I didn't mention I was cold so that you would give me your jacket, dumbass.

Your attempts at chivalry were more than often excessive. Over the years you opened countless automatic doors for me, and on one spring afternoon you found yourself running around a renaissance festival in women's tights and your mom's bathrobe defending my honor with a two-dollar wooden sword.

What would Theta Chi say to that?

Now we're walking down Orange Avenue again, me in your blue flannel and I should really be going. But you start talking about throwing law school out the window and being a writer in Scotland and all your bullshit is so warm and familiar that I decide to stay a bit longer. We always bounced dreams off each other like that. I was willing to give mine a shot. You just liked to hear what yours sounded like out loud. I know you're never going to take me to Europe "someday," you just say it cause you know I would jump on a train going anywhere if I had a ticket. Damn you. Sometimes I think you purposely do things to weed your way into my life so that I won't vow to never talk to you again, like my computer. You built this scrap heap that no one else knows anything about; the second something goes wrong with it I'm biting my tongue and dialing your number.

You're feeling pretty confident tonight so you say I can't leave yet and drive me through your father's neighborhood, alluding to yellowed memories. I suppress the laughter of predictability. You are drama for the sake of drama, you hint at destiny when you're bored. Well that fact drained me of sorrow years ago, I am left amused, take me to my car, please. You hug me too close and too long, say "see you soon" when I know you'll miss Mardi Gras, and I leave you for the interstate. I made it to Daytona Beach in record time, and kept humming north. In the moonlight, lonely highway and soft white glow of my dashboard panel, I reinvented the line, realized my explanation for you: "a thought mistaken for a memory."

Bridget Conn