A Library, CD
It all starts slowly. Very, very slowly…
I never noticed her approach. I don’t know how I could have missed it, but I did. She was just there, an anthropomorphization of a pink pair of panties, floating in the air in front of me. I knew exactly what to say.
“Hello!” She was unduly chipper. I wanted to sit on my bed, listening to this music. That’s all I wanted. I was doomed to more than that. “How are you today?”
“Ummmm… OK.” My wits kicked in. “Do I know you?”
“Don’t you remember me?” The panties bobbed in front of me, seemingly agitated. “Well, it has been a while…”
“Since?” This conversation was not going anywhere I wanted to be, if I actually wanted to be anywhere.
The band brings things together, but not closely, as if they were obsessed with protecting each other’s personal space.
“Well, I think the last time I saw you was that summer picnic so many years ago. You had grown so big!” I shrugged. It had been a long time since I stopped growing big and started growing fat. She gave me that sweet sideways smile again. “You remember your Uncle Joe?”
Uncle Joe was only whispered about anymore, and that rarely. I tried to remember what they’d say. “Uncle Joe…”
The band swells just a little, like during the openings of one of those stage rock megasongs that was maybe a grand composition, maybe just a way to chew up a side of vinyl.
She bobbed even more. “Well, the divorce was pretty messy, so I understand if you don’t want to talk about it.” She calmed a little, then raised herself up – errr… floated higher. “I was,” she dips a little, raises up again, “I am, your auntie!”
I stared. Not at her, not at the wall, not at anything. I just stared. “Auntie…”
“Yes!” She beamed, “Auntie Panty!”
A clarinet, sounding like 90’s squonk jazz, but lighter, breathy, wanders into the mix. The sound is still light, barely composed. It makes a nice background for our conversation.
“Auntie…,” I couldn’t get it all out. You’d think I would have remembered this. I can’t recall seeing her before, and now she won’t go away.
“So how have you been keeping yourself?” She swayed now, seemingly at ease. “How’s your love life been?”
I blanched. To discuss that… with… “Uhhhh…..”
She rose a little higher. “Oh, you don’t have to tell me… yet. I know it may take you a while to get used to me being around again. I’ll give you plenty of time!”
She floated down a little at last, now below my eye level, and gave me that sideways smile again. “I’ll be going now. See you real soon!” With that, she floated out my bedroom door, and, somehow, closed it behind her.
The band kept going for a long time, delicately keeping on without really going anywhere. Just like me.