1. The hallway at the Commons with in 2003. It was raining and we held hands and talked about Dead Kennedys. I thought my heart was going to beat out of my chest and I realized I believed in love at first site.
2. Brooklyn in 2011. I was hungover and my brother brought me a burrito. He sat on my bed and we are together and talked about growing up. He talked about a girl he liked and I talked about the girl I liked. We laughed all night and my headache eventually went away, so we decided to watch a movie.
3. Boston in 2009, when I slept with a girl for revenge. It was the best sex with the worst reasoning behind it. Walking home that morning with an iced coffee in my hand, I finally felt like the antithesis of everything I thought I was.
4. North Carolina, July 2012. We sat in her backyard as I cried and cried, leafing through photo after photo of my brother. I only knew her for ten hours, but the way she held onto me and touched the nape of my neck led me to believe I could love her.
5. Somewhere in New England in 1991. There was a bright light, there was a farm. There were goats and there was so much cheese. There was also a spider, which scared me only a little. My parents and brother got ice cream afterwords and I fell asleep with a napkin in my hand.
6. Hartford, 2004. I got dragged to a renaissance fair and, sitting in the back seat of the car, pretended to be asleep. The girls up front talked about me and said they both had a little crush. My heart melted, but my eyes remained closed.
7. Connecticut, 2005. We were all getting ready to leave for college, which meant we had to make the best of the time we had left in town. People came to my house for a week straight. I got stuck driving her home. I told everyone I no longer loved her, but her perfume reminded me of the hallway at the mall when we first met. She and I took a detour and got coffee and kept pointing out all the frogs that were in the road. We sat outside a stoop at CVS and I didn’t know how to tell her I needed to kiss her. So I didn’t.
8. June 21. It wasn’t the beach or the sunshine or the beer. It was the walk home to our apartment. Ours. It wasn’t anyone else’s. We were slick with sweat with the summer sun cooling us off. Somewhere there was reggae playing and I finally felt that type of happiness that everyone always talks about.
9. West Hartford, 2005. It was balmy. We tried holding hands, even though it was a joke. Finally we kissed and then we couldn’t stop kissing. She sprawled her body across mine and stated into my eyes and that’s when she stopped being my friend.
10. Montreal, 2012. It was the first glimpse of joy I’d felt in almost a year. She was foreign and made it clear that I was the exception to her rule about having sex with foreigners.
11. The Ocean, 1998. It’s silly to think of a family vacation on the Disney Cruise lines could inspire someone into a life of being a vagabond. But, as I stared deep into the water, I knew that I would never stay settled for too long.
12. Boston, 2011. Biking through the rain and only stopping to text her that I wanted her to die. I told her I was going to plow my bike head first into a truck so she could feel the guilt of my death and how she’d always be remembered as the lying, cheating, scumbag that caused my death.
13. Massachusetts, 1995. We watched The X-Files after a bad thunderstorm. It was literally the calm after the storm and the entire house was this perfectly cool temperature. The breeze was intoxicating and my mom said we could stay up for an hour longer.
14. Nevada, 2010. If was the first good, quality cigarette after weeks of smoking rollies and $2 packs. The inhale, as my two car-mates did drugs in the front seat was ironically a breath of fresh air. I opened a journal and added Camel Turkish Gold to my list.
15. Connecticut, 2007. I had sick for weeks. I could breathe and I thought I was going to die. The doctor practically forced the needle full of morphine into my arm and the wave of pleasure erased every awful pain I’d felt for so many days.
16. New York City, 2014. I knew she wasn’t ever going to love me again. So when she told me did, her follow-up inquiry on whether or not I was going to have a heart attack was met unanswered. I had loved her for months and she finally reciprocated.