Picking up Women at the Gas Station

17 10 2009

People freak out about meeting other people on the internet. They could be serial rapists or serial killers. I would have to say you have the same chance of meeting them on the internet as you do in real life.

Jessie was driving her shitty little Saturn. I was sitting in the back seat. A big red truck drove along side of us and honked. They were honking because they approved of our rainbow sticker. We pulled into a gas station and the truck pulled into the gas station across the street. Before we left, the red truck drove over to our side. A short little Mexican woman jumped out. Somehow Jessie arranged a date between me and this woman, Esme.

It was almost a blind date. I didn’t know her. We danced at Diversions, and I brought her home. And then she didn’t leave for 2 months. Esme lived on 16th street in an olive green house with her mother and the 8 year-old son she had when she was only 13. The kitchen walls and ceiling were brown with grease. There had been a fire. Tester noodles were crusted on the backsplash.

Her mother wore oxygen and was too fat to tie her own shoes. She couldn’t move very fast, but her voice carried and she scared me a little. I met many of her friends and family that commented on my light eyes. I only ever caught half the conversation, because it was always in Spanish. Esme drove a gold Camero with naked women silhouettes. It didn’t run very well and spent most of the time parked in her backyard. I didn’t really think anything about her not working, because I was a college student. A lot of us didn’t work or didn’t work that often. But I think she was dealing. And that was why she was on probation. Only I didn’t understand this until later.

I was 21. I believed what people told me. It only lasted 2 months, and I would have ended it sooner, but I was scared how she would react. I caught her in lies. Was it an overdose or a brain tumor or multiple personality disorder? Esme wasn’t educated enough to keep the lies believable. Instead of picking one lie, she would combine and overlap them where they didn’t make sense. I wasn’t stupid, only new to liars and manipulators.

She stole my chocolate one day. I think it was intended to be funny. But I’m serious about my chocolate. I tried to get it back, and she was rather rough about it. I realized while we wrestled on the floor that she could hurt me and wouldn’t care if she did. 

There was something mean about her. She had this kitten for a while, but as soon as she saw another kitten that she liked better she threw the old kitten out. She said it was ugly.

Esme had been looking forward to going to the graduation dance with me. She had just bought a new outfit. A couple of days before the dance, I broke up with her via letter. Jessie delivered it. The next day there was a box of things on the porch, pictures of us together with her face cut out and everything I ever gave her. She requested I return everything that she ever gave to me. I didn’t. I still have my broken hematite ring, the glass fang with a bubble of mercury and some pesos from Mexico. I don’t have a single picture of her though.

 Jessie said she saw her drive by the house a few times in her red truck (really her fiancés red truck, the fiancé she had the entire time) But we moved. I didn’t see her again until Tulip Time. She acted like we were real close, called me some endearing term. I kept on walking. 

I heard about her later through the lesbian grapevine. Sylvia shook her head in amazement, “You dated Horse Hair?” “Why do you call her that?” I asked. “Because she had a fucking mullet.” Sylvia said that Horse Hair had dated her girlfriend Erica. At one point she came to D&W with a loaded gun and waved it around. And another friend of mine had dated her sometime later and got a disease. Esme might have had bad hair, but she got around.


Memories of Dating a Cougar

16 10 2009

The last time I saw Beatriz must have been over 5 years ago. When my couple of dates with her daughter, Carmen were not so remote. When I looked more like myself then with the blonde spiky hair. Beatriz asked me if I had a girlfriend or something. She remembered that I had dated Carmen. But I can’t remember how the conversation started. Or maybe Carmen had asked Beatriz to ask me. That’s when Bea’s cheeks were fuller. Before the dentures. Before her skin turned from olive to pasty grey.

Before the date with Carmen. I worked with Bea on 2nd shift at the Nursing Home—washing up residents after they dug themselves out and finger painted with their own shit. Ah, those were the days.  Bea had perfectly curled hair and dark lipstick with liner. There was something elegant about her. She was only in her 50’s then. Now she’s a great-grandma. So I can only assume that one of Carmen’s kids is the parent.

Seems like I met Carmen on Yahoo personals. At the time, I was living with Jessie and Mel. It was during my serial monogamous rebound relationships–after Joe, after my 2 day stay in Pumpkin Town. It was after Horse Hair. January, February, March 1999? No it had to be March, because I was already hired in at the hospital. Our first date was at Ponderosa. I had never eaten at Ponderosa. It was before I knew what good food was.  She brought her children. They had bright green or blue eyes. And I had to touch them otherwise give them Ojo.  That’s when I learned about the Evil Eye. If you look at a child and want to hold them and then don’t, they get sick with the Evil Eye.

Our second date was at—fuck I can’t remember the name. Now Rumor’s bar, but it was a lesbian bar then. She wanted to smoke her cigarette outside. Carmen said they wouldn’t let her smoke her “special” cigarettes inside, because they stunk too much. So we stood outside in the parking lot or maybe we were sitting in her car. It didn’t smell like a cigarette. Her “special” cigarette was of the MaryJane brand, but I didn’t really know about that then.

I think she kissed me on the cheek before she let me out of the car. Maybe I let myself out of the car. And I never saw her again until the other day. Goddamn, I would not have recognized her. Except Bea was there, and I recognized Bea. And she introduced Carmen.  She had been a hot 40 year-old Latina with her mother’s hot lips. Now she was a rough 50 year old with pockmarked skin and pajamas.  I don’t think she recognized me by face or name. I was some stranger amidst an information exchange. But what are 2 dates that I can’t clearly remember? 2 dates and a few e-mails 10 years ago doesn’t lend itself very well to tangible memory. It’s so distant and fuzzy, it might not have ever happened.

Not long after our last date, Jessie and Mel saw Carmen making out with some man in a truck. Carmen saw them see her and she ducked away. Looking back I think the whole date thing with Carmen was a set-up. I suspect she was friends with Horse Hair. They lived on the same street. Things with Horse Hair didn’t end well and there was stalking involved. Stalking that might have continued, had I not moved. Maybe Carmen had been sent as a spy. But it never amounted to anything. Maybe Horse Hair was trying to find out if I still talked about her. Which I didn’t. So there was nothing to find out.

But 10 years later I have these faint memories, and I wonder if I’m the only one who remembers or am I only confabulating. Memories fail. I see that now. Do I remember how it really happened or how I think it happened?