Wednesday, June 18, 1997

Journal entry, Neil's Birthday

6/18 Neil arrives late at Verona’s. I’m miffed at him for turning down my invite and accepting hers. What does that tell me? Herman tells me Neil wants poems for his birthday. I scribble something. He greets them but it’s quite some time before he says hello to me (but I am writing!).

They pour champagne, I try to put away my negative feelings and foreboding. I desperately want to put a stop on this day, stop time. I don’t want it to go forward. I’m uneasy in my skin. I don’t want to go to lunch with them. I’m the party-pooper, antisocial as hell.

Bad dreams this morning. The maja veil is over my mind: I can’t recall enough to know what it’s all about. I remember thinking that something really traumatic needed happen to bind us to each other. I stared idly at Neil’s picture when a vision came into my head. Something about an accident. Neil laying in the middle of the road. I chalk it up to aggression, I’m a bit pissed at him. Then felt guilty.

We drink a toast and get into their car. It was just broadsided in a hit-and-run. The fender squeaks. Neil hesitates, “Shall we go in my car?” he asks. Verona says, “No, no. Don’t be silly. It’s your birthday. I’ll drive.” Neil and I crawl into the back seat. I reach for my safety belt, it’s not all there. Neither is Neil’s. I figure, “Oh well!”

We thaw and begin to flirt. The champagne’s gone straight to my head. It’s like it was Easter—the tension's rising. It’s still there! I’m elated. We test each other on British kings, We know more that Verona, and she’s English!

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