This was an evening of discovery. I thought Ravel’s Bolero began with an oboe and I was all ready to write about a sexy oboe event when I discovered that it actually begins with flutes, which just won’t work when you’re supposed to be writing about an oboist. So, this. No sexy. Sorry.
“It was her Concerto in D Minor. It blew my mind away,” he says as he tosses clothes into his overnight case. He’ll come back for the rest he says as if it’s nothing, as if he isn’t confessing to cheating on me and abandoning me all in one step. No. Strike that. He isn’t abandoning me. I refuse to be the victim in this. But.
He’s so ebullient, so gregarious, so unconcerned about me. After seven years. I pinch myself hard to make sure that I’m still a flesh and blood woman with feelings, and because my nails and fingers digging into my skin hurt, I decide I must be.
“She’s magnificent. You’d adore her,” he says, smiling, straightening up from his task to share his glowing joy with me, the woman he’d promised nothing to.
At this moment I am so stupefied that I don’t know how to react. So, I don’t. I’ve got nothing. No: “if you liked it, you shoulda put a ring on it” because we are far, far removed from that now. He didn’t like it so no ring on it. Me. No ring on me. But the oboist? She may get a ring on it.
“I’ll have someone pick up the piano,” he says.
“It’s my piano.”
“But I tune it.”
I give him a look that would melt diamonds.
“I love that piano. I’ve composed some of my best pieces on it.”
Ya, ya, I want to say. Lurleen’s Trilogy that no one anywhere has ever heard or will ever hear because it’s egotistical meanderings of cacophonic sound that don’t mean anything or make anyone feel anything except murderous, which may be exactly what I am feeling. And, in that moment, I see what I haven’t wanted to see. Imagine welcoming purposeful blindness.
I allowed myself to be a victim because I thought I was in love. That this was love. I supported him, let his live with me while I paid for everything because that’s what you do when you’re in love. It’s give and take. But, but. Now I see, I gave and he took. And he still wants to take even as he’s moving on.
Suddenly, I feel weary and old and sad, so sad. “Don’t come back for your things. I’ll have them sent to you.”
“I could do it when you’re not here.”
I glance at him. I can actually see him stealing my piano. “Give me the keys.”
“You don’t trust me.”
I laugh, first just to identify disbelief, and then I laugh because of the situation, and then I laugh because, as Granny used to say, you laugh or you cry, and there ain’t no way I’m crying, not now, not in front of him, and hopefully not ever because the only thing I might cry about is how stupid and blind I’ve been.
“You’re right. I don’t trust you because you’re not only a cheating cheater, but you probably want to be a thieving thief.”
His lips draw in a straight line, a facial gesture I’ve always hated because his upper lip simply disappears and that’s intensified now.
He tries to slam the door behind him after he leaves but his jacket gets caught and softens the sound, except for his “oof” when he can’t move forward and adjacent words that inform me just what he thinks about me.
When I hear the sound of his damaged muffler spring to life, I open a bottle of prosecco that I’d bought for our fake anniversary, pour a glass and listen to oboe music and think that I might just adore the sound of oboists for the rest of my life and appreciate the service they do for all of mankind. Here’s to sexy, stunning oboists! May you all continue to show us the truth.