Monday, August 06, 2012

The lights

I'm dying my hair while I'm waiting for the X to kick in, I told Abby it would be better to do it at home where we could relax instead of all that stress at the Loft, right? Especially now that we got the good stuff.

My hair works the best if I leave the dye in for a few days – plus, you can do anything with it while the dye is still in, so I pull out the fuchsia sides like wings and then twist up the purple in the middle like a bow or a knot, honey this is a good look. I go downstairs and Abby looks at me and smiles and says Mattilda, your hair! I say I like it when you call me Mattilda, and Gabby says Mattilda, your hair, I love it, and then I look at her eyes and yes, honey, here it is, let's go. Abby starts talking to me about her sweater: I don't feel comfortable in this, I don't think it looks good, do you?

I don't like giving people fashion advice – sure, it looks like something her mother picked out when she was 10, but fags in Boston love the infantilized preppy look. I'm noticing the texture of my robe, so I rub Abby’s sweater and oh, it’s soft too, and I guess I'm starting to do that thing with my tongue that everyone always notices, and Abby says what do you think? I don't know, I say – whatever makes you comfortable. She looks kind of perplexed and touches my arm: Will you wait for me? Sure, I say, and she goes upstairs.

I've never noticed how comfortable this sofa is – and oh, this robe, it's amazing. That chandelier, has that always been there? There’s pink, purple, green, red, orange, blue in each bulb – oh, look at all the colors!

I can feel my eyes fluttering and this is great, I could stay on this sofa for the rest of my life, yes this ugly brown corduroy sofa, where did we get this sofa? Abby comes down in a new outfit, pink T-shirt with a purple heart drawn over one nipple and a red star on the other, smiley-face boxers pulled up over the baggy striped jeans, rolled up at the bottom. What do you think, Abby asks.

Gorgeous, I say – you look gorgeous, where did you get that shirt? I made it, she says, and then I notice she's wearing lipstick. Honey, I say, you better work. And she holds out a permanent marker, and says: Do you think I should use this for eyeliner?

Honey, that's a permanent marker.

I know.

It might hurt.

Do you think it will be worth it?

Honey, how are you feeling?

Oh, Mattilda, thank you.

Look at the lights, oh the lights.

Mattilda, I'm never wearing that sweater again.

What did you do with it?

I threw it away.


Out the window.

You, bitch, are fierce.

No, bitch, you are fierce.

Do you want to go to Star Market?


The lights.

I'll be right back, Abby says, so I go in my bedroom and look for something to wear, something I can pull on over this hair. Oh, yes – that blue nightgown with the silver flowers on it, yes it’s so soft, oh yes. I better look in the mirror. This looks perfect with my nails – oh, my nails. I'm sitting in the bathroom looking at my silver nails, the way they shine differently from different angles and Abby knocks, can I come in?

So then we sit together on the bench in front of the vanity, looking in the mirror and I see the eyeliner around her eyes. I love it, I say, and she takes out a yellow highlighter and closes one eyelid, rubs it on, over and over, and then the other, opens her eyes.

Yes, I say. Yes.

She’s holding my hand and we’re looking in the mirror at each other's eyes.

I love your dress.

Thank you, I say.

Mattilda, I'm having so much fun!

Me too – look at my nails.

Oh, your nails.

Should we go downstairs?

I love these stairs.

We get to my room and I put on that crazy purple sweater coat-dress thing that looks like it's made out of a shag rug. Mattilda, where did you get that? Dollar-a-Pound – my favorite place in Boston. You'll have to take me there. Definitely. Do you want to go there now? Yes. No – it's not open. Where should we go? Star Market. No, wait – the Prudential Center. Isn’t it closed? Not the middle – we could do runway. Yes, runway. The lights. The lights, Mattilda, I'm ready for the lights. Let's get a family picture first. A family picture!

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