More dialogue for dialogue’s sake. Let’s see where this goes.
K: I mean, I probably spend at least two hours a day deleting emails. At this point I’m basically going to work to eat lunch and even that’s getting tiring. I’ve tried all the good spots in a 500m radius and we keep getting the same food trucks passing by. You can only eat so many sushirritos before fusion is the new bland. Plus my boss is never really around, so we have the run of the place. I come and go when I want and nobody even notices. Well, maybe my co-workers notice but they don’t say anything.
K: I know, right? It’s the best and the worst rolled into one. I should probably quit, challenge myself and all that, but when the money’s so good to be doing practically nothing what recourse do I have? Kids starving in Africa and all that. Anyway, I’ve had enough of that new Justin Timberlake song already. We get it, you’re rich, sexy and happy. So are your friends. Go rub it in someone else’s nose. When did paint by numbers promotional tie ins for summer kids’ flicks become the new ukulele 1,2,4 beat?
A: Why are we here?
K: What do you mean? Why would you even say that? You know this is the only place where we can get chipotle infused maple syrup. What other point is there to being awake on a Sunday morning? Or do you mean on a larger philosophical scale? Like, here I am rambling on about work and a lack of fulfilment when I could be off exploring Ghana? I should, I know. At least before I’m 35. I feel like my travel over the past few years has been so Pan American. It’s like, see how others live, y’know?
A: I think I mean me. Why am I here? Me, sitting here in front of you while you prattle on about meaningless shit.
K: That’s so fucking rude! Why would you say that?
A: It is, I know, and I should apologise. Really though, I’m just way too fucking tired. You haven’t asked me a single thing about myself. You’re not letting me get a word in edgewise and even if I did, I feel like you’d just use it as a launching pad to talk about yourself and your opinions some more. We’ve-
K: That’s really fucking hurtful. It’s not like I’m-
A: There you go again! Do you realise how frustrating it is to have to mitigate everything I say to cater to your conversational dominance? Please for fuck’s sake just let me finish my sentences and I’ll do the same. Okay?
K: [blinks] Okay.
A: I called you here today because I wanted to catch up. It’s been about five or six months since we last saw each other and it was the same thing then. We used to be so close, but now whenever we get together we just talk past one another. Like, we’re talking but it’s not a conversation.
K: Thats… fair. I guess. I just. I don’t know where to start.
A: [sigh] I’m not saying we have to jump into deep and meaningful stuff. It doesn’t have to be heavy or anything. I just want to shoot the shit like we used to. Hell, remember when F left me? I was a mess. I spent hours crying on that fucking playground in the rain. You sat with me and talked at me until I stopped crying. What was it? Animals are all the wrong colour or something? That was kind. It meant something to me. You mean something to me and I want to remember why. Because meeting up twice a year to talk about the day to day isn’t cutting it for me anymore.
K: Okay. You’re right. Okay just give me a second to think here. It’s kind of a massive spanner to throw into the middle of a conversation.
K: THE SCENE IS SET. You’re in a hole-in-the-wall coffee shop-
A: [laughs] NO FUCKING WAY. It’s been years since we’ve done this.
K: [faux frown] Now who isn’t letting the other finish?
A: [grins] Sorry, sorry. I was just excited. Okay, what do I have? How many are there?
K: You’re in a coffee shop. What else do you need? There are four of them. They have switchblades.
A: [cracks knuckles] Step one is to fish the coins out of the tip bowl and throw them as they walk in. As they’re flinching away from the tiny shrapnel I’ll knock the first guy out with a well placed ceramic bowl thrown straight at the face.
K: Got it. One down.
A: I’ll set all the steamers to full to cover my tracks and start pulling shots for extra steam. I’ll pick them off one by one through the smoke like Batman.
K: A bold move. You are the night.
A: Exactly. I’ll duck down and turn on the brew. They’re gonna have to walk around that cramped counter and they’re not gonna see it coming. That’ll slip at least one of them up, right? Some Spicoli style scalding?
K: I’ll give it to you, but I think you can do better.
A: Noted. I’m rusty here. Uhh, I’ll tip the grinder out onto the floor just to make it harder to navigate, then the first dude to thrust at me is losing a hand. The last guy isn’t like, deathly lactose intolerant or anything by any chance, is he?
K: Allergic to penicillin, actually.
A: I can work with that. So the portafilter I hadn’t cleaned yet will be red hot. I’ll parry the last guy’s knife thrust with the portafilter and brand him in the face and while he winces in pain, I’ll rush to the medicine cabinet and grab some painkillers. I’ll crush them up and force feed him. SCENARIO ACED.
K: [laughs] That was sloppy, but not bad for your first scenario in a while.
A: [chuckling] Remember how we’d always mess around like this? Why did we stop?
K: I’ve got no good answer for that. You’re right, but it feels like it was so gradual that we never noticed. I guess it felt like too much work having to upkeep it all the time. Oh Christ, did I just say that? I sound like such a joyless asshole. I’m not joyless, right? You don’t see me that way, do you?
K: If anyone can be, it’s you.
A: No you’re not. You’re not a shitty person and I’m not pandering just ’cause you’re in front of me. We’ve been drifting and I’ve noticed, but I never known how to say anything without being blunt. I guess that’s kind of shitty in itself. I was rude earlier, I’m sorry. But I was also telling the truth when I said that you mean something to me. It’s sort of naive of me to expect that we wouldn’t change.
K: Yeah, we have. That doesn’t mean everything has to change though. We’re still friends in ways that have nothing to do with what we do or where we are.
A: Well, except for the chipotle infused maple syrup.
K: [laughs] You’re right. That has exactly everything to do with where we are. Hey, what are you up to now?
A: I was gonna go shop for fruit and veges. How come?
K: Well that playground isn’t far from here. We could go there and just shoot the shit. I never did tell you why giraffes should be teal, did I?
A: Nope. That sounds nice. Real nice.