Thursday, August 17, 2006

The Lengths To Which I Will Go.

Whenever I get bored and restless, whenever the prospect of going to bed at 9:30 terrifies me, I decide that I should either gamble or go to a bar. Each offers such marvelous unknowns and opportunities. This is well-covered territory. So the other night I went to a local pub and had a few drinks. Alone. Watched the crowd. Fiddled with my cell phone. Pretended that someone was calling me, so as to allay my self-consciousness about being alone in a bar. I wanted to leave. I uttered some fake parting words to a friend who didn't exist to a cell phone that was off. I paid $6 for my beer. Then I got the bright idea to take a cab to the only strip club I know about in this whole city. I knew it was a terrible idea, and an awful waste of my rather limited resources, but o, the possibilities!

Now, the interesting part: I hopped in a cab and told the driver the approximate intersection. I commented on the bouquet of roses that he had, bizarrely, attached to the dashboard. He didn't hear me. I repeated, "North and Kingsbury."

"V.I.P.'s? You going to V.I.P.'s?"

My reflex on this evening, as it was on many evenings previous, was to lie.

"Oh, no. I'm not going there. That is a fun place though. Just here at the corner, that's fine."

And so he dropped me off and began to execute his U-turn and get back to a main thoroughfare. I began to cross the street and make my toward the neon, the techno, the cheap-looking silhouettes. I took two steps and realized that if I continued toward the club in plain view of the cabbie, I'd be confirming his (well founded) suspicion that I am a sleaze-bag who had just lied to him. So I changed course. I yawned. Nonchalance is key. I pretended to get another phone call again, and I walked briskly. Purposefully. Away from the club.

Once the brakelights of the cab had gone safely over the hill about a quarter of a mile away, I figured the coast was clear. So I made a 180-degree turn and retraced my steps toward the club.