"There's so much more to a relationship than sex," she said.

"Like what?" I asked.

"There's just so much," she repeated, "you either get it, or you don't."

"If you can't describe it, it can't be that important to me. My life's work is about describing things."

"Is that why you're always studying?" she asked.


"Tell me, when will you ever take a break?"

"I don't know - I don't plan my vacations."

"Well, that's all I need to know," she said, nonchalantly, "you don't get it."

I generally didn't appreciate how divorced she was from reality - constantly living in an imaginary place that would let her feel alive. I hadn't read fiction in years. In my life, ever footstep contained a structure, and a mystery. Only fools took fiction seriously. Fiction always made me feel lonely - glorified caricatures designed for public consumption, reminding me that most people live in a world that they feel they will never understand - which leaves the rest of us, alone.

"Math? But why?" she said.

"For fun," I said.

"Fun?" she said.

I pointed to the coffee shop, and said, "money," then I pointed to the notebook on my lap and said, "fun."

"Then I was right," she said, "it's a planetary difference."

"What's a 'planetary difference'?" I asked.

She replied, "it means we're from different planets; you know, metaphorically. At first I wasn't sure if I didn't get you because it was an age thing, but no, it's a planetary difference."

"So where do we go from here?"

"Home, I guess."

"Separate homes?"

- A fruit salad of conversations I have had with women, and then some.

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