The excuse part of my brain is working overtime. STFU isn’t working so great, but I’ll keep trying.
“What is it with you people anyway?” We’d been uncomfortably silent for several miles. Me watching the road. Olsen fiddling with his OSU cap. I wasn’t paying attention.
“What is it with you people anyway?”
“You people. Your people. F..gays. Homos. Whatever.”
“I’m not Jewish. Or Mexican. I don’t have people. We aren’t ‘a people.'”
“Bullshit.” Interesting–I thought he’d roll over on that one. “Was that movie with Robin Williams real?”
“I don’t know. The one with that anorexic chick.”
“Is she the anorexic one?” Olsen throws a look at me that says, I’m trying to get to some other point.
“Calista is the one you think is anorexic. She says she’s just thin.”
“Anyway was that shit real? All the dressing up likewomen and shit? And that fucked up butler guy?”
“It’s not real around here–too often. And not like that. But I guess it’s real enough for places like Miami.”
“Then you got people.”
Maybe he’s got me there.
These conversations seem to take different turns when the get out of my head. They feel more burdened. Less snappy.
“Seriously! Don’t tell me shit like that. I definitely don’t want to know you had a fucking crush on me when we were fucking Freshmen. I don’t want to fucking know it. I don’t want to fucking talk about. And I don’t want to fucking know it.” Olsen doesn’t even look at me to tell me. It’s like he’s talking to the dashboard instead of me. No eye contact will probably make this easier on both of us.
“Don’t worry about it Mark.” Using his first name comes tough to my mind. I called him Mark the whole year we were Freshmen. It wasn’t until later–after–I started calling him Olsen like everyone else. It’s hard to believe I have to calm him down. I thought he’d laugh at that one off. The next thing I say needs to come off as casually as I can make it because he needs to believe it’s true. “Once I got to know you. It wore off real quick.”
I make a show of checking my mirrors.
“Good, ’cause that fucking shit just ain’t gonna happen.”