Tuesday, July 25, 2006

A Friendly Affair

He was reading a book on the balcony of his apartment one Sunday morning. Why Kevin gets up so early, I don’t know. I looked over at him from my kitchen window, which is in the next apartment building. You could say that we are neighbors in a way. He looked back at me and said, “Spying on me again, ay, Regine”. (Yes, as odd as the name may be my name is Regine.) “Shut up!” I said to him. I hated him. I just looked away and kept to washing the dishes. When we were younger, we were the best of friends. We met in kindergarten and we graduated from high school together. I knew that our friendship wouldn’t last. It seemed too good to be true. He was just sitting there reading his book like it was really important. He seemed to struggle a lot with it. Maybe he just could not read.

I screamed, “Wutcha readin’?” He didn’t budge. I screamed again, “Hay, Retard, wutcha readin’?”

He turned the book over to look at the title. “I’m reading The Lord of the Rings”, he said with a shout. He lost his page and I started to laugh at him. “Retard”, I yelled at him.

That is pretty much how our conversations went. I remembered that my boyfriend was going to come over later for lunch. It was pretty close to lunchtime so I had to decide what I was going to cook. I also remembered that I couldn’t cook.

I finally decided to get Chinese food. I bought some General Tso’s Chicken, Sweet and Sour Chicken, Vegetable Lo Mein and other healthy but not really foods from Bo Bo’s Chinese Restaurant. Finally Troy comes over. He looks really puzzled.

“What’s wrong, Troy?”

“I really need to talk to you, but I can’t stay long.”

“What’s going on Troy? I bought Chinese Food. What’s happening?”

“ Listen, forget the Chinese food. We really need to talk about us.”

“What is there to talk about? I thought that we were doing very well together.”

“Please just listen to me. I have been seeing someone else and I think that I have fallen in love with her. Please don’t be mad at me. I just…”

“What!?! Are you crazy? You are such a retard! How can you stand there, tell me that you are cheating on me and then ask me to not get mad?”

“I don’t want to hurt you. I really think that…”

“Please! No forget you! I don’t want you anymore. You disgust me, Troy! How could you do this to me? You know what? Forget it! I don’t care anymore. You are nothing to me. You see what is in my hand?”

“There is nothing there.”

“Exactly, that is what you are. Here, you take my Chinese food and you eat it with your new girlfriend. I don’t care if you two eat the whole thing. Whatever, I don’t care!”

Troy walked down the hallway and turned the corner. “I hope you two get food poisoning”, I screamed at him. I hate him more that I hate Kevin. How could I, though? We were together for three years. I couldn’t hate him because I loved him so much. I sat at the kitchen table with my head down thinking what could have gone wrong. I just couldn’t figure it out. I really needed a friend but the only friend that I have ever had was the retard sitting on his balcony reading that stupid book.

I looked over to see if Kevin was still there reading. He was. It looked like he was laughing at me. That made me cry. I felt so humiliated. He was able to hear every word that Troy and I said. I wanted to die.

I stayed there at the table. I had nowhere else to go. I was about to take a shower when the phone rang. It was Rachel, Kevin’s sister. Of course Rachel was a friend through transitive property. She says that she has something very important to say.



“ I just got engaged.”

“To whom?”

“You don’t know him. His name is Trent. We met in college. Oh my gosh I love him so much.”

“Well I guess you kinda have to since you are getting married to the guy. Why didn’t you tell me anything about him before?”

“Well I knew that you and Troy were getting it on and that you guys didn’t want to be bothered.”

“It didn’t really matter cause he was out getting it on with some other girl I didn’t know about till now.”

“’Oh my gosh, he was cheating on you?”

“Um hum”, I cried.

“What happened?”

“He came today and he told me that he was with another girl while he was with me and that he was falling in love with her.”

“Is he crazy? Seriously! Did he ever tell you the girl’s name?”

“Yes he is crazy and no he did not tell me her name. I don’t want to know her name. Forget it. How are you and what’s his name? I mean you guys must be doing well if you are engaged.”

“We are doing well, but I have a problem.”

“What is that?”

“I haven’t told my brother yet.”

“Well then you have to go tell your brother. You’ll think of a way. Bye!”

I finally got to the bathroom to wash up. I felt horrible. What am I going to do about Troy? How was Rachel going to tell Kevin about Trent?

