Thursday, July 5, 2007

564 days, 1 hours, 54 minutes, 19.8 seconds

It's hot and humid, but she wraps a thick scarf around her neck to hide the bandage, just in case they run into someone from their building. She walks on the wrong side of the street, past the guys hanging out there: she'd forgotten. If one of them should attack, or even reach out to her breast, like they did once, she can't run. She thinks of maybe grabbing a cab to a better restaurant, then remembers she's wearing short sleeves and all the scratches on her arms will be visible.

She can envision herself becoming agoraphobic once again.

This is all the wig's fault.

Freshman year of high school. She thought if her hair just wasn't so curly, if she looked more like the other kids, she'd have more friends. The wig, expensive at the time, a brown just a little redder than her own hair, was set in a perfect flip. She doesn't recall now if she ever wore it or not, but by the next year she'd quit school. She kept the blinds drawn in the house, didn't want to be seen.

And tomorrow she's off to buy a wig again. This one will be different, she tells herself. Closer to her own hair. Finally she likes her own hair. She might even bring in a photo of what she wants, and not some model's photo. Doctor's orders. Courtesy of Blue Cross.

George Bush bursts out laughing, then lies more about Medicare. He doesn't understand the costumes yet.