For those of you not from Memphis, Beale Street is Memphis' less than equivalent version of New Orleans' Bourbon Street. Bars are open until all hours of the night, non-bottle adult beverages as open containers are permitted and of course we have the famous Beale Street Flippers. The Flippers are young, black kids that rap, dance, and perform acrobats in the middle of the closed off street. It is a great place to gawk at the jackasses or perhaps to become one yourself.
Whenever JB and I get together to go 'downtown' we always end up with interesting stories. Like the time JB fell in-love with that J-named fella, while I was stuck listening to his jack-off of a best friend, Adam, allnight, "I'm a private investigator working on a top secret case in Millington." His story was unlikely and so was mine. I was a flight attendant who was engaged to a FedEx Pilot, I had the biggest rock ever on my finger, but our drinks were paid for all night. Or how about the time when JB and I went out on July 7th to celebrate my ‘I'm-Not-Turning-29 Birthday,’ JB ended up with a snaggled-tooth disaster following her all over Silky's. It is quite a miracle that the only photo she has of him is the one I am in. The photo of the two of them miraculously "did not take." Our last trip in September is no exception.
JB and I decided to go to Beale Street on Saturday, September 22. She drove us to the top of the Peabody Parking Garage high above Memphis. It was really only like 5 stories. We managed to find an open parking space, next to a brand-new, maroon Jeep with the extended cab. JB and I begrudgingly trekked up to the elevator, only to share it with the owner of the Jeep and his two friend-girls. The Jeep driver was smoking in the elevator; I was annoyed at his smoking. I leaned in to JB's ear and whispered, "Who the hell does this guy think he is trying to kill us in the elevator? He won't stop looking at me!" The banter in the elevator was pleasant.
JB and I headed to the Flying Saucer as the people from the elevator went elsewhere. Many beverages later, and after my bad judgment of giving the wrong guy my REAL phone number and after having been booty-groped by the same wrong guy, a real AssHat, at the Double Deuce, JB and I escaped to Alfred's.
JB and I danced our asses off to the Madonna cover bad playing"Material Girl" and "Like a Virgin." We were both sweaty or should I say delightfully glowing. Naw! I was sweaty and I have the photos to prove it. We were heading to the bar to purchase another beverage when I ran into the guy from the elevator. He was a nice change from the five text messages and three voice mails left by the"I can't believe I'm going to be hittin' that ass later, tagging that shit tomorrow" AssHat.
Yes, can you believe the boldness of AssHat? I just met him and as far as he could think I was his property and apparently we were going to be 'knocking boots' quite quickly. Even eight weeks after I gave him my phone number I'm still receiving drunken voice mail messages at 4:30am and random text messages from AssHat. I have never returned one call or text to him and yet he still insists on contacting me.
The elevator guy bought JB and I drinks. The conversation was going so well that I sat down to talk, JB went to dance. He and I were in the middle of a conversation when he "had to tell me asecret," apparently the secret involved his tongue being halfway down my throat because not only was I kissing him, but I was blatantly making out with a complete stranger in a crowded bar surrounded by his friends.
At the moment I was "that girl," again. You know who I am talking about, that drunk girl that gets a little tipsy and all of her friends have to babysit her because if she steps away you won't know which corner of the bar she will be in making out with a complete stranger. Yes, I admit, that was me and I have a habit of kiss strangers.
Did I mention before that one of his friend girl's had professed her undying-love to elevator man? No? That is because I didn't know either until after we sucked face. We parted like the Red Sea and I turned to see if JB had returned from the dance floor.
As I glanced to the other side of the table there she was, glaring. I was blushing. JB had one hand on her hip and the other strangling her beer bottle. Her eyes were piercing me and bulging out of her head. Her nostrils flared and her lips were securely pressed in disappointed shock. It was priceless! She looked at me and I knew exactly what she was thinking. Her glaring eyes were screaming, "Whatthe eff are you doing? You have a boyfriend you live with at home!" But she said, "Gather together so I can take your picture." Oh... her sweet revenge.
When I came clean to one of my roommates, Edward, and showed him the photo of us he said, "You must have been wearing beer-noculars." In the drunken moment, I don't remember anything other than the guy at the bar I was kissing had dark pools for eyes that I fell into. I was tempted to threaten that I would not be drinking in public anymore, but we all know that is not possible. Besides, I find Elevator Man attractive.
The rest of the evening, alright it was early morning because we didn't leave Beale Street until 4:30am; the girl with the undying-love was shooting daggers directly into my face. I smiled. I could see that she was imagining a slow and painful death for me. To retaliate I did what any other girl would do. I smiled and made sure to kiss him while she was glaring directly at me. And I was so nice to her. She knew what I was doing and he just saw me being nice to her. It was a win-win!
