The Proxy Marriage _ The New Yorker.pdf - The Proxy...

This preview shows page 1 - 3 out of 22 pages.

6/16/2019 The Proxy Marriage | The New Yorker 1/22 W illiam was tall and thin and shy and awkward in school. His best social tool was that he played the piano, and so was recruited for school musicals, which placed him at rehearsals and cast parties with kids he would otherwise scarcely have known. He thought he would be either a pianist or a physicist, although he didn’t know anyone in Montana who did those things professionally. His piano teacher was a banker’s widow who gave lessons in her lace-curtained house, and his physics teacher was primarily the wrestling coach. But William could imagine another kind of life. Through the musicals, he became friends with Bridey Taylor. Bridey had golden curls, like a Botticelli angel, and a face that didn’t go with them: a long, straight nose, dark eyes. She had a clear, bright mezzo-soprano voice and she wanted to be an actress. Her mother had left when Bridey was nine, and she had grown up with her father, a lawyer, who adored her. Bridey was con±dent, even a little vain, and she was good at school, except for math, which didn’t interest her. William helped her through trigonometry, teaching her the concepts at lunch before tests so she could forget them immediately afterward. William had no girlfriends in high school, and his mother once sat him down at the table in her spotless kitchen and asked if he was gay. She said it would be ±ne with her. She loved him unconditionally, and they would ±gure out a way to tell his father. But William wasn’t gay. He was just absurdly, painfully in love with Bridey Taylor, who leaned on the piano and sang while he played, and he had no way of telling her. He was too shy to pursue other girls, even when the payoff seemed either likely or worth the agony. But he didn’t tell his mother that. It was too humiliating. He just stammered an unconvincing denial. Other boys asked Bridey out, and William suffered through it. She viewed them with amusement, but she accepted most invitations. Encouraged, in their junior year William decided to ask her to the winter formal. He was getting ready, vibrating with Fiction The Proxy Marriage By Maile Meloy May 21, 2012 You have 2 free articles left this month. Subscribe now. Expand
Image of page 1

Subscribe to view the full document.

6/16/2019 The Proxy Marriage | The New Yorker 2/22 anticipation, when Bridey told him that a tennis-playing senior named Monty had invited her. “What did you say?” he asked. “Oh, yes . I guess.” William excused himself from homeroom and went to the disinfectant-smelling tiled bathroom. He waited until he was sure that no one else was there, then threw up in a green graffiti-marked stall. He hadn’t thrown up since he was six, when he had the ²u, and it was harrowing. His body seemed to have been taken over by some alien force.
Image of page 2
Image of page 3
  • Winter '11
  • lauraHanson
  • The Land, 2007 singles, 2005 singles, The New Yorker, Proxy marriage, Bridey

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern