"The thing to remember about love affairs," says Simone, "is that they are all like having raccoons in your chimney. ... We have raccoons sometimes in our chimney ... And once we tried to smoke them out. We lit a fire, knowing they were there, but we hoped that the smoke would cause them to scurry out the top and never come back. Instead, they caught on fire and came crashing down into our living room, all charred and in flames and running madly around until they dropped dead." Simone swallows some wine. "Love affairs are like that," she says. "They all are like that."
-- Lorrie Moore, "Birds of America"