s body. Oh well, I’m here and I might as well make the most of it.
“Hello. You must be Pete.”
“I am. And you must be Red.”
I looked through his rimless glasses — how professorial — and into his eyes, green and gray with a few specs of hazel, I think, and further into what I hoped was his soul. I liked what I saw: A certain subdued sadness of a life that had been interrupted by divorce and other bumps in the road I had yet to discover.
“ Drink?” he asked as he filled both glasses. “One of my favorites. It’s a bit presumptuous, contemptuous, and even a bit pompous — sounds a bit like I’m describing some of the profs at the Big U. But I like it anyway. The wine, not the profs. Jeez, don’t you hate the words that wine buffs use to describe a simple mix of fermented grape juice. So damned meaningless. I just enjoy the taste and, of course, the buzz.”
“I’m a novice”, I replied, taking a sip and marveling at the wine’s sweet complexity.
During the next hour or so we drank the bottle and noshed and told each other about our mixed-bag pasts, that potpourri of lies and truths we had both recited before with other potential lovers. It’s a prerequisite for a one-night go in the sack or a long-term relationship.