Thursday, August 10, 2006

A. W. I. A. 15: Squaring off in circles

All right, now back to business. I was starting to describe the tiger lilies I saw on my walk that morning, but I sensed that if I told the man who claimed to be a doctor that they looked to me like mourners at a funeral, he would somehow use that to prove certain things about me, which, as I said, I've already demonstrated to be untrue.

Instead, I told him they looked like golf spectators, thinking that would be good, with all that 'golf spectators' implied: cheery, sunny people gathered to watch something they found exciting, for reasons I could not even begin to guess at. But a hitch before I finished the sentence told the man I had changed course.

"Why did you pause there?" he asked me.

"Where?" I asked. I knew, of course. But consistency was going to be important here, and the kind of person who might think tiger lilies looked like golf spectators would not be the kind of person who looked too deeply into her own motives.

"Before you said 'golf spectators.' You paused as if you might be about to describe them in a different way."

"I did?"

"Yes."

I shook my head--not in a contrary way, but the way I might if I were mystified. "I'm not sure."

The man nodded. "All right, then." He wrote a note on his pad.

I tried to read it, but his handwriting was small and jagged, like shards of glass.
"What was that?" I asked him.

I could see he was appraising me. Looking for the canniest course. Would he feign ignorance or--now that he knew I had him trapped--would he come clean?

"I just wrote myself a note," he said.

This was non-responsive in the extreme. "What does it say?"

"Tiger lilies."

"Why?"

"I am starting a garden."

Next

2 Comments:

Blogger Blumertha said...

'I tried to read it, but his handwriting was small and jagged, like shards of glass'.


....like a large crushed spider ?

What would've happened if his note had read: 'send wreath' ?

August 10, 2006  
Blogger L M said...

If his note had read 'send wreath,' I might have felt some sympathy for him.

August 10, 2006  

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