My habits are changing. Like, I keep waking up earlier and earlier. 6:30 this morning. Also, somehow I've cut down to a cigarette or two a day. But it's not on purpose. I'm not trying.
Clarke was over last night. We watched The Outlaw Josey Wales. Afterward he drifted over to my 'fridge. "You're out of beer," he said, surprised.
"I haven't had a beer in a week."
He cocked an eyebrow. "What?"
"I dunno why I haven't."
"I've got beer," Clarke said, returning to the living room. "Let's go to my place. "
"And smoke a cigarette, for chris-sake."
We put on our boots and trudged, jacketless, through the fifty feet of knee-deep snow separating our doors. As I stepped out I could see my Crooked Tree seedling poking through in the front-yard. I pulled out a cigarette as I arrived on Clarke's doorstep. He handed me a bottle when I stepped inside.
"At some point when I was in my early thirties," he said as I took off my boots, "I realized, I am who I am and there's no turning back. This is my lifestyle. And that's all there was to it."
I nodded. He waited for a response, but I had none to offer. I stood in the doorway, waiting for him to finish.
"You'll get there too," he said in a fatherly tone.
I was amused by his condescension. "I am who I am, hey?"
"That's very pessimistic, Clarke."