JB, Elevator Man, his friend-girls, and I all walked back to the cars together. Elevator man and I stopped at the vehicles to say goodbye or to give each other strep tests, I really don't know which. In the background I could hear the girl with the undying-love bitching about me. Apparently, I learned later, that she bitched about me their entire drive home, "Oh, so you have something for Miss Blue Eyes, Long-hair, Big-Titties...don't you?"
Isn't my new nickname perfect? I just love it!
JB lectured me all the way home about already having a boyfriend. Reminding me I would ruin my relationship if Rhine found out about ElevatorMan. She didn't know that Rhine refuses to claim me as a girlfriend. She doesn't know that earlier that day he declared that after unofficially dating for well over a year he has decided that he is holding me back and I should date other men. That is just the tip of the iceberg.
True to fashion and as he promised, Elevator Man called me four days later. I waited five weeks before I returned a text message; some things are just worth waiting for. But the truth is I had to work up the courage to return a message, I was nervous and second guessing myself. He immediately called me, as I picked up the phone he said,"I knew you wouldn't forget me," I could hear him smiling on the other side. "I want to take you out, how about Monday?"
We decided on Tuesday because it was more convenient to me. He texted me on Monday afternoon to reschedule for Thursday November 8, which was fine I had other things I could be doing. On Thursday he texted to confirm our date for that evening. All of this it was very new to me; it was all nice, gentlemanly even.
Here is where I am sure most of you are asking, "What about Rhine?" So? What about him? There is nothing about him, he is NOT my boyfriend. Rhine doesn't know any of the above story; I'd like to keep it that way. And if he did know, he wouldn't care. Yes, I know for a fact, so I just leave him out ofthe loop.
At 4 o'clock Thursday afternoon Rhine called me to ask me for a favor,"Hey, do you have any plans tonight?"
"No, why?" It wasn't so much a plan as it was a date. It's more of a lie by omission.
"When you go home tonight will you clean the crock pot so that I can cook dinner?"
"Sure," I said.
At five I race to the house, clean the crock pot, plaster my face with make-up, pin my hair back, tell Edward "You don't know where I am," Edward knows and I rush out the door before Rhine gets home.
I go on the date with the guy I met on Beale Street; his real name is J-squared. Yes, he has a real name, reference "Naming the Puppy." We both work in the vicinity near Cozymel's on Poplar, so we met there after work. We were supposed to meet at 6pm for drinks and just this once in my life I am actually on time. I climbed atop the benches in my four and half inch, red,stiletto Enzo's, with my fists clenched and yelled in a tribal, guttural,monosyllabic grunts, "I was ON TIME!!!" I sat there patiently and waited. J-squared was late.
We go to the bar for drinks, he drinks some sort of beer, and I drink more Diet Coke than I have ever previously had in my life. Caffeine buzz! We talk, he is nice. Like me, he was raised Catholic. He talks more, he is nice. When we first met he told me he had two children, apparently he has magical Sea Monkey children because once on the date he has three kids: 14, 9 and 7. He has full custody,which is nice and tells me a little something about him.
Two women he previously worked with randomly show up. The one whispers too loudly, "She's pretty; try to keep her. Good luck!" He talks more, he is nice and we move to a table to have dinner.
He is a liberal, but he is nice. He has a full-time job with benefits. He is 10 months into starting his own company, and he is nice. He would rather spend $10,000 dollars a year on a social life than going to grad school. He talks too much.
Before we leave he asks me out again for the next night, "I want you to meet my friends. How about Moffat's for karaoke tomorrow night?" At first I agreed, but once I got home and asked Edward about what he thinks about J-squared's request to meet his friends. Edward said he thinks he might want to show me off and parade me around, like a girlfriend. Eeeek! I'm putting on the breaks; he said the word that has me stop in my tracks. I decide I will be too tired to go out on Friday night.
J-squared boxed up my leftover food, opened the restaurant door,opened my car door and gave me a sweet, soft peck on the lips. It was cold outside, or maybe I was cold and we were just standing there...and he was still talking.
Finally, we parted ways at 9:35pm. I had just over 15 minutes to get home before Rhine and Edward would be coming home from lacrosse practice.
I rushed home with a few minutes to spare. When Rhine came upstairs to the bedroom, he told me how hard I am to get ahold of. I guess you could say that, he called and texted several times while I was on my date.
As the gentleman I believe him to be, J-squared called me the next day to tell me how much he enjoyed our date and that he would like to spend more time with me, he also slipped in a compliment, "You are beautiful." It is very nice.
So when is 'just nice,' nice enough?
I really don't know...it has been so long since I have gone on a date...and he doesn't have any weird quirks, like immediately asking me to marry him or trying to get me into bed, or a third eyeball in the middle of his forehead...the Sea Monkey child was kind of odd, but still he was just nice.
I obviously don't have the answers, and I won't pretend to know them. On this one, I am just going to take it day by day. I'm not settling, but nice is enough for a second date.