The Other Shoe
I Had Your Manual.
Ah...Such an intimate possession to have and I had
yours - your manual! Your Operating Instructions. Your reactions to:
Explained. I downloaded it from the loads of tests you'd done all over the Internet - I had your manual!
Contained in the pages I scanned was everything there possibly was to know about you. Your tendencies, maintenance requirements, irrational fixations and your preferences:
Wine - not beer
Cream - no sugar
The Royal Tenenbaums
Ringo was your favorite and I knew this because your manual said so on page 29.
While you slept, I read your sexual chapters. There were sidebars & charts & diagrams:
All those things that would have remained such a mystery to me, explained in black & white.
Catering to your every whim - even before you knew what that would be - was my goal. I was the perfect partner: Caring, thoughtful, privy to your innermost intimacies.
I had your manual and, for some reason, I never told you I was working from it.
In hindsight, that was probably a mistake.
I don't know. Do you tell the person you date that you're in possession of their manual? Your own manual made no mention of it, and your manual said nothing to suggest that you would come down the stairs that morning with that suitcase...
None of the things you mentioned were covered in the troubleshooting section. Your final words to me, words that no amount of tech support could correct - spoken through the window of the taxi:
"George was my favorite."
I didn't just know you, I knew you. I had your manual. Your needs, wants, desires...
...Page 29: Ringo.
As I closed the covers to your manual it almost seemed as if I hadn't ever really known you after all.
Which is, of course, impossible.