Archive | September, 2012

I’m a Creep

30 Sep

I have a secret.  Don’t tell anyone.

Remember when Missed Connections first became popular?  Pretty much every girl I know trolled Craigslist (at least once), hoping to find that some eloquent mystery man had made her the subject of her own romantic comedy.  To my knowledge I still have yet to be the subject of someone’s Missed Connection… but I wrote one this week.

The other night I attended an improv show with a friend from college.  We then went to a bar in Williamsburg where we had a long, self-indulgent conversation about what’s wrong with our lives.  After really letting loose with an assortment of personal confessions, we somehow shifted onto the topic of absentee voting.  It was then that an extremely attractive man interjected– “I don’t mean to eavesdrop, but I just overheard your conversation…”  Oh god.  I hadn’t even noticed that anybody was sitting behind us, let alone Mister September from the Brooklyn Eligible Bachelor Calendar.  I thought back over all of the embarrassing things I had just drunkenly said to my friend that he may have heard.  He cleared up our confusion concerning voting absentee and told us that he had just written an article on voting laws for a popular blog.  I was impressed– you may have gathered by now that I have a weakness for writers and musicians.  His friend was much more stand-offish, seemingly hesitant to be engaging in conversation with us.  They moved to sit next to us at the bar and we talked about writing and rapping (the other guy turned out to be a rapper in a well-known rap group).  My friend and I ordered our next round.  The cute guy told his friend they should stay for another, but the grouchy rapper said no.  They left and I realized we hadn’t gotten their names.

When I got home, it took me all of five minutes to figure out his name thanks to my cyber-stalking skills (honed during a summer 2007 telemarketing job where I got paid to uncover the personal info of top company CEOs in Boston).   I couldn’t bring myself to contact him directly, however… that would be TOO creepy.  So I settled for a Missed Connection, floating in the vast sea of Craigslist posts like a vacant lily pad waiting for a sexy frog occupant.

Here’s my post:

To the handsome stranger in the thermal at Basik:  Tell me more about WordPress and voter’s rights.  Why did you let your friend talk you out of having that last drink?

But seriously, a writer and a babe?  I long for another fleeting conversation, perhaps even a sweet caress and/or blog collaboration.  Just kidding.  Kinda.

A Canadian Conundrum

26 Sep

As the air gets cooler and the leaves begin to change, Canadian men flow freely throughout New York City– blending in among us.  Why, just the other night a few glasses of wine turned into a lengthy Canadian kiss on the steps of a spooky church as the clock struck five.

Another Canadian man, “Pepper,” recently sent me one of the most original messages I’ve gotten on OKCupid– a rap song that he wrote for me about body parts.  He explained that he writes educational rap songs for a living– mostly about biology.  He noted in his profile that when he isn’t rapping about molecules, he enjoys pickling eggs.  His “Six Things I Could Never Do Without” were six of his pickled eggs (or maybe I made that up)… and under “The Most Private Thing I’m Willing to Admit” he wrote that peeling eggs was eerily relaxing for him (that was really on there).  Aside from his egg fetish, he was also well-known throughout Canada as an avid planter of trees.

Last week, Pepper invited me to attend a play with him at the New York Fringe Festival.  He wouldn’t tell me what we were seeing because he wanted to surprise me, but I figured out that it was a Shakespearean parody of “Pulp Fiction.”  I was looking forward to it because no one had taken me to a play on a blind date before.  Pepper already had 100 points for creativity.  We got a drink at the tiny bar in the SoHo Playhouse prior to the performance.  He knew everyone there and admitted that he had gotten free tickets because a rap show he had written had performed in that theatre a few months ago.  I told him that I can be a tough theatre critic and usually have a 75 minute play-watching limit.  He was surprised to hear that I used to do theatre, but hadn’t mentioned it in my profile.  As we made it to our seats and waited for the show to start, I gave Pepper the ol’ once-over.  He was older, with orange feathery hair, a small mouth, and a mischievous look in his eyes.

