What can YOU say in six sentences?
Buck and Mary drove us back to their house where my former husband drank another vodka tonic and I pretended not to see the subtle play between Mary and the male babysitter, their eyes locked and heat rising up from the brown leather sofa cushions.
One year later the divorced thirty-eight year old explained to us how she could be so in love with with a fifteen year old, while forty-four year old Buck was busy courting Tina, a twenty-something with mischievous green eyes, double-D's, and a moderate gap between her front teeth.
Buck was now wearing pink Polo shirts, the back of the collar purposely turned up to look casual and carefree, to transform him from dull corporate accountant to contemporary wild rebel.
Mary shortly exchanged her pubescent boyfriend for fun-loving George, a white-haired fifty-eight year old with a bulbous purple nose, while Buck and Tina continued to explore sexual positions and Tina's awkward attempts to step-parent the four and six year olds.
As Buck and Mary's drama continued to unfold, my own marriage faltered, so to cheer me up a neighbor suggested the J. Larkins bar where five years earlier I'd agreed to meet my husband for a first date.
I sat like a laundry basket while everyone else danced to lyrics about stars and callings, then I saw Tina across the room wearing a red leather jacket and miniskirt, her stilettos marching with a message that would abruptly end my evening and known world.
"I'm sick of him bringing his girlfriend to our house," Tina said, the shock of my husband's affair with a young NASA coworker delivered with the hubris of a cartoon avenger.
Tina's brown hair was teased high and wide, her tight red leather a devil's costume floating in the mists of a fog machine, and as I stared blankly at the gap in her teeth, the Southern Cross lyrics became a loud ringing sound, followed by the deep vibration of a heavy locomotive in my chest.
I drove home quickly while rehearsing what to say, feeling prepared by the time I reached the bedroom where my husband propped himself up on elbows to cheerfully ask, "Did you have fun?"
"Who's Kristi?" I said while jerking open dresser drawers and tossing his socks and underwear in a lawn-sized Hefty.
He played dumb until I told him to get out, then came his full confession, copious tears and snot collecting on a glass tabletop between us, my only thought being how good it felt to see him suffer, my detachment like a cat's role in a horror film.
I went through the typical crazies after my divorce just as Buck and Mary were finding stability, Buck marrying a conservative accountant his age while Mary wed George, a fun guy whose heart would give out six years later.