In the car on the way to The Village, I am surprised to find myself in a car on the way to The Village.
The man taking my order looks Italian. Is it racist to say that a man looks Italian? Do I look racist? I hear myself say spiced chai from another person’s body, with another person’s voice. Like a Yak-Back. In the nineties, everyone wanted a Yak-Back because that shit was hot.
Molly is holding a dog.
In the car on the way to The Village, the dog rode in the passenger seat and so did I. We were both passengers. We passaged. The Italian is making my drink too quickly.
In the car on the way to The Village, the dog sat on my lap. It’s very young. I prayed it wouldn’t pee on me, and I don’t ever pray for anything.
I might have prayed for a Yak-Back.
The Italian asks, “Skim milk or two-percent, Ma’am?” And I want to tell him this isn’t a goddamn McDonald’s, Sir, it’s the fucking MT Cup and I want my service slow. That’s why I came here.
The Italian says, “Here is your receipt, when you’re ready.” I am holding the pen. If I am not ready, I could just keep holding this pen. I think I could.
Yak-Back: I could.
Molly is wearing a jacket like a British officer and I want to tell her that weed maybe comes from Jamaica. Was she wearing her British jacket when she bought our Jamaican weed? Because if she was, this pastime and her wardrobe are at odds, politically.
The dog is too young to be out.
The Italian thanks me. I give him back the pen. I still think he is an asshole.
Soon we are outside. The chai is probably too hot to drink, so I don’t. Molly waves at some guy and then that guy comes over and they start talking. He is wearing a lot of yellow. That takes commitment.
Molly does not want to be distracted, so she puts the dog on a wire table.
That dog is too young to be on a wire table.
I burn my tongue. I hope the Italian hasn’t seen.
When the Yak-Back got popular, they stuck it on a pen. Everyone is always trying to stick things on pens. I’ve seen those multi-pens that click red, black, and green. They can even stick pens on pens. Whatever.
Molly doesn’t see that the dog is looking over the side of the wire table.That dog is too young to be near the edges of things.
I hope I remember to tell my children that the Yak-Back was the Ipod of the nineties. I hope they understand this and care deeply.
Molly says it’s cute that the dog is looking across the street where there is a collie on the sidewalk. I don’t think the dog can see more than a few feet. He is probably only looking at the ground. I try to say so. I think I fail.
The dog is too young for us not to know what it can see.
Molly and I decide to leave. She puts the dog on the ground and puts it on a leash. We are like parents pushing a stroller.
I say, “Self, promise me you will raise compassionate children.” So I do. I promise. I don’t want them to think the nineties were lame because the Yak-Back only had two buttons.
We try to walk to the car, but the dog will only take a few steps. His elbows don’t seem right. I think his eyes look like a pair taken from a newborn baby, and his skin is so soft it makes me sick, a little. Molly says he is lazy. She says it is going to take us forever to get to the goddamn car.
That newborn baby is too young to be dragged across a sidewalk.
Molly pulls hard on the leash.
Yak-Back: I promise.