My first apartment in Toronto was a shared house in the Annex. My roommates and I had the top floors, and a businessman lived in the bachelor apartment in the basement. He was very serious and not very friendly. Due to his serious nature and apparent lack of humour, Dennis suggested that he may have worked for CSIS. I figured he worked at a bank. Either way, ‘CSIS’ became his new name in our books, as ‘Bank” is a lame nickname.
CSIS eventually started dating a voluptuous Latin lady with wild dark, curly hair. She wore brightly coloured, flowing dresses with plunging necklines, the thick straps of her 18-hour bra constantly visible and hard at work. She had a job at the LCBO. They would have loud fights that we could hear from upstairs and Jane once walked in on them making out in our laundry room. He was fully clothed, suit and tie and all, and she wore only tiger print panties. Jane screamed and ran upstairs.
CSIS and LCBO stayed together for the duration of our stay, and she must have moved in shortly before we moved out. She was coming in and out all day long. She was much friendlier than he was and would occasionally stop for a chat when we passed on the porch. One time she sat with Dennis, telling him of a camping trip she had planned for them and her intention that she and CSIS make love in a canoe. This seemed very important to her and Dennis wished her well.
A few days later, CSIS was back, silently creeping around the side of the house to his entrance. But LCBO was nowhere to be seen. After a few days passed, we started to worry that he had killed her and left her in the woods. His particular brand of quiet and serious could also lean towards the possibility that he was a cold blooded killer. CSIS had killed LCBO after an argument fueled by tequila and the pressure that only 30 years of silence and frowning can give a man.
Or so we thought. She was back the next day. We never found out if her canoe dreams came true.
I sat on the streetcar today, watching the busy people walking by. Walking by themselves, walking by the shops, walking by each other. A woman was walking west, with big, fluffy hair and wearing a tie-dyed purple dress with a bright yellow sash. She was smiling and laughing with her ear to her phone. A man was walking east, clad in a suit, clutching his briefcase and grimacing at the inconvenience of the beaming sun. They walked and walked and walked straight past each other.
I wonder what happened to CSIS and LCBO. I also wonder how they met. Maybe she served him at the store. Maybe he served her at the bank. Maybe they were both CSIS agents and met during a sting or a stakeout or a Christmas karaoke party. Maybe they were walking in opposite directions one day and stopped when their paths met.
How do opposites attract?