Last night, before going to sleep.
“Diana: I was thinking that you never liked any of my boyfriends.
Me: That’s not true! Plus, you only had two boyfriends, and the first one doesn’t count because you were only seventeen.
Diana: Tommy? Yeah, you never liked Tommy either.
Me: It’s not that I didn’t like Tommy; it’s just that at the time I was jealous because you were picking a dude over me, and I was eighteen and you were my best friend. I was also over protective; I’m your big sister. I’m the only one that can screw up and you should just learn from my mistakes, without having to make them yourself.
Diana: I know you were overprotective. Everyone in this family is so overprotective of me.
Me: I was nice to Christian too; I had nothing against Christian. But, whenever I felt you were unhappy, I just blamed it on him. I think we all did.
Diana: You guys need to stop being possessive of me. I’m not a baby.
Me: It’s not that. It’s just that, well, you are the youngest in the family. We all want to put you inside a crystal box and carry it around with us wherever we go.
Diana: I know. But you guys need to stop. I am twenty-three years old, and I still have a baby tooth!
Me: How did that happen?
Diana: The dentist told me I never had a real one underneath the baby tooth. So it wasn’t going to grow out.
Me: I’m not planning to look for the metaphor in this symbol.
Diana: You don’t have to.
Me: Good night.
Diana: Good Night.”
Getting into arguments about Morality and Religion, at three in the morning inside the bathroom of your apartment in Flushing, Queens, while everybody else is asleep, and when your best friend Tony has only gotten five hours of sleep the night before and when his temper is just as bad as yours, and when the argument ends with a typical insult such as: “Keep acting like this! Keep it up and you will never do well in life!,” and when the argument also ends with another typical insult such as “ Get the fuck away from my here” and continues in a “ Yes, I am planning to get the fuck away from here” etc. etc,, and when you will be stuck sleeping in the same room with him and two other people that same night, and when you will be living five blocks from his place for the next two moths, is never a good idea.
Diana told me this story the other night, so I am typing it here.
Taking the subway back home from the Art Students League in Manhattan, there was a homeless guy sitting in the seat in front of hers. He kept staring at her but in a friendly way. Diana did not feel threatened and this is what she said:
“I had that Art Students League bag with all these wooden dowels and poles sticking out of it and I guess he saw that, and he smiled and said "you're and artist"-he said it and he was rejoicing. He said it in a child's voice, like a little child that was happy and shy. I just kept smiling at him but I think my eyes were kind of sad from the day. Then his voice changed, it became grave and serious, his face changed too. It was a man's voice that said "you're going to be famous-you already are famous!". Like casting a spell. Then he became a blue eyed child again, he recoiled and hugged himself and still timid from what he had said blew three kisses at me. Then he recoiled again in a hug.
When I sat on the 7 I just kept thinking about that and smiling. I was smiling because he saw me and he knew a secret and I felt we both knew of secret things. ”
At the same time but in a different place, Diana was walking down Sixth Avenue. A hip looking guy with a strange hair do approached her trying to sell her something.
“Are you interested in manicures and facials?” he asked.
“We have really good prices in our salon, you should check it out. Every woman likes to get a facial!” he kept insisting.
“It won’t last you know,” answered Diana.
“What?” The guy looked at her like she was an alien.
“ It doesn’t last” she kept repeating to him as she walked away annoyed and frustrated at people like that man, and all those women who go to that salon, and all those other women who must think of her as an alien, and all those others who do not know of secret things.