Day 65: Playing the Field

I left my girlfriend, Sharon, several weeks ago because she was just too transparent. She tried to act all substantive on me, but I could see right through her.

I moped around until my buddy Hutch sat me down.

“Here, here, Joey. Pulchritude surrounds us in abundance offering you with ample circumstances to fill the vacancy of your affections.” Yeah. He really talks like that. He dresses that way, too.

“I’m not ready, pal.” I reached for his Cognac.

“Get ready. ‘Cause I took the liberty to set you an engagement tonight. You’ll love her. She’s a flower.”

What can ya do? A good friend sets you up, you face the disaster.

So I meet this girl, Daphne, at the steakhouse. She wasn’t exactly a flower—she was a tree. A tree nymph to be exact. She was beautiful, I’ll give Hutch that much, but she had no interest whatsoever in anything I wanted to do. You should have seen the look on her face when I mentioned the bonfire.

She ordered a sixteen-ounce ribeye and I ordered a New York steak. It was great until I notice every time I took a bite of asparagus a tear fell down her cheek. The whole night was a real downer. She refused my offer for a second date.

“Don’t fret it,” said Hutch. “It takes an attempt or two to winnow the chaff.”

The next night he had me dining with Veera, the vampiress. She was cold, which I liked. We got along well. We split an extra-rare porterhouse and she picked out this marvelous heavy red wine.

Very cultured, too, so I invited her to this starving artists exhibit, but when we got there and I tried to drag her in, she turned into a bat and flew away. “Can I have your number?” I yelled, but she was gone. I walked into St. Agnes Catholic Church alone and had a fair time looking at the paintings myself.

“Exemplary effort, chap.” I never understood why Hutch used the word ‘chap.’ He’s as American as me. He also said ‘right ho’ and ‘poppycock’ a lot. “You will absolutely adore Charlotte.”

Charlotte was a zombie. We went to a French Restaurant where she ordered Sautéed Cerveaux and I got a Sole Meunière. I have to admit the simple conversation did put me at ease, but by the time she was through tearing into her meal with her bare hands and drooling all over the table, I was done.

I went home and did what I promised myself I wouldn’t do. I called Sharon. Sharon was a bit agoraphobic, so I had to see her in her home, which wasn’t exactly proper so I called Hutch to chaperone. Hutch was our usual choice since he was her brother.

When she met me at the door, instinct got the better of me and I stepped into her for a hug and walked right through her. I turned around and smiled. “I missed you.”

In that hollow, husky voice of hers she moaned back. “I missed you, too.”

“All right, you love birds. Joey, why don’t you make some popcorn while I cue up a movie on the telly?”

On the way to the kitchen I turned back just in time to see Sharon’s hand pass through Hutch’s in an attempted high-five.


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