The second you said, “To be honest, I’m not having a good time — I’m going to go,” I saw you get up, grab your faux fur jacket and step on a land mine, just to the left of the table. Your legs detached themselves from your torso, the left one rocketing through the front window onto Tenth, the right sailing over the bar and slamming forward three taps — an ale, a stout and a cider. Your upper half, arms still attached but pointed north as though you’d abruptly reacted to someone yelling for you to FREEZE, went straight into the recessed light fixture above, shattering its bulb and sending chips of thin glass and brain matter onto the rest of our Sicilian pizza (of which you’d eaten the majority). Your teeth rained on patrons at adjacent tables in a beautiful hailstorm; I couldn’t quite tell during dinner, but you sure did have some pearly whites. I suppose your coat had a goose down lining, because as the last of your fleshy bits hit the walls in a percussive squelch, feathers floated in every direction like smoke trails following the grand finale of a fireworks display on the fourth of July. Just as the smog began to dissipate, The Beatles rang clear on the juke: And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make. Golly–that was the best part: You said you were a Stones fan and that to truly love The Beatles you had to be some kind of dope. Well, here I am at the table, covered in all the nastiness with which you killed the mood, swaying side to side to a song I adore. I’ll go home alone, as per usual, and maybe that makes me a dope. But I’m still in one piece.

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