Morning came and I was still very upset. I still hadn’t thought of what to do. I had gone down to the art studio to finish my painting for the newly wed who wanted a painting to go into their new home. I didn’t know the couple very well. They are paying me one thousand five hundred dollars for it. They are obviously a very wealthy couple.

I finally finished the painting when I realized that I had to go to the gallery and set up for the art exhibit that I was holding. It took me the longest time to prepare for that. Hopefully I can get some people to buy my paintings. I started painting when I was in high school. I only really did it cause I was bored. Then I realized that this was something that I really wanted to do with my life. Now I am painting for rich people and holding my own art exhibit.

I went back to the studio to end up finding the rich couple standing right in front of the painting that I made for them. They were standing in front of it as if they could not tell what it was. They looked as if they weren’t thinking at all. I told them that I could have it ready for them by tomorrow. I saw a smile come to the woman’s face. She said that she really liked the painting and that she would come in the next day to get it. Her husband just kind of followed her around. He did not have very much to say. The woman was so pleased with it that she gave me the check for the painting. The couple left and I just stood there staring at the painting hoping to find what it was they were staring at.

I finally locked up the studio and went to the bank. I got back to my apartment and had dinner alone. I checked my messages. Rachel called to tell me how it went with her brother. “ Hi, it’s me, Rachel. I just called to tell you that Kevin was a little upset that I didn’t tell him right away but he was overall very happy for us. I have a problem. I invited him to have dinner with us and I didn’t want him to feel like a third wheel so I kinda sorta in a way told him that you were coming. Please don’t get mad. The dinner is Thursday night at eight. We will pick you up before we pick up my brother. Thanks for the advice.”

I freaked out for just a little bit. Tonight was definitely a night for a bubble bath.

Wednesday afternoon came around very quickly. I hadn’t spoken to anyone since I heard Rachel’s message. I had decided to not go to work. I didn’t really have to. The rich couple came to get their painting yesterday. The art gallery was all set up for my exhibit. All I had to do was worry about tomorrow’s dinner.

What was I going to wear? What was I going to do? I haven’t exactly fully recovered from the thing with Troy. I wasn’t sure if I even wanted to recover from the thing with Troy. I figured that I should anyway because he found another woman and he was happy with her. I had other things to worry about. What I really had to think about was why Rachel used me as a reason to get Kevin to come. I thought he was with that girl Kimberly. They have been together since junior year of college.

I went to the gym. I had to get my mind off of the situation at hand. I went shopping. I bought a dress to wear to the dinner. I figured that I would make the best of it.

Thursday morning and I was all panicked out. I was rid of all of the stress. I could breathe better than I did before. I was ready for whatever was to come. All I had to do was wait. I still couldn’t really figure out why I was used as an excuse to get Kevin to come. To pass the time, I watched television and I tried out several hairstyles. I was a little anxious. All I could think of was how the dinner was going to be. I imagined a table for four. Rachel and Trent would be hand in hand and I would be trying to get as far away from Kevin as I could. I’d be silent and Kevin would be talking up a storm with his sister and his future brother-in-law. As I was thinking this, butterflies began to form in my stomach. What was making me nervous? Was it because I was going out? Was it because I really didn’t want to go? Was it because Kevin was going to be there? Why was I nervous about being in the presence of Kevin?

It was only seconds before Rachel came. I was all dressed. I had slippers on cause I didn’t want my feet to hurt. Finally Rachel and Trent came and we were on our way to Kevin’s. We got to his apartment and he opened the door. Something was wrong. He didn’t say, “ Hi!” or insult me at all. I was worried. Kevin was quiet all through the ride to the restaurant. He has never been that silent before. I had been thinking if I should ask him what was wrong. Rachel had to know or she wouldn’t have invited me to get him to come. I tried to forget about the whole thing. I wanted to think about how my exhibit was going to be. Instead I could only think about Kevin and how sad he was. I made it my mission to cheer him up.

We finally got to the restaurant and we got to our table. The seats were very cushiony and soft. I sat next to Kevin and Rachel and Trent sat across from us. We didn’t really have much to talk about. Kevin looked heart broken and his sister glowed more than she has ever glowed before. I actually had pity on Kevin. Everything was different that night. While Trent and Rachel concentrated on each other, I tried to figure out what was wrong with Kevin.

