I like Happy Sophie, who sees shapes in clouds and throws her head back to let out a whopping laugh or a machine gun snigger. I like her simplicity, the gratuitous smile that pervades even the eyes, and the fragmented tunes she whistles as she trots down the stairs and along the road.

I like Chatty Sophie, who likes people, small talk and exchanging stories. She meets facetiousness with a witty response and does not miss a beat- words are water from a running tap. She answers with aplomb, and it’s almost an out-of-body experience watching conversations unfold like maps with roads that meander off the edges of the paper.

I like when Chatty Sophie, Happy Sophie and Drunk Sophie come together with their hands interlocked. This is the point when Carefree Sophie makes an appearance, with this dangerous proclivity for skipping too high (with no fear of falling), forever chanting “why not?” as Reasonable Sophie takes her cue to jump out the window (for a much deserved vacation).

But I don’t like Selfish Sophie. She tosses her hair and swats people away like flies flying too close. She chooses to erase the things that ground her for the briefest luxuries. Hedonist! Greedy, venomous beast! She’s possessive, jealous, with the same neediness of an infant for his mother. Her fangs glint between painted lips, ready to take. I’m scared of her, and anticipate Guilty Sophie who usually crawls out from under the weight of Selfish Sophie, battered and begging to stay for days. Sometimes I can’t get rid of her, but when she doesn’t show up, I feel like a part of me is missing. Guilty Sophie you are my compass.

Sophie wears adjectives and personas like costumes on rent. I wonder if I’ve ever met Just Sophie… must’ve just missed her.


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