The play ended up being the perfect length… it was a little wordy at times, but otherwise well-written and acted.  After the show, Pepper suggested we get dinner at a nearby restaurant.  We shared a bowl of truffle mac and cheese and a big plate of overcooked clams.  He began to open up to me for the first time all night– he had initially been a little stand offish.  We talked about OKCupid, relationships, and how he’s done a lot of work in the bush.  Wait, come again?… I almost choked on a clam and he remembered that was not a term we use in America.  As we finished our meal, I assumed the date was ending but Pepper had other plans.  I thanked him for dinner and he said “My pleasure… you can buy my drinks at the next bar.”  Shit.  I had four dollars in my bank account until my paycheck went through later that night, probably sometime around 2 am.  It was currently midnight.  This is going to be a long two hours, I thought.  I walked as slowly as I could with him to a bar that I knew of in the West Village.  We drank and talked there for the next two hours while I repeatedly checked my balance on my phone.  How embarrassing.  He thought I was just bored, so we kept ordering rounds and he put his arm around me.  My speech was beginning to slur when my paycheck finally went through.  I paid the now $50 bill, hugged Pepper goodbye and leapt in a taxi before any funny business could transpire.  Thankfully my cab driver made great time, and was as funny as I was tipsy.  He told a story of unrequited love concerning another lady passenger who gave him “sexy eyes” but wouldn’t give him “her sex.”  He kept saying “Me?  I look like a potato.”

The moral of the story is:  Don’t go traipsing about the city with only four dollars in your bank account.  You never know when you might have to buy drinks for a Canadian.

The Underling

24 Sep

Aside from my high school boyfriend, there was another fashionable male I had a run-in with during Fashion Week.  A guy named “Luke” had asked me out about a month earlier.  He texted me on the day we arranged to meet saying that he had to cancel because he had a migraine.  We rescheduled a week later, at which point he canceled again– this time because he was trying to launch a blog in time for Fashion Week.  Just as I was beginning to wonder what he was hiding underneath his chinos, he commented on our shared interest in an old punk band from my youth.  Apparently it was one of his favorites and he had a band-related tattoo on his calf.  OK fine.

The night we met, he wanted to go to a hipster-y bar around the North Williamsburg area.  I changed venues to The Turkey’s Nest to test him out.  For those unfamiliar with The Nest, it is a favorite amongst Williamsburg old-timers, who try in vain to ignore the invasion of hipsters that trickle in as the night progresses.  If you go to The Turkey’s Nest on the right night at the right time, there are sleazy country songs playing on the jukebox and patrons are naked in the bathroom or sleeping on the bar.  All the bartenders are friendly and beers are served in giant styrofoam to-go cups.  I arrived first and parked myself at the bar between a Tim McGraw fan with a “RIP” tattoo, and an older man who was asleep sitting up.  I purchased a large styrofoam cup of beer, reapplied my lipstick and waited for my date to arrive.  When he did, I have to admit he exceeded my expectations.  He was cute, tall, and more masculine than I had anticipated.  His luxurious loafers, necklace, and perfectly folded pocket-bandana threw me for a loop, but I tried to look past his obvious affinity for accessorizing.  After playing a couple rounds of pool, we went to another nearby bar where we sat and chatted about blogs.  He was excited to launch his street fashion blog– it was all he could talk about.  I told him where I work and his eyes lit up.  I also broke one of my rules and told him about my blog.  Aside from his obvious love of fashion, he seemed pretty normal so I decided I wasn’t going to write about him.  He had never heard of people blogging about online dating before and was intrigued by the idea.  All of a sudden, as if out of nowhere, a pot of fruity lip gloss appeared.  And we aren’t talking a stick or even a tube.  A pot.  The kind that one must apply to their lips via fingertip.  It smelled like Hawaiian Punch and I was instantly jolted from my quasi-drunken euphoria back into sober skepticism.  For whatever reason, he decided to fondle my cell phone, and when I picked it up, it was covered in greasy fingerprints from his lip gloss!  Oh god, I spoke too soon I thought to myself– Instantly regretting divulging details of my blog to him.  En route to the train, he said “Well, I hate awkward goodbyes so…” then proceeded to pin me against a building and lay a kiss on me.  I counted to five in my head and pulled away, my lips coated in a fruity gloss that I (a female, mind you) would never wear.  We walked to the train and said our goodbyes.

