Thursday, October 06, 2011

DIALOGUE - A Near-Death Experience

"Who started this?"

“I didn’t. I think it was you.”

“Well, I can’t remember anything before you said you have been deceiving yourself your whole life.”

“I can’t remember talking about self-deception. Didn’t you mention that you had started to love Johnny – for his sake, not yours?”

“I don’t think that’s anything to do with self-deception.”

“I do. You think you love Johnny only because he has got used to you loving him and your withdrawing it now would make you unhappy because it would make someone you once loved become very unhappy, so you have blotted out that you really have stopped loving him, and so you actually feel that you still love him as a consequence of something I can only call a subconsciously induced self-deception.”

“Look at me, do I look like a liar?”

"Well, no proper liar looks like a liar. I see a woman who has blonde curls turning slightly to grey, still pretty, and a personality that has made you my best friend since before... Well, I don’t think there was ever a time when you weren’t my best friend.  Our mothers wheeled us side by side when we were babies, don’t forget.  As far as I know, you have never lied. Except, that is, perhaps, those lies you tell yourself.”

“Johnny was your boy friend first, don’t forget. Don’t you think there was some element of deceit on my part during that period of him leaving you for me?”

“No. It was a natural process. I was never suited to Johnny, nor he to me. You did us both a favour.”

“I haven’t told you this before. But I seduced Johnny.  My intention was to steal him away from you. I had no idea you weren’t suited to each other....”


“Yes, really. I’m glad I’ve got it off my chest now. Perhaps you have deceived yourself that you weren’t suited to each other when you discovered he loved me more than he loved you.  I’m sorry.  Truly sorry.”

“Why tell me now?”

“I don’t know. And while we are on the subject. When we were in our pushchairs, parked next to each other on Market Hill outside Tesco, I stole your rattle.”

“I don’t remember."

“Perhaps because I was slightly older?”


“Old enough in fact to lean over and release the brake on the backwheel  of the pushchair... Are you listening? ... But I didn’t actually release it, but only very nearly did. ........ Where’s Johnny?”

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