In the last paragraph of my previous post, (Three weeks ago. I know. But when I get the I-don’t-cares, the first thing I stop caring about is this stupid blog.) I mentioned a long-ago dalliance with Bonnie. Go back and reread that paragraph and then come back here. I’ll wait…
This is how I lost Bonnie.
* * *
Bonnie was way out of my league. She knew it and I knew it. She was a successful architect and a Yale graduate who had a bitchin’ apartment right across the street from the Museum of Modern Art. She was a Renaissance woman. She dabbled in stage design and performed in a modern dance troupe when she was young. I, on the other hand, had just gotten out of the Coast Guard and had begun an exciting career as a word processor.
She was significantly older than I was. I don’t know by how much because I was never gauche enough to ask, but it was quite a few years. On the surface, you’d think we wouldn’t have anything in common. But I know what she saw in me (aside from my youth). I had an insatiable hunger for experience and knowledge. I hadn’t attended college so I had a lot of catching up to do and Bonnie made an excellent Sensi. She guided me through the literary, artistic and theatrical classics. She taught me all about New York City, which was quickly becoming the love of my life. It fed her ego, which was fine with me. And we were passionate. She still had a dancer’s flexible body and I had energy to spare. We were Bogie and Bacall in reverse.
We would attend functions together and knew that her friends were talking about us behind our backs. We’d take mental notes to ourselves of all the sideways glances and whispers, retire to her apartment, lay in bed, compare notes and laugh our asses off at them. We were awfully, awfully fond of one another, but never in love.
* * *
Currently at MoMA is a Post Modern art exhibit. The feature piece is the manuscript of avant-garde artist John Cage’s 4’33‘‘. In this piece, a pianist walks up to a piano, sits down and does absolutely NOTHING for four minutes and thirty-three seconds. The “composition” is whatever ambient noises occur in that period of time. Floorboards creaking. People coughing. Programs rustling. Cage was pleased at the premier in 1952 as, according to him:
“… people themselves made all kinds of interesting sounds as they talked and walked out.”
Here’s what the sheet music for 4’33” looks like:
On August 12, 1992, John Cage passed away. There was a front-page obituary in the New York Times. I was over Bonnie’s apartment and let her know, in no uncertain terms, that I thought Cage was a pretentious fraud and that a front-page obit is wholly unwarranted. I told her that nobody *I* know or listened to was ever influenced by Cage (certainly not Rush) and that four minutes and thirty-three seconds of silence is neither music OR art. It’s just lazy. I prattled on for several more minutes and finally ran out of gas. Bonnie looked at me.
“Are you done?”
“My dissertation at Yale was on Cage’s career.”
That was it. I blew up the bridge. That distance between us was never traversed again.
* * *
I bumped into Bonnie in the summer of 2012. I was seeing a play with My Bride and she sat several rows behind me. I leaned over and whispered, “Hey, I think that’s Bonnie! Do you think she’d remember me?” I couldn’t concentrate on the play. At intermission I got up and walked to the lobby and out of the corner of my eye, I saw Bonnie get up out of her seat. I stopped her as she walked past.
“Hi, Bonnie. Do you remember me?”
“Oh…I remember you, alright.”
Bonnie ended up marrying a multi-billionaire. You’d know his name if I said it. They were married for a short period of time and then had an amicable divorce. She always wanted to be traveling and on the go and he just wanted peace and quiet. They threw a lavish divorce party for all their friends to show there was no hard feelings. The wheel spins, doesn’t it?
* * *
Several people have written to say my Follow button does not include an option to add my site to a WordPress RSS reader. No doubt this accounts for my low readership. It can’t possibly be the content, right? To add this site to a WordPress Reader, go to your reader, click on Edit and add my URL. Conversely, I’ve moved an email subscription widget below the photo of dear St. Lucy and her plate of eyeballs. I blame Obamacare for my Follow button kerfuffle.