Several days later I received a text from Luke asking if I was working at my store for Fashion Night Out (a party leading into Fashion Week where stores have drinks and giveaways, etc).  I hesitantly told him yes, to which he responded that he was going to bring his “blog team” by to “snap” some pictures.  What had I gotten myself into.  The night of Fashion Night Out, I wasn’t really looking forward to this individual I had met once (and accidentally made out with) coming to my place of employment with his “blog team,” but I forgot about it at some point during my ten hour work day.  I was working the door when Luke arrived.  His “blog team” consisted of himself, a mousy girl and an equally petite dude with a camera.  Luke’s outfit left me speechless for nearly a full minute.  He was wearing salmon-colored pants that were cuffed at the ankle to reveal just the right amount of skin, the same luxurious loafers as before (I’m not kidding I think they were velvet), a blazer over a black shirt, and a necklace.  It was in the 80s and close to 100% humidity that night, and I was stunned by his foppish attire.  But what made me want to board the next plane out of the country was the reincarnation of his perfectly folded bandana from a few nights earlier.  In his breast-pocket, a black and white polkadot silk scarf was situated into a little blob, like a scoop of whipped cream atop the fruitiest of sundaes.  His sidekick asked if they could take a picture of Luke and I, to which I politely declined– offering up the humidity as an excuse.  I could hear my coworkers snickering behind me as the blog team departed.

A few days later, Luke texted me to let me know that his blog had launched and he would love for me to check it out.  He also asked if he could take me out for drinks again (“before I forget what you look like!”)  I checked out his blog when I got home from work that day and found a post he had written about his Fashion Night Out excursions.  The tone of his blog is very snarky and wanna-be pretentious.  In the “About Us” section, Luke wrote that women swoon in his presence… but to catch his attention they should buy him a drink “without making eye contact” and then HE will approach them “if satisfied.”  The girl wrote that she gives men orgasms just by stepping on their toes with her designer heels.  Ugh.  In Luke’s post, he compliments my company for throwing a good Fashion Night Out party… but refers to me as a company “underling” while referencing the staff.  I had to glance through the post a second time to make sure I read it right.

For future reference: If I tell you I’m not going to write a blog post about you and then you insult me in your blog… all bets are off, buddy.  The bets were already close to being off when you smothered me with tropical lip gloss, but I was trying to be civil.  Either you are a moron and used a word you didn’t understand, or you are an asshole.  He texted me a day or two later, wondering when I was free to go out with him and also about the runway shows I attended.  I didn’t respond.  He texted me again a few days after that asking if I was watching the football game that was on.  This time I responded: “Yep, the Bears are certainly the underlings in this game.”  I don’t think he got it because he wrote back “It’s def a turn-on when girls talk sports.”  I wanted to write back “are you sure it’s not the men in tight pants?” but I didn’t.

Now I know I have written a multitude of unflattering things about men on the internet.  The fact that he called me an “underling” doesn’t really bother me… But the fact that he said that and then continued to try to go out with me is what blows my mind.

I wish him the best of luck with his blog… but maybe he should spend a little less time in the closet.  Literally, that is.

Ten Years Later…

16 Sep

“Did I wear the right thing tonight?… Do I look like the plump indian no one wanted in their teepee?… Uh oh two other girls are wearing my dress… Oh my god, Ricky Martin just walked by and he is shorter than I am…”

Fashion Week stresses me out.  Even when I’m off the clock, dancing at an after-party, I can’t stop the constant flow of irrational thoughts running through my head.   My Fashion Week freak-out usually begins a couple days prior and tends to manifest itself into an emotional eating/drinking scenario.  This is exactly what you SHOULDN’T do if you are going to be exiting a runway show in a few days, greeted by a wall of paparazzi waiting to get a shot of Victoria Beckham or Dakota Fanning.  But at that point, it’s too late.  You ate a lot of cheese and now all you can do is suck in your love handles as best you can and try not to fall down the stairs.  My pre-Fashion Week crisis was especially amusing this time around.  Precisely two days before the runway shows I went to for work, I could be found in a Buffalo Wild Wings eating wings and drinking beer.  Wearing stretch pants.  This incredibly Midwestern meltdown alone is enough to have me deported from New York City.  People who work in fashion here are not supposed to eat at Buffalo Wild Wings.  Or eat, for that matter.

