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They both sat down and announced their ages.

“I’m 32,” said Arlene.

“I’m 23,” said Tammie.

“Add your ages together,” I said, “and you’ve got me.”

Arlene’s hair was long and black. She sat in the chair by the window combing her hair, making up her face, looking into a large silver mirror…

From Chapter 41 of Women, a novel by Charles Bukowski

Note: Arlene was based on Georgia (RIP), who famously posed with Bukowski in front of his refrigerator. (You can google the photos — priceless!) Bukowski also wrote a poem called “The Silver Mirror” about Georgia’s first visit. Tammie was based on Pamela “Cupcakes” Wood, whose memoir of her two-year relationship with Bukowski —  Charles Bukowski’s Scarlet — is available on Amazon.com here.