One of my best friends is at the wheel of her car, listening to my story of the end of my relationship with Bennett (Bennett Bites the Dust). Susie is a long-married woman who relishes all the diverting details of my single life. Every time we get together, she gets that gleam in her eye, the one that says, “Time for some vicarious pleasure.” Then she asks, “What’s up?”
She’s the friend who gave me the book, Getting Naked Again. This means she has insider information on my angst wrapped around that topic.
When I finish telling her about his last email, she turns her head away from the road, toward me, and says, “Why don’t you just…”
I know from her voice exactly what she’s going to say next. I turn to face her in the car, jab my finger at her and say, “Don’t you dare say one more word! Stop right there!”
I’ve never spoken to her like this before. Quite possibly I’ve never spoken to any of my friends like this before. While I’m not shouting, there’s a fierceness to my tone that astonishes both of us.
Her hands tighten on the steering wheel and her eyes shoot straight ahead to the road.
I continue in the same tone. “You were about to advise me to just get it over with, have sex with one of these guys. Right?”
Her eyes are wide, her spine stiff. She nods her head slightly up and down, “Yes”.
“You think it would be a good idea for me to have sex with some guy whose touch leaves me cold? You think I should just get naked, just do it, with someone who doesn’t arouse me in the least?”
She’s wise, my friend Susie. She doesn’t say a word, just lets me rant.
“Where would that get me? What would that do for the poor schmuck who’s in bed with me? A good time would be had by all, huh?”
Susie is wise, truly, with a generous heart. This just wasn’t one of our better moments for either of us. Her well-meant advice was dropped, never to be raised again. I hope.