It just so happens that we are two people who share one bedroom in a three-bedroom house. And because we are neither rich nor hospitable, we do not have a guest room. In divvying up the extra space (because what is marriage for, if not for divvying?), Matt claimed the larger end room for his library, and I got the smaller middle room for my little collection of belongings. My own meager book collection, my blue hobbit chair, my bank statements and trash, our shared stationary bike that sits lonely and neglected in the corner. I gave it a view of the neighbor’s yard to appease it during long bouts of slothfulness.
There isn’t much to do in my room unless you want to exercise or sit in a small chair, so I spend the majority of my upstairs time sleeping and wandering into Matt’s larger, more interesting library. Which brings us to the issue at hand: meth.
Tuesday night, I meandered past the library with a toothbrush hanging out of my mouth to find him perusing Amazon. More specifically, he was looking at a book on meth. A fancy book on meth with vivid pictures and menacing fonts.
“Is that the meth book I’m in?” I exclaimed, Colgate dribbling onto my t-shirt.
“No. Wait – what?” His look was a combination of fear and curiosity. Because small sections of our lives over the past few years still remain a mystery. I'd like to think he was in the circus.
“I’m listed as a source in a book about meth. Google me and it comes up on like the fourth or fifth O.”
[One time* I Googled myself and found that an article I’d written for my college newspaper surrounding the tragic drug-related death of a student and her boyfriend had been used as source material for a book on meth aimed at young adults. It seemed sort of text-bookish.]
Matt proceeded to Google, and there, buried between century-old obits for the Catherine Monahans that came before me and race times I have failed to scrub from the public record, was my name in the source notes of [book name redacted].
“How come you never told me?” Matt implored, his hands scrambling to find a pen and a piece of paper for my autograph.
“I didn’t think it was a big deal,” I said, waving my toothbrush nonchalantly. But sadly, to me it kind of was. The article I’d written was a journalistic high point among many, many low points – dozens of poorly drawn, very unfunny editorial cartoons. The other truth is that said meth book appears to have been written as a collaboration between babies and textbook robots. The cover bears the garish mark of Microsoft paint.
“Well, you should at least blog about it,” he said.
And so I did.
Friday, June 18, 2010
Great article. Equally great comments.
When we were little, we'd be rewarded for making it through swimming lessons with a trip to the White Castle drive-through. I ate White Castle because I hated swimming lessons. I hated swimming lessons because I was chubby. I was chubby because I ate White Castle.
It was a vicious circle, much like a White Castle Chicken Ring.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Tuesday, June 08, 2010
Friday, June 04, 2010
Jeez, the events of two weeks ago seem eons behind me. This is what I get for failing to blog on a regular basis. Per usual, I'll just have to use exaggeration, distracting similes and falsified facts to fill in the missing pieces.
Lost. On Lost. On the TV show Lost.
I distinctly remember the first time Matt and I watched an episode of “Lost.” And by distinctly, I mean vaguely. We were visiting my family in St. Louis for one reason or another, and after a hearty meal of casserole, we found my brothers hunkered down in our walk-in closet of a family room, watching some new bullshit sitcom about castaways and polar bears. At that point, a third of the season had already passed, but we slowly, reluctantly began to tune in to see what this trend amongst fanboys and survivalists was all about. And so it goes that we finished the first season eager to watch the second.
And the second, eager to watch the third.
I was caught, like a wild boar between a spear-toting plane crash survivor and the ocean’s cold abyss, in the grips of an inexplicable crush on Ben Linus. And Matthias was similarly trapped under the spell of Kate Austen. If I were to guess, it was because he has been told, by numerous friends, relatives and strangers at restaurants, that he looks like Dominic Monaghan. And, in addition to playing Charlie on Lost, Dominic Monaghan happened to be dating Evangeline Lilly, who plays Kate. So, you know, of course.
For reasons mutual and individual – for him, the complexity, the adventure, the literary allusions; for me, the Ben; the Sawyer; the Desmond; the Dharma-issued canned peaches; the comfy, retro hatch; the moments so painfully poignant that a few times I found myself sobbing through previews for next week’s episode.
As it happens, Matt and I broke up just shy of season three’s end. And having watched it every week together since that first fateful encounter in the family room, it seemed fitting that we would watch the season finale together before going our separate, undetermined ways.
The episode? “Through the Looking Glass.” You know, “not Penny’s boat”? The one where Charlie dies. It was all very disturbing and meta for me. For the next two years, I swore off Lost completely.
I even changed the channel during Lost commercials. It, like Charlie, was dead to me.
And then we got back together. And not even a week after our wedding, a mutual decision was made. Although Matt had been loyal to Lost this entire time, we would watch seasons four and five in time for the premier of season six. Jumping back in was easy. My desire to watch was less about nostalgia and more rooted in a genuine interest to be part of it again. In among the helicopters, the mysterious cabins, the sarcastic quips and pseudoscientific ramblings.
Plus, if I hadn’t watched season four, I would’ve missed my favorite episode – “The Constant.” I’m sure it’s everyone’s favorite episode, but that’s just because it’s that good.
We made it through season five with time to spare and watched season six with the fierce dedication of the loyal and DVR-less. When I found out my brother’s college graduation would put me in Boston the night of the series finale, I realized watching the very last episode with Matt wasn’t going to happen. In fact, watching it at all might not happen. We were staying at a convent, so hot water was a hope and expecting access to television was like expecting your potential rescuers to actually rescue you.
TWIST: To make a long Lost story short, I had the good fortune of running into a nun/Lost super fan at breakfast that Sunday morning. She graciously let me watch with her in the inner sanctums of the convent where there was, in fact, a very nice TV. And while it would’ve been nice to watch with Matt, I’m sure he appreciated the utter silence my absence brought – no one yelling “Lupetis is alive!” through a mouthful of Doritos or air kicking as Jack forced ghost Locke over the edge of the cliff.
The end? Nearly perfect. I have no qualms. Lingering questions, sure – that was inevitable. But that night, I drifted off to sleep in my convent bed with dreams of Ben Linus and the satisfaction of relationships, both real and imagined, come full circle.