I Remember the First Time

by: Ellina Buettner

 
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I remember the first time I met you two. Ms. Peggy, you were wearing sunglasses even though it was 7 p.m. and we were inside. You complimented my hair and then went on to tell me about how too many kids were dying their whole heads rainbow. We both agreed that although in style, that look was a bit much. A few weeks later, I had my first real conversation with you, Walter. It was all about cookie dough ice cream, and it lasted 20 full minutes. Glorious minutes indeed. That same day, I also found out that your wife always wore her shades because the eye doctor screwed up the prescription for her normal glasses, and she didn't feel like taking them back. I just kinda knew right then that we'd be close. I was so right.

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Chris, the first time you walked through the door, I wanted to run in the other direction. You were big and had earrings in places I didn't even know were legally pierce-able. You called yourself Tank, and strut your stuff like you owned not only the little building - but the whole dang town. I just kinda knew right then that I'd avoid you. I was so wrong. 

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Your bark only worked till I made you tear up on that old couch when we talked about Jesus and stuff (don't worry, I cried too). Oh, and I'd be a fool if I didn't bring up the time you got super defensive when I complimented your ankle bracelet. You told me you were only wearing it because your niece made it for you - not because you were a sissy. I firstly laughed in your face, then told you only real men do that. I asked if you could get her to make me one too (with blue and purple beads) and you did. It's sitting right now on my vanity, and I'm never getting rid of it.

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Oh man. I don't really know how to thank you three for expanding my capacity to love the way you did. I'll never forget your coffee orders or all your crazy quirks or all of our seemingly pointless chats that actually meant something to me. I won't forget your smilies or 'tudes or smart remarks or any stinking thing. 

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The sun always came out when you were with me. 

 

Johnny Dockman