“ Kevin?”


“ What’s wrong?”

“ Nothing, why do you care?”

“ You look really stupid moping around the way you are.”

“ That is good to know.”

“Why haven’t you insulted me yet? What is going on? How come you aren’t with that Kimberly girl?”

He looked at me with hatred. I obviously said something wrong.

“Look, there is nothing wrong with me so just leave me alone. I am fine!”

“ Yeah, sure! If you are fine then why do you look the way you do? You look like someone died or something.”

He got up and headed towards the men’s room. When he got back, his eyes were red and watery. I got up and pulled Kevin in the direction that I was headed. I hadn’t planned it so I didn’t know what to say. All of a sudden, I found myself hugging him and he was crying on my shoulder. I was speechless. I actually had no words to say. That has never happened to me before.

“Kevin, stop crying.”

“ Why are you being so nice to me?”

“We are still friends no matter how much I hate you.”

“ That is really good to know. Really.”

“ Why don’t you tell me what is bothering you so much.”

“It’s Kimberly. Lately we haven’t been doing very well. We haven’t been going out as much as we used to. She just faded away. She lost interest. What else can I say? She just threw away what she didn’t need.”

I knew exactly how he felt. I had gone through pretty much the same thing with Troy on Sunday. I kind of knew what to say to him but I couldn’t put it in words.

“Kevin, I know exactly how you feel. I went through the same thing on Sunday. You heard every bit of it. You know exactly what happened.”

“I guess you do know what I am going through. Please don’t say anything to my sister or to Trent. This is their night. I don’t want to be the party pooper.”

“I won’t say anything to her. If you all of a sudden feel like you are going to burst out with tears, just hold my hand and squeeze it as hard as you can. It won’t hurt, believe me.”

We went back to the table to find Rachel and Trent staring at us.

“Is everything alright?” Trent said.

“Everything is fine.” I said.

We sat down and said how happy we were for Rachel and Trent. We had our dinner and our dessert and we just sat there for a little while. Everything actually went very well. Kevin seemed to be very happy and he was insulting me again. The dinner was a success and there was nothing to worry about. Kevin really liked Trent and felt that he was right for his sister. All of a sudden, out of nowhere, Rachel says, “I hope this dinner got your mind off of Kimberly.”

There was a great pain in my hand and I wanted to scream but it really would have messed up the mood. A tear came down Kevin’s face. He didn’t say anything. I kept his hand in mine hoping it would make him feel better. I tried as hard as I could to provide comfort and I think it worked.

The rest of the night went well. I did have a few pains here and there because of Kevin’s squeezes but it was fine. I could take it. He needed a friend and I was there.

After dinner, we went dancing. It was some club that was near by. Rachel and Trent went off on their own and left Kevin and me together. We decided to dance the night away and get rid of our troubles.

I got back to my apartment and I felt really good. My friendship with someone was restored and I got a dinner out of it. Trent seemed really cool. I thought that he would be really good for Rachel. I think Rachel was happy to have the two guys in her life there together with her. Kevin and I seemed to hit it off very well and we reminisced about old times. It was good to know that he remembered everything that we did together. I got my friend back with me.

The next day, I got a wake up call from Kevin. He just wanted to thank me for cheering him up the other night and that he was happy to know that I was still there for him. It was nice to know that I made someone very happy. After the call, I got ready for work. I went down to the studio and started to work on my next project. A family wanted me to paint something for their daughter’s room. I don’t know anything about the girl except for the fact that she likes ponies and ballerinas. What am I supposed to paint? A pony wearing a tutu? I am not sure. I guess I could paint two separate pictures. As I was brainstorming, there was a knock at the door. I got up and looked through the peephole. No one was there. I opened the door and there was a picnic basket shoved in my face. Wow, a picnic basket with legs! Amazing! I never saw one of those before. The basket slowly lowered and to my surprise Kevin’s face was slowly appearing.

“What are you doing here? Don’t you have a job or something?”

“This is my thank you gift. We are going to the park and having lunch. Come on!”

“I can’t!” I said. “I have work to do!”

“ I don’t see you doing anything. Come on, it’ll be fun. Like old times!”

“O.k. Fine! Just let me clean up and close up the studio.”

