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On the C train

She just got off the C train at 14th Street in New York. She had a butterfly tattoo on her right foot. She looked kind of like Thandie Newton or Sherri Saum. She was light-skinned, thin but with wide hips. Married, late 30s, American. She looked like someone with education, with a brain. Her hair was thick and black, like springs coming out of the top of her head. Her eyes were tired looking but there was intelligence behind them. Her eyes have seen too much of the world. Yellow top, blue jeans down to just below her knees. It was hard taking my eyes off her. She looked at me, curious, like maybe she knew me. It took everything not to look at her. Could she tell?

If this were a William Gibson story then I would meet her again in about 20 pages and find out who she is. But it is not, so I will probably never see her again, the woman on the C train.

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[Yaya DaCosta]

For our slower students who did not get that last posting:

My wife is away. I thought I would get a lot of work done. I did last time. When she is away my mind is undivided and I can pour my whole heart into something. I work for hours on end with no one to stop me.

This time it is different: all I think of is sex. Well, half the time.

I count the days.

We could have done it the morning she left, but I got up a half hour late and barely made the bus. Boy, what a mistake that was. If I had gone in late it would have saved me so much time later on!

If I do not do it for a while, sex begins to cloud my mind. Sex and women take up more and more of my thoughts. Someone is talking to me and what is going through my head? I am trying to think through something difficult and I have to start all over again – several times. Because what keeps pushing its way into my thoughts?

On the A train on the way home I look at the women. Last night I saw one with beautiful dark eyes. Our eyes met. In the state I was in, it took everything I had to keep from looking at her. Even as I write this a day later her face is burned into my brain. She was about 30 with a good smile and looked like Eleanor Roosevelt’s half-black love child.

But I know that after a point these thoughts will disappear altogether, at least for a while. It is like going without food or sleep. You get a second wind, but it does not last for ever.

I once compared it in this blog to turning 14 all over again. That is what it feels like. When I wrote that, I thought I was entering a new stage in my life, just as I did when I was 14. But now I see it was much simpler than that: I felt that way because I had gone too long without sex: at the time I was fighting with my wife. And so certain thoughts and desires began to take over.

I can go six months without sex, but it requires prayer and fasting. Fasting and sex seem to be opposites almost, at least for me.

My wife would be surprised to read all this and would believe none of it. She says I have almost no sex drive. What she refuses to believe is that it is her mouth that gets in the way of her own love life (and mine). I walk home wanting it so bad, but when I get home she starts a fight – because she wants it but is not getting it! This is how she seduces men?

I look out the window. God willing, Rebecca will return.

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You walk off the train. Standing there waiting to get on is a woman so beautiful you could look at her forever. But all you have are the four seconds it will take to walk past – she is standing with her boyfriend. Everything slows down like in a dream or charging into battle. Your feet never seem to touch the ground, but somehow you are moving past her. You drink in every detail, every second. Her eyes are chapter one, her lips, chapter two.

Then she is gone.

If you had stopped you would have fallen in love.

Sat Mar 03 01:50:04 UTC 2007

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