Anyway, the whole point of this post is that, while seated in a spandex yoga pant, housing a Miller Light and some boneless wings, I received a text from a guy I used to date in high school.  He was coming into town at the end of the week and wanted to get together to “catch up.”  Knowing this gentleman, I had an inkling of what his idea of “catching up” entailed.  The last time we had seen each other was back in Wisconsin, where we’re both from.  After a long night of partying with other friends from high school, I had woken up naked in a stranger’s basement, next to an elaborate toy farm set complete with cows and hay bales.  Sheepishly, I accepted a ride home from my friend via his mom’s mini-van.  I would like to lie and tell you that this incident happened years ago… but it occurred in July.

Let’s backtrack a bit.  I met “Mike” my senior year of high school.  I was the female lead in the school musical and Mike’s best friend was the male lead.  I had not known either of them during the first three years of high school– we went to a big school.  Although I initially had a crush on Mike’s best friend (who played my love interest in the show), Mike and I started dating after the play ended.  Mike was one of those people who everyone knew was destined to be successful in whatever he did.  He was in all honors classes, had a 4.0 GPA, and spoke multiple languages.  The only two things I remember about our relationship are: he gave me some sort of slingshot monkey for Valentine’s Day (that I had no interest in but my dog really liked), and once he came over to pick me up and brought with him a bag of biscotti as an offering to my mom.  Although it was a nice gesture, we all giggled later about how he pronounced “bees-COE-tee.”

The length of our relationship has been a source of debate between us during the rare times we see each other these days.  He says we dated six months.  I think it was more like three and a half or four.  I do remember how we broke up, however.  While we were still together, he found out he had been accepted to the University of Pennsylvania.  It was his first choice school and he was ecstatic.  I was simultaneously happy for him and devastated myself, because I had just found out that I had NOT gotten into either of my top choice schools.  While I barely had a 3.1 GPA, I had an extensive theatrical resume and felt that I had rocked my auditions and my essays.   Come to think of it, devastated is an understatement.  I was absolutely destroyed when I didn’t get in.  While I was in a state of great depression, Mike (still my boyfriend at this point) was on top of the world.  I remember one of the last nights we hung out as boyfriend/girlfriend, he got mad at me because I thought “Penn” meant Penn State, not University of Pennsylvania.  He was thoroughly insulted that I could think HE would go to Penn State and upset that I had told my parents that was where he was going.  He was totally unconcerned with my situation, and, if anything, annoyed that I wasn’t being positive and fun.  He broke up with me the next day.

After high school, we would occasionally run into each other when we were both home for the holidays.  There were a few times when we got together and watched 1970s soft core porn in his parent’s basement for old times’ sake.  I also saw him in Boston once, while he was in town for some fraternity brotherhood thing (Mike has always surrounded himself with groups of men who love each other like brothers).  The first time we actually had a “fling” again was the aforementioned basement barn-set incident.  I hung out with Mike’s best friend a couple days afterwards and we laughed about that night.  I was surprised when he revealed to me that my relationship with Mike (ten years ago) had been his longest ever.  I couldn’t help but wonder why– he was now a producer for a TV show about fish, had money, apartments in two different cities, and did a lot of traveling.  It seemed like all that was missing was a perfect relationship to go along with his effortlessly successful life.  I have to admit I was slightly embarrassed to have fallen back into the old pattern with Mike, and to be talking openly about it with his best friend.

