BOOK TOUR:THE PLACE WHERE WE BELONG
BY R.K. MAYER
General Literary Fiction /Self-Help Fiction
I don’t care how old you are, where you are from, or what your profession is, I think humans have one thing in common: the need to belong. I am no different. It’s not so much a dependency; it’s more like an instinct. Despite human evolution over the past million years, we still remain pretty tribal. With me, the need to belong conflicts with the fact that – as my friends say – I am “all angles and edges.” I don’t fit in anywhere very easily. I don’t try to be this way; I just am. I think this was what David initially found so attractive. He was so trapped in making people like him, being acceptable and acquiescent, that for him, I was a breath of fresh air. I was someone who could tell the electrician not to bother to come inside since he was late, or someone who was not scared to tell his parents that no thank you very much, but we will not be coming to dinner. In many ways, I was able to say and do things that he couldn’t. He allowed me to become his mouthpiece, at first in situations of conflict and then in uncomfortable places, and then more or less all the time. Suddenly he realized that he had lost his voice all together. I guess that over time, my directness became less and less charming for him and more of a burden – a reminder that his own voice was sublimated. Until one day, it wasn’t anymore.
So at the age of twenty-eight, I found myself newly divorced and wondering what to do next. I don’t know if there is a code book for the newly divorced, but the gravitation to the tribe was stronger than anything that I can remember. To not be alone. To be out on the market. Single again is like having the scarlet letter “A” branded on your forehead: Alone, Anguished, Awkward . . . not belonging to the tribe, on the outskirts of civilization. So I grew out my pixie short hair, bought a few new pairs of jeans and tops to herald in a new era, and went to live in that infamous city of singles: Tel Aviv.
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