Previously, on Calinsomnication…
Well, if this were a television series, that’s what you’d hear. Last post, I discussed the fact that I’m splitting the sheets. Of course, this is no surprise to those who know me/her/us. And these things don’t happen overnight. This has been a long time coming. So long in fact, that when I refer to my “ex” I’m no longer necessarily referring to my soon-to-be-ex-wife. Sometimes, like now, I’m referring to the last woman I called “my girlfriend.” Such an odd term, “girlfriend.” Odd to apply it to a grown woman and causes one to wonder why the term “womanfriend” just never caught on. Anyway, she was a rather accidental girlfriend. I didn’t seek her out.
She approached me on a dating site. I wasn’t looking for anything beyond a night or two, frankly, but she had her charms and the next thing I knew, months had gone by. She works in the industry (for those outside Los Angeles, that means she’s in show biz), and is a native angel. She gave me grand tours of the area, showed me where Janis died, where River died, Where Belushi died… where OJ’s house used to be… (yes, I get the morbidity of all that), took me on my first visit to LACMA, showed me the tar pits, showed me her favorite spots, and some that would be mine. We went to the Rosewood Tavern on Fairfax a few times. The Rosewood has the best fish and chips in town.
She worked in fashion, sort of, and had more informed opinions than I about what a writer in Hollywood ought to be wearing. I had no such opinions, and in fact, I’ve never cared much about clothes and was happy to let her have her way with me and my wardrobe. For some reason, the Madonna song “Dress You Up in My Love” springs to mind.
We enjoyed each other for months, but we both knew there was an expiration date on our relationship, and we eventually went our separate ways after which I generally avoided her neck of the woods for a long time. For a while, even a craving for fish and chips reminded me of the Rosewood, and thus, of her. But I never went back after our break-up, searching for adequate fish and chips elsewhere when the craving hit. But, alas, all others were inferior. It’s not like this was where we went on our first date. That would be another restaurant that holds no such ghosts. So why this place? I don’t know. We liked it. We had fun there. We all have those places… places that we went with someone… places where they are just sitting there waiting for us… haunted places.
Time goes by like it always does and there are other fish in the sea, literally and figuratively. There were other dates. Other restaurants. I don’t think of her so often, I don’t pine and don’t imagine she does, and when I’m reminded of her, it’s just a pleasant memory.
Saturday evening, I was alone. No date. No agenda. No work. Nothing but a craving for fish and chips.
I went to the Rosewood Tavern, ordered the fish and chips and a crafted draft called “Midas Touch” and thoroughly enjoyed the meal. It had been too long. They serve a bowl full of fries and a magnificently large piece of fish with malt vinegar. Yum. No, she wasn’t there, and after a few minutes, I stopped looking around as if she might happen into the place. I wondered if she’d been there since the last time she was there with me… if it was haunted for her.
We all have these haunted places, but rather than avoiding them indefinitely, we can perform a head-on exorcism simply by going and and letting some of those old hooks and nets loosen and fall away. And malt vinegar makes an ample substitute for holy water.