Right now I'm single and it doesn't bother me much. Oh, sure, I feel sad when I see two people clearly in love. I know what it feels like, so I smile, happy for them that they're in love. I yearn for that love, the special and singular companionship of a girl. I know that my time will come, just be yourself and don't try too hard. Never force anything; I've learnt that from painful experience. The long days of loneliness are hard, though. But the feeling always goes away. Just call up your friends or make some art, or something. Don't watch TV: it's a reason you're still single, Chris.

Dreams are much crueler than reality. Last night, I had a dream in which I had a girlfriend. A wonderful, kind, gentle, and outgoing girl. We did everything together, like hanging out, talking, kissing. I met her mother and her sister. It was all so real. In dreams like that, I can see how I act and present myself as a boyfriend. There was not a single bad moment when we were together.

And then I woke up.

And the dream haunted me for the rest of the day. I was walking around, doing my normal everyday things, trying to figure out what happened. That's always the eternal question: "What Happened?" I was in love. I was in love with a girl, and she loved me. Who was it? Who would love me, after all, when I feel that being myself simply means scaring off acquaintances. There is a bubble of dishonesty around me all the time when I'm in my "be myself" mode. Yes, I always try to be honest about myself, but don't get too casual, Chris. Stay polite. What? Yes, polite. Maintain an imperceptible level of detachment, refrain from showing your inner fault lines until... when? For how long do I hide my weaknesses and neuroticisms? Do I display them on my forehead at all times... scares them off, for sure. Or do I ease them in gradually, so that it's too late for her once she sees the true me?

No, I know that I'm a nice person. It's an inner battle which I have to face, all the time. You can't involve anybody but yourself. The friends that I have do accept me. And what would you rather have, anyway? Many good friends for life, or just one girlfriend, whom you will most certainly drive away.

Oh, please! Don't make me have to make that decision! After a dream like that I wish to God that somebody loved me the way she did. But it wasn't a person, anyway. You dreamt of her. She doesn't even represent anybody in real life. In your dream you loved yourself. Wasn't it good? Wasn't it healing? There is the capacity within you to love yourself, to feel as good as you did when you had a girlfriend. You just have to find it. Doesn't that inspire you?

Yes. I was telling a story. All day today, I saw the beauty in every kind of girl. I knew that each and every one could, possibly, be my next true love. Yes, I know, a remote possibility. I've wished sometimes that, I dunno, a crystal ball, or something, could show me the face of my next girlfriend. It would save a lot of searching and a lot of wondering, wouldn't it? But then, maybe if I did know whom to woo, it wouldn't be the right time or circumstances, or I might try too hard. No, I bet I would try too hard, knowing that a crystal ball showed me, and the future is irrefutable.

It's a bad idea to know the future. I still think it's a good idea to just let things happen randomly, let whatever will be, sera.

--December 1997