But What If I’m Just One?
What if my life is just a never-ending scene from a movie?
The scene where I’m leaving the grocery store
I smile at an attractive creature in the parking lot
I think they’re making eyes at me too, but just when I’m about to take the smile too far,
Just when I’m about to try out some poetic and romantic idea I’ve had in my head for ages-
Saved up just for this exact moment~
Just then, their partner comes walking back to the car and gives them a peck on the cheek ~ smug ~ because they just returned the grocery cart to the place where it lives
They returned it. They returned it instead of wedging the front wheels halfway onto a triangled curb with some grass in it. They returned it and now they will be rewarded.
And that’s just it. Some people end up with people who return grocery carts to where they live.
But I return grocery carts- and still- I am just one.
And when I go to a restaurant and the hostess grabs two menus, Assuming, and I say NO- I am just one.
“Oh”, she frowns
And she puts the specials back.
But, what is that? I ask.
She says it’s the sharing menu, the menu for two, the one with special prices.
And I ask if there’s a special price for just one- and she laughs.
But I don’t think this is fucking funny.
I want to know why there is a Together pricetag on everything in life-
A Together price- when some people are just One.
I want to know why Houses cost Together prices, and rental cars, and hotels.
I want to know Why, when I book a hotel, it asks if I am Just One but then it never even cares.
It cares about Together people. It offers them packages with rose petals and champagne.
It offers me a non-smoking room with an extra bed in case I get wasted and creative.
Because I am just one.
I am just one and I use less than Together people.
So I want to know when I get rewarded.
I want to know when it’s time for me to benefit from being the little girl who played so much with boys, that I figured out early on that I didn’t Have to pick one- because they always picked Three.
They picked three every time, and you can say that there’s some that only picked one, but I never knew those kinds.
When am I rewarded?
When am I rewarded for knowing my boundaries? For not settling? For wanting True happiness and not just something to hold me over?
When am I rewarded for my ingenuity of figuring out how to be Just One in a Together priced world?
When will I go from being called Independent to Spinster?
When will my motives stop being called Strong and instead get called Lonely?
What IS exactly too many pets? And when will having adventures in my van stop being called Brave and start being called Desperate?
When will my intelligence become an asset and not a threat?
Why can’t I love books more than movies and ephemera more than podcasts?
Why can’t I love being alone And love you?
Why can’t I have a separate bedroom but still fuck you in the one we both like the best?
Why? Why is it a Together world when some people are Just One.
What if I am Just One?
Enjoy Joe Jackson’s sentiments on Together People by clicking here: Happy Loving Couples
From the “Look Sharp” LP released in 1979…another (in my opinion) hidden punk rock gem!
***If You’d like to support me on my artistic ventures, mainly on finishing my novel, click here: Support ART
3 Comments Add yours
Beth, This piece, in particular, struck a chord with me; thank you. Reading it was a bit like the first time I heard an AA speaker tell “my story”.
Solitude is NOT synonymous with loneliness and only the solitary know this. It’s an acquired taste and, once acquired, must be sated. Maybe it’s a lame attempt at rationalization, but I think my “rewards” are already in hand. I am complete as I am…AND INCOMPLETE as I allow myself to continue to be a work in progress. After 55 years, if I haven’t completed myself I probably never will…and probably never should. Arriving at, and maintaining that realization does not come with ease or without pain. I can love being alone and love you, my kids, family, etc. …and I do, in so far as what my understanding of love is…and I have doubts as to whether I LOVE or I just TOLERATE. Maybe I’ll figure it out someday, but fuck it if I don’t.
My reward IS knowing (and testing?) my boundaries. My reward IS not settling. My reward IS not just wanting, but pursuing happiness. My reward IS being okay with “something to hold me over”, because that MAY be all there is.
My reward IS figuring out how to be “Just One in a Together world”; how to be “Just One” and a dad; how to be “Just One” and a brother; how to be “Just One” and a friend. My being a “Just One” is not going to go away, it can’t; it’s a large part of who I am.
My reward IS allowing myself to be independent AND dependent, self-reliant AND other-reliant, a resource AND a user of resources. After all, shadows have light to thank for their existence and each uses the other to define itself. (cliche’ alert) Yin and Yang. My strength comes from knowing this.
Words like “spinster”, “lonely” and “desperate” are descriptives used by those who have not acquired “the taste”.
My reward IS knowing my intelligence IS an asset; and if it’s a threat, it probably should be.
So yeah, I think I CAN love being alone and love you.
And yeah, I CAN “have a separate bedroom but still fuck you in the one we both like the best.”
They can have their “Together” world; I’ll dabble in it as is necessary, but “Just One” is where I reside.
Thank you again for this piece…and I realize it is a “piece”. But is it not also true that the artist can’t help but leave a “piece” of themselves in each work produced? Your talents run deep and I appreciate that you share them. Next time you’re in Lancaster, hit me up; it would be great to spend some time being “Just One” TOGETHER.
I love this ♥️
Very nice. Very interesting and “on point” now let’s get breakfast and talk more. 🙂 por favor?!