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"I carried a watermelon."

October 23, 2009

The statement slipped out before I could catch it. Before I could determine that it made zero sense in the context of our casual and introductory conversation. Before I could pause to tell the back story, give it context, explain its real meaning. It just popped out; a statement that I usually close a longer story with just asserted itself without the rest of the story. How dare it do that! And why couldn’t I stop it?!

It fits at the end of a story about new beginnings, challenges, perseverance, belonging, self-reliance, resourcefulness, comfort, and humor. Standing alone it felt nonsensical, naked, awkward, and out of place. It came out quickly, before my car door shut and he walked around to the other side. I didn’t have time to elaborate or explain, which is probably why the statement came out unaccompanied in the first place. By the time he took his place behind the wheel too much time had passed. I couldn’t help the awkward statement without appearing awkward myself. So I betrayed it in the same manner it betrayed me – I left it alone. Perhaps the night air swept it away or perhaps it still stands out in the parking lot alone waiting for companionship by the rest of the story. I’m not sure I will have that opportunity.

So for now, I just shake my head and laugh, make a quizzical face and repeat my absurd statement in the same way Baby does in Dirty Dancing:

“I love my car; I would live in it if I could.”

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