on opening

ENTRY # 2533

What if I open a box? I havent tried this before. The attic is dusty and cool. It smells like an attic, of memory. My home is a jumble, but the stack of the actively forgotten is ordered and arranged. Funny how the mind is.

For this experiment I look for Beyond Care. Not a mere Dont Care Anymore. I wonder if the residual anger is telling me something, but reach for the medium-sized box anyway. This box has the name R**. ENDING: phone calls that petered out to nothing. The box is mostly structurally intact; old corrugated cardboard with frayed corners. Inside is a disarray of things. There is that argument we had. It was a great argument. A stupid one. He kept trying to say Bartolucci was a genius. I said “The Last Temptation of Christ” was flat and uninteresting. Back and forth until I said, “Okay. Youre right.” Then he continued arguing with me because my okay was insincere (and it was, but I just wanted to stop arguing).

Is that a good memory? At the time it wasnt but in hindsight – pretty ridiculous. I look for anything else that I would deem “good”. It smells like mouse droppings. I have to look hard. Why were we even together? He wasnt all that handsome. I used to think he was sexy as hell. Hell. Right. Arrogant, argumentative and needling. Great repartee resulting in some fantastic sexual tension. No specific conversations there – just a general feeling. He scared me sometimes. Just another a feeling. He gets the award for most likely to be a serial killer. A brief tangent where I think about other bad men in other boxes, but I return to this one.

I find my cat Spencer in the box. I had forgotten that is where I got him. Not with R**, but the house where I lived when I was with him. And there is my room and Sheila too. And Chris Carmi, and singing all the time, and irresponsibility and mom wondering if I was a lesbian? because I lived in that house and never brought any guys home. No. I wouldnt bring R** home. He was bad for me. Even I knew it. Stupid.

Stupid to have packed up all those other memories with R**. And R** isnt that big a deal any more. I wasnt so bad then. I packed myselfup too. The stupid one who would even feel anything for this stupid man. But I wasnt that stupid and it wasnt all bad. I can look at that younger me and give her an airing out, maybe even welcome her back. I didnt know Id put myself in the box too.

Enough for today. More boxes. Lots more. But not today. This one is still a mess. I just found S****** here. He has his own box, but a bit of him is here too. I get ready to go back downstairs. Its time for breakfast. The head-monkey cages are in the corner. Didnt notice them before. Theyre quiet, just watching me as I leave the room.

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