Fast forward to this week.  Mike texted me last night that I should meet up with him around midnight.  That’s a little late for me to be going out, but I wanted to make an effort to see him after our encounter in Wisconsin a few month prior.  If I could feel like we were friends, I would feel better about our recent meaningless hookup.  I arrived at the bar, hot and sober.  Mike and about seven of his college friends had come from some party at a club.  Mike looked cute and well-dressed as always.  He was already drunk, and put his hand on my thigh while leaning his body against mine as I perused the whiskey menu.  His friends looked on, seemingly intrigued that Mike had a lady friend in the city.  He went around the table introducing me to everyone.  Not just by their name, but by what they do and how they make a lot of money.  One person was in grad school at Princeton, another did something involving hedge funds and had just gotten married… everyone was well off and lived in a beautiful apartment, according to Mike.  I felt my face flush as Mike got back to me… Please don’t tell these people I work in a store.  He introduced me as working in fashion and told them that I have a master’s degree.  Later, he brought up my dad and how impressive his job, wealth, and lifestyle is– as if that was one of my main selling points to him.  The rest of the evening continued that way.  When Mike closed our tab, I offered to split it with him.  He responded that he made more money than he knew what to do with, and reminded me of this again when he paid for my cab later on.  While I was secretly relieved (my funds are running a little low this week), I felt inadequate next to this guy who was basically flaunting his assets… and I realized I didn’t know him at all.  We hadn’t been close before, even when we dated ten years ago, and now we were virtual opposites.  After the bar, we went to his friend’s gigantic apartment uptown, where I tried to talk to him about what was going on in my life.  Each time I began to speak he would cut me off or start making out with me.  Mike wasted no time in stripping down to his designer briefs– well, I’m not sure you could call them briefs because they kind of looked like a thong.  I sighed, resigning at last to the fact that he had only wanted to hang out with me for one reason.  As we parted ways, I felt a sense of relief at the closure I now had for my strange relationship with Mike.  He was the same as he’d always been, and we may as well live on two different planets.

What a long week– Chicken wings, Ricky Martin, runway shows, endless bottles of wine, partying, ex-boyfriends… I feel like I could sleep for three days.

Stay tuned for the other absurd scenario that I had this week involving a Fashionisto…

Zerkan the Great

14 Sep

For the past few weeks I have been bombarded by a man named Zerkan.  In one of his profile photos he is pumping gas, clutching the nozzle in front of his crotch while the hose dangles betwixt his legs.  Another depicts a nocturnal scene in the country, where large pillows and wicker furniture are arranged in a grassy field.  There is romantic lighting, a large screen showing a movie, and an over-sized wooden bowl filled with popcorn between two of the pillows.  The picture was clearly stolen from a Pier One catalogue… but his caption reads “My secret place for sexy-time in NYC.”  Right.  Did you purchase a quadrant of Central Park, Zerkan?  Under “On a Typical Friday Night I Am” he wrote “Going out to salsa party or hanging on my red couch.”  OKCupid told me that we are 63% enemies.  I should never have responded to this persistent Turk in the first place, but I was amused… and I rarely block anyone on OKCupid unless they are really out of hand.  Below is our conversation copy/pasted directly from my inbox.

(August 25th)

ZERKAN:  Heyyyy !! How Re u ? Today’s fantastic beautiful day , just like u. Hope U’re doing very well. So sorry for bothering u again. (Note: he had never messaged me before at this point)  Swear I have never seen a girl like u before adorable and amazing pretty. So if u dont have any plans yet, lets go out for drink something on Rooftop place in the city. -Zerkan

(August 26th)

ME:  Wow, that’s quite a message.  Any plans yet for when….. last night?  Tonight?  The rest of my life?

ZERKAN:  Hey hey hey! Thx for the message me finally. Any plans for tonight. I would like to get know u more drinks something with you Rooftop place in the city. So how’s ur day going ? -Zerkan

(August 27th)

ZERKAN:  Hey! Goodmorning. How are u ? Today’s fantastic beautiful day, just like you. Hope U’re doing very well. MAY I ASK YOU SOMETHING ? PLEASEEEE

(August 28th)

ZERKAN:  So U did not respond my message yet ? : ( ( (

ME:  What do you want to ask me?

