She wasn’t a perfect cat either. Jonathan’s mother was unlucky with a string of men that came along her way. She remarried once before incorrectly settling down with the husband who would have her child. Before her second marriage, Megan was approaching her thirties without much concern- who could advise her otherwise?
In her post college years, Megan was a wild cat living relatively larger than her peers and after a few successions of climbing up the corporate ladder, she decided to get her MBA. She was a robust candidate for the life she had planned; she wanted to amass wealth but also power- she didn’t have any female role models, so she was determined to embed herself in the male-centric rungs of society. At 29, she’d celebrate two major events: she was invited to TEDxDover to talk about Geni- she invented a new computer language by using 3D into her algorithms. Her committee of support came from IBM, Microsoft, Sanctal Science, and Fortune Expo. She garnered three successful rounds of VC funding to launch an ISO standard for public use. While Geni was her gift for the world, she would meet a man that would speak to her health and happiness.
Port was the blood line to Jubal Early, a Confederate General in the American Civil War. Port was a steady stream of patriotism and exploration- much like his descendents. He’d find that his blood started from the deep South and was the same pigment as the red that flowed out of life and his country. He was a standing symbol of his nation and as independent as they’d come. He had mixed opinions of an America growing to be more diverse than he’d like- he’d categorize the non-white folks as all a lump sum to better the white people. The powerful were to the right of the equal sign- the rest were just lucky to be part of the equation. He’d change his analysis when he met Megan.
The contour of their beginning seemed to be the unlikeliest of traces. Port had just finished leading a youth rally at an all white summer camp- there wasn’t a flyer blast on Facebook and they kept away from public discourse- they kept the racial cloud hovering over only their own and the parents were tight knit with such narrow minded commonalities. Kids were there by invitation only; it mirrored the community that their parents had adored at their country clubs.
Megan was finishing a two day “Corporate Women” seminar at the University of Chicago- she shared about her background. Her father was raised in the Mediterranean and her mother grew up in Seoul, South Korea. Megan grew attracted to her father’s French dialect and her mother’s tradition to Korea. Throughout the conference, she felt like a younger Oprah; after the event, she’d stay for an extra couple of hours to do a meet and greet and later was ready to take her success back home.
They met at the Chicago O’Hare International Airport. Both were at Sable’s Bar in Concourse B waiting for different flights- she was waiting to get to New York while he was planning to arrive in Lynchburg, Virgina in a couple of hours. Both would go about their way strolling their luggage in opposite directions. But they had exchanged numbers and promised to meet again.
He sent over a fax. A hope of ingenuity lured the prospect of a resume come to life- the chance at an interview would be nothing like the mannequin of broken dreams that had been whispered in dark phrases throughout his past. His father was no longer the welder of a story of death and failure over this young man’s life. The receipt of the fax came back approved.
Later, a call came and with startled hands, he stumbled to answer, “Hello, hello, hi, yes, this is Johnson”. An interview was scheduled with the senior manager of Intercom Technologies; “Ok, ok, bye, bye thank you. See you Tuesday”.
Johnson had just graduated as a computer engineer from River Penn University in New Rochelle, New York- the E31 bus was his 10 minute commute from home to school and his mother always walked with him to the main street to wave goodbye. He would enthusiastically stutter back, “Goodbye good goodbye”. His mother was a computer programmer- the few whose daily plot of work was spent at home and luckily for her, it’d be the quality time she needed to be with Johnson. Every hand wave goodbye was an empowering gesture for Johnson to stretch into the future instead of bending to the weight of an oppressive past.
Journeying forward, she’d commit the same effort to love Johnson until the day he’d move out to start his own family – it’d been approaching 12 long years since his father left in such ringside horror- his final blow struck Johnson in his teeth permanently leaving him with an unorthodox smile- for the next 6 months his reflection would cause him to think violently in the sweat of fear and sadness; he swallowed his shame while smearing his last name in a pool of blood that he’d occasionally create by harming himself. She knew he’d need everyday from that moment on to relearn how to breathe. More importantly he’d relearn that he is loved. It’d be their victory if he learned to love again.
“Mom mom mom. MOM. I got an interview on Tuesday! I have a good feeling mom- about this one.”
“I’m glad you have an interview hon. I’m so proud of you. You did an amazing job. You are amazing. I cooked some dinner for you when you’re ready”.
