from the Archive. This won me a nice little book prize from Two Dollar Radio, which is frankly the only glory this Vancouverite has ever gotten out of the Manhattan literary establishment, aside from the glories of Gawker commenter status.
He was tall. He was handsome. He was fit. He was educated, intelligent, in law school.
He was in love with Rebecca.
How do I know this? He told me. At length.
In the restaurant, he insisted on ordering a particular dessert wine with the main course. Bewildered, I wondered if it was some new foodie fad. No, he said, it was because it was called “Sweet Rebecca,” and that was his ex-girlfriend’s name.
She dropped him. She was cruel, and sweet, and had hair like golden silk, or so I was informed. When not explaining how perfect she had been, he spent many a long, silent moment staring into the glass and murmuring “Sweet Rebecca.”
At one point he pulled out a ten-dollar bill and showed me the family resemblance to John A. MacDonald, to which I could only reply, “Yes, one of Canada’s truly great alcoholics.” It was a little too late to impress me by then. And he’d drunk most of the wine, although I could have used a Martini or four, myself.
On the way home, he borrowed bus fare; I never intended to see him again, however decorative he may have been, but at a dollar seventy-five to get rid of him it was a steal. On the long, no, endless ride home, he had one more golden memory for me. Halfway home, he slowly removed his ski gloves and proceeded, methodically, to pick his nose.