Pictures & Puzzles

You used to draw me pictures all the time. Some of them were amazing portraits, or very detailed comics. Some were just silly jokes. They were on paper, cards, napkins, brochures, in books you made me and even scratched on your class handouts.

You mailed me puzzles too. Word games that I had to decipher in order to get the message, clues ripped up and in a jewelry box, anagrams of our names, palindromes, ambigrams, jokes written between the lines of a class assignment. . . So many puzzles.

Pictures and puzzles alike were full of private jokes. Our life together started so long ago – we had so many sayings and nicknames and jokes and wacky anniversaries to celebrate.

I mean, you were a dork, and also it was usually fun mail to get.

I look at them now though, and a new puzzle appears.

Did I appreciate these incredibly inane word puzzles? I think I rolled my eyes. I think my friends sighed when they saw the crazy mail. I know I hid it all from parents prying eyes. There were too many crude jokes, too many cartoon versions of me — with my head recognizable, my clothes off – and a naked you on a bed waiting, staring at my cartoon boobs.

You literally sketched yourself a big(ger than real life) penis and mailed it to me.

That’s weird, dude.

I used to wonder how I was going to get rid of all of these notes and pictures before we died. I didn’t want the kids to ever read a cartoon you with an erection cracking a sex joke with a naked sketch of me on a bed.

Thank goodness I can just burn the pictures and puzzles now.

What a relief.

Although, there’s a picture on a napkin in this soon-to-be-burned batch. It must be important – because why would I save a napkin from 1994? It looks like a birds eye map of a house. But I have no idea what it is, or what it means.

If I asked you, you might remember. But the days of mailed pictures and puzzles and love letters are gone. We don’t even text unless we have to these days.

It’s a shame, because dork or not, red flags and all, there’s history there, and I thought I’d always get to share it with you.

I’ll just burn it with the rest, I guess.

I have no idea what most of this is about. Only the part about not being quizzed makes sense— that is an inside joke that lived for almost 30 years!

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