The students’ announcements were lengthy – the longer roll call was, the shorter first period would be – and filled with double entendres: Boys’ soccer is practicing on Coates Field today, which, if you don’t know where it is, is behind the headmaster’s house, and if you still don’t know where it is, ask Fred. Where are you, Fred? You wanna raise your hand, man? There’s Fred, everyone see Fred? Okay, so Coates Field. And remember – bring your balls.
There then occurred the first and only paranormal incident of my marriage. Charlie shifted in his sleep, opened his eyes, looked at me and, without preamble, said, “You have to forgive yourself for killing that boy.” . . . “For your own sake but for mine, too,” he was saying, and his voice was hoarse from sleep yet also certain and insistent. “If you don’t forgive yourself, you’re making that accident too important, you’re making him too important.” Charlie paused. “And I want to be the love of your life.