Saying the quiet part out loud

I’m in limbo. Stagnation’s taken a seat across from me, insisting he stay, if only for a few days. I need Colette.

Thankfully there she is in the photo posing after a dinner party in Prague. Right above this season’s largest rose – so far – and beneath a photo of the best hat I ever had and no longer miss.

I do miss her when she’s busy doing pirouettes amongst the stars. But when necessary the unbearable lightness of being Colette floats down offering her Venetian mask for a chat.

Colette: Hello.

Me: It’s this pandemic. Feels like one step forward, two back, and it’s playing with my sense of time. I felt time shift back in Rome, you remember that, but this feels like the future. Everything’s political. Biden’s in but he’s still trolling us, playing his reality tv role, demanding we stay tuned.

Colette: I hear they’re waiting for him downstairs. Such anticipation.

Me: If America’s considered the teenager he’s having the longest temper tantrum anyone’s ever seen.

Colette: He started saying the quiet part out loud.

Me: Supposedly the phrase came from a Simpson’s episode back in ’95.

Colette: Nothing new under the sun as they say. I see Dad’s in Istanbul this week, generally you’re so productive when he’s gone.

Me: Plenty of projects, but I’m in limbo, feel’s like the world’s in limbo. Projection’s the only game in town. One of the projects insist I wait, and it’s contagious. Godot needs to come back to remind. How is he?

Colette: He’s fine, insisting everyone’s arrived. Limbo is felt elsewhere tho pointless to remind him. Read any good books?

Me: Patrick Radden Keefe’s ‘Empire of Pain’ about all the pill popping and the evil addiction to money. Remember living in Amsterdam and the doctor telling us how Americans would put a baggie on his desk, insisting all the prescriptions be filled? Apparently, improbably, it’s worse. Then I read a great biography of Mike Nichols, reminding me to laugh again, plays on every page, but now there’s “Premonition” by Michael Lewis. I kind of dread reading about another one of my former home’s pathologies, I loved growing up there…

Colette: In a nutshell, think he just wanted to say America doesn’t have the kind of institutions it needs to save itself.

Me: Does he have hope?

Colette: He has to, he’s American, but thinks Americans have the luxury to be idiots because they’re the product of too much luxury and peace. They’re young so there’s hope.

Me: I listened to him talk about the book. He said the US government needs an Oscar awards event. Awards given to the risk takers. The central character in the book, a person in real life named Charity Dean, took allot of risks. She still has the ‘hoax’ crowd standing outside her house, threatening her, every single day.

Colette: Trumpism is here to stay I’m afraid.

Me: They have to stop popping all those pills

Colette: Twitter and Facebook don’t help.

Me: Where they say the quiet thing out loud on a daily basis.

Colette: Everyone’s become an acquired taste.

Me: Everyone has a perceived slight, but you…

Colette: No one’s ever laughed at me.

Me: Empathy is fading away. It’s like that line in ‘The Heiress’. When her lover comes back he says, “my god how cruel you’ve become.” to which she replies, “I learned from the masters”.

Colette: I’m always here to remind you otherwise.

Me: I miss you.

Colette lingered until her spirit filled the air and my heart and went back to doing pirouettes amongst the stars…

Published by baileyalexander

An American living in Piemonte. Sailed across the Atlantic aboard our 43 Nauticat in 2002 and spent over a decade living in Rome, Paris, Prague, Malta, Venice and Bucharest before settling in Piemonte, Italia.

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