“ Hurry up!”

He put the basket in the backseat of his car and we went off to Ivy Hill Park. It is the biggest park in town and the most beautiful. It is the perfect place to have a picnic. Kevin and I used to go there when we were younger. I haven’t been to that park in five years. Going back there reminded me of this one time when Kevin and I went after our high school graduation. I was still wearing my graduation dress and he was in his coat and tie. We sat under a tree and watched the sunset.

“Wow, I can’t believe high school is all over, Kev, can you?”

“Nah, it went by so fast. I can’t believe that we aren’t going to see each other next year. We have to do something special over the summer.”

“We don’t have much time to do that. I have to move in to the campus by August 10th. If I want to board, I have to get there right away to get a room or I will have to get an apartment.”

“Fine then, let’s start now. Get up! Give me your hands!”

“What are you doing? Are we dancing?”

“This is a perfect time to dance!”

That was the best time I ever had with him. That was also the last day that I was in this park.

“Earth, to Regine! I have been calling your name forever!”

“Oh, sorry! How about we find a place to sit down?”

“We are almost there. Here, remember this tree? Remember that night after graduation when we danced under this tree?”

“Yeah, I was just thinking about that. I really had fun that night.”

“Here give me your hands. Let’s dance!”

“Um, hello! We are outside! You know, in a public place!”



“ Come on, we did this last time!”


I didn’t mind dancing with him. He was my friend and we did do this before. It was kind of hard to dance without music but I figured that I just had to imagine it. Old Times!

After we ate our lunch, we just started talking about our lives and our work. I told him about the exhibit. I asked him to come if he wanted to. He said that he would find a way to get there and see my stuff.

“You know, Kevin, I don’t really know what it is that you do for a living.”

“I read for a living. I rate books. You know, for the newspaper. There is the section where they talk about the latest books. You know when they say, ‘Our sources say that such in such book is blah blah blah.’ Well, I am that source.”

“So the book that you were reading on Sunday is the next book that will be written about in the newspaper?”

“Pretty much!”

“So all in all, you tell people whether or not the next fad in books is the way to go.”



Saturday morning and it was just a matter of hours when half the town would be in the gallery looking at my work. I was scared and excited. All I had to do was wait. I couldn’t bear it anymore. I went out and got some coffee. When I got back, there were a couple of people walking around looking at my pictures. They looked so interested. Instant smile. This one woman tracked me down and pointed me to a painting that she wanted to buy.

“$600? Sold!” I sold a painting. I couldn’t believe it. A man holding a baby came up to me and showed me a painting that had a woman and a baby in it. He told me that it reminded him of his wife that died. I gave the painting to the man for a lower price than it actually is. He seemed very happy. I guess the baby caught me and the story was a nice addition.

Kevin walked in seeming really happy. “Hey guess what?” He said.

“Um, you won the lottery and you want to share it with me because I am the greatest person in the world?”

“Not even close! Apparently, they really liked my Lord of the Rings book review. They gave me a bonus. I don’t know why!”

“Maybe they are going to fire you and they felt bad so they gave you extra money.”

“Ha Ha! Very funny! I think I got promoted. The thing is that every time that I said that a book was good or even a little decent, the book sales started to go up. I still have the same job but I am just getting more money for it. The newspaper is getting more sponsors in the book business like Walden Books or B. Dalton. Some of the money that is coming from those book stores is coming to me.”

“That is wonderful. Congratulations! I am so happy for you. I have good news for you as well. I sold two paintings already, one for $600 and another for $450. I already made over one thousand dollars.”

“We need to celebrate. What do you want to do?”

“I don’t know but I really want to do something. How about we rent movies and hang out over at my apartment?”

That night, we went over to Blockbuster and rented a few movies. We got back to my apartment and we ended up watching all of the Lethal Weapons. That Mel Gibson is something. Kevin wouldn’t let me choose any girly movies. That didn’t matter because I am not into that kind of stuff anyway. I actually didn‘t mind having to look at Mel Gibson’s butt. In the middle of the last movie, Kevin got up to turn off the television.

“Why did you do that?”

“Let’s talk!”

“About what?”

“Anything! How are you?”

“I think the question is how are you? Have you spoken to Kimberly lately?”

“I called her once to see how she was but she refused to talk to me. She obviously doesn’t want me to be part of her life anymore.”

