For my Anniversary (I must say “mine” – things haven’t been “ours” in a long time, you must agree), for my Fifth and my Twelfth, like I’ve said, “Depending on how you look at it,” I am getting a “No More Tears” phone. The phone I’ve had for more than two years now – well, the phone I did have and its Evil Twin, The Refurbished Warranty Replacement Phone – have been topless for a LONG time. I always get my mobile phones little leather outfits, not in the S & M spirit one might suspect, but rather in the protective motorcycle “leathers” sense. Yes, I drop the poor things, and I think that the their wee leather coats protect them to some extent. But this phone witnessed a lot of…the “End,” by means of myriad text messages and oh so many conversations full of things that I’m sorry I said or I’m sorry I heard; I’m sorry about many things. And my easily incited tears always got caught under the plastic screen protector and trapped damaging moisture under the top part of the little “outfit.” After wiping that damn thing off the umpteenth time, I finally just took it top off. And somehow, in one of many moves, I misplaced it (probably, PERHAPS, subconsciously on purpose because I was not brave enough to put the thing back on again lest it somehow brought on upsetting conversations). Come on – I’ve never denied that I’m crazy and selectively superstitious.
Yup, that is THE tiny pineapple.

I think I told you this: Over a year ago I was sitting at a Friend’s funeral. And I was feeling JEALOUS. He’d been remarried right before he’d been re-diagnosed with cancer, and his new wife saw him through that horrific time. And I had the narcissistic GALL to sit and be jealous that I’d felt all alone during my worst times. But that was a wake-up call. I was so DISGUSTED that I could sit there and think THAT and wallow in SELF-PITY when we were mourning my friend and his lovely, still essentially NEW bride, had to figure out how to say goodbye to him after three years of wondrous hell. That’s when I thought ENOUGH ENOUGH ENOUGH! I still was/am trying to figure out how to forgive myself and to forgive you, but I finally was able to acknowledge that we had a lot of beautiful, intimate years – time that some people never are privileged to find or to know – and that even if I was still hurt or angry or CRAZY AS HELL (working on that one) I really needed to move on in my thinking. I had moved on in many respects, obviously, but to decide that I didn’t have to live an absolute and that I could acknowledge what I was so grateful for what I once had, I could choose to remember it, and even though sometimes it might make me feel a little lonelier (in comparison) I had the opportunity not to denigrate or erase it. And it doesn’t mean dwelling in anything – I was dwelling in my feelings of abandonment and I will always have to be careful of that bugger. It just means that I can feel lucky for something in my life that had so many moments of inexplicable beauty and humour and love. And, YES, it means that I will get a little melancholy on MY Anniversary. I was always the more nostalgic one, anyway, so give me a break. Don’t worry – I’m not going to give you any wood* (that’s for the Fifth) or silk/linen (for number Twelve) – or the “Nontraditional” gifts of silverware (Fifth) or Pearls (Twelfth). Besides, I already have the pearls, thank you very much (you never timed anything “traditionally,” did you) and though now the idea of sending you an anonymous “spork” and a napkin strikes me as rather droll at the moment, it’s a little too late. Let’s just go with the idea that it’s the thought that counts.

So tomorrow, I’m getting THE HELL OUT OF THIS HOUSE and getting that phone. It will be SUPER-COOL and NOT half naked. I’ve also made a decision. I found a bunch of rolls of film, and I know that our actual “Wedding” pictures are among them. I was debating about developing them, but I’ve made up my mind that I’m going to do it. We had an BIZZARE and BRILLIANT Wedding, damn it, and I’d like to remember it. I will make you copies of the pictures. I sincerely hope you’d like to have them. Signed, A Bear Bean (OKAY – a Bear Bean BUBBIN)

*Who thought up this stuff anyway? WOOD????