ZERKAN:  I just want to talk with you more. U do look amazing pretty and different. If u give me a chance i’d like to get know u better.

ZERKAN:  How could i talk with you more ? U see How i am being persistent for get know u more ? Where do u live in Brooklyn ? I do live in Brooklyn too.

(August 29th)

ZERKAN:  Why dont u want to talk with me ? ? ? How did u like my pictures ?

(August 30th)

ME:  That’s just the way the wind blows, I guess.  Is your “sexy-time” picture from some suburban housewife’s Pinterest?

ZERKAN:  You are so sweet. Actually its coming from my friends catalogue. I will try to have same ambient for someone. Swear if you give me a chance for see you oneday , I will try best make sexytime for you : )

(August 31st)

ZERKAN:  MAY I ASK YOU SOMETHING ? PLEASEEEE

ME:  Last time you said that you didn’t even have a question.  You can’t fool me, Zerkan.

ZERKAN:  How could i talk with you more ? U see How i am being persistent for get know u more ? Where do u live in Brooklyn ? I do live in Brooklyn too nearby.

ME:  That is mildly frightening.

(September 1st)

ZERKAN:  Heyyyy !! How are you ? Today’s fantastic beautiful day, just like you. Hope U’re doing very well. So if you dont have any plans yet, lets go out tonight for drinks something Rooftop place in the city.

ME:  I’m sorry but it’s just not going to work out between us, Zerkan.  Also, you sent me that exact same message 2 or 3 other times… If it’s the message you copy/paste to girls on here, do you want me to edit it for you?   I spy a few errors.

ZERKAN:  No no no I just wrote it to you now bc u didn’t respond my messages back. I don’t know how could I show my effort for you ?  U see how I am being persistent for you. Please don’t think I am creppy or just looking someone for one night.

(September 2nd)

ZERKAN:  Hey !! How was ur day ? Please do not mad at me and just give me chance for drinks something with you oneday in  the city. PLEASEEEE

(September 5th)

ZERKAN:  Heyyy! How are u? Today is not amazing pretty day. Hope U’re doing very well. So Whats wrong about me ? Why don’t you want me to say that hiii ? : (

(September 6th)

ZERKAN:  I dont know wht should i have to do for get a message from you ? Let’s give me a chance for get know more each other!  PLEASEEEE

(September 8th)

ZERKAN:  Heyy. I am being persistent for you because i have never seen a girl before like u , fantastic beautiful and sincere. U look very different and real. I’d like to get know u more on my red couch!

I blocked him.  I did not want to “say that hi” and clearly he wasn’t going to stop pestering me.  On one hand, I felt bad because he’s so incredibly desperate.  On the other, you couldn’t pay me to get on that red couch with him.

Chad’s Chickens

6 Sep

“You’re a hard girl to pin down” my blind date for the evening mumbled as he led me, with the gait of a geriatric serial killer, to a tiny table in the back.  The bar was pitch black, but his white bald spot lit my way like a torch through a great forest.

“Chad” was referring to the fact that he had tried to get me to meet him at this bar every night at around 11pm for the past week.  Since 11pm is a little late for me to be making plans for the night, I had already been out with someone else or was staying in each time.  Even after I told him no, he would keep urging me to “just come over.”  This not only struck me as highly unattractive (basically begging me to come to his apartment when we hadn’t even met) but totally creepy.  After the third or fourth time suggesting the same bar, I asked what was the deal was with that bar.  He responded “It is close to my home and they let me bring my dog.”  Apparently he brought his large German Shepherd mix on all of his blind dates.

These factors combined would normally have been more than enough to convince me not to go on a date with this person.  However, I gave him a chance A) because he was from Wisconsin and B) because HE OWNED CHICKENS.  Under “My Self Summary” he wrote that he is a litigation lawyer who does woodworking in his free time and lives with a dog and five chickens.  As badly as I wanted to see these chickens in person, I simply will not risk getting murdered by going to a stranger’s apartment.  I’ve seen every “Law and Order SVU” episode ten times… I’m no fool.  So I settled for meeting Chad at his favorite bar instead of getting killed and having my chopped up body parts stuffed under his chicken coop.

