Five and 1/3 years ago I passed along a brief personal tale about sexual molestation. It happened in New Orleans when I was 19 and blind drunk. Suffice to say that I woke up in a French Quarter hotel room with a heavy-set 50 year-old dude in New Orleans. That’s as far as I’m going to go, detail-wise, but I’m 99% sure nothing happened. And if it did, I don’t want to think about it.

Yesterday I was having lunch with an ex-girlfriend from 40-odd years ago and her husband, plus a friend of theirs. The three of them were roaring along with conversation at a fairly high speed, and I was trying to jump into the chatter like a 1930s hobo hopping on a freight train, but they were going too fast. Every so often I’d hear a word or a phrase and would try to jump on…”hey, hold on, guys, slow down…I’ve got an observational nugget here! Wait, wait!…okay.”

I began to lose track of time but there I continued to be, running alongside the freight train and starting to feel winded and then a tad despairing.

So eventually I figured, “What the hell…the next observational nugget will have to be a conversation stopper…I won’t even look to precisely add to the topic of the moment…I’ll just drop something into the conversation like a hand grenade.” Hence the drunken New Orleans thing.

All to say I might not have inserted this sordid tale if I could’ve figured some way to jump on the train, but I couldn’t. I wasn’t fast or fleet-of-mind enough.

There’s an anarchist that lives inside me. He takes orders from the rationalist and the humanist, but he has a voice and sometimes gives me great ideas for column topics and is very much the free-thinker, but there are some stories that should probably not be shared during a nice lunch.