She Used Her Own Words and Everybody Else’s

“Some of the world’s greatest pieces of art were made out of it. Michelangelo’s dreams were of that material. Yes, marble. The color of your face reminds me of marble. What a work of art you are!” Those were the words I got her attention with on Facebook.
She liked books, most of them religious. But she was beautiful, really beautiful.
Same week was her birthday, not her first one, her thirtieth something… it doesn’t matter. She was out of my league.
I asked her out with sweet, plastic but controversial words and she said yes. Attaboy, Johnny!

I arrived at her house. She came through the front door, opened the door of my car and got in. Marvelous hair, feminine shoulders, a cleavage deeper than the Pacific ocean. The circularity of her behind and its shape were equal to rounded numbers, firm as the faith of the pope. Hey man! I know where to look. Her feet? You can have them for breakfast. I told you, beautiful.

Without further ado she started talking about her day and how her mom’s hip-replacement thing was going good. That I didn’t ask about and will never do. I interrupted her to ask where she wanted to go and, with an air of pride, she said she’ll show me the way and continued narrating her saga.
It was a less than average looking Café-Resto which was a block away from her house. We could have walked here, Einstein!

When we got out of the car, she was still talking. I could even hear her talk behind the car as she crossed over to my side so that we could go up the stairs of the Café.

We sat down, looked at the menu (she read the menu out loud) and ordered. She then asked me for a light; I had a glimpse of hope that she’d shut up while smoking at least. Well, not tonight, Johnny, not tonight. she was blowing out smoke and words at the same time: Now that’s what I call multitasking.

What was she talking about? How she met famous people “back in the day”, how she could help me publish my poems and stories by giving me moral support, how she hated her sister’s kids, how she had no privacy living with her mother, how her friends left her and migrated (let me take a wild guess why)… She talked till the cows came home and left again!

All I did was nod and smile. It was worse than the lectures on Ethics I used to attend at the university.

She took only two bites of her food and smoked half of my cigarettes.
Thank you, Facebook!

She said it was time to go home (God answered my prayers). We got to her house, and she told me it would be nice to have beer at her place the next time. I did what any other guy would do and said, “sure”. My God, she was talking about how she predicted her father’s death and how she hated her sister’s kids…

I swore to myself never to do that again. At least never again with her.

You know, I’m remembering all of this while sitting face to face with a girl who thinks UFO pictures are true and phones cause cancer.
The Eagles are playing in the background and I think that all of this has a lot to do with Facebook. And the song goes: you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave…

The Beginning of a Ghostwriter’s Journey

I lose count of how many words I write per day. But that doesn’t matter much because not a single word I write is ever mine. As a ghostwriter, whatever I write will never have my name on it.

Oh well…

Now stuck in traffic, sitting in the backseat of an Uber cab, I think: “I’m a ghostwriter, therefore I don’t exist.” Then I remember what Roland Barthes once wrote: “The birth of the reader must be at the cost of the death of the author.”

I mourn.

It’s raining and I’m hungry. The cars are not moving. I take out my android and start scrolling down my Facebook homepage. I think of posting something, but I change my mind quickly. (I’m very picky about what I post on Social Media. In general, my posts are very neutral and without ‘character’. I try not to be very opinionated because I don’t want people to think I’m an idiot, or an asshole, or a pessimist… Yea, that’s me.)

“Just drop me off here,” I say suddenly.

“What? Are you sure?” The Uber driver turns to ask me, “it’s raining.”

“Yes, I’m sure.”

I go out in the rain and walk towards nowhere. I eventually end up in a coffee shop and have my dinner there.

I am a ghostwriter. They see me, but they don’t know my name.