A guy and his girlfriend walk into the store. He heads over to the manga section while she looks at the impulse items at the counter. She has selected what she wants, and is taking money out of her purse, when he comes over to the counter.
To his girlfriend: “You’re 21 years old. You are too old to buy Silly Bandz.”
He turns to me and says: “Could I have ten boosters of Yu-Gi-Oh cards?”
Customer: “I haven’t read an Archie comic in thirty years.”
Me: “How come?”
Customer: “Because they aren’t as good as they used to be.”
Me: “How do you know, if you haven’t read them?”
Customer: “I look at the covers.”
Loiterer: “The problem with these new comics is that they just don’t hold their value on the resale market.”
Me: “You’re supposed to read them. Because you like them. Collectibility is a possible side benefit. Not the purpose.”
Customer: “People actually read this garbage for fun?”
There are over 100 beers on tap at Tuatara's. Every week they cycle new ones in and out. And because I'm a sucker for metaphor, this is where I choose to take dates. This was where Ben and I had our first non-date with Celeste, Trick, and Socialist Steve. This is where Jackie and I celebrated Sora's twenty-first birthday. This is where I used to go to write when I lived in Slummerville. I've spent so much time on the barstools at Tuatara's, you'd think I liked beer.
On Sunday nights Tuatara's has a spoken word/jazz show that I used to go to on a regular basis, but recently have been avoiding since the other poetry reading in town pays me to bartend, and one can only take so much poetry before alcoholic consumption becomes less a choice, and more a survival mechanism.
Early this afternoon, I made plans to meet Number One, a stage actor (read: waiter) for drinks. I neglected to take into account that it's poetry night. So as soon as I walk into the bar, I'm greeted by all sorts of people I know, but have no desire to sleep with.
I'm in the middle of explaining why it's been nearly a year since the last time I performed with the jazz trio when my phone, thank Okoawa*, buzzed.
#1: Sorry babe. Too tired to put on pants. Not coming out tonight.
Me: So don't put on pants. I'm just going to end up ripping them off of you later, anyway.
#1: That's very presumptuous of you.
#1: And hot. I'm on my way.
After fifteen minutes of insincere ""Has it really been two years since" you insulted my racial and sexual background because you're insecure in your blackness and masculinity "we talked? Wow. So what have you been" saying behind my back to people who are just going to tell me the next time I see them anyway "doing with yourself?", #1 shows up.
"I am ready to get my drink on!"
One hundred different beers on tap leads to both of us drinking a series of escalatingly alcoholic mixed drinks. Which is not, in any way shape or poor form, gay. Escalating alcohol leads to flirtation. Escalating flirtation leads to us heading back to his house. Which, of course, leads to pants flung on the floor, and "You know I usually don't put out this easily."
And then we do.
"So how usually do you not put out that easily?" I ask.
"A lady never tells." And I look around the room of his better than mine apartment. Lots of playbills and posters, a keyboard, and a surprising number of dresses for a...did I just sleep with a drag queen?
*- The God of Getting Out Of Awkward Conversations
Ben: “See that guy over there?”
Me: “The one crying, and singing Strong Enough by Cher?”
Ben: “Isn’t he cute?”
Me: “Well…not right now.”