Category Archives: talking

Talking It Over

I would like to think him leaving is his loss, but really it is mine too. There were many things about him I enjoyed, but one thing in particular I miss most. Actually what I miss most fluctuates, but right now, this is what I want.

I loved telling him about whatever I was reading, studying, teaching (although the latter is a new development and not one we discussed in detail).

I can’t explain it, except that he always knew. He probably thought I was ridiculous in my odd fascinations, yet he humored me anyway. I would find whimsy in the strangest quotes, but still, he knew.

Whatever I had studied, or was reading, he most likely already read, and had an opinion on it. I enjoyed hearing it, constantly getting me to think about something else, new, and maybe different.

I think my favorite part was making him figure it out. He would and I would squeal and giggle in delight, reading his email or text that unraveled whatever random thing I would send.

I sometimes wonder if he enjoyed it, and viewed it like a game the way I did.

There was one time I thought it would amusing to create something formatted like the reference in the title of this blog and see where it went. Pick a subject, any subject, and go from there. The end result would have been entertaining.

If we were still talking, I would tell him about my lesson planning for next week:  “on ne nait pas femme: on le devient.” He could easily figure out what/who I am teaching… but the why… especially considering my opinion on the subject…  that would be a whole different puzzle.

Well, I guess if I want puzzles, then I will have to go back to Sudoku.

Irritated Post #23

When I am sitting at a table by myself reading a book, I am not attempting to use it as a prop or conversation started. I understand not everyone knows this, but when you ask me what I am reading and I reply “a book,” this should be the first indication that I am not feeling particularly chatty.

I can’t not be nice, so even my short responses come with a friendly smile, and I am beginning to think this may confuse people.

Maybe I should start carrying a sign, but then I would probably get questions about the sign, defeating its purpose. “No sir, I am not picketing, I would simply like to be left alone.”

I think the worst is when they continue talking, but haven’t the slightest clue what they are talking about. No, Prometheus Unbound is not the newest John Grisham bestseller. Uh huh, yes, I am sure he is fascinating.

My favorite is “you must be really smart.” Obviously not smart enough to eat my lunch at home.


Over the weekend, as I was making plans with friends, one of them asked me to call. The idea was momentarily terrifying. I agreed. Then thought about it the rest of the evening and the following morning. As noon approached and I knew I had to make the call, I began agonizing.

I realized how bad my aversion to the phone had gotten. Having had my phone calls and all activity monitored for years I avoided all conflict by simply no longer using the phone. I would only call “safe” numbers, meaning immediate family. At one point even Tanya had become off limits. I resorted to texts, emails, Facebook messenger, and all other untraceable modes of communication. I knew I had grown to dislike using the phone because of the potential for a fight, but had it really gotten this bad?

I stared at my little pink phone, and made the call. As the phone rang on the other end it all dawned on me. I can use the phone. No, not just physically. But, I can use the phone. Really use it. And there is no one monitoring my calls anymore. No one to question the numbers. No one to track my minutes. I don’t have to justify anything anymore. It was unbelievably liberating.

The call went to voicemail, and my first real call in years only lasted a few seconds. But that is not the point.

I do have to admit, I felt clumsy as I left the message. Almost as if didn’t know what to do. The only messages I had left for years were to my parents, and usually having to do with when I would be stopping by next. I was doing something I hadn’t done in a while, and I was a bit shaky. And I am not referring to calling places to make an appointment, or utilitarian type calls. I am solely referring to personal/social calls. I felt weird. Almost uncomfortable.

But I liked it.