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Zoe & Sophia Enjoy Fine Dining (again) and Flee to Florida as the Sublime Consumers of the Lightness of Being

January 17th, 2010 Comments off

January 17th

Thank you for the WONDERFUL ADVICE you’ve offered the two single women, whose lives are suddenly crashing in chaos! Zoe and Sophia, BFFs for thirty years, find themselves unexpectedly cast into the world of re-creation and redefinition after decades of being faithful wives to George and Marty. They need advice from anyone willing to help them. For instance, what advice would you give your BFF as she cried, WHY CAN’T I BE STRONG LIKE A TREE INSTEAD OF FRAIL LIKE A LEAF FLUNG ABOUT IN A FURIOUS WIND ? Any advice you can give to Zoe would be helpful, but this is what Sophia said.

Zoe sat at her kitchen table thinking about her first face-to-face meeting with Jackson from Florida in two days. She envisioned them as characters in a film, reunited after a long separation, running in slow motion then falling into each other’s arms and whirling round in a blissful blur. Smiling at the visual, her thoughts next turned to Walter–the guy who likes travel.  He  called and asked if she wanted to “date” for an hour or so. But Zoe wanted to stay “fresh” for Jackson, and anyway she was still weighing whether Walter was arrogant or just confident. Until she figured that out, she thought it best to avoid him. Almost against her will, Zoe’s thoughts suddenly floated, the way thoughts do, into an unchartered, unprotected area somewhere deep inside. In this place she began thinking about Ron. Although she hadn’t seen him in years, she did contact him after her split with George, and they spoke on the phone a few times. But Ron was tricky because he was the one man on earth for whom Zoe brandished the sword that always turned inward, that sense of loss for something she never quite had. Ron was the object of her unrequited love.

To shake the echoes of that buried hurt, one that still swam to the surface, Zoe took a shower, thinking she might wash the echoes away. When the hot splinters of water failed to dilute her feelings, she sat down and Googled his name as she had many times in the preceding months. Ron’s bio popped right up. He was now a divorcee and a high-ranking executive in the Chicago branch of the same corporation he worked for in Boston, when Zoe knew him, before she married George. His bio was apparent because he authored two well-received books on how to motivate employees hydraulically bound to corporate feudalism. The thrust of Ron’s advice (to get the sheep to stampede off a cliff and like it) was interactive communication, positive reinforcement, honesty, integrity and a host of other strategies he no doubt found in some Carl Rogers’ book on psychology. Ironically, these were qualities Ron steadfastly refused to apply to his relationship with Zoe. As the old pit gnawed at Zoe’s stomach, while new tears sprung from her eyes, Sophia burst through the door in a dither, startling Sparky from his slumber. He lay in a dog bed dotted with hard turds his body involuntarily purged during his nap.

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