Thursday, January 07, 2016

It’s bewildering how other people live. I always get that feeling when we stay in someone else’s place. We meet them, they seem like happy people. Interesting people, with things they love and things they don’t; things that worry them. Things they depend on. Things that make them feel insecure. They are alive. They try their level best. These are people just like me and yet I can’t understand how they get up in the morning and enter their dark kitchen, illuminated only with two little lamps up on a shelf. Their silverware is standing up in jars on shelves below the counter; there’s lots of knives but none of them are sharp. Three different mustards in the fridge. No napkins. Some heavy gray plates. Fancy-looking soup bowls they probably inherited. This is how they live.

Pictures leaning up against the wall, not hanging on it. Like the day they first moved in, 13 years ago (he told me they’d been there for 13 years). And instead of hanging them on the wall that day, or the next day, or later that week, or on any of the thousands of days since, they just left them there. Leaning on top of each other, three or four at a time. Some good art posters and shit.

The stereo’s in a weird corner of the room, not easily accessible, and yet there’s a little stack of CDs, so maybe they’ve been listening to music, or maybe the stack’s been there for 13 years. There’s a Michael Jackson CD, “Off the Wall.” Everyone everywhere has a Michael Jackson CD.

I can’t understand how people live like that and then I realize something: I’m living like that too.