Johnny sat on his couch, a bottle of Fat Weasel Pale Ale in hand and a goofy grin on his face. For more than a while he had this feeling that someone was trying to send him a message, but he was never clear about what it was or what he was supposed to do about it. He was a man who liked to base his beliefs upon science and the tangible, or so he would tell you. But sometimes in the quiet of the night he would stare up at the moon and feel like there was something more than science out there. He’d lie on his back and look for shooting stars and just open himself up to the possibility that maybe the universe did send you messages.
It wasn’t always easy for him. He was a skeptic who sometimes straddled his disbelief by silently reviewing the reasons why something or someone wasn’t really meant to be. It wasn’t hard to poke holes in these dreams. If you would have asked him he would tell you that it was easy for con artists to take your money. The old gypsy woman who sold Love Potion Number 9, the psychic and mediums who told your fortune knew that most people visited them because they wanted help with their love life or finances. All you had to do was give people an opening and they would practically write the story for you.
And yet he had experienced things that made him wonder if perhaps he was wrong. There were moments in which those signs were as clear as a grapevine or that yellow rose of Texas. He took a swig of the Fat Weasel and sung softly, “The stars at night, Are big and bright, Deep in the heart of Texas…” He wasn’t so sure what made him think of Texas, but in an odd, convoluted way it sort of fit. The song did talk about stars and he did like to spend time staring up at them. He had told June more than once that if she wanted the moon he would find a way to get it for her. He smiled again and muttered something about not knowing who was crazier, him or June.
It felt like forever since he had spoken with June and had you talked to him a week or two earlier he would have told you that he was done. He was tired of it all, worn out, exhausted and ready to say that it was fun while it lasted. These weren’t just words to him. He meant what he said and he had intended to do what he had to do to walk. So he drew a mental picture in his head of himself standing in a room and then pictured himself turning out the lights, pulling the shades and walking out the door.
That mental picture wasn’t easy to come up with, but it seemed to be the right thing so it was what he did. And with a simple click he locked the door and took the first steps to an unknown future. At least that was what he had intended to do but life has a funny way of taking your intentions and turning them inside out or upside down. If life were made by Hollywood the scene would have been easy to script. All that he described would be performed by skilled actors who would make it clear that this wasn’t a part of some formulaic romance. It was real and it was true. And just when the audience bought into the story something would happen that would lead the two of them back into each others arms.
But it wasn’t Hollywood- it was life and sometimes the hero stumbles or the villain gets the girl. And Johnny, our closet skeptic wasn’t willing to open himself up to the possibility that some of this was part of some larger master plan. Sure, he wanted to believe that there was something more but it really didn’t make sense so he didn’t bother to consider it as even being an option. At least that is how it started and maybe if were a different person that is how it would have stayed. But things happened, weird moments that he couldn’t explain as being anything other than signs that maybe someone or something was trying to speak to him.
At least that is what he was beginning to think. Still it wasn’t a comfortable thought so he fought it down and read the newspaper. And just when he had pushed it out of his head he heard the opening to Helter Skelter.
“When I get to the bottom
I go back to the top of the slide
Where I stop and turn
and I go for a ride
Till I get to the bottom and I see you again
Yeah, yeah, yeah
Do you don’t you want me to love you
I’m coming down fast but I’m miles above you
Tell me tell me come on tell me the answer
and you may be a lover but you ain’t no dancer”
He smiled and shook his head again. He didn’t know if the universe was tapping him on the shoulder but he couldn’t shake the feeling that somewhere out there June was silently asking him to call. It would be fitting, damn woman used to tease him that she only let him think that he was in control when in reality she was. So he sent out a silent message in response where he told her that he heard her calling and that if she wanted to talk her damn fingers weren’t broken. Dial the damn phone woman and I’ll talk to you.
With a snort and a smirk he finished his drink and wondered if the universe worked that way. He figured that if there was anything to it he would find out, because if the universe really does speak to you, well he is listening or it seemed.