Saturday, November 14, 2009

Jealousy 11

I take the M&Ms and sit back down on the couch. Laura has put a wrap over her hair to keep it from becoming speckled with paint. She has left a folder of pictures sitting on the couch. I pick it up, holding my breath as I open it. The first face smiles up at me. Julia Roberts. I smile with relief. “Free associate! Start blabbin’ Miss Jane.” Laura calls out. She is standing poised at her easel, ready for a smattering of words that will guide the paintbrush in her hand.

“Okay. Pretty Woman! Her smile is known by everyone! Being too big for her face has somehow turned it into a…. a…. something people desire. She always plays the underdog who becomes the heroine. You know, like in Erin Brockovich or America’s Swwethearts and so on.” I am smiling at the simple joy her smiling face brings. It’s such a lightweight feeling. I realize that this could be a fun activity and begin to relax. “Is that enough or do you need more?”

Laura is standing still watching me. Her brush is dry and devoid of any color other than the natural color of the bristles. “Only give me what comes to mind. Don’t over think it. I want your natural reactions,” she assures me.

I set Julia Robert’s smile aside and look at the next picture. Brad Pitt. “He is America’s Sweetheart. At least every female I know loves him and his chiseled features. But, the handling of his divorce has left a bit of a sour taste in a lot of people’s mouth, including mine. I guess we never heard much of his side of the story, but still. I don’t know. Maybe it isn’t fair to judge. He went from untouchable to basically gossip fodder overnight. And now it seems the tabloids are constantly after him. No peace. I feel for him.” I glance at Laura. She is staring at her canvas, dry paintbrush poised above it.

I am quiet too long. “Keep going,” she says contemplatively. “Just think incessant chatter.” She never even looks in my direction. She just stays focused on the canvas. I move Brad Pitt to join Julia Roberts.

The next picture is someone who looks vaguely familiar, but I can’t place her. And I say so. “I don’t know. She seems like she is approachable. Maybe it’s because she isn’t a super star and so the nervous jitters just wouldn’t …”

“Hold on.” Laura interrupts. I am rethinking how to approach this. Too many different emotions. I need to decide if I want to put your perspective on its own canvas or if I want to paint single canvases identifying only one emotion on each.” She is silent for a while. I don’t interrupt her thought process. I sit on the couch with my legs folded under me eating Raspberry Almond M&Ms. They are good. After a long pause, she speaks again. “I want to do a single canvas for each person. I think that will be best. I can paint flat emotion. I want to represent a mixture.” Finally, she looks at me. “How are the M&Ms?”

“Great!” I say.

“Yeah. I thought so.” She is still contemplative as she begins to pack up her stuff.

“Are we done?” I ask uncertainly.

“For now, yes. I need to rearrange some things. We’ll do it again soon okay?” She seems to be sincere in asking for my permission.

“Sure Laura. It would be my pleasure.” I sit and watch her put lids back on the paint. I don’t offer to help. I’ve tried to before. She’s particular about her supplies like I am about my designs. I know not to invade her space. I just watch until everything is cleaned up and she plops on the couch opposite from me, grabbing a handful of M&Ms for herself.

“So, what’s going on in your life?” she asks.


  1. Good job after such a big day we had yesterday.

    What a fun idea for a game..glad it wasn't torture, Now I wonder who the third person was.

    I hope we get to see this again or something.

    And I look forward to the how she answers/reacts to the question and if Laura is looking at it more as therapy for her friend or something else.

    OK maybe I am over thinking this...

  2. Good. At least you are picking up on my thought patterns! I must be communicating something well. Your 'overthinking' are the same things I am questioning in order to write the next part. As well as other ideas floating around.

  3. Well I am glad I have anticipated your brain. :)