Sunday, March 21, 2010

Day 77 - Cowboy Boots and Cat's Eyes

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

Scars are like cat's eyes: they both shine in the light of passing cars.

One scar in particular sat high up on a woman's chest, just below her left collarbone. It reflected the light of the streetlamps and cars, the reflection making it stand out on her smooth skin.

It looked precise, like a medical scar. Small, maybe an inch long. That scar tripped me up mid-conversation with her, but let's leave my verbal fumbles out of this for now.

The scar was flanked by the strap of her summer dress. The dress itself was not quite black, not quite brown. In the harsh red light of the jack's sign, it looked the color of heart's blood.

She wore three hairpins that I could count, visible over the part in her hair on the left side of her head, and she never seemed to let her cigarette stay in her mouth. Not that she wore any lipstick to smudge it with.

She always kept that cigarette in her right hand. I'd have forgot the tattoo below her right wrist otherwise.

Her left side wasn't done telling me things. The heart tattoo on her left arm, for example, wreathed in what looked like blue flame.

There was more symmetry to her when she walked up to the cherry tree, nose pointed to the sky so she could regard the white-pink flower blossoms the tree would soon start to shed next week.

Her dress was all parallel lines, the back side of it drawing a straight line from shoulder blade to shoulder blade as it wrapped around her torso. A similar line where her dress ended, right about at her knees.

From where I stood I could see the skin of her legs beneath her dress and a matching pair of tattoos, both looking fresh and new, on the muscle of each calf.

Beneath the tattoos she wore cowboy boots.

Imagine her as I've described her, Dear Reader, standing under the blossoming tree, in that dress, with those boots on. Perfection.

Ras Dank agreed with me on that point much later in the night, after she'd departed with her friend.

I happen to know that friend's engaged so I'm curious how she knows him.

They say San Jose is the 10th largest city in the country, but from where I'm sitting it sure seems small. Circles of friends run pretty tight out here, circles of acquaintances even tighter, as spending time at Jack's keeps teaching me day after day.

What I'm having a hard time learning is that it's easy to assume you've got something figured out, when in fact you don't. It's not easy to sit back and let the world explain itself to you, one moment at a time.

Or I could just ask ten thousand questions, per Jenny's advice.

But hey, I do have all year. ;)

Aside from the woman who walked up to the tree (like I did, a few moments before her), there was lots of fun had with Tod and Mark (Tod, speaking to Mark: I value my belly button lint more than I value your ex girlfriend), as well the arrival of Bang-Bang! and ACME, one wearing all black and the other all white, which reminded me of Spy vs. Spy.

I got John to point this out (I'm not that brave) and ACME swiftly replied, "Yeah, and you never know which one's going to hit you first."

See why I'm not brave? That would have intimidated me right out of the bar. ;)

I took the last of my notes on the night as I watched Gabby leave for home. I sad goodnight to Eva and Sean, then walked across the street to the Happi House parking lot where my truck was parked next to The Rock.

As I drove up Taylor, I saw all the barricades out in front of Cielito Lindo and for just a moment they looked to me like rejects from the Queen of Heart's army of cards, all standing around like construction workers, doing nothing.

Then I thought about how she always looms so large in my vision whenever I see her, but whenever I give her a farewell hug, she feels so tiny in my arms. Women are impossible like that.

See you Friday at Jack's, Dear Reader. Take good care until then.


  1. "the woman"March 26, 2010 at 11:11 AM


  2. What flavor of "wow" was that? I hope it was a good one, but I want to be sure.

  3. "the woman"March 26, 2010 at 7:28 PM

    a sincerely flattered "wow". When I read the part about my hair, I actually reached up and felt which side my part was on. I can't believe you noticed something so simple as that. Thank you for making little ordinary me seem a little less ordinary :)