Wednesday, March 15

Experiment in characters.

He was the kind of person who knew precisely when he was particularly good-looking and although he never tried to take advantage of the fact in a malicious way, it was a trait he enjoyed considerably when it discomfited people who wanted things from him.

A reporter once took took him by the arm at a rather noisy, bright public function and began to question him about his political views in light of the upcoming something-or-others. At first he tried to pull away but she only gripped harder; it was too big of a crowd to move very fast, though, and soon he realized that he was stuck next to her.

She uncapped her pen and positioned her notebook awkwardly. "Now, can you tell me what you think about the issue in the light of the remarks about social reform raised by--"

He smiled at her.

"--by the candidates--"

He tilted his head at just the angle that might suggest he was listening but also allow a lock of hair to fall gracefully across his forehead. Since his pale face was already flushed from the heat of the crowd, it created a very striking effect. "I'm sorry, can you repeat that?" Very polite, octave slightly below his normal tone.

"Can you--I mean, do you . . . " She glanced up, flushed, and shifted her weight to her other foot. "What do you think," she began more softly, "about the . . . "

He persisted in smiling politely and looking down at her as if he was actually listening to her. She let go of his arm to smooth her hair back.

He put his hand up to stop her. "Just a sec." He looked up and waved, yelled to somebody across the room who couldn't hear him.

"I have to join my friends," he said nicely, as she looked up at him through her eyelashes. Her expression turned apologetic. "Oh . . . oh, okay."

He smiled one last time. "Bye." Grinning, he began to push his way slowly through the crowd. "Bye!" she said, waving with with her hand that had the uncapped pen in it.

Escape! Free escape from reporter! He found the keg and somehow managed to get another plastic cup full of disgustingly pee-smelling "lite" beer. Free!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Okay, that one is hilarious and fun, almost as though the semi-omniscient narrator and the suppressed spirit within the hero were exasperated housemates. A Jungian Odd-Couple, so to speak.