Two Men Contemplating The Moon

“Use the word obdurate in a sentence.”
“I can’t.”
“Why not?”
“I don’t know what obdurate means.”
“Oh. Okay.”
“Do you?”
“So how would you know if I even used it the right way?”
“I wouldn’t.”
“So I could have used it in a sentence then.”
“You could have.”
“Where did you hear that word.”
“Yesterday I heard it used three different times by three different people.”
“In what context?”
“I don’t remember.”
“What did the people look like?”
“One of them was an old man. He was wearing a black overcoat and a scarf.”
“It was really hot yesterday.”
“Then another man said it. He was walking down the street and he said it into his phone.”
“That’s a little bit of context.”
“Not really.”
“You’re right.”
“And then a woman said it while I was standing in line at the market. She said it to her kid.”
“Well now that’s all the context you need right there. Was she angry when she said it?”
“Was she pointing at the kid? Did she say something like, Stop being obdurate, and then she wagged her finger in the kid’s face?”
“No. She was flipping through a magazine and she showed a picture of a woman in a blue dress and then she said something-something obdurate.”
“Huh. Well, let’s look it up. Where’s your phone?”
“I didn’t bring mine.”
“I didn’t bring mine either.”
“You said we should come here and look at the moon without any distractions.”
“That is what I said.”
“It is a very nice moon.”
“Crescent moons kind of freak me out.”
“Whenever I look at a crescent moon I always picture a woman using it as a chair, with her legs dangling off, like a woman in a naughty sailor’s outfit, and she’s winking at me.”
“I think that’s a logo for a record company.”
“Which one?”
“I forget.”
“I know which one that is. That’s the one, with the guy, and the coke sting.”
“He got set up.”
“Yeah, yeah, and then he died.”
“No, I thought he went to prison.”
“He had an Egyptian sounding name.”
“I thought he was Italian.”
“No, no, wait, he was Jewish.”
“With an Italian last name.”
“Maybe he was half Jewish.”
“Was his mother Jewish?”
“I have no idea.”
“I can’t remember his name but I can remember that it sounded Italian and that he was Jewish.”
“What does that mean?”
“It means I’m done looking at the moon.”

2 thoughts on “Two Men Contemplating The Moon

  1. …Paul Mahlum is correct, your stuff is great.

    And this piece is particularly sweet for me…I don’t know what obdurate means and I resist the urge to open the thick book beneath the backgammon set.

    It’s like tantric sex without having to tidy up afterwards.


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