(this is annie)

Whenever I breathe out

I stayed at work late last night, mostly to avoid the crowded rush hour trains, but also because I knew I'd just go home and sit in bed. (Or on the couch. Same thing.) The thought of spending an hour traveling just to do that was exhausting (consider all the crutching it would require, the fear of hobbling home alone down dark streets). Tossing financial prudence to the side, I wedged myself into the back seat of a cab and sighed.

The driver wore a hearing aid and looked like a middle-aged version of Phil. It was like being carted around by the future of my past. He wasn't chatty, and I wasn't feeling talkative, either, so the silence worked. Instead, I rolled down the window and took in the mild evening breeze. The preceding day, Louis and I had been talking about the air quality in our respective countries. He said that he doesn't realize his lungs haven't expanded until he's in the rainforest, and then they're surprisingly fuller. You'd choke on our air, I said.

When the taxi finally pulled up to my house, I had a bit of difficulty removing my crutches from the back seat. The car behind me honked, which mildly irritated me, because I'm moving as fast as I can, buddy. I decided to let the driver pass, but he waved me forward. I gave the thank-you smile and swung myself past the front bumper.

"Hey Annie," the driver said as I passed. I squinted, recognized him and laughed. The honk hadn't been a "hurry it up, gimpy" honk, but a hello honk from Fake Paul Weller. A serendipitous meeting. While he parked the car, I looked up at the stars and hummed the Keyboard Cat song. We then went down the hill for a pre-birthday snack, took a few pictures, talked about lost loves, and successfully kept me away from a place I didn't feel like going home to right away.

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"Who is this Peter Weller?"

My mom bought some charity CD that features The Who and The Cure, and somehow she found out about my Paul Weller crush. She just IMed me: "Who is this Peter Weller?" Peter, Paul, it's all apostolic.

I sent her this video, which is a capsule of everything I superficially like about young Paul Weller: the skinny suiting, the beaklike nose, the youthful energy bursting from his body, the mop of hair stuck to his forehead with sweat, and the perfect pairing of sharp guitar with a catchy melody.

My mom was confused at first. "He's too young for you," she said. (This has not stopped me before, I should mention.) "And not as good-looking as Pattinson." (Jury is out.) I had to explain that The Jam were touring while I was floating around in a blissful amniotic pool, and that now Paul Weller is a sleazy 50-year-old who gets tanked in public and slips his 23-year-old girlfriend the tongue. Then we had the IM conversation at right. I am glad that my mother agrees that a middle-aged man who bleaches his hair is not so dreamy.

Then my mom went on to talk about how men who date much younger women have major issues. Well yeah, no shit. Except, as I pointed out, my dad is 18 years older than she is. "I was young," she said. True, but it's not as though Dad was Snidley Whiplash, tying the knot against your will, I replied.

Her response: "Yes he was! I didn't know better!" That is ridiculous, because they seem very much in love in all of the faded photos I look at, and because my dad is hardly coercive. Also, now that I think about it, I always hated Dudley Do-Right and wanted poor Snidely Whiplash to triumph once, just once. The helpless damsel always bugged me because she was such a wuss, and Do-Right had that weird chin, and Whiplash seemed more interesting. Maybe that makes me a bad feminist, or a textbook psychology case, but either way, it means I have daddy issues, right?

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Thanks, Vanessa.

The best thing I received all weekend:

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Weller Feller

Oh, Paul Weller. They don't make men like they used to. I've always had this thing for quasi-mod style, particularly when peacocked by dark-haired young men. Hedi Slimane does too, to an extent that perhaps Paul deserved a royalty check from Dior.

I love how dorky Tony Wilson is here, too.

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say hello

    it's anniet at gmail.


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