When Nicole came in, I was sitting off in my corner, writing, and doing pretty well. She was walking into a volatile situation and she had no idea. Things were starting to get ugly. Buddy of Chris was beginning to cheese the other patrons. He was hitting on the girls instead of pimping for Chris. He was out of control.
When she saw me, she was really happy to see me there. Happier than I am used to contending with. She waved across the room and said, “You’re back! Or, you’re still here!” She not only remembered my horrible beard, she remembered me. She remembered my story. Accelerated regularization at its best. And man, oh, man, she was looking good. She’s going to read this, and that means I probably can’t go back to The Cannery without freaking her out. Strike that. I’m already freaking her out, that’s why I can’t go back. ‘Cause here’s the thing. She’s really something. I actually entertained the idea of asking her to come to Vegas with me, before I overheard that she had a boyfriend of some years.
I don’t think I would have had the guts to ask her along anyway. The prospect of rejection is far less frightening than the possibility of her saying yes. What the hell would I do then? And just because she has a gift for making all her patrons feel special doesn’t mean that I actually am special. I saw it work. Whoever she talked to was the most important person in the world. Yeah, I know all that. In my head I know that, anyway.
So I sit here, late at night, writing about it and that’s all it’s going to be. Why? Well, let’s be realistic. I’m just passing through. Beautiful women who repaint their own cars aren’t looking for drifters. Of course, I could be wrong. I’d love to be wrong. But I’m right. (Still, Nicole, if I’m wrong, let me know.) But I’m right.
For those of you worried about Chris, he gave his number to one of the girls at the bar. Now I have to sleep. Adult Swim has given way to Tom and Jerry. Tom is drunk off his ass. Good kitty!