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Keith’s long reverie of romance ends when Lesli pops the big question




At length, Lesli had made the transition from L.A. to NYC in fairly fine shape, getting her legs beneath her once she’d decided to accept the gig running the research library at the American Museum of Natural History. Her next step had been to sign a lease on some digs downtown. She didn’t particularly care for the Upper East Side. “All these damn snobs,” she had groused one morning as they sat poring over the N.Y. Times classifieds to find her a crib. Keith had to agree that his neighbors — for that matter, everybody he knew of in this part of town — thought their stuff didn’t stink.  He also couldn’t give a flying figure-eight. Continue Reading →

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Their inauspicious start ended well enough…until now



Keith recalled how Lesli had thoroughly cussed him out for stepping on her foot the very first time they’d ever set eyes on each other at an L.A. party. Midway through a loud exclamation about what he did with mothers in general, she stopped and looked around the room. In pin-dropping silence, the guests, well-to-do, mostly White, gawked. It dawned on her, on him, too, as they looked around, that they were acting out age-old stereotypes that Black women basically were loud, uncouth hellcats, and Black men, especially after enough to drink, beat them as a matter of course. Never all that impressed by upscale trappings, Keith didn’t give a flying figure-8 what these lames thought. He hadn’t liked, though, that she looked bad, swearing like a sailor, clearly than in less than full control of herself. He held out his hand to help her up. She gave him a glare that would scare Medusa. He waited. Continue Reading →

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