Category Archives: 2012-09-10 to 2012-09-23 – Bookmarked!
I remembered the bookmark clearly; I stored it in a folder called ‘before launch prep’; I had even tagged it ‘survival’. But in those last days on earth there were more important things to be doing than catching up on reading: there were so many things I wanted to see one last time.
I probably skimmed the content of that article, but lying here in my dark, powerless ship; slowly dying; I can remember nothing of it. All I recall is creating that bookmark and of course the title, ‘manual restart procedure for the primary power controller’.
The doctor tried to tell me I have kleptomania. That’s bullshit. I am perfectly in control of the things I steal. I mean, sure, I like to steal a lot of stuff, but it’s not like I’ll just pick up any old random piece of crap. It’s got to be right. It’s got to be the next one in the sequence.
It started when I was twelve. I found an old leather bookmark down the back of the couch. There was something about it. The shape, the smell, the feel of it. Minimal but functional.
Now I have 207. Reckon I can break 300 before the year’s out.
So very bookmarked.
That chiseled jaw. That perfectly coiffured hair.
I scritch and scratch about seven lines into my notebook. I’ve been working on my technique. Character sketches in as few lines as possible. Not to be too boastful, but I’m getting pretty good. Six months of sketching every day will do that.
“Excuse me. Is this seat taken?”
Chiseled jaw. Perfectly coiffured hair. He’s standing right here. In front of me. Talking to me.
My pen, my jaw, my defenses: dropped.
Oh. Em. Gee.
I pull out the chair and smile back with my best, broadest, grin.
A dried flower fell from the book as I opened it – I knew it must have been hers. In those far off days she often hid things in books hoping to be surprised later. Sometimes it was small handwritten notes, sometimes extra cash that she had no need of, and sometimes souvenirs: a theatre ticket, a love letter or a flower.
It was a carnation, the vivid yellows faded by the intervening decades to an elegant tan. I must have given it to her, the other men always gave her roses, I was the one who knew she hated that cloying sweet smell.
I carefully fold the faded blossom back into the book and replace it on the bookshelf: I feel I have intruded.