“You got a fast car.” “What’s that supposed to mean?” It went on like that. They didn’t have a Ouija board or a tarot deck in that small shack, so they augured with what was to hand. Board games, mostly. Scrabble. Life. In this case, Monopoly. “The token of your extreme, I’ll say. It takes you a while to get moving but once in motion, you burn rubber whatever direction you’re headed.” If nothing else, her wife was a consummate improviser. Once she got her hooks in, she could bullshit past the horizon itself. She pulled a blue card from atop the instructions. “Oriental Avenue reversed,” she downshifted into false solemnity, “an omen of great bigotry faced-down.” “Come on, for us, that’s just another Tuesday in Schenectady.”
They were trying their best to unwind for a weekend, from her lesson planning for next semester and the second draft of her wife’s newest musical “Public Displays of Infection”, at her in-laws’ beach place on Pleasant Hollow Long Island, but a thunder storm them stuck inside. Neither took the divinations too seriously, between them an agnostic science professor and a culturally Jewish artist who referred to herself as “Reformed Reform” whose definition of God was “wants us all to love each other and She has great tits.”
Still, reading futures via Monopoly broke up their rain-forged monotonies, allowed them to joke about all the psychic fairs cancelled by COVID and how if they were worth their claims, surely, they would’ve seen it coming and not booked them to begin with. “When we played the Ouija at sleepovers,” the biologist admitted, “I always moved the planchets to doom my friends with the love of ugly boys.” “My folks never let me have sleepovers,” her wife smiled sly, “they already knew I wouldn’t be there to talk about boys.”
They got where they were going along very different paths, they found each other along the way and because of who the each of them was, they knew they hadn’t been destined for each other at all. They both felt it better that way. If God or the arrangement of the stars or a turn of the cards give you something, it means so much less than if you find it and work to make it your own. The dramatist and scientist found each other by simple chance, saw something good in each other and worked like hell to make their lives wonderful together. If anything, those fates opposed them at several turns and they together told the fates to go screw. They earned their love themselves.
A crash of lightning and the power in the beach cabin flickered. “Marvin Gardens,” she said with a green card in her hand, “name Marvin mean anything to you?” “The boy Ouija told Susie Yost she was going to marry. Think he ended up in the priesthood.” Her wife laughed. “My fast car,” she flicked the card across the table, “how glad I am we parked ourselves together.”