“I’m sure that’s not it. She was probably really busy.”

“How did you get over Troy? I am sure you are still upset about that.”

“Well, I didn’t get over him yet. It hasn’t even been a full week since we broke-up. I guess I just remember everything else in my life like my art to get my mind off of him. He isn’t everything. Just don’t think about Kim and you will be fine.”

“I guess you’re right. I just got promoted and I need to focus on that. Plus, there are other fish in the sea.”

I started to cry.

“Yeah, the sea has lots of fish. He was so good to me. I can’t believe that he cheated on me. I just can’t believe it. What the hell did I do wrong? I was faithful. I wasn’t too clingy. I gave him his space when he wanted it. I loved him. I think I still do. He loved me too. He told me so.”

“Don’t say that stuff. You didn’t do anything wrong.”

“Then why did he have to go find another girl when he had a perfect one already with him? I’ll tell you why! I wasn’t good enough for him. I didn’t satisfy him. He wanted something and I couldn’t give it to him. I was too self centered and I didn’t give him what he wanted.”

“Look, if he loved you he would understand how focused you are. You love what you do and you can’t give him everything. You have a job. You have bills to pay. You have your own life to take care of before you can take care of someone else.”

He gave me a big hug and the next thing I new, I found myself kissing him. I couldn’t control it. The weird thing was that he wasn’t protesting. He was kissing me back. I didn’t know how to react except continue kissing him. It didn’t feel wrong but in a way it did. I was using him to get over Troy. Was he using me to get over Kim? I finally pulled away to see what he would say.

Total Silence. It was an awkward moment. I had just kissed my best friend and he enjoyed it.


“Yeah!” he answered seeming confused.

“Why didn’t you stop me from kissing you?”

“I don’t know. I guess I wanted you to. I really don’t know. Do you want to finish watching the movie?”


Friday came by pretty quickly. We haven’t spoken about what happened Saturday night. We spent a lot of time together during the rest of the weekend. We seemed to get closer. It had gotten to the point where we had spent too much time together to be just friends but we weren’t doing the whole boyfriend/ girlfriend thing. It was a confusing thing but we had to figure out what we were. To get my mind off of the situation, I went down to the studio to finish my painting with the pony and the ballerina. I had made so many drafts. I didn’t know what I was going to paint. I guessed that I could paint a ballerina standing on top of a pony. That didn’t sound too stupid.

Although I was off in ballerina world, there was still a part of my brain that couldn’t stop thinking about the kiss. I never felt that comfortable with Troy. Troy! All of a sudden, I started to think about that day with the Chinese food. I started to wonder about that girl that he is with now. She is probably a tall, skinny, blonde, who models. My heart started to pound and I felt all choked up. I stopped what I was doing and thought for a little bit. Pain came to my stomach. I ran to the bathroom and blacked out for a little bit. Somehow, I found myself thinking, “I don’t remember eating that!” I needed an aspirin or something. Maybe the thought of the Chinese food made me sick. I needed to get out and clear my head.

As I walked out of the door and down the street, I heard someone call out my name. It was a familiar voice but I couldn’t tell whose it was.


“Yeah?” I turned around.



“How are you doing? I’ve been meaning to call you!”

“That’s good to hear, Troy, but I have to go! Call me later!”

“No, I need to introduce you to someone. This is Suzanne, my…uh.”

“Girlfriend?! Yeah! You know, the woman that you fell in love with while you were with me. The woman that stole you away from me. It is very nice to meet you Suzanne! You have really got some nerve to come up to me today with her in your arms!”

She was a tall, skinny, blonde, who could be a model if she wanted to.

“First you tell me that you found someone better and now you actually show her to me. What a guy! You know, I really don’t have time for this! I have to go!”



“Wait, I came here to apologize for the pain that I have caused you.”

“Boy did you!”

“I’m trying to make amends. I don’t have to, but I choose to.”

“I’m listening!”

“We have been together for a couple of years and we have done so many things together. I also wanted something new. Something different. I wanted to electrify our relationship but you weren’t willing to have that. Then I met Suzanne and she was interested in the same things that I was interested in. She was my something new.”

“This isn’t much of an apology. I haven’t heard you say I’m sorry yet.”

