Monday, March 28, 2005

Thank God for TiVo

Wednesday, March 9, 3:00pm
Steve's office

"Steve, can I speak to you for a minute?"

"Sure, Dom."

Things have been very chilly with Dom and me since our confrontation a few weeks back. We talk about work, every day, but I can't recall one personal conversation since then.

"Steve, I need to apologize about a couple of weeks ago. About Lila?"

"Don't worry about it."

"No, I was out of line. Especially since we work together, and I work for you, I should have had more respect."


"You're right; I probably should have told you beforehand, so I really am very sorry."

I smile. "I appreciate that, Dom, and I know an issue like that could never - interfere in our friendship." No, I don't think of Dom as a friend, but I do want him to know that I appreciate the gesture, and this seems the best way of doing so. And of course, we HAVE spent a lot of time together outside of work, socially, and at some level that does make us friends, anyway.

"You're right," he smiles. "I'm not really used to having friends at work. Or anywhere. It's basically my brother and granmother and me. I don't have much of a family, and the people I do have are across the country."

"I've never really spoken to you about this, but I guess that move must have been tough on you. And it was on short notice, too."

"It's been fun, though. I love it here, and I really like working for you. You're a good boss, Steve."

"It's good working with you too, Dom." I extend a hand; he shakes it. "Just make sure you invite me to the wedding."

He laughs. "I wouldn't worry about that too much."

I want to know what happened between Dom and Lila. Did they fuck just once? Twice? Every Tuesday afternoon at 3:15? Are they dating?

I know that the answers won't help me in any conceivable way, though, and may quite possibly distract me unnecessarily. I don't NEED to know; that information is something I couldn't possibly use. So I don't ask.

It feels good to resolve things with Dom. I don't even feel like snapping at anyone.

Right now.


Thursday, March 10, 12:30pm
Steve's office

It's been another bad day today. I don't want to think about Steph. I don't want to ponder how I will deal with losing her, if I do. I just want to avoid the problem, as dysfunctional as that sounds. I want to drown my thoughts in a lake of alcohol, and mute them in an endless stream of movies and TV shows. And when I wake up each morning, I count the hours until I can rush home and do it all over again.

My cell phone rings. I check the caller ID, then turn away and look back again in disbelief. It's Steph.

It's been four days, but it seems like months. I never realized how much she and I actually spoke, until we stopped.

I like that she's calling me. It's a relief to be this much closer to resolution. No matter what her decision will be, I like the idea of KNOWING, and not waiting anymore.



"How are you?"

"Fine, Steve. How are you?"

"OK. What's up?"

There's an awkward silence. Steph and I NEVER have awkward silences! Sometimes we are giddy and lovey-dovey; sometimes we fight like jackals; sometimes we attack each other like horny, sex-starved savages. But we're never awkwardly silent.

"I finally got that sweater I ordered from J. Crew. Now that winter's over."

"Steph, I don't think you called me to talk about sweaters."

"I know. This is hard for me."

"Me too."

"I miss you," she says, almost inaudibly.

"Me too."

"Can I see you tonight?"

"Of course you can! You want to come over?"


"So we can talk when you come over, then."

"I don't wanna talk."

"What DO you want to do?" I ask, my voice breaking. Is she thinking what I think she's thinking?


"Ok, ok. Why don't you come over around 8 or so? We can have dinner, and maybe we'll watch ER."

"You better tape it."