It was over a hundred degrees in Long Beach yesterday, even after the sun went down, which is when Donny and I headed to the drive-in theater to see The Goonies.
I didn’t wear gauze on my fingers because it is at the sloughing stage and I wanted to let it breathe. The blisters have gone, and tiny wounds have scarred over, and the finger with the most damage is peeling down to its underskin like it’s also tired of the hot summer and wearing so many layers.
I show him my peeling limbs, and he says the appropriate comforting things, and then smiles lightly as he remembers his own burn just earlier this year, and how things like that underline the fragility of our animal bodies. I am glad to have a boyfriend who, like me, isn’t disgusted by the affectations of humaning.
Images that disgust me: rotten banana pudding slow eeking from a city sewer, a thin almost-sticky layer of dirt (why is it wet?), a pool of oil sitting on the ocean (how could we?), and blue food, and blue food dye, and blue-dye-soaked tongues, and little driplets of unexplained blue liquid lurking on kitchen floors.
Images that will never bother me: how my friend with colitis explains the differing levels of blood in his stool, a long strand of my hair mixed into my salad and pulled out just before the eating, feet.
I love how people have different metrics for what turns their heads, turns their tummies, turns the wheels in their brains.
I love how people… people. And I’m fascinated by how people animal. And I’m curious, endlessly curious, about when we chose to do either, or both, and especially the moments we have no say in the choice.
The cars in the parking lot are spaced like checkers. Masks have to be worn outside your vehicle.
My mask is white and my hair is long, and I walk without a cane now. My dress would be a September dress in most years, the brown flower pattern on white strapless cloth says fall is coming, and sings a goodbye song to summer.
For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow.
This year, even the weather doesn’t know what’s coming, and isn’t quite sure what has passed.
In the middle of a heatwave, we get a flash flood warning. I can’t imagine how rain plans to sneak its way between the vibrating heat of the sky. How the sky thinks it will shed its way down through the almost-violent layer of sun spew and still be something whole by the time it splashes.
Outside, away from the television alert, the people walking on my street don’t know this is coming, but I see them lift their faces up. I see them look over their shoulder. Lift their masks to sniff the big blue blanket that has us tucked so firmly in August.
They look at each other, as if to acknowledge this shared knowing, but then look away, embarrassed, instead.
I like how people people.