She said to me one day, “I wish I could smoke a cigarette.”
I flipped over onto my other shoulder. “You definitely don’t.”
She just smiled at me and dug her chin into the pillow she was hugging for dear life. “Oh but I do. If I were anybody else I’d be bumming a pack off someone right now.”
Bumming? “Well, aren’t we glad you’re not somebody else, yeah?” She has this weird effect on me. Where I can’t stop smiling and I feel incredibly soft inside. Even though she just told me she wanted to take a hit off the cancer stick she still manages to be incredibly endearing.
She shoved her whole face into that pillow and groaned. “I’m not. The fact that I’m me is ruining my carefully cultivated aesthetic.”
I felt so incredibly soft. “There won’t be an aesthetic to cultivate if you’re dead.”
She threw the pillow to the side with her eyebrows knit together. “I know. That’s why my pussy lungs and I aren’t slummin’ it right now.”
I laughed. I couldn’t help myself. Pussy lungs? “I’m glad.”
After that we fell into a silence. Where we both sat flat on our backs and listened to the sound of each other breathing.
“What do you wish for?” It was a whisper. As we sat on the mattress stargazing at her popcorn ceiling.
“Hmm?” I hummed back, not opening my eyes.
“Jordan, what do you wish?” I imagined her lips curling around the syllables of my name. Even in my daydreams she’s smiling.
“I don’t know.”
She laughed. “I told you I wanted to smoke cigs and you’re not even gonna give me an equally engaging answer?”
I wish I could tell her how soft she makes me feel. “I wish I was musical.”
“Oh come on!” She sat up and startled me. “The fact that you aren’t musical is a user error. Your fault!”
I sat up with an energy to rival her. “Excuse me, have you heard me sing?”
“Yeah, and it’s a crime against humanity! But at least with practice and training you can get better. It’s not like you have a chronic illness that prevents you from singing or playing the ukulele or something.”
I sighed. “Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should. You shouldn’t smoke cigs,” I pointed at her. “And I shouldn’t learn to sing,” I point the finger back on myself.
“I mean I get the cigs but why don’t you wanna learn?” She looked like a puppy. Head tilted to the side. Pout. Chin up. Such a drama queen.
“Because I don’t think it was meant to be. I’m more of a watcher and consumer than a doer and maker.”
“Bullshit! That is absolute bullshit!” She was pointing at me and waving her arms around at the same time. “Give me a better reason than that right now or I’m gonna whack you over the head with a guitar.”
My eyes crinkled in a smile. “Alright. But only because you’re so scary.” I seriously doubt either of us were remotely close to a guitar. But somehow I felt like she’d still be able to do it. She’s an incredible improviser.
I layed back down on the mattress. “I wouldn’t learn because I’m scared I would be horrible. Like my efforts were wasted.”
She sighed. And it was a sad sigh. I didn’t like that noise. “I get that… but you do things like that for yourself. If it makes you happy and you’re the worst musician in the world it doesn’t matter how shit you are. All that matters is your happiness.”
“I’d look like an idiot playing an instrument.”
“You’d be a happy idiot.”
Fuck, she makes me soft.