“Let me finish! We wanted different things. We didn’t fit anymore. I realized that when I met Suzanne. Now she isn’t the one to blame. I am. I should have come to you when I first realized our differences. I am so sorry for not even trying to give it another try after I met Suzanne. I was too afraid to bring it up. The only thing that I could do was lie and cheat. I am sorry for wanting something better. I figured that you would want a change too. Stupid me thought that you would have broken up with me for even attempting to try new things. I thought that it would be ok to be with the both of you knowing that I was going to lose you for your sudden change in interests. It never happened! You didn’t let me go!”

“Of course, you wanted me to let you go so it wouldn’t seem as bad to know that you were cheating on your girlfriend. You are so noble.”

“Why didn’t you let me go?”

“I didn’t want to let you go. I loved you. I was willing to accept your changes.”

“You were?”

“Yeah! So! Look, I really have to go and clear my head. It was nice to meet you Su…”

“Wait!” said a female voice. “He is trying to tell you that he thought that you wouldn’t want to be with him anymore because he changed. If you see it or not, he is doing this for you. You don’t want him! You two are different now. I think that he wants you to find the perfect man for yourself rather than being stuck with him.”

“Thank you very much Suzanne but I have to go.”

“It is for your own good!”

“Yeah! Right!!”

For my own good. What does she know? I really needed to talk to someone. Rachel! I went to my apartment and called Rachel.

“Rachel, I saw her.”


“Suzanne is her name. She is tall, blonde and skinny. Rachel, she isn’t me. She is nothing like me. Troy hated everything about me!”

“He couldn’t have. He really had to love you to stay with you for that long. No offense, but there is no way that he could have hated you!”

“Apparently there was. He had to in order to get someone that is the total opposite of me.”

“Well, honey, that is usually the case. Guys don’t want to be with someone that is exactly like the girl that they broke-up with.”

“I guess you’re right!”

“I know that I’m right!”

“Where’s Trent? What’s he up to? I haven’t seen you guys in a week.”

“He is just fine. He is at work right now. You don’t know what he does do you? Well, he is an architect. You know that big building on Broad St.?”

“He designed that?”

“The little spa right next to it is the one that he designed. You know that guy that works there with the crooked teeth? I think his name is Olli. He wants to ask you out. I think he likes you.”

“Oh jeez! I think I know who you’re talking about. Don’t even mention him to me right now. I don’t want to be more depressed.”

“I have to go, Trent just got home and we are supposed to go out to eat. I’ll tell Trent you said ‘Hi’. Talk to you soon!”

I was tired. I was hungry but I didn’t feel like eating. Actually, I didn’t recall eating anything that day. I felt sick. My heart hurt and I felt sick. I decided to take a bath. The phone rang. I took the cordless and went into the bathroom.

“Hey Kevin. What’s up?”

“Not much, I just wanted to see what you were up to.”

“Well, I just stepped into the bath tub.”

“Ooh, you’re naked. Tell me more!”

“Well, I am naked and I am very stressed out. I threw up today and I haven’t eaten a thing since last night. I am still confused about the kiss and I met my ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend today. I had a wonderful day today. How about you?”

“Well, what a coincidence! I saw Kim today. I tried to ignore her but she wanted to talk. She wants to get back together with me. She said that she made a very big mistake in letting me go. What a bunch of bull!”

“You want her back don’t you?”

“I don’t know. I don’t think that I can make a decision this quickly. I can’t decide on something else when I don’t know what we are. We have been spending a lot of time together. We are more than friends.”

“But you want her more than you want me so you should go to her. You know that you want to go back to her. What else are you going to do? You can’t stay with me. We aren’t even official. You and Kim are official. She had her reasons to let you go but she realized that she made a big mistake.”

“I know but we just started to get close again and I don’t want to lose that again. I don’t know what I would do to not have you as a friend. We know everything about each other. Things will be awkward with me and Kim.”

“They won’t be awkward. Were things awkward with you and me? I don’t think so! Don’t you want to be happy with your girlfriend again? I would be too busy trying to make fun of you for something that you did in sixth grade or something. I know you too well to be with you. Kim couldn’t possibly know everything about you yet so you guys can spend time getting to know everything about each other.”

“We’ve been together for four years!”

“Oh! Well then you guys can spend your time being a couple.”

