April 5, 2004


“Temper your affect.”

It's awful somtimes how clumsy I am about boys, but most of the time I figure I'm the only one who realizes. This weekend I found out that I’m not fooling anyone.

I was hanging by the bar talking to Nicole. Nicole—with her shock of blond hair and tan, chiseled bicep. All eyes in the room were on her, but it was a gang of fat, rowdy, 30 year-old thugs from Queens who offered us drinks. They were crude mother fuckers and insisted that she flex her muscle in exchange for the beverages.
“You want a drink?” She asked me. I shrugged, “ok” and modestly she complied. Telling them, "you know this doesn't mean we're going home with you or anything like that, right?" So straight forward and yet, flirtatious enough to get what she wants. I don't think I could ever be so cooly charming.

I had what I considered to be polite conversation with the portly, somewhat pathetic gentleman who bought my drink. I didn’t intend to talk for long, but I couldn’t figure out how to end it. His friend came up after a few minutes and half shouted, “get her number now, ’cause I wanna leave.” This was probably the most awkward moment of my life, but there was no way in hell that I was surrendering my phone number so I shook both their hands and said “nice meeting you, thanks for the drink” before slipping back to where Nicole had already joined the others.

After a few more minutes past a large pock-marked man in a leather jacket came up to me, I recognized him from their group. He said in stern careful words, "you need to temper your affect on men. You don't know what you're doing, and my friend, he's totally lost it. Learn how to temper your affect." I wanted to tell him to fuck off, but instead I nodded. I was annoyed, but more-so I was embarrassed and a little guilty feeling.

“Temper your affect.”

I didn’t want to talk to his friend even for a minute, but it seemed to mean so much to him and maybe because I was drunk I was emitting all kinds of false warmth, saying shit like, “you live in Queens and went to BU? Wow, what do you know! What a coincidence!” As if I thought we might be soul mates and that perhaps he should propose on the spot so we could have a big June wedding and then settle down in Whitestone where I’d pump out five kids and nag him every weekend to finish the deck.

I’m always too nice to people I don’t give a shit about and too afraid to talk to the ones I’m interested in. Next time I’m going to say “thanks for the drink,” and wander off to rub up against to someone sexy. That’ll teach him to buy drinks for strange girls with flimsy arms.

Posted by on April 5, 2004 12:52 AM