Little Talks: What Should We Watch?

A series of short stories about a relationship starring a fictional couple who live rent-free in Scott’s head.

Scott Muska
I THOUGHT THIS WAS WORTH SHARING

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“This is the ultimate betrayal,” she says, shakes her head, puts the popcorn down on the coffee table and sinks into the couch with an exasperated sigh. Seems like she’s the kind of fake mad that actually has a tinge of real mad mixed in. A dangerous kind. “I’m not angry. I’m just disappointed.”

“To be fair, I didn’t know this was something you wanted to watch,” I say.

“Well, you never asked.”

“I didn’t think you’d be into it — so I just went for it. I actually chose it because I thought it wouldn’t ring your cherries.”

“Why’d you think that?”

“You hate horror films.”

“Call them scary movies. You sound pretentious. You’re not Jordan Peele.”

“I mean — okay. Tough but fair.”

“Don’t think I forgot you saw Us without me.”

“That movie came out a year and change before I met you. And I saw it the night it came out.”

“I mean — okay. Tough but fair, super fan. I hope you thoroughly enjoyed your ‘horror film.’”

“I don’t think it was quite as good as Get Out, but — “

“Let’s not have this conversation again. Please. I could write a fucking book about the multitudes of Jordan Peele at this point. Maybe give a TED Talk on him too. And I want to start something before an hour passes.”

I can’t decide if I should lean forward and grab the remote from the table or not. Might be more prudent to let her do it. This is weird. I haven’t been in trouble for watching a scary movie alone since my Mom caught me late one night watching one of the Freddy Krueger installments. (At the time I wasn’t permitted to watch The Simpsons or The X-Files. She ran a tight ship.) I opt to sit still on the couch and let her make the move, which she does with one hand while grabbing some popcorn with the other.

I assume we will eventually find something we want to watch and will settle in to do so, but that it will take roughly the same amount of time it would take to take in a full 30-minute episode of a sitcom.

I float a suggestion.

It is promptly vetoed.

She scrolls through Netflix and stops on a tile, looks over at me.

I shake my head.

We repeat this dance several times before I change tack and bring up a movie we both love that is so great there’s never a bad night to rewatch it. Sometimes it’s best to shut up and play the hits.

She’s not in the mood for that this night.

“Are you in any particular mood?” I ask. “We can go from there.”

“Something funny,” she says. “And we need to make a goddamn selection before the edibles kick in because then we’re going to both get even more indecisive.”

“And we won’t be able to fully enjoy our high. Or popcorn.”

“An American tragedy. That’s what that’d be.”

I suddenly recall a series we started while stoned a couple weeks back and bring it up.

“Oh, I just finished the first season last night.”

“That’s the only season. And we only watched, like, three episodes before we passed out, I think.”

“Yeah, you’re going to be on your own on the rest of that one, buddy.”

“This is the ultimate betrayal,” I say. “I’m not angry. I’m just disappointed.”

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Scott Muska
I THOUGHT THIS WAS WORTH SHARING

I write books (for fun, and you can find them on Amazon), ads (for a living) and some other stuff (that seems to magically show up on the internet).