J lives in a weird small town. There are two Chinese restaurants, a library, a strip mall, a VFW, and a gun club. There are Victorian houses and a park and in the town over, a Jewish camp where many people I know are counselors. They are primarily familiar with the ice cream stand and the Walmart.
Yesterday I saw some people running, they were serious runners, in spandex, with pedometers, the kind of runners who go very far away from where they live, because they know they can trust their feet to bring them back.
The cat threw up. Twice, which is a departure from his usual regime of three times. Cleaning it up makes me feel functional, as I have done nothing else today. I drank some coffee, looked at my list, and thought about how twice since arriving here I have been reminded of Oberlin-the first time when the coffee shop smelled like the co-op right before Shabbat, the second while listening to Science Friday, something we would often do in the co-op on Friday afternoons while making giant pans of chicken and kugel.
Once I had a fight with my friend from middle school about opera. She was angry, I remember, that I’d gone to a high school outside of our city, a public school whose standards rivaled those of a private school. They got you, she said, when I told her I was going to run track (read: badly) the next season. Our opera fight stemmed from my obsession with Les Miserables, which at one point in my life I thought was terribly original. (I even wrote a terrible college essay about it.) She insisted that it was opera, and I insisted that it wasn’t, and the internet did not exist then to prove either of us wrong. I couldn’t tell her why it wasn’t opera. I’m not sure I could tell her now why it wasn’t, but that’s not the point. I really wanted to be right, because she had made up her mind to hate opera and track and people who liked them and did them, and before high school was over, we were no longer talking.