see you in another life, brother.

megan found me on facebook, said we should meet up. i hadn't seen her since 2002, 2003. i said sure, i'm not doing anything, why not? she said in her message that she had gotten divorced, had back surgery a few months back, and that she was now collecting disability, all the while trying her best to raise three boys. jesus. i said that i'd text her when i was in town, and that we'd go out for a drink or something. you know, something two people do when they haven't seen each other in nearly a decade.

i told another old friend, joseph, that i'd be in town, and i said i'd text him, too. he and megan didn't know each other at all. i told my cousin about this odd little reunion, and he agreed that yes, it would in fact be a strange encounter. i made plans with everyone to meet at the monkey bar, the bar that used to be the convenience store my dad once co-owned, and i told them to be there at 9 p.m. megan was already waiting there, and my cousin showed up with his new girlfriend. all the proper introductions were made, and then we sat at a table on the patio. cool summer nights, always good for some patio sitting.

to drown out the awkwardness of my facebook rendezvous, i knocked back a couple of beers, and at my cousin's suggestion, also had a mind-eraser. by then, joseph had shown up. he was wearing a large orange shirt with an eagle on it, and a baltimore orioles cap. i asked if he was an orioles fan. "no," he told me, "i just like birds." he then added, "i've also got a blue jays hat." he had asked about my ex-girlfriend, and megan moved in closer, saying that she wanted to hear all about it, too. why everyone was so interested in my lack of a love life, i wasn't sure. i told them it was over and done, and what else was there to say?

joseph told me that he was "cool" with kathleen now. that he stopped being a hater. back in the day, we always joked around about how great it would be to destroy our whole school and crush all our enemies. "can you imagine if columbine happened before that?" he said, "we'd be in hella trouble!" we laughed about our miserable upbringing, and how we believed that everyone was against us. "i've stopped being a hater," he said. "me too," i said, "what was with all that animosity?" "i don't know," he said, "do you know?" i said i didn't, but that it was just all in our heads. i offered to buy him a beer, but he refused, saying that he had quit drinking a few months ago.

joseph, megan, and i reminisced about other things. that's what happens when you haven't seen people in nearly a decade, and you're at an empty bar in a city where the only things to do are to go to in-and-out burgers, leatherby's, the galleria, the arden fair mall, the country club plaza, and dimple records. joseph told me that he just hangs out with his cousins now. megan said that she spends all her time with her kids. i would've felt bad about it, were it not for the fact that i don't have many friends, either. because that's what happens when you get old, see?

this random life. it just throws us all together, and waits to see what happens, doesn't it?

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