‘Don’t wear anything furry,’ I’d said. She arrived in cotton pants and a crisp linen shirt—hoped it wasn’t too formal for a movie. Perfect. I found it  hard to explain how fluffy things overwhelmed me—how I wanted to plunge into them. But when I asked if we could move seats she seemed to understand. A girl with a fur collar had taken the seat in front of me. ‘My god, Eric, you’re shaking. Is it an allergy?’

‘Not quite,’ I said. ‘More a fascination. An urge to touch. Almost too much to bear’. Usually when I had this conversation things crumbled. I was tall and athletic and I was supposed to like hard, uncompromising things.

But Anita took it in her stride. Said it was cool. Different. Made things interesting. She wanted to know the details. We talked until midnight, mostly about soft things.

On our next date she wore angora. ‘Knock yourself out, big boy,’ she said, with a smile I hoped I’d never forget.

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