I Call it a Compatibility Test by Martin Brick

Lorraine felt excited, like a teenager again, lying in bed, remaining silent.  Instead of hiding from a lover’s parents, she hid from his son.

Her mission tainted the giddiness.  The front door clicked.  Her feet hit the floor before his car started, into the closet before they even left the driveway.

“A person’s home tells you who they are, but their car says who they want to be,” Lorraine’s carsalesman uncle always said.  Reverse the axiom.  She’d seen his car, so in essence she only knew who he wanted to be.

His closet was too neat for a man.  Dress shirts here, casual there, all arranged by color.

Most people wouldn’t understand.  She wasn’t snooping.  A snoop looks for secrets – forbidden things.  There was no possession she sought , whether love letters, drug stash, embarrassing medication…  Rather it was a matter of patterns.  Where was stuff kept?  How neatly?  Case in point: she found a selection of college textbooks – not in a box in the attic, but together on a shelf.  This suggested he considered all of the past relevant, something that might be needed at a moment’s notice.  Dangerous proposition in a widower.

In twenty minutes he’d be back and they’d make love again, shower, have breakfast.

In his dresser she found a cigarette case – antique, silver.  Family heirloom?  Or a secret smoker?  She opened it and found a folded paper.  Interesting, she thought.

Of course she read it: I know you better than you know me.


Filed under Martin Brick

2 responses to “I Call it a Compatibility Test by Martin Brick

  1. I love this piece, Marty! I quaver on the last line, but I really like it. Great character bit.

    Ever heard Alanis’s a capella “Forgive me Love”, which follows “You Oughtta Know” on her first CD but isn’t listed on the album tracks?

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