“Whatever! Look, I have to go. I’ll talk to you later.”

“Ok. I’ll talk to you really soon.”

I lied through my teeth. Kevin was right, we had just reunited and we shouldn’t let that go. I did want to be with him, but I knew that he would much rather be with Kimberly. I couldn’t take what he had with her away from him. He wanted to be with me too. We want to be with each other but I had to feel sorry for his stupid ex-girlfriend. I got out of the tub and I made a sandwich to eat with some milk. I hadn’t eaten anything that day so I really needed to stuff my face. I didn’t know what to do about anything. I had both Suzanne and Kimberly to be jealous of. I had to sleep on it. That night I dreamt about being alone in a big black room. There was a tiny window at the far end of the room that didn’t show much light. I had my sandwich and my milk and all I did was cry. I couldn’t stop crying. I couldn’t do anything. Four people were approaching me as I was sitting on the floor. The figures were glowing and they brought light to the dark room. Laughter came from the figures. They were laughing at me. I was a dark lonely figure among four glowing figures. I couldn’t stop crying.

I woke up to a wet pillow. I cried in my sleep. I didn’t know what to do. It was morning and I didn’t want to leave the apartment for fear of laughter. I was truly alone. The half eaten sandwich and the empty glass of milk were on the table in my room. The sun shone on the glass to make it glow. I had to get out of bed. All I needed was a quick shower and some fresh air.

I went out side to see Kevin coming down the stairs of his apartment. Kimberly was with him.

“Hi Kevin!”

No answer.

“Here Kim, wait in the car. I’ll be right back. Hi Regine!”

He hugged me and he kissed me. On the cheek. I didn’t know what to say.

“How are you? Obviously you’re ok since Kim is here.”

“Yeah, I’m ok. I took your advice and I figured that Kim and I had something special and I couldn’t let that go.”

“Yeah! Good for you.”

“Kevin, honey, we have to go. My parents are waiting.”

“I’m coming, Kim! Look, Reggie, thank you very much for helping me get back what I almost lost. I have to go!”

“See you!” I cried to myself. I didn’t want him to see me crying. I sat on the stoop of the apartment building with my head in my hands. I had no one. I just sat there trying to breathe and to keep my cool. This would be a good time for a cigarette, except I didn’t smoke.


“What? Huh?” I looked up to see Suzanne sitting next to me. “What are you doing here?”

“I am really sorry for taking Troy away from you!”

“Are you stupid or something? You should never be seen near your boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend. Go home to Troy! You got him! You should be happy right now.”

“I can’t be happy cause he keeps on talking about you and how much he hurt you. Every night he prays that you don’t hate him. Don’t hate him! Please don’t hate me!”

“I have to hate the two of you right now. Apparently, I wasn’t good enough for him and you are. I have to hate you for being perfect and I have to hate him for thinking that you are perfect when you clearly aren’t.”

“I deserve that”

“Deserve what? It’s true. No one is perfect. You can’t go around thinking that you are just because some guy broke up with his girlfriend just to be with you.”

“I’m sorry! Ok! I didn’t make him leave you. He told me about it right after he went to your apartment.”

“What am I supposed to think about you now? I can’t just stop hating you.”

“You can try! It couldn’t hurt to try. You may end up liking me.”

“You may be right but it is going to take a while. Just let me hate you for a little bit. We’ll see how it goes from there. If we do end up being friends, don’t tell me about his quirks cause I know them all. Don’t expect me to tell you about them either.”

“Okay! I’m gonna go. It was nice having this one-on-one thing with you. The first time I met you, I thought that you were a bitch but you’re not”

“Don’t you just love first impressions? I’ll see you whenever.”


I went back inside to reflect on my life thus far. My boyfriend broke up with me. My best friend’s girlfriend broke up with him. I got together with my best friend. My best friend got back together with his ex-girlfriend. I become friends with my ex’s new girlfriend. I have no one. What a wonderful couple of weeks I’ve had. I definitely needed some ice cream and support from Alanis Morrissette’s Jagged Little Pill.

The End

A Friendly Affair

By Regine Riviere

With a Friend 10/13/03

Carolyn was sitting in Drew’s room talking about the shoulda, coulda, wouldas of his failed relationship.

