Faux Fable: A New Language

William C. Blome 

Email: yandropov@hotmail.com

She sat in German class with him (or, more accurate to say, across from him at the end of a small worktable), and during the third session of the semester, she glanced under the table and saw that his right foot was completely out of its loafer, and his big toe was protruding through its white sock. He noticed her looking down, and when she looked up, he smiled like a jack o’ lantern at her and pointed toward his foot; he was tick-tock moving the foot from side-to-side and slowly pushing it toward her. He reasoned—he hoped—she was close to breaking up, close to laughing heartily, but she kind of fooled his ass and kept her composure, and the ice didn’t really break till the class-after-next (when, beforehand, he had tied a note to his bare toe, and then during class, he angled his chair just-so, stretched out his leg, and propped his sockless foot boldly on the edge of her chair and started to randomly toggle the toe back and forth like a silent and addled metronome).

She couldn’t help but rise to the bait this time, and she started to guffaw like a buffoon. In a moment or two, she reached down and undid the strip of shiny red ribbon he had used to tie the note, and she grabbed the little piece of paper. She brought it up and smoothed it out on the table with the heel of her hand and studied it intently over and over, but alas, he had written something in a German that neither he nor she comprehended at all during this early stage of their first-year class, and sadly, the effect and delay of her being completely puzzled by the note rapidly chilled her interest in him (and concomitantly, his toward her). The two of them now began to look away from one another, and they lost all semblance of ever becoming future lovers, and it was more or less at this point that he withdrew his foot from her chair and returned it to under his own chair, where he then (with a somewhat embarrassing difficulty) jimmied it back into his shoe.

Moral: Dude, you can be casual about many things, but unless you’re serious about crucial shit, there’s no way you’ll get by grunts, grins, and gestures.

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