Bradley Somer: Dear Carla

February 12th,1998

            Dear Carla,

            Have I ever been in love?

Up until the moment I saw you, I thought I knew…. now, I’m unsure.

My past loves were all kind of like, “Hey, you’re pretty cool. Let’s hang out a lot, watch some movies, maybe have a bunch of sex and get to know each other as best as anyone is able.” Lying in on a Sunday morning, all snuggling under warm blankets and twisted up in each other, the sun peeking through cracks in the blinds, chatting and listening to some cars drive past outside, I thought that comfort was love.

Don’t get me wrong, that kind of love is great, but it’s not what I’m feeling now, not after the time we spent together this evening.

This love is not comfortable.

If words could describe this love, they would be hard and immediate and… not comfortable.

Maybe I’m starting off a little strong. I don’t want to seem like one of those guys… the trouble ones, you know? But I know how they feel.

I can totally see how a guy would go through someone’s garbage just to get closer to a girl he’s interested in, just to know more about her. Or even how he could painstakingly collect strand after strand of hair to make one of those hair dolls that people think are so weird.

I mean, they are weird, the hair dolls, and I don’t condone such behaviour or anything, just saying I understand it. Feelings that strong can be so hard to express that we can become some bumbling guy sniffing a hair effigy. There just aren’t the words or gestures to— our mouths and bodies are totally inadequate, our brains totally ill-equipped, for such force of attraction.

But this isn’t about me, it’s about you. It’s all about you and maybe that’s what this feeling is, this buzz… this intoxicated buzziness. It’s all about you. This feeling, this foreign fear, maybe it’s an ego release because I’m not the most important thing to me anymore. You are.

I know this is where I should insert a list of the things I love about you (the way you move, the way the light catches the life in your eyes, the way your smile shows your cheeky charm) but all that would make this love cliché. And this love is not cliché.

It’s almost like these feelings were afterthoughts that snuck up and hijacked the main point of everything in life, like they weren’t in the original plan, but somehow became it. We can deal with pretty much everything, human beings I mean, on a big scale. Our bodies and brains can deal with so much, except this.

This kind of love is like putting after-market parts on your car, you know? Like you drop thousands of dollars on an Alpha Delta SoundFX muffler and some Screamer Series wheel skins for your low pros… like you spend days installing a Trillian T-Force kit and have to fight to fit the Cat-Back Exhaust, even though it’s supposed to be frickin’ compatible. You do all that, but in the end, it’s still just a Kia, and a Kia doesn’t know what to do with all that stuff.

 And that’s how I feel about you, Carla.

I’m that Kia and I don’t know what to do with all this stuff.

It’s unfair.

I know I’ll probably come across sounding like some douche because I can’t say it any better, but I had to try.

My buddy Gary, the guy who brought me here, he said I should write you a letter. The bouncer wouldn’t let me give it to you, and I didn’t trust him to deliver it, so I’ll mail it to you, to Carla, here at the bar here.

I don’t know your last name, so I hope you get it. You’re the only dancer named Carla that I know, so I’m sure you’ll get it. I’m sure this’ll work. It must.

My number is on the back. Please call me.

Or you can text if it’s easier.

Thank you for the poster,


P.S. Gary was right! Tell the cook that the chicken wings are awesome!

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