I spent Sunday evening (yesterday) with Z. We walked the trail around Town Lake, which I think is about an eight mile walk. I thought, since it was Sunday and a beautiful, almost cool evening, the trail would be mobbed, but it was more like deserted. Z. speculated there must have been a season finale of some show or other on TV last night. (Z. -- maybe even more averse to crowds than I -- checks the TV listings to plan trips to the grocery store.)
After our walk, we went to Magnolia Cafe. I had a beer, a Sierra Nevada, and the "Martian Landscape," which is roasted potatoes topped with cheese, scallions, and jalapeños. Z. had some kind of turkey taco thing, a salad, and a root beer float. We lingered long enough that eventually I ordered a gingerbread pancake. Just one.
We were together for over 4 hours, talking non-stop. He works in a field -- I guess I shouldn't say what it is, since I don't feel comfortable revealing the identities of people I write about here -- that I am endlessly fascinated with, so we talk about that a lot. We talk about love and sex a lot, too.
Z. is a remarkable man. He's quite a bit younger than I am, but so smart about people and relationships. He knows things that I'm barely beginning to understand. Nothing escapes his notice, he reads the most subtle signals. He often knows what I'm talking about before I do.
What I most enjoy about the time I spend with him is that he is as committed to honesty, directness, clarity, as I am. He asks himself the same question I try always to ask myself as I move through life and try to make right choices: "What is really going on here?"
And he reads me like a book. I find this bracing, and a wonderful relief, because, when I'm with him, I am unburdened of my irritating need to explain myself.