Something bad has happened to ‘Paul’.
When I was 17 I met Paul and immediately fell in limerance with him. Maybe that is a word I made up? It means that I was infatuated, starry-eyed, couldn’t think straight, was in lust and thought it was Love.
He was beautiful. I loved to run my fingers through his shiny, straight blonde hair and let it drop. It fell like a fan.
But, ‘My Paul’ was a wild man. All the girls thought he was beautiful. And Paul thought he was beautiful. He had been spoiled by his mother, his sister and all the women who knew him. He too was in love with Paul. This made him a very bad potential boyfriend.
Through the years I loved him anyway and we stayed in contact.
Many years later we lived together and I found he was not only a bad potential boyfriend but a bad live in real boyfriend.
We broke up.
We stayed in contact.
Every year he calls me on my birthday. He’s with a nice lady now and they live in the Midwest.
He has given up his wild life. He tells me that all his men friends are dead and have been dead for years. His buddies all died young from alcohol, drugs, tobacco, fast cars, fast women and various other forms of fun abuse. Paul is the only one still alive.
At 69, Paul is old. He’s beat. He has COPD and emphysema from all the smoking and he’s had two fatal heart attacks where he came back to life.
He’s just called and it’s not my birthday.
“I just got out of the hospital,” he says. “I was there for a week and a half, most of it in an induced coma.”
He tells me he was just sitting in his big leather chair when his girlfriend ‘Judy,’ heard him making strange sounds. She ran into the room and found him busily having a massive heart attack.
“Did you die?” I ask.
“I’m pretty sure I did,” he says. “I came back feeling really spooked and angry.
“And, it’s the damnedest thing,” he says, “A lot of my memory is gone.
“When I got back home,” he says, “the first thing I did was point out some new repair work in the house and I said to Judy, ‘Who did that shitty repair job! It looks like hell! It’s the biggest piece of crap I’ve ever seen. Who did that?’ Judy said, ‘……You did.'”
I’m laughing hard. When Paul lived with me he always repaired things but he did the crappiest, ugliest repair jobs I’ve ever seen!
Maybe this is a New Paul?
Maybe he’s forgotten how beautiful and spoiled he used to be? Maybe in the time he has left he will now do designer repair work, think of others besides himself and become the King of Judy’s Heart.
Maybe he died and got washed clean. Came back to earth spooked and angry about the loss of his old racy life replaced with a more gentile but boring one?
Well, maybe it’s bad for Paul…. but not so much for the rest of us.
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