looking like you used to

Bobby and I were sitting on my floor, smoking a joint and listening to jazz records. We had just spent some time admiring paintings by that famous artist who killed herself. Bobby was telling me about this movie he made with his friend Timmy. I didn't know Timmy very well at all, and was certain that he didn't know who I was, either, even though we had both slept with the same guy Johnny, who broke my heart. Bobby told me that in fact Timmy did know me, and had mentioned me to Bobby. While they were making their movie (an erotic--soft-core--art film, about power dynamics and aesthetic dynamics). Bobby said that Timmy brought me up, because Johnny had told him that he slept with me. Bobby said only that Johnny was talking about me, mentioned that we had slept together. I said I was surprised that Johnny mentioned it, especially to Timmy. I said that I naturally assumed that Johnny would have been embarrassed to have slept with me (so many times). I said he probably didn't want that known, and I was touched, in a way, that he told Timmy. I wasn't so touched that Timmy told Bobby. I didn't ask what Johnny said about me. Whether he said if I was any good in bed or not. I knew I wasn't. Not then. I was ashamed at my performances with Johnny, and felt some secret regret that he never caught me at the right time. In the years since then, I did have the opportunity to show off, to Johnny, how great I am.

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