Friday, 15 May 2009

Just right: a story without guarantees.

You're here.

I have failed to compare them successfully and now I know why. There is plausible deniability here and I wanted so many things. Love me like Jake did, but keep me safe while you're holding me out to the wolves, like Cole did. Be dark and passionate and quietly crazy like Cole but be goofy and impulsive and immature like Jake was. Don't mince words like Cole did, say what's in your heart, in your head, like Jake did. Don't leave me like Jake did, try to keep me. Like Cole did.

I have it all. When I had nothing left there was nowhere to go but up. Three friends with three incredibly distinct personalities and the one guy everyone thought would be dead first seems to be the only one who remains. The only one who hasn't heard his eulogy or left anyone behind smiles and proclaims to do nothing more than try. The hero. The guy who built his life on empty words and foolish chances still breathes in time with his princess.

I don't care if you like him. You don't know him. He can get away with murder, he won't talk to you, he'll just do his own thing and not say all that much and then suddenly he's wired his face with that famous oh-fuck-look-what-I-did-now grin, the fratboy smile that makes you want to tell him off in a thousand distinct languages until you realize you're smiling too, usually around the same time a pat of butter sails past your left ear and hits the wall and laughter breaks out around the table. Or maybe in the midst of a catastrophe you follow the carnage and find him staring out the window and there's more of a storm in his black eyes than there is in the sky outside and he shakes like a leaf but he won't sit down, he doesn't seek comfort, he just stands and stares and shakes and thinks and eventually he'll ask how I am and put his hand out and play with my fingers as he holds my hand and he'll sing to me until he can no longer speak and then he just sinks to the floor and suddenly I find myself holding him up, a feat like nothing else considering how big he is and he'll take comfort in my bony little embrace because he told me that's the only comfort there is now.

He's taken the hard jobs. He's been the bad guy when no one else has wanted to take the fall, he has stepped up with nothing left to lose and thrown the bolt that lets the bottom fall out of my world. Then he's reached down and at the last minute grabbed my hand and pulled me up. Not all the way, just enough so that I can get a better hold, so that I can go back to holding him.

Because Ben doesn't fix things and he never will and there's no mad rush to make things perfect and as we build the character that our lives rest upon he laughs because nothing else could go wrong that hasn't already and we've covered enough ground for seven lifetimes here and we still haven't really figured out who the hell God is and where he stands in our lives because we can't name where we're standing right now let alone define anything else at this point.

He's been the bad guy so many times over and you don't understand the magnitude of that. When everyone else has chickened out or wandered away in their own despair, Ben has wiped his face on his shirt and cleared his throat and tossed his hat into the ring because someone has to.

There's work to be done and we can't stop now. It's just a risk. People take them all the time. You're worth it, Bridget. Keep going, we can do this.

Indeed, Ben. I think we can.

I'm here.