Friday, July 27, 2012

Neither a borrower . . .

I found him crying by the phone moments after his brother had refused to lend him more money, so of course he asked me. “I’ll walk you to the bank,” he said in that anything-to-help tone they get when they’re beginning to worry their last chance might just back out the door. And don’t kid yourself, normally I would have, except that now I was his very best friend—at least as long as it took us to get there—and by then I figured it was well worth the money just to be rid of him for a while.

. . . nor a lender be.

But it wasn’t enough that I’d loaned him the money, he wanted me with him as he spent it, as if to let me know just how much he now valued our time together. And here I was feeling pretty good about myself anyway, having just saved him from an angry landlady, perhaps, or a week without food, and so I tagged along if only to learn that the very first thing one buys in such desperate circumstances are cassette tapes to mix the music for the big party you’re planning and that, second, it’s probably best not to know.

Illustration by Justin Orris.


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