“I can’t figure out how to turn down this umbrella.” Clara fidgeted with the handle and spokes, feeling for some sort of toggle that just wasn’t there.

“Well, if you press this button here, it’ll collapse and fold back up-“

“Do I really look that dumb?" She huffed. "I'm trying to turn it down, not off. I only want to filter out all these low-quality raindrops." She continued searching in futility for a few more seconds. "Wow, it really doesn't have a filter, does it? Why would anyone want an umbrella that only has one setting?”


“A good umbrella should know the difference between a good and bad raindrop, you know? The purity, the temperature, the sphericity- all of it. Well-designed rain is cool, smooth, and compact, and rolls off the skin gracefully. Like the rain in St. Louis. Have you ever been to St. Louis?”

“I haven’t, but-“

“I love it there. They have some of the world’s best weather designers in St. Louis. The raindrops are thick, to a point that they’re almost creamy. It’s so well done that I usually don’t even need an umbrella to feel the difference.”

“That’s great, but, well,” Blake let out an exasperated sigh. “Look, I have to confess. I have no idea what you’re talking about. I’ve never seen an umbrella like that before. And weather designers? Really?”

She paused. “Are you being serious right now?”

“Dead serious.”

A longer, more awkward pause followed, then a sigh. “Damn. Your profile even listed ‘dancing in the rain’ in your list of interests.”

“Yeah, so?”

“I thought for sure that I’d finally found someone on that stupid website who actually appreciates the rain.”

“Well, I do. At least, the rain that I know.” He scratched his head. “But right about now, I really feel like I’m missing out on something.”

“Yeah,” she said, reaching her hand out from under the brim. “Me too.”