My phone is ringing. It’s 2 a.m. and no surprise – it’s Dan.
I hear static…drunken shouting… and then…. Dan’s voice breaks through, but sounds like it’s coming from miles away.
“HELLO YES -” Dan yells, “HELLO.”
I’m laying in bed, picturing Dan. He’s holding his phone out in front of him like a walkie-talkie, outside the 33 Speakeasy. His polar fleece is bunched up around his hairy stomach, and his pants? They are no doubt falling down, due to his open fly. He trots away to catch a taxi. I see him, in my mind, trying to light a bowl of weed while running, which undoubtedly leads to him setting his beard on fire…
“YES HELLO -” he continues. “HELLO.”
Now, I don’t always answer the phone at 2 a.m. But when I do, I just so happen to be in a good mood.
DISCLAIMER: Dan previously assured me that when he calls in the middle of the night, it’s not a booty call. It’s because his workday is from 8 p.m to 5 a.m. To him, calling at 2 a.m is his equivalent of my 2 p.m. So, if he calls and asks to hang at 5 a.m? It’s not a booty call!
“I AM IN A CAB,” Dan shouts, “ I AM ALMOST TO YOUR HOUSE NOW.”
Dan barges through my front door, and the stench of alcohol slaps me awake like a frozen seabass. The room becomes encapsulated in an alcohol-sweat cloud.
He collapses into my armchair, holding a practically-empty bottle of Labatt Blue.
“HELLO,” he says, with a bag of weed balancing on his chest. “WHAT’S NEW.”
The two of us stay up for an hour talking and drinking tea. Suddenly, Dan decides to climb the ladder to my loft bed and pass out with his clothes on. I didn’t want to sleep up there next to him, anyway. The putrid, alcoholic-sweat scent was a major turnoff.
I end up sleeping on the floor.
In the a.m, I put on dance music.
“Come on, wake up, we gotta get coffee before work!” I say.
Dan raises his body slowly, and opens his eyes as fast as a sloth on ketamine. He stares out blankly and distantly into the abyss.
“…All right,” Dan says.
We get breakfast at Spot. Dan pays, so I consider this a date. (The actual “dates” in this world are few and far between). Then, Dan needs to get back to his car, which he abandoned at Gordy’s Tavern. I make Dan drive us to Gordy’s, on the outskirts of the Cheektowaga/Amherst line, in my car.
While cruising down the 33, I ask Dan if he has ever engaged in road-head. (I’m not sure why).
“Why, ah, no.” Dan furrows his eyebrows.
“Oh, yeah, I did that before,” I say, absently. “Back in the day when I was in a monogamous relationship.”
After a minute of staring out the window, I look over. Dan has his penis completely exposed.
“You moron! I didn’t mean today,” I shout. “I’m already on thin ice with the B.P.D, I do not need a ticket for performing fellatio on a highway.”
I grab a bed sheet from my backseat (from the beach), and toss it over his lap.
We arrive at Gordy’s Tavern. I give Dan a half-hearted smooch in front, like the ridiculous Cheektowaga person that I am.
Is it weird that I consider Dan one of my best friends?
Nothing quickens a man’s pulse like being ignored. At least, that was the case with Eugene.
Back in the spring, it seemed as though our passionate fling would go on forever. It seemed as though the drunken, hedonistic evenings would never end. Actually, we only went out two, maybe three, times. But what can I say? Eugene has that je ne sais quoi.
However, that je ne sais quoi is also pourquoi I decided to cut him loose. Months ago, I grabbed Eugene by his tatted-up arms and placed him in the friend zone. Despite haphazard texts from Eugene, my desire to be more-than-friends with him is suppressed. I just don’t pay him that much attention.
Imagine my surprise to get a text from Eugene while I was gone for the weekend. He was all worried that I moved to NYC. We made plans to meet for coffee upon my return. Apparently Eugene wanted to discuss a “humorous situation” which happened to him “earlier in the week.”
I get to Romeo & Juliet’s as the clock strikes three. The place is closed. “Will re-open Wednesday,” declares a note on the door. I look at my phone, and read a text from Eugene. “R&J’s is closed,” it says. “Meet me at my house.” I drive a very short distance to Eugene’s home.
It’s always really welcoming, going to Eugene’s. I unlatch the chain link gate and walk right in. Romulus starts barking at me. Eugene rushes downstairs in navy sweatpants, applying citrus-infused wax to the tips of his mustache.
“I was planting garlic, then went for a jog,” he says. “Had to take a shower.”
He follows me into the kitchen and turns on the espresso machine. I turn around. We’re sandwiched in the breakfast nook, facing each other awkwardly.
“So, hi,” Eugene leans in, and inches towards my face with his lips. I back away with a quizzical expression and go sit in a chair.
“So, what’s new?” He asks, sitting across from me.
We catch up. Eugene talks about the kayak expedition he just took down the Mississippi River. I feel kind of awkward. What the heck is up with Eugene, anyway?
“Let’s go upstairs, listen to some music,” I say.
We go up to the den. Since the last time I was here, the leather lounge chair moved from the room on the right to the room on the left. It’s those subtle changes that remind you time has passed. We go to the room on the left, and I recline on the chair.
Eugene decides to perform a series of yoga stretches.
“I’ve just – become – so – flexible lately,” Eugenes says with a leg behind his head.
“Uh, yeah…” I pick a book from his shelf. It’s called “Sexual Styles” and I start to flip through it very intently.
“I love this book!” I say, focused upon the Table of Contents. “According to this, I’m a Histrionic Lover.”
I look up after a few seconds. Eugene has both of his hands down the front of his sweatpants. He tugs out the elastic band and pulls them down completely. I look down at “Sexual Styles” unaffected. What the heck is up with Eugene anyway?
“Let’s go for a walk,” I say. “To the bodega or something.”
It’s during the walk that I realize – I am totally desensitized to dicks.
What this all proves is that A) Eugene invented the Pre-Planned, Stone-Cold Sober-in the-Middle of the Day-Booty Call, and B) When men can’t expose what’s really on their minds, they expose their dicks.