I don’t have anything to say to the world yet. But, not long after we moved in together in San Francisco, Aaron posted what follows. He was pressured to take it down; partly by me, out of fear. We do such stupid things out of fear. I regretted it almost immediately, and saved my little copy, untouched, in a place where I could get to it anytime. I carried it with me. I repost it here, because it should have stayed untouched, and I am done with this regret.
Some days it seemed like all there was was gray. An overcast sky, a broken bus, a freeway under construction, an edifice of concrete and steel. That office was dullening, full of gray pillars and florescent lighting, drones tapping at computers and talking about synergizing, forced conversations with the pleasant, strained tone of someone who knows they will have to live with these people. But Quinn was different.
A bright red shirt in a field of gray. Cargo pants in the land of business casual. Hunched over an iBook in the corner, surrounded by people with desks. She stood out like a stereotype. And as I walked past her to get some water, I felt electrified by her presence. I went to get a lot of water that day.
Late that night, after everyone had gone home and I was left alone in the dark, reading a New Yorker article on my monitor and listening to They Might Be Giants on my headphones, I felt a tap on my back and jumped. It was Quinn. “Hey,” she said.
There are some people you talk to and you just feel like you’re banging your head against the wall. You can’t understand what they’re saying, they can’t understand what you’re saying, you’re completely out of rhythm and unconnected and you just stand there waiting for a chance to sneak away without making things even more awkward.
Not Quinn. Within moments of seeing each other we’d begin laughing. I, normally shy and reserved, would suddenly find myself boisterous and cracking jokes — good ones, as far as we could tell. I felt like a different person.
Quinn was so out of place she didn’t even have a keycard. Whenever she wanted to walk down the hall for lunch or a snack, she’d ask me to come with her so she could get back in. And one day she asked if I’d go with her to the shooting range. I wanted to be that different person.
We went to Europe and I got fired and she started looking for a new place and asked if I would be her roommate. I said yes and she said why? and I said how else am I going to get out of the house?
We got a sweet little two-bedroom in the Mission, with a gorgeous view of downtown — close enough for you to see the skyline but far enough away that it doesn’t feel like the office. We cooked dinner and went to dinner parties, we bought a loft bed and brought over Quinn’s daughter.
I got a new job and there are days — getting up early to carpool to work, commuting home to a home-cooked meal, a great friend, and a lovely little girl — that I feel like I’ve finally found home.