“God, I can’t believe that whore did this to me”, he said with his hands covering his eyes. Even though it had been a couple of months since he and Annie broke up, Carolyn still ended up sitting next to him on his bed on a weekly basis.

“I’m sorry, but you should move on with your life and forget about her”, Carolyn said while rubbing his back.

“How am I supposed to do that when everything reminds me of that cheating-?”

“Hey, now stop it. Look, I don’t really know what to say to help you. I’ve never been in your position. Actually I haven’t dated anyone in a long time, so I really don’t know anything, but I think it would be good for you to experience single life for a little bit”, she said while shifting on his bed to face him.

“No, you know what?” he said suddenly feeling inspired, “I’m gonna go out and find a really hot girl and I am gonna hook up with her.”

“I think that’s stupid. Why would you do that?” She looked at him while squinting her eyes and shaking her head, wondering what was going on in his mind. “I mean what if she became emotionally attached or something? Are you going to drop her?”

“Why are you putting me down?”

“Me?” she asked, springing to her feet. “Oh please! Every single day you break down about how Annie hurt you, and everyday you go on about how you’re gonna snag yourself a hot chick and blah, blah, blah. Do you ever do it? NO!”

“Wait a minute-”

“NO! I’m still talking. It’s fine that you want to start dating again, but it’s going to be harder for you to find girls if you set your standards so high. Look…” finally calming down, “everyone wants to be with someone that’s gorgeous and yaddah, yaddah, but you need to know that there are a lot of girls out there that could be better. You just need to open your eyes and look right in front of you.”

“You know it’s not like that” he finally said, noticing that Carolyn was walking towards the door.

“Then how is it? When you find out, will you tell me? I’d really like to hear it. In the meantime, don’t go acting stupid just cause a girl broke your heart.” She noticed that his expression changed back to how pitiful it was before and she regretted the last thing she said. She got away from the door and walked toward him.

“I’m sorry. It’s just that we’ve gotten so close this past year. We don’t know everything about each other, but I do know that you’re better than that.”

“Carolyn...never mind”

“What? I’m just trying to help you. What are friends for?”

Coffee Portrait 2/22/04

Coffee Portrait

Unlike most teenagers, I actually enjoyed waking up early for my summer job. It gave me an excuse to drink coffee everyday, and where there’s coffee, there’s Josh. He worked at the coffee place a couple of blocks away from the insurance company where I worked. Every morning, on the bus, I would think about him and I almost missed my stop, once, because of it. I always pictured him in his uniform because I have never seen him in anything else.

Josh was a young, thin guy. His navy khakis were a bit loose on him. His black belt never did a good job holding up his pants. It made his torso seem longer. His green collared shirt fit him perfectly. The three buttons at the top were always unbuttoned, showing a few dark brown chest hairs that would normally disgust me, but the fact that there were the only part of his chest I would ever see, made me want to see them.

He had a goatee that made him look older than he really was. It surrounded his pouty lips that released a raspy voice saying, “Morning! How may I help you?” Everyday, I would say the same thing, “Coffee. Black. Please.” At that time, I would take my mother’s advice and look him in the eyes whenever I gave him my order. I thanked my mother everyday for that because I have never seen such gorgeous eyes. They were blue, but you would swear they were green because of his shirt. Some days, his dark brown hair would cover his eyes slightly and blend in with his thick eyebrows. His nose was a little large for his face, but I didn’t mind it. Maybe it was the tiny beige freckles that went from the bridge of his nose to his pale cheeks that made his nose look cute.

One day, towards the end of the summer, I made a plan to “accidentally” touch his soft hands as he gave me my coffee. I got off of the bus and walked to the coffee shop noticing a “Help Wanted” sign. I walked in with pep in my step and waited on line. By the time I reached the counter, I was wearing my most flirtatious smile, but that was quickly wiped away when Josh was nowhere to be found. There were no strands of chest hair, and blue eyes to see. There were no soft hands to touch. I just had my coffee and my eight hour work day.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

my graduation flowers

This flower in particular means a lot to me. It was the most delicate
out of the entire bouquet and yet it stood out the most. It seemed
to be the strongest out of them all because of it's stature, but it was
the first to wilt.

my mother gave me these flowers for my graduation from college.
I decided to take a picture of them because they were beautiful (obviously)
and because they symbolized a new beginning for me.