Marveling at his appetite, she encouraged him to a second helping. Her cookbooks weren’t just page turners for delicious images- for all the time she spent at home, she learned to be a mother. She was his superhero- her livelihood was his pleasure to follow her steps. She never had to force her happiness on him-after all, it was his joy that spurred her on.
She had dark circles under her eyes – the type that I wouldn’t believe if they were the result of unrest and stress; I formed the thought that if I had a moment with her together, I would ask her out to coffee sometime soon. Just then I dropped a transparent blue glass plate on the table. The shatter became human- I could hear the “OO’s” and feel the seering tension of eyes cut through all of their importance and make this accident their new gaze.
Well, just to clarify, I’ve bussed long enough to know that I can get through a table while blindfolded. So any mental distraction is juvenile to spillage and breakage- my fingers were oily. The plate was slippery. We cleared the table and reset settings for the party of six. Such are my nights at Nobu. My weekends are for the service of everyone else’s weekends. My work is for their play- where would hospitality be without such arrangements?
Physically, many are my type and mutual attraction is usually the magnet that starts with the eyes. So any glances to and fro are my signal for them to call Nobu the next day and ask for that busser. But when that table clears my browsing history is suddenly gone and her intentions for anything more than a nice dinner is faded.
I haven’t dated in over six years; I don’t have much reason to right now- nor do I give a girl much reason to want to date me- the more that Relationship flirts with me, the more I shun the idea that she’s more important than my pursuit for Career. They sound like they’d hate each other, and I’d be stuck in the middle trying to get them to see each other’s better side.
In a couple weeks, I’ll be at Nobu four times a week and shortly after just three times a week. Summer classes will be my newest input to produce better output- Career needs me to take prereqs- I’ll listen to her for now. In addition, I’ve been coaching basketball voluntarily at LACES magnet school; once school hits summer, I’ll be more present during tournaments and practices. Oh yeah and I’m with LA Models.
Perhaps Relationship isn’t who I think it is. Maybe Relationship already knows who I am. And as the season approaches the busyness of summer, I want my heart to approach you, Lord.
Right underneath the logo of Stella’s blue hat, there was a smudge that impacted the look. She took her Tide To Go and tried to mark the stain away. Instead the chemicals penetrated without strength and the formula of the magic pen had no answer for her disappointment. She tossed it on her bedside and decided to text her hair stylist instead.
“Hair is looking crappy. Can we meet up?”
“Sorry, booked today and tomorrow. How’s Monday?”
“Too late, got a first date”.
Shawn had scheduled to pick her up at 7. He would swerve through mundane LA traffic- the kind that makes him scan through every radio station from AM to FM; he sat through the curse of listening to pristine voices debating about transgender restrooms while wanting the option to be surprised by the FM – all he got, was “work, work, work, work”. It briefly got him thinking about his awful co-workers; he wanted to rip glands out of Eric and unravel Trisha’s left bicep muscle. He discontinued those childish thoughts and repeated out loud, “They are yours. They are yours”.
Suddenly, a large pickup truck with monstrous wheels cut him off to make an abrupt left turn on a NO LEFT TURN lane- this villain thought he’d be extended a 10 minute grace period because he was the road’s Goliath and didn’t care even if road’s David was right behind him. Shawn would’ve been nicer if it was 7, but at 6:50 he knew he had to get to her doorsteps- he wasn’t about to begin their night with “I’m sorry I’m late”. He honked madly at Goliath and a pool of purely explicit cuss words were steaming out of the left side of his brain. The light was turning yellow and he proceeded to make the turn; Goliath was ready to unhinge his car door and become the biblical Hulk. David wasn’t going to let his bullying slide. They both got out of the car and with a full head of pride, David rushed at the concrete flesh.
Shawn awoke next to his car; big tire marks screeched away and he stood up to look at his driver’s side window. He had a plum for an eye and felt his left hand unable to grip the steering wheel. He arrived at her doorsteps. 7:17.
With a right handed knock, he stood there and Stella opened the door. She had her blue hat on; he noticed the stain, but otherwise, it couldn’t be his excuse for his unkempt display. They exchanged greetings and with quiet smiles they were on their way. Not too much was said in reply- she accepted his story and instinctively found it cute; there would be a time to unfold explanations during dinner. She then took off her cap and showed him her hair. It was the work of a mad scientist- scissors weren’t a tool; it was a weapon. He laughed hysterically and then she matched the laughter. It was going to be a good night.