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The Beachcomber

Published: March 10, 2015

I was at my favorite bar when a stranger bought me a drink.

Beachcomber: Come to Myrtle Beach with me Wednesday.
Me: I don’t know you.
Beachcomber: It will be our first date.

He was cute and tall. I thanked him for the drink.

Beachcomber: Your boyfriend wouldn’t like it.
Me: I don’t have a boyfriend.
Beachcomber: A husband?
Me: No such luck.
Beachcomber: Would you like one?

If my life were a romantic comedy instead of my life, I would accept his invitation, we’d fall in love and this column could finally end.

Beachcomber: I was married twice. Both my wives were named Melissa.
Me: We’re doomed. My name is Sarah.
Beachcomber: Do you want some weed?

I declined. We flirted through the night. He had a radio show I had never heard of. It didn’t sound entirely like a job, but who is a freelance writer to judge?

Beachcomber: Don’t worry, I’ll take care of you when we’re married. I make grown-up money.

After last call we shared a cab uptown. He put his arm around my shoulder. It was nice.

He kissed me. I kissed back.

He used tongue. I pulled away.

Beachcomber: That’s totally frigid.
Me: You did not just use that word in 2015.

He walked me to my doorstep.

Beachcomber: What kind of music do you listen to?
Me: I keep my radio on all day long when I work.
Beachcomber: Old school. I like that. What do you listen to?
Me: Classical.
Beachcomber: Like Stones, Dylan, Beatles?
Me: Like Mozart, Beethoven, Verdi. But Bob Dylan is my cousin. How’s that for trivia?

He is, distantly. Every Jew in the Northwoods is related to each other, and to me.

Beachcomber: So when I kissed you in the cab I was kissing Bob Dylan’s DNA?
Me: Some very small fraction, yes. Though fully 100 percent of his mitochondrial DNA.
Beachcomber: What’s that?
Me: It doesn’t matter.

It didn’t.

My block was empty and spooky. He started talking about New York City crime. There had been a vicious murder that week. Two men were arrested for holding a woman captive in a hotel room. They violated her repeatedly and she threw herself out of the window.

Beachcomber: To my mind, this is a victimless crime.

An existential joke? The victim died; therefore she no longer exists.

A tragic attempt to be funny?

Or controversial?

Or, despite my high hopes and fantasies, he was just that boor from the cab, who picks up women in bars, and I am just lonely and I like to be flirted with sometimes.

 

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