Romy, one of my failings is a failure to realize when someone is trying out something on me that sounds convincing when they are really only trying to convince themselves. I keep thinking about our conversation the other day when I was running the dogs and want to say to you that it hit me later that I should be saying to you: Don't act on those impulses you are having. You know that only misery can come from it. The illusion of intimacy is no substitute for the real thing. It is in fact terribly heartbreaking. These youngsters have no idea what they are playing with when they tantalize you. They are children with children's sophistication and play with matches in innocence. You are lonely and that is partly because you have learned about false paths and are not distracted by the lure of illusory satisfaction. That's a good thing. Do not give in to what you know is going to cause you pain. You are seasoned and wise beyond the comprehension of maybe everyone around you. That's lonely but you are not alone in that. There just aren't that many of you because it takes a lot of courage and pain to get where you are. Don't sell yourself short. Reach for that illusion and it will turn to sand and trickle through your fingers. You are on the right track. Don't blow it. Maybe that was what Maurice was trying to tell you. Or maybe he's doing the things you are too smart to do. I mean it. I know you are being tried. In truth I think you are far evolved over me in the risks and tests you have withstood. You are a man. That's not commonplace in my experience these days. That's far better than being the fool adolescent that would kid himself with diversion and get burned.