CHURCH AND STATE
Once Church and State hooked up at a singles bar. They made for an unlikely couple, to be sure, seeming to have little if anything in common. Most who had even a passing acquaintance with the two would have been surprised to find either of them in the type of meat market where they met. Hardly “swingers” in anybody’s book, both Church and State had a reputation for preferring the company of those they already knew and for feeling uncomfortable with any notion of risking potentially dangerous liaisons with strangers. That might have been the way things remained had it not been for the uninvited urging of certain friends who fancied themselves matchmakers and thought the reserved pair just needed a helpful nudge to “overcome their inhibitions and expand their horizons,” as these friends put it with a wink and a nod. What a waste if the two didn’t venture out and discover how much excitement a little mixing might bring to their lives. Arriving at the singles bar at roughly the same time, the self-appointed cupids who formed the respective retinues of Church and State exchanged knowing glances and quickly set about executing various schemes to maneuver the two into closer proximity while keeping their glasses filled. There were plenty of awkward moments at first, but as familiarity grew and things began to loosen up, the pair might be seen to touch pinkies furtively from time to time as if by accident, then to lean together ever so gently and then more unblushingly as their last inhibitions faded until, unable to keep their hands off each other, they drawled incoherently and groped away for all they were worth. Confident they’d accomplished their mission, the matchmaking friends on both sides quietly withdrew and went home to sleep off the effects of the evening. Not so for the blotto pair of Church and State, however, who had to be shown the bar door at closing time. As they staggered away locked in an ungainly embrace, little of what the two could be heard to mumble made much sense. If anything, it sounded like a rambling difference of opinion over whose place to head for and who should be on top and who on the bottom once they got there.
Copyright © 2020 by Geoffrey Grosshans