What Is This?

“What is this? Is this for me?”
“It is. I ran out of wrapping paper.”
“Oh, well that’s okay. It’s a really nice notebook.”
“Oh, it’s a journal.”
“Yeah, and, you know, I’ll understand if you want to give me my apartment key back….”
“Oh, you’ve used it. You’ve drawn in it.”
“…and if you want to get all your stuff out of here. But, although I’ll understand, you should know that none of it is intended to scare you or freak you out or anything.”
“I love the way you draw.”
“Well, you’ll see what I’m….”
“Is that me?”
“Who else would that be?”
“Well, she’s wearing my number.”
“She is. So yes, it’s you.”
“She’s taller than me.”
“Perspective really. It may be off.”
“Oh, look—I’m fast on the ball. With my tongue out? Do I run with my tongue out?”
“It’s not like you’re wagging it. You press your tongue to the corner of your mouth when you stop, think….”
“Right after kick-off and there I go.”
“That’s not made up.”
“Not this fast. Where the fuck’s the other team?”
“They’re there. It’s just that you’re so fast.”
“These are amazing. I’m happy you used the full page and didn’t draw those tiny cell’s like you do with Jordy.”
“You give a lot of detail in the bigger ones, these pictures. Like this one, with the ball in the air, looking at it from below. Seeing it in the sky, the details in the sky. It’s nice.”
“You could be a critic. You could be my agent, maybe.”
“Oh, there’s the other team.”
“There they are.”
“Only one person on the team?”
“One person on you at least.”
“Nice, she’s grabby. Arm up in my neck, other hand on my shirt.”
“You get that a lot.”
“I’ve noticed!”
“Does it ever turn you on?”
“Being pummeled by strangers? Are you serious?”
“Pummeled’s a strong word.”
“No time to get turned on. It’s turning me on to look at this picture, knowing you drew it and all, but in real life it happens too fast to think about anything other than getting away.”
“Oh, look at me! I’m all pissed off in this one. I can’t shake her. How come she’s out of the picture?”
“What do you mean?”
“Why can’t I see her face?”
“You’ll see her face.”
“How long did this take you?”
“Yeah. Oh, she’s tearing my shirt. It’s almost off, I like that. Do you want to come here and sit with me? We can look at this?”
“Go on. I know what you’re looking at.”
“Where’s the ref? This is total red card material. She’s pulling me down by my waist.”
“I like how you’re asking for the ref still, here in my apartment looking at a comic I drew.”
“Well, my shirt’s practically off and my face is against the ground. I like my grimace. Good thing I’m not biting my tongue or anything.”
“Good thing is right.”
“She’s kissing me. Just her lips? I like the look in my eyes, like ‘fuck you!’ Face in the ground and all…Oh, I like the silhouette in this next one. Except where is everyone else? You can draw bleachers full of spectators but…Oh, I like the person holding the ‘Owen Sucks’ sign.”
“Yeah, I tried, but couldn’t really resist that, figured you would.”
“And now she’s kneeling above me now and I’m just, like, up on my hands looking back at her, all in silhouette. I like the lights on the field. Those are nice, the way they shine.”
“Thanks. I’m glad you can tell what’s what. I sort of rushed toward the end.”
“You couldn’t tell. Will you please sit here with me? I’m being mauled by a stranger and you’re just standing there, letting it happen.”
“Oh, you can get me on more than that, actually.”
“Just sit. I like this one of just my eyes. It’s like the turning point, right? Something big happens after this: the really tense picture, up close. Oh, you can see her in my eyes! She’s reflected!”
“Mm hm.”
“What is this? She’s grabbing off my shorts? This is a nice one. I like when you focus just on body parts, like her hand and my stomach, my thighs. Oh, I think she’s got some underwear, too.”
“Yeah, she does.”
“Ah, huh…will you stop….”
“SHE’S FUCKING…wait, is that you? Hold on...it fucking is you!”
“It’s more of mythical version of me, I guess, see. A time when that could have been possible, but since that time is now and it’s not….”
“That doesn’t even make sense. Julia, you’re, like, oh my god. You’re practically fisting me in front of hundreds of people, my teammates, your teammates. Oh, the sign says, ‘Owen Blows’ now.”
“Uh, ha! So….”
“Oh my god, I’m loving it.”
“A little bit, yeah.”
“No, I mean I’m loving this. I mean, I’m loving it here, too. But, oh, I’m so happy you drew you biting my lip.”
“I love it when you bite my lip, but here it looks like you’re doing it too hard.”
“Um, consider the circumstances?”
“You raping me?”
“You’re raping me. And no one’s stopping you.”
“Not even the referee.”
“Oh, am I coming in this one? Your hand on my neck. That’s reversed. You like that.”
“Yeah, that’s not too good. It’s hard to separate looks of pain and, like, pleasure for you because, when I did that, you just ended up looking like Jordy.”
“Jordy’s coming face?”
“A little bit, yeah.”
“Have you never watched me come?”
“I don’t…no. I never…you know, I’m usually busy elsewhere.”
“Watch next time. You can redo this one. And that hand needs to be on your neck.”
“Oh, okay. But it’s a better effect that way.”
“I like how the only line of dialogue in this is ‘Oh!’”
“Well, seemed more flattering, let’s say, than ‘Unh!’”
“Is this the way it ends? Oh, there’s one after. I like this one, though, just our faces, with our eyes closed. I like the way your mouth is opened, like you’re out of breath. And I like the way I’m sort of nuzzled there against you.”
“I don’t usually have to run that fast, see….”
“Ha! I like how in the last one you’re there on top of me all snuggled….”
“Snuggled, I don’t know….”
“…and I’m, like, signaling for the card. I like how the ref has five.”
“It’s actually motion. A waving motion, not really five.”
“Well, I like that.”
“I knew you’d have it coming for me.”


meg said...

I LOVE this!

What a fun moment. Great dynamic. I love how it starts, with Julia saying she'll be expecting her apartment keys back. :) And you really managed to pull off telling us what is in the drawings and have it seem very natural. Well done.

angela said...

I want to write the book in dialogue only.

meg said...

I think you could do that.

I also think you could do the whole thing as a graphic novel. (though, yes, I guess that would require drawing...)

Have you seen this book? Just as an example of the seriousness possible in graphic novels:


It's wonderful. So is it's sequel.