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A Scene: In Which Imperatrix Realizes that the Consort Must Be a Brave Soul

26 April 2006

The Scene: Last night, I was with a group of older women, at the home of one who in her demeanor and personality I would have to say is a veritable Nanny Ogg, and, as is the case when folks get together, we were talking of things. Somehow, someone made mention of Capricorns. (Keep in mind that, being a January baby, I am a Capricorn.) Now, I don’t know these women very well, and, being in a different arc of the life cycle than all of them (let’s just say that they’d all be happy to hear tomorrow that they are to be grandmas; I would not), we don’t have that much in common. Although they are all very nice. But they do like to talk. And sometimes it’s hard to get a word in edgewise.

Nanny Ogg: “…very organized, you know, like a Capricorn is.”
Me: [Chuckles.]“That’s funny, I’m a —”
No. 1: [Cuts in, doesn’t even register my speaking.] “Ooooo! I dated a Capricorn for seven years, and he had me wrapped around his little finger…”
Me: [Continues] “—and I definitely like things organized—” [Realizes with a start what’s being implied; fades out.]
No. 2: “Well I was married to a Capricorn for 28 years, if you can believe it.”
Nanny Ogg: [Interrupts.]“The first husband or the second?”
No. 2: “The first.”
No. 1: [Continues, oblivious to No. 2]“He had a day and an hour for everything. [Pregnant pause.] I mean, ev-er-y-thing.” [Wiggles eyebrows.]
No. 2: [Refuses to be outdone.] “Talk about control issues! I didn’t even know who I was anymore until I left him.”
No. 1: “Goodness, he had no creativity at all, that man—and you know how creative I am; I’m an art teacher for heaven’s sake!”
No. 2: “The sooner you get rid of a Capricorn, the better off you are.”
Me: [Silent. Tries to look inconspicuous.]
No. 1: “Absolutely.”
[They all nod in agreement.]
Nanny Ogg [to me]: “I’m sorry, hon, did you say something?”
Me: “Oh, no.” [Brushes off the attention.] “Nothing. Nothing at all.”

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