lost and found in life- a dancer and a doctor --- For Writers' Cramp
| Hello, Papi!
I’ll be little late, Sweetie. Don’t forget your pills. Two greens and one white. I’ll be staying out after hours. We have to finish up some dance routine. I’ll be home just as soon as I can. No, no. Don’t worry...Really, Dad! I have to go. I’m using a friend’s cell phone. I can’t stay on for too long. Bye, now.”
“Thank you for letting me use your phone...Errr...What was your name again? Yes, Bryan. Of course. How could I forget?
No, Bryan. My shift has just ended. No, I am not on again. Sure, all dancing I like. What’s wrong with nude dancing? You watched it, didn’t ya?
Sure, I’ll have a drink with you. What was it you offered? Oh, okay. We can go to your place, as long as I call home to check on Papi. Well, sure. Your cell phone? Sure, I can use that. Still, eventually, I’ll have to go. As long as you understand that.”
Ohhhh...What a fancy looking wine! Frosted bottle. Interesting fridge you have, Bryan. Do you have some crackers or something? Saltines will do just fine. You see I have to eat something when I drink. I have this problem. I even had a colonoscopy! Sure, I’ll wait for you here until you come back.”
“Yechhh ! Some cheap wine! Tastes like the laxative I drank right before the colonoscopy.”
Oh, Bryan.You’re back! What? You just want to talk? Nothing else? Oh well, what the heck...I like guys who admit to needing other people. Depression, you say! Oh, poor you! Sure. I got ears better than anybody. Hard to start, isn’t it?
What do you do Bryan, I mean for a living? A doctor, my...my...my! I once knew a doctor. Yeah! Well, I didn't think I was good enough for him. Not after Papi...
Well, never mind that. Tell me about yourself. What kinda doctor are you? A psychiatrist? You don’t say! And you can’t solve your own problems? Your wife? Why don’t you go back to her, Bryan?
Go back to her. So what?To err is human. No? Even Papi.... Well, no use talking about that. I forgave him. What was I to do? He had no one else in the world.
Okay, okay...Children, too? Bryan, you hafta go back now. Babes with bath water, can’t throw them out, can you? Look Bryan, I’m telling you. I swear a guy like you, babes and all, you should return. Yeah, tonight! Doesn’t matter. Patch it up with her. After Mama left so many bad things happened to me, you wouldn’t believe...
Papi wouldn’t have done what he did, had Mama been around...Yeah!
Bryan, Sweeetie, lemme have that phone of yours. Thanks you’re a doll.
We’re still working here. No, don’t worry. I haven’t left you. I told ya...You’re so ill that even a witch like me wouldn’t have the heart.
Did you take your pills? Good! Can you make it to the bed? Oh, you’re already in it. Good. Turn of the light and sleep. No Papi, I haven’t left you. I know you’re sorry. So am I. Good night, Papi.”
“Thanks, Bryan. Why was Papi apologizing? Oh, well, what the heck! You told me yours. I can tell you mine. It hurts to talk about this, you see. This happened after Mama left. Papi was working at nights. He took to drinking. Didn’t know what he was doing. Came into my room in the middle of the night, and.... and.....
Thanks, Bryan. Thanks for understanding. No, I didn’t. I just told Grandma. She told me I turned out to be just like my Mama. She said her son would never do that. She said if I uttered a word of this to anyone she’d whip me like there was no other world. Then, she took me in to live with her. Weird, ha? She died a while ago. Then Papi got sick and I took him in. What was I supposed to do?"
“Thanks for the tissues, Bryan... You know I never cry... This is the first time I’ve ever cried.... After that thing I told you about...I just couldn’t get a tear out of my eyes.
Yeah, I guess. I musta been depressed all my life. You’re right, Bryan. Nah. Didn’t do well in school. Just did the dancing and the living. It cleared me. It cleared Papi, too. I figured if I enjoyed dancing like this, what Papi did couldn’t be so bad. I wanted him to be my Papi. If he couldn’t, I’d live up to him.
Papi was an important man once. Very! He built houses. Housing complexes, to be exact. All went bad when Mama left. They said she ran away with another guy. No, she’s dead! Long time ago. She left me a letter. She said I’d understand if I knew. Well, I still don’t know. I’ll never know. But I know what happened to me. Don’t I?
Did I really? Wow! I’m glad I helped you, Bryan. Yes, I know we talked about you but we talked about me too.
God! I think you’re great. What? You want to see me in your office? You think I can work this out? You, too, can, you know.
You decided to go back home? Tomorrow? Great! I’m so happy...happiest I’ve been, I think.
Thanks, Bryan. No, I don’t have a cell phone. No, we aren’t allowed to use the phones in the club. Yes, I’ll call you. In your office, in a group? Really? If you say so...
Sure, I’ll be there. I don’t want to feel this lousy the rest of my life. Thanks for offering me your phone, but I’ll call you when I get home. I know...it is dark and dangerous out. Well, no one looked out for me before. I sure appreciate this. You're the best friend I've ever had, Bryan.”