He was wearing a black turtleneck that was too short at the waist, but the way the collar crawled up the back of his neck and bunched right under his hairline was perfect. The girl sitting across from him was wearing almost the same thing, but the collar of her sweater scooped more. They smiled at each other above their collars. Their giggles got trapped in the ribbing. When the restaurant got drafty, they pulled their collars up around their chins at the same time. And then they tugged them down in synchronized form. Then they left.
I saw the collar couple a week later, this time on the subway. They weren’t wearing their sweaters. But they both had big furry mittens on. I couldn’t stop watching the blunt movements of their hands. One mitten resting on another, or one mitten brushing the face of the other mitten-wearer, or, and this was really shocking, one mitten trying to get a speck of something out of the other mitten-wearer’s hair. Maybe what it really comes down to is hair.