I’ve been debating whether to tell this story or not for over a month. Even though Briullov/Storm has already posted his response to the conversation we had, I decided to write.
A Penguin I’m friends with sent me an email. She had been playing nurse and housemaid to her boyfriend while he was sick with swine flu, and then came home one day to find that she was not allowed in the house.
And not for the relatively “fun” reason that he had zombie fever and it was quarantined by the CDC, or for the more “fun” reason that she might really be a penguin and maybe he accidentally stepped on the egg when she was away hunting and he didn’t want her to see. No.
Her boyfriend, Mr. Seal, had a girl (herein: Ms. Sea-Urchin) at home and he didn’t want the girlfriend to spoil his game.
This still makes no sense to me. If Mr. Seal knew Penguin was coming over, why would he invite a random different girl (and think that telling Penguin to wait outside in the midnight air for a half hour would suffice his purposes)?
I want to be chivalrous and say that Ms. Sea-Urchin didn’t know of Penguin’s existence before she got invited over. I think that’s being very generous. Likely she did.
But still. The fantasy-construct of “ooh-I’m-doing-something-bad-you-have-a-girlfriend” is one thing. Sitting in the guy’s apartment and hearing him tell Penguin off, still anticipating to pose as the Humpback Whale as she’s gone seems really totally creepy and awkward. How did the exchanges you overheard (you, I’m speaking to you, Ms. Sea-Urchin) make you feel?
I realize I’m operating here on the assumption that humans are capable of rational thought, which is typically untrue.
The same night I got Penguin’s email, I was sitting one of my favorite cafés. The couple next to me spoke in very loud voices about the affair they were planning (he was married; she had a child [not his, but no wedding ring]).
What’s the Charlie Brown quote? Something like: “I love humanity. It’s people I can’t stand.”
6 months ago