Pathetic fallacy

Pathetic fallacy: When the mood of the character is reflected in the atmosphere (weather).

Giboulées de mars

30 March 2013

The French have a specific term for this. Les giboulées de mars. Those brief and violent downpours that mark the passage from winter to spring.

Even as the rampant tempest is running its course, I glimpse blue skies through the heavy storm clouds.

I strip off my pajama shirt and throw it down angrily on the floor. A satisfying slap. But not enough.

The wind picks up. Howling. It whips callously around the house and rattles the windows, shutters and doors. I slam my fists against the wall as I stomp down the stairs to the bathroom.

And then I scream. My roar harmonizing with the deafening crescendo of the rain.

Now the sun is shining and the only proof of the turbulence are the quickly fading raindrops on the sidewalk. The sticky-salty stains on my cheeks.

The playlist pumping out of my sub-par 2008 Macbook speakers is a confused mix of upbeat, funky and whiny. Melancholic.

I’m searching in vain for the right frequency.

Why is it you can never seem to express yourself when you need to most? And to whom you need to most?

When we make small talk about nothing—my job, your job, my French, your English—my pulse quickens, my palms pool with moisture and my bowels tense with anxiety. The next morning I wake up with a fresh sprinkling of stress acne. One time I even subconsciously picked at my scalp until it bled.

Imagine if we really talked.

I’m almost certain you like me. And I know without a doubt that I like you.

Even if I didn’t, the flirty tone and the winky-face emoticons wrapped up in two-years-worth of archived Facebook messages are undeniable.

From both sides.

So why do you keep denying us time? The time to figure out if this thing is something.

Even if I already know that it is.

Since you coyly asked me what “hang out” means. (I still suspect you knew all along.)

Since the one and only time we kissed.

And since the next day when you told the screen connecting me to you that “we should not take that ‘seriously.'”

Since we kept in touch across time zones, oceans and continents.

Since, now that my time in France is once again running out, we finally (albeit tentatively) decided you’d visit me. Today. Before you flaked on me. Again.

And since I’ve realized that where you’re concerned I’m incapable of separating my emotions from the reality of our un-relationship.



  1. Jamie · · Reply

    This is a very beautiful and disturbing piece. I think I know about whom you speak. I’m sorry he flaked on you again.

    1. Thanks. I was really hesitant about posting it, but I really like how it turned out.

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