December 7, 2016
I distinctly remember November, just last month, I was thinking, "Game over. I'm old, fat, old and fat fat fat, I'm never going to have sex again. And even if I do I won't be able to relax and enjoy it, I'll be too self-conscious." Well you know the old saying. Never say never.
In December, on one of the rare days I was feeling hopeful and adventurous, I drove to Bardstown Road. It was a lively part of Louisville I hadn’t explored. I parked randomly and walked into the closest brew pub. If only I could have known walking into that bar, everything about my life from that day forward would be framed in terms of “Before Jeff” and “After Jeff”, would I have gone in? I don’t know the answer to that question.
I walked in and paused to look around. There were a group of men in the back, older fellows. They saw me and started waiving me back towards them. “Come on back here! Sit back here with us!” As is my usual style, I immediately started towards them. I love meeting new people, listening to their stories.
I slid into a booth beside a pleasant looking middle aged man, pretty much unremarkable in every way. So unremarkable I didn’t catch his name when he introduced himself. So unremarkable, I didn’t immediately check his left ring finger, something I do habitually. I didn’t even give him much of a look over at all.
I explained I was new to Louisville and as I did whenever I met locals, I asked the fellows to tell me some fun things to do. The knowledge of the fact I would more likely remain in the cocoon of my bed raised his nasty little head and stuck his tongue out at me, but I swatted him down.
Mr. Unremarkable pulled out a pen and grabbed a receipt and started writing on the back. For the life of me now I can’t remember what he said. I know he also wrote down the name of a good car repair shop. I remember I had the receipt for a long time. I wish I had it still. It pains me it’s misplaced, lost.
I chatted with the guys for a few minutes. Somehow I must have been sitting too close to Mr. Unremarkable, because my arm kept touching his. Even sometimes my leg would touch his hand or his arm. I kept trying to scoot over away from him, so I wouldn’t be in his personal space. I know how much it annoys people to have a large person invading their personal space. I’ve experienced it time and again, mostly flying for work. I’ve had such unpleasant experiences, even when people are gracious, I end up apologizing over and over for my body touching theirs. I try to pull myself up higher so I am taller and not wider, but of course that is futile. The physicality of you doesn’t change from hoping. You can’t hide your size.
And then the event I always dread, when the fun times are about to end, when someone says, “Well, we had better get moving along.” The guys started gathering themselves up to leave. And they were gone.
I pondered the list and thought about what I might actually do, but I knew nothing would come of it. At least not then, maybe in the future, when I felt better. Something I had been saying to myself for years, for decades.
And suddenly, Mr. Unremarkable was next to the table. I looked up.
“Can I talk to you for a minute, out by the back?” he asked.
“Me?” I responded.
“Are you sure?”
I gathered my things and followed him towards the back of the bar, all the while wondering if he was making a pass. “Nah, not possible,” I said in my head.
Instead, we get back there and he grabs me and starts kissing me and grabs my hand and puts it on his cock and it was GREAT. Then he starts talking about my hot sexy body. And I stepped backed and opened up my coat and asked, "Have you really looked at me?" And he says yes yes you're sexy and so on and so forth and etc. and well you know.
Mr. Unremarkable is Jeff.
“You will always fall in love and it will always be like having your throat cut, just that fast.”
-Catherynne M. Valente