As a child, Bobolinko lost his milk money, his allowance, his quarter for the offering plate though sometimes he just kept that for himself, and shoes. How can you lose shoes, his mom asked. Dunno, just do.
He still hasn’t outgrown losing things. When he fell in love with Craig at eighteen, he lost his heart. Craig, a poor choice to lose a heart over, was attractive, kind of like a brand new vacuum cleaner, shiny and ready. And he knew it.
Craig left him for Dan and then another and another. It occurred to Bobolinko that maybe Craig had no heart to lose or to give. Bobolinko asked St. Anthony for help, the patron of lost things, even though he wasn’t Catholic. What could it hurt? He got his heart back, dented, but still beating.
He kept losing his heart. Maybe it was better to live without one. Hearts won’t stay put. If Bobolinko could keep his in his pocket he knew it would fall out just like his SmartPhone did when he was walking in Washington D.C. on his way to the Lincoln Monument. He never found it and as usual it wasn’t returned.
A monk brought Anthony food during his fast–the devil. Bobolinko decided to take a fast from love. He watched many reruns of That Girl reruns and read another Bette Davis biography. Bette faced temptations too, but she saw herself as a “Yankee” who could fight them off if she chose to do that. Bobolinko could give up sex but his heart was another matter. It yearned. It wouldn’t leave him alone. Even when lost.
One cold November day after eating a Lorna Doone cookie, he saw that his heart had become a feral cat looking for a slight opening in the back door to get out. It scurried up Clanton Street and into a park. St. Anthony called to it couldn’t get it to return. Until in spring when it appeared at the back step and shot back inside. The right ear had been torn, no doubt in a fight. The cat fell asleep, seemingly contented, for a while.