Don’t Do That

Don’t do that.

Don’t come to the coffeehouse and talk to me so sweet with that smile that makes me feel like the reason. After you left, my boss turned to me and said, “Katey, are you and J going out?”

Also, don’t come after work, when I’m counting four dollars and sixty-five cents worth of nickels into the cash register, because it makes me lose count. Don’t wear so much aftershave that when we hug goodbye, I can still smell you ten minutes after you’ve left. No, especially don’t do that.

And please don’t come back after you’ve said goodbye, even though I said you could. Don’t walk across campus with me and tell me about your artwork because, in this small community, that makes it look like we’re going out. And when I’m looking at your artwork, don’t duck into the auction tent nearby and bring me back a bottle of wine to share.

Don’t sneak away after that, because you are shy or embarrassed or ignorant or nervous. And when I find you again (don’t make me come looking), don’t tell me about your aunt that has breast cancer or your plans for the next two weeks.

No, don’t do any of this. First, because you don’t mean it and I am sick of boys that don’t mean anything. Second, because you have no idea that when I love it is whole and fluid and as unstoppable as a train. That is probably something you do not want. Third, because even though I may want you to do these things, you still shouldn’t. And fourth, don’t do these things because I am ill of anything to do with two hearts beating and lately, yours is awfully close to mine.

Promise me you won’t, ok? And don’t let me see you for a good 72 hours and don’t bring me those CD’s you said you made for me and don’t, for god’s sake, do what you do with me to anybody else (especially in my presence).

You don’t know what kind of impression you make. And you don’t know the bruised heart with which you flirt. So don’t do that. Don’t start.

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