Of course he made me come out to a bar that’s only convenient for him I had grumbled to myself on the way over, getting lightly soaked by the rain.  It always happens to be raining when guys choose a locale that is completely out of my way.  I walked seven or eight blocks from the train, finally locating the bar between some sketchy bodegas.  Chad arrived ten minutes after we had agreed to meet, even though I knew he lived just up the street.  “Sorry I’m late,” he said without making eye contact,  “I was eating garlic scapes from my CSA and lost track of time.”

Once we were seated at the tiny table in the darkest corner of the bar, his dog wandered over to me to say hello.  The dog was cute, Chad was not.  He was fairly short, balding, bearded, had on a faded t-shirt, and a questionable smirk.  One of the first things he shared with me was that he thought his dog had fleas because he kept scratching his butt.  He then pulled a clump of fur off the dog’s rear, set it in the middle of the table, and began dissecting it like an owl pellet.

I wasn’t even halfway done with the PBR he had bought me when he said “how about we get out of here and you walk me home?”  Was he joking?  We had been at the bar less than twenty minutes.  Not to mention he lived down the street and I had a thirty minute walk ahead of me.  I told him I’d at least like to finish my drink.  He rolled his eyes and said “Ok, I wasn’t trying to suggest you abandon your beer or anything…”  Not ten seconds later, he got up, grabbed his dog’s leash and said “Just leave your beer, let’s go.”  This guy was officially the worst.  He had shown up late, bought me a beer he didn’t even let me drink, then ordered me to accompany him back to his apartment– as if that’s how the whole “date” thing works.  I sighed and set my half-full can down on the table.  Once out the door, I announced I was going home.  He told me his street was on the way.  Unfamiliar with the area, it took me a few blocks to realize that he had lied and I was going the wrong way.  I called him out on his lie and he laughed and said “Now you have to come over.  I’ll let you drink my special cider and meet my chickens.”  I was way past the point of being lured by fowls.  I told him my answer was no and stormed off, barely even saying goodbye.  Naturally, it started to rain again as I backtracked in the direction from whence I came.  Irritated and soaked, I ducked back into the same bar we had just left and ordered another beer to wait out the rain.  I actually really liked the bar.  There was a DJ playing good music, it was dark, and there were several attractive guys there.

I always feel a bond with fellow Wisconsinites.  However, my experience with people from Wisconsin that I’ve met in New York has been less than reassuring.  Much like The Lying Lumberjack, Chad enjoyed building things with wood and dressing like he was out on parole.  Both seemed to be totally self-involved and inflexible.  I told my mom about Chad’s chickens before I went out with him and she said “Well he is obviously ahead of the curve.  It’s VERY trendy to own chickens.”

Sometimes I do miss Wisconsin.

The Night Raven

4 Sep

The Night Raven comes at night.  Swiftly, silently; he is unseen coming and going.

The Night Raven feeds on fine whiskeys and gins, breathing in his alcohol like cool mountain air.  He is smart.  Maybe too smart for his own good, and he has seen things I cannot imagine.  His thoughts hover in the humid darkness…… and wait for mine to catch up.  Pulsing candlelight frolics in the background, and, as gin splashes over my fingers, a wave of calm inexplicably washes over my erratic equilibrium.  He warns me about the dangers of opening up to men, letting them in, showing them my weaknesses.  He understands.  He has enjoyed the company of both sexes.

The Night Raven doesn’t see gender.  And he doesn’t see that my shirt is wrinkled; that my hair fell limp from the humidity two hours ago.  He opens a wounded wing to reveal his offering to me: a collection of three keychains and four magnets from his travels through Poland and Turkey.

I smile with my eyes.  I sip my gin.  I hold souvenirs from faraway places I can’t afford to visit in my hand.  I nod my head and confidently show him my weaknesses.

I look at his eyes instead of his scars while I do.