I re-read John Sanford’s Night Prey (the first of his “Prey” series) the other night, and the dialogue made me laugh out loud. Sanford’s hero Lucas Davenport and another cop are standing around talking about a woman who killed her husband with a mallet and chisel. Whack, whack, whack. Practically nailed him to the mattress. No history of abuse, just it was hot and she got tired of him lying there in bed, snoring and farting. If she'd only whacked him once, they'd be able to plead temporary insanity, but three whacks indicated some intent, there. It's not typically a woman, Lucas says. Usually it's some guy standing there half-drunk, scratching his ass, saying, "Beats me, man, she just pissed me off, you know?"
I’ve been lonelier coupled than I’ve ever been alone. Better to enjoy the pleasure of your own company than to be stuck in a bad relationship. There’s nothing worse than lying next to a live-in lover, listening to him snore, and thinking, “Oh, my God, I’ve got to get out of this! How can I make him leave? And he owes me money, too. Shit. But if I have to stagger home after a hard day at the office one more time to find him sitting there in front of ESPN with his meaty fist wrapped around a Budweiser, looking up from the game to ask me cheerfully, ‘Hi, honey. What’s for dinner?’ I’m going to lose it completely...”
That’s worse than being alone. Trust me. Been there, done that, bought the T-shirt.
When I lived in L.A. with Liam the Irish Prince, his music drove me nuts. He was a wanna-be Eric Clapton, but he wasn’t any good; he couldn’t sing to save his life. He couldn’t really play, either. My idea of guitar is Segovia; he wanted to do Electric Ladyland with the amp up high. He liked to invite his low-life friends over to play their instruments and get high and drink a couple sixpacks of Budweiser apiece. The noise drove me insane. I finally told him he had to practice in the garage because I couldn’t bear to listen to him. Poor lamb. I’d been all for it in the courting stage, before he moved in — even went so far as to prepare snacks for the guys and applaud their awful attempts at being rock stars — but once I had to live with it, the electric guitar got old in a real hurry.
He called a couple of weeks ago. It has been nearly 23 years and he’s still seeing the same stoner buddies and they still hang out and “play” together. I bet his wife doesn’t appreciate it any more than I did.