Saturday, December 15, 2012

Mayan Face

Some years ago, I don't know, a half-dozen or so, on the eve of the eve of my leave-taking of my apartment of six or so years, a man and a woman I'd never met knocked on my door and when I bid them enter, entered bearing beers.

I don't remember their names but the woman lived directly below me and told me she was teaching a geography class that my friend was taking. She was drunk and began to tell me that she knew the schedule I kept, my comings and goings. She knew when I woke in the morning, when I left the building, when I came home, and she knew when I had sex: the building was turn of the last century and the walls were thin. But she told me this. You don't tell strangers this unless you are sure you'll never see them again. Not knowing what to say, I said, strangely, "I guess I've had a good year."

Her man friend handed me a beer and studied my bookcases. He stared at me for longer than is appropriate to stare at anyone you're not planning on beating up or making love to or scolding. He took a swig of his beer and said, reaching out, almost but not touching me--"You have a Mayan face."

They left as suddenly as they had arrived. Outside it was snowing.

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