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  • WJ King

"TWO SIDES OF A LIE"

I am a thirty five year old male, attracted to women much the same as a diabetic is attracted to coconut cream pie. The initial relationship is fabulous but nothing good can come of it. I paint a noble picture of me bravely forsaking the relationship in favor of her happiness. I suspect, at least subconsciously, I fancy myself a ‘bad boy’ of sorts who sacrifices his own feelings to save hers. Given sole control of the artist’s brush, I nearly bring myself to tears, spreading my benevolence across the canvas and before I’m done I wonder why there is no parade for me. In reality, of which I have only a casual relationship, I am a sniveling coward, who writes bad checks with his emotions. A thief if you will. If you aren’t overcome with empathy and/or sympathy at this point, you are a heartless animal.


I am shallow, self serving and enjoy several other narcissistic traits. Even with these as my strong points, my story is not a rosy one. Like every no count, having an exit strategy is of the essence. Mine initiates with a warning whistle in my head that activates upon a relationship and reality nearing an intersection. Thus, the highway of my being is strewn with broken hearts, including my own. As I alluded, my marriage to the truth is a shaky one and we certainly don’t sleep together.


In reality and I must say this quickly before I’m sucked back through the portal of fantasy, I can barely tell the truth,even in the rare cases I know it. I am not thirty five years old, rather a strapping sixty eight year old with the physical strength, stamina and lucidity of a sixty seven year old. I am afraid I am/was not a swashbuckler of any description. I am/was not successful in the dating game without handcuffs. All charges dismissed. Each and every woman kicked me to the curb and attempted to erase any record of my existence. I was married once but when we came upon the grand entrance to our lives together, it turned out to be a revolving door, in which I hardly survived a full circle. I don’t consider any of my, seemingly unsuccessful liaisons to be such. I prefer to consider each, an ongoing trial separation, some spanning decades. I learned this positivity from a used car sales manual.


My self esteem is in good repair, in spite of the potholes in the highway of life. When I brush my teeth on the morn, clad in my spaghetti stained ‘wife beater, I see in the mirror my meticulously groomed self in a three thousand dollar suit. My reflection, shoulders back, is looking into the distance holding the wrist of his cufflinked shirt and there is a sparkle blinking from his even and bright white teeth. I would have teeth like that, had I not left them on the bar somewhere. I stand up straight, tossing the wife beater into the hamper or thereabouts, replacing it with one, not as visibly soiled. I am off to change the world but first, maybe a cold beer and a nap.


wjk/12/6/20/545


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