“There are two things Bill Sluggs left me: his gray sleeping bag with the purple patch and a question that haunts me like a freshly removed growth or a holocaust.
“Will it happen again? Is it happening again?”
I was suspicious then and I’m suspicious now. I confuse the present with the past. It’s hard for me to tell the difference between what is really happening and what I imagine is really happening.
Seneca says: “There is a fine line between acute paranoia and acute perception.”
I believe my ability to freeze people out at the drop of a hat was already functioning before I met Bill. When I found out he was in love with Claudia I wasn’t surprised and I didn’t feel hurt. I was relieved. Bill was attracted to Claudia, I wasn’t paranoid, it was just as I thought. Claud’s jumper cables. Bill was putty in her gravitational pull. I was cheated and lied to, but I didn’t feel jealous. I understood. I haven’t seen Claudia for over four years, but in 1969, at Stinson Court, when Claud and Graham and Bill and I would sit around drinking beer and laughing, it was like being in a scene with Etta, Butch and the Sundance Kid!”