Originally appearing in Everyday Genius
The girl that used to. She used to . . . about so many things. She walks hastily to work. Always, usually arriving on time. Early even. Her mother called on the phone this morning. And she yelled at the phone. “Fuck you!” With feeling. It was real. It had feeling. Dastardly feeling, aware of its own ridiculousness. Thus tragic. The voice is tragic, because it has lost its potential to utter, “Hello, how are you?” She walks to work hastily.
There is squirming and racing, bumping, repeating in her mind. OK. OK. Give her some room. Look quickly. She’s wearing a tight skirt. Her hips swing with blatant sexuality, but her head is stiff. Her arms are stiff.
Give her space. As she moves hastily attempting to reach her destination. OK. Give her a nod. Do not smile. Do not show her your teeth. She does not want to see them. Do you understand? She has no desire to find out about your story. She only cares about her own story. Because this is the way she is. This is the way she believes you really are, so do not tell her the details of your life. She does not care.
If you are extraordinarily talented, attractive, mysterious, charming, idiosyncratic. These are reasons for her to talk to you. She is well aware that these may be arbitrary criteria. But, she has not figured out any better criteria to keep her from staying in her apartment at all possible moments of the day, or year. She actually does not mind being asked for directions. This a question with purpose and to be able to answer it efficiently may be one of the worthier endeavors throughout anyone’s day. Do not ask her about her day. Do not ask her about her weekend. She probably doesn’t remember, not because she partied so hard that she literally can’t remember. She just really can’t remember. Because her experiences don’t soak in quite right. Not right enough to be able to answer your questions. Unless she went to a movie. She will say, I went to a movie and it was good or it was bad.
If she is not noteworthy to you, then . . .
So she arrives at work four minutes early.
“Some guy called for you and wants to know if you can do a heavy sub-session.”
“What does he mean by heavy? I can do medium today.”
The girl that used to can only take a medium amount of pain today. Well, she can’t feel her ass, until she sits down and all the pain compresses on hard surfaces. The other girls are sleeping on the sofas, and there are only chairs.
Here, the girl that used to’s name is Genevieve. And she does not care about your situation.
She has many men tell her how special she is on a regular basis. Then she hears how they say the exact same thing to other girls. She does not care about your situation. She cares about your money. She cares about whether or not you are sufficiently interesting. Inherently. She has no inclination for the details of your situation. The scenario that drives you. She only wants to know if there is anything that can sustain your fucked up mind in the middle of the night when other people are sleeping. Who or what do you masturbate to? Do you even know?
After the shift, the girl that used to about so many things and places and people and little tiny things walks home. She walks quickly, trying to get home as soon as possible. When she walks through her door she notices that everything looks the way it did before she left, hastily.