“Do you ever get sick of people?” Julia asked Joe.
“Mmmm. I don’t know.”
“I can’t stand anyone for more than a day or two in a row,” Julia said. “I feel like a bad person.”
Joe sat on his bed with Julia, typing on his computer. They sat silent for a while. Julia felt okay about everything momentarily.
“I don’t have any friends from more than a year ago,” Joe said.
It was silent again. Julia and Joe rarely acknowledged what each other said. They both seemed to feel okay about it.
“Except for the internet,” Joe added.
Julia pushed her face into the bed. She curled into fetal position next to Joe. Julia felt a wave of nervousness while she thought about what Joe just said and what it inevitably meant. In a year Julia still wanted to be friends with Joe. She felt very tenderly towards Joe. Julia felt her throat swell a little as she thought about Joe being sick of her friendship. Julia thought about how it is pointless to try and break people of their social habits and thought also that she should in some way emotionally prepare to be disliked by Joe within the year.
“my friends are assholes,” Julia thought.
Julia had developed feelings about Joe that were very similar to both her best friend in the Midwest and her retarded brother. Julia had a strong feeling of protective platonic love for Joe. She recently had a sex dream about Joe, that was not particularly alarming or worrisome. Julia had wondered if Joe had ever had a sex dream about her, although it was “neither here nor there” as Julia saw it.
As Julia and Joe sat on his bed, people kept poking their heads into Joe’s bedroom and making asinine conversation. A comment would be said and when Julia and Joe stared at the head without saying anything the head would disappear. After the door had shut Joe and Julia would glance very briefly at each other and laugh. This happened a few times in the evening before Julia decided she should stop ignoring her lover, Connor, who was in the living room with a small group of people, who were waiting for her to watch the movie she demanded they watch.
“I’m going to watch the movie now,” Julia said.
“Can I read your personal add when you are finished?” she asked.
“I stopped writing it. I didn’t know what to say.”
“It’s hard to know what you want. Well, goodnight then Joe.”
Julia walked to the door. She did this very slowly, because she did not want to leave Joe’s room at all. She wanted to continue to lie on his bed and watch him type or stare at the walls while Joe played a mix CD of his favorite songs. While she walked to the door Julia thought about lying in Joe’s bed and listening to those songs and wondering if they sounded good because they reminded her of her first boyfriend who she missed only in theory, or if they sounded good because she knew that Joe loved them, or if they sounded good because they were nice songs.
Julia left the room.