Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Creating Co-incidences

“I’m going to write you a letter.”

“Why are you going to write me a letter?”

“Because some things are hard to say aloud.”

“That’s such bullshit. Tell me what you can’t say but you can write…”

“It’s to do with co-incidences.”

“Fuck this, Robbie, this is bullshit. Write your fucking letter. I've had it.”

You hung up the phone and so I wrote the letter to you. On the plane home from Sydney. In the cabin with the air hostesses and the girl waiting for the toilet in the black bra and white singlet top, jumping up and down like she was holding $10.50 worth of chips in. I wrote the letter in the same cabin as the man with the Timberland shoes, beard, camera and blaring hip-hop. In the same row as the lady who wouldn’t stop crying and looking through photos of, who I could only presume was, a younger her and a handsome man. In the seat next to the man with a wedding ring who wouldn’t stop staring at my crotch the entire flight. That’s where I wrote the letter. This is the letter. I made a photocopy, then typed it out, then posted it on this blog, then onto my Facebook. I am an evil piece of shit.

Dear Sarah,

As I mentioned over the phone in my hotel room, this is a little letter about co-incidences. Ok, so there is: luck, chance, fate, the meant to be factor – I guess they all mean the same thing, right? Why do I do this? Questions in letters get me every time. I remember all the questions I used to write you. And how it would take three days for the letter to get to your door, a day for you to respond, then three days for it to come back. Sometimes it would take a week and a half to get a response to a question like “how did your exam go?”. The answer to which I had already procured via text, Skype, drunken phone call or email. It’s a wonder why we still send mail like this. Though this letter won’t have a stamp on it. I’ll just leave it by your bed. Our bed. In fact, it’s a bit stupid I am even writing that, but there’s no way I will put a line through it, for it will ruin the entire aesthetic of the letter and you’re always hell bent on my just writing what’s in my head etc.

Back to co-incidences.

So there’s luck and fate and chance. Then there’s complete post-rationalised thoughts about a particular circumstance. For instance, I have no doubt that the purple hat lady existed, and that she pointed to us and that she drew the love heart in the air. Afterwards I was sure this was a sign. But perhaps it was just co-incidence; co-incidence that was post-rationalised and romanticised into the ‘fate’ category; that she was destined to walk that street, that day, while we still wreaked of nature’s perfume, and point to us. It could have been to anyone. Who points and draws a love heart anyhow? She was probably a whacko.

Second. There was our meeting in the supermarket. Both picking up dried apricot sachets. At the same time. Wearing the same jumper. Yes, I know you lived around the corner, and it was 7pm, which is a regular time for people like us to go shopping on a weekday, and I know I’m not the only one who likes dried apricots or wears grey Bonds hoodies… but, there was something in that. There was some co-incidence in that. There was some truth to ‘fate’ or ‘chance’ in that. But really, it was the ensuing courtship that made our relationship. The countless coffees, meaningless jokes, bike-fixing, movie-enduring, vegan-meal-chewing. That was what made us date, go out, fall in love.

What I am trying to say is that most co-incidences should not be read into. Most. What should be read into are the opportunities following a co-incidence. If my uncle hadn’t visited Shepparton in the summer of 1989 for the buck’s party of a high school friend (who he didn't even particularly like, and whose fiance he had been familiar with only weeks earlier), he would never have bumped into his ex-girlfriend, Sophie. Four years had passed since they broke up over a breach of trust. Both had fallen in and out of serious – or what seemed serious – relationships. All the while something had lingered in their heads. Now, as you know, Jack and Sophie are married, happily. That was a co-incidence, their meeting again, but it wasn’t the thing that meant something, it was what followed.

All I am saying is that, if a co-incidence comes again, you have to take it, otherwise, how do you know what anything means? Is our relationship going to go any further without another co-incidence that we can conjure into fate and use to propel our destiny?

Ok. With that said, I am leaving. When you receive this letter I will be off to an airport. It could be Avalon or Tullamarine. I am not going to say which, or where I am going. I won’t say the time. I won’t even tell you if I am leaving that night. There will be no clues. I have packed both winter and summer gear as I plan on going – hopefully with you – for a long time. None of my friends know, neither do my family. No one at the local café has a clue, and don’t bother asking the bartenders at Prudence. Ok, so, if I see you at the airport, then it will be a co-incidence, one that we can manipulate into fate.

Pack for all seasons, baby, I hope that we’re going away.

Yours, forever, and truly,

See you soon?