“It was a dark and stormy night,” I mumbled,
staring out the window of the station. “That’s
how Snoopy started all of his unpublished
novels. God, I loved that dog. Snoopy was great.”
The woman nodded and smiled. “I always
liked the girl who pulled away the football when
he tried to kick it,” she said. I nodded. “Lucy.
She was my first crush. What a wonderful bitch.”
The brown-haired woman next to me grinned. “Who do
you think she ended up with?” she asked. “Charlie
Brown or Schroeder?” “That’s easy,” I said. “She loved
the round-headed kid more than his Beagle did.”
“But Schroeder played the piano,” the woman
countered. “So,” I said. “They both played baseball, yeah?”
She nodded. So did I. “Who was the pitcher?”
“Oh yeah,” the woman said. “And Schroeder was the
catcher.” I nodded and shrugged. “As if that’s not
enough, she tells Schroeder Beethoven ‘wasn’t
that great.’ Why? Because he was never on a
baseball card. I’m telling you, she dug Chuck Brown.
She thought he was a righteous dude.” The woman
chuckled. “If I asked you to marry me right
now, would you?” I grinned and shook my head. “Sorry,”
I said. “I don’t want to be married right now.
There’s nothing I’d like more than to get to know
you, but if you’re expecting a ring and kids,
well … ‘it ain’t me you’re lookin’ for, babe.’ Not yet,
anyway. There are too many things I want
to do before I settle down into a
life lived for someone other than myself.” A
shrill whistle sounded in the distance and we
stared into each other’s eyes for ten seconds.
Neither of us said a word. I stood up. So
did she. We walked to the platform hand in hand.
As the train screeched to a halt she pulled me in
close and pressed her body to mine. “Don’t go,” she
said. “Stay ‘til the next train gets here. Please.” A man
in a conductor’s uniform warned, “Looks like…”