If you are (someone like?) me...then words are powerful demons.
Not unlike a glance or a scent, a phrase can trigger a cascade of memories, the right combination of words can transport.
"Not nearly drunk enough"
We are driving in a car on W Burnside, leaving one bar, taking us all home.
A man I am friends with, but is drunk enough to imagine more, is making boisterous comments next to me that are meant to be indirect overtures. There is, I guess, a hope, if he seduces me subtly, through clever sarcasm, I'll never see it coming, and won't remember to say no.
But since we can all see how well this is going to work out, his friend, the lucky man who gets to drive all of our drunk asses home, just keeps reminding him that I am not drunk enough to go for his shit.
Every ridiculous move is met with a friendly chime "not nearly drunk enough! she's not nearly drunk enough".
I don't know why that memory flies to the front of consciousness. Nothing else interesting happened that night. I, indeed, was not nearly drunk enough to do anything other than go home to my own lovely bed, alone.
But youth takes on tones and textures. A feeling and a scent and a velocity that isn't ever replicated, again as life goes on. You are new to a city, you are in a car with people you barely know. Everyone is in the know that we are all beautiful and available and free and we are all going home, tonight, to wherever we want to go, and that is our choice, and we may do it again, the very next evening. Or not. The moment is more consequential than the ultimate equation, and the fact that I have so little control concerns me only because there is so little to control, in that moment.