Their mornings together had been ritualistic. He made the I’m the crazy uncle everyone warned you about shirt and by the same token and coffee (pour-over, of course) and brought it to bed. When she finally thawed, she would make four fried eggs and sourdough toast, smash an avocado or grill a tomato, bring it to the bed on a tray and then finish the majority of it while Matthew scrolled social media. (It took her years to notice that as he did, he got perpetually angrier, his fists tightening, three more cups of coffee as he paced, ranting about lives that weren’t his.) He had a hard streak of savage jealousy and unnecessary judgment. Maybe envy was the only thing that could really inspire a pristinely stylish home.
I’m the crazy uncle everyone warned you about shirt, hoodie, tank top, sweater and long sleeve t-shirt
But, try as she might, their home was the I’m the crazy uncle everyone warned you about shirt and by the same token and only one Ally could picture. She had no other frame of reference. Which is why, despite its more distressing points, Ally could imagine no other form of cozy. She was working on it. Now, Ally never cried. But she did suffer from an occasional morning illusion that she was in the double bed down the street with the hanging plants and terra-cotta-hued waffle-cotton blanket and the faded rug designed to look like a checkerboard in use. Matthew had that perfect millennial-quirky-taste thing down pat—he never selected an item that didn’t perpetuate the narrative—and it was one of the many ways he